UW School of Medicine Alumni Association
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From Epidemiologist to Podcast Host: Celine Gounder, MD ’04, ScM, FIDSA
Medical journalist uses her passion for science and storytelling to tackle health disparities.
Sometimes the best medicine begins with a well-told story. Medical journalist Celine Gounder, MD ’04, has covered the Ebola outbreak, the Zika virus, the coronavirus pandemic, and the opioid overdose and gun violence epidemics in print and on television. Now, Gounder hosts and produces the podcast American Diagnosis, on health and social justice, and the podcast Epidemic, offering in-depth coverage of the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19) outbreak.Read More >
A rural pathologist is building a group home for his son — and other adults with autism.
Clay was 11 years old the first time he went to a psychiatric hospital.
“We had to call an ambulance to take him out of our house,” says his father, Zachary Weber, MD ’06. “He was thrashing and kicking and breaking doors.”
Although they love their son dearly, Weber and his wife, Mindy, knew that sending him away was necessary — partially to protect their younger son, Wesley. “Clay was starting to throw things at us and hit us,” Weber says.Read More >
One of our first WWAMI students speaks to the power of relationships in rural family medicine.
Around the turn of the last century, Louise Renkin took a forested wagon trail from downtown Seattle to get to her classes on the University of Washington campus. She was earning a degree in English, and she was also a bit of a pioneer, remembers her grandson, Richard (Dick) McLandress, MD ’74. Renkin joined the first-ever women’s Husky rowing club in 1905. Later, she became a teacher at Wenatchee High School.Read More >
Outside Her Comfort Zone
Physical therapy alumna and Paralympic medalist Megan Fisher loves a challenge.
“I'm very good at being uncomfortable,” says Megan Fisher, DPT ’14. For instance, last June, Fisher bicycled over 200 miles in blistering heat, and she recently climbed Cotopaxi, one of the world’s highest active volcanoes.
She has done all this without the lower half of her left leg. “There is this saying: Two legs, too easy,” Fisher says.Read More >
Finding relaxation — and a way to help patients — at the pottery wheel.
There’s a weight that comes with treating very sick patients. For pulmonologist Joshua Benditt, MD ’82, releasing that weight is essential to well-being. At the end of a difficult day, he’ll often decompress in his home studio, throwing clay on a pottery wheel.Read More >
A Vote of Confidence
Faculty members establish a visionary scholarship.
When Eli Luna was a boy in Idaho, he remembers tagging along with his grandma while she went to visit neighboring Latino families.
As a liaison between the public school system and migrant workers, Luna’s grandmother met with parents, encouraging them to enroll their kids in school; as a former migrant worker, she had insight into their culture and needs. For Luna, it was a powerful lesson about the value of education — and the importance of making connections with underserved populations.Read More >
Helping Science Thrive
Putting inclusion front and center.
Amanda Bradley is a PhD candidate in molecular and cell biology. Richard Gardner, PhD, is her mentor. We sat down for a conversation with the two researchers, who received a Gilliam Fellowship for Advanced Study from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. The fellowship’s purpose? To foster diversity and inclusion in the sciences.Read More >
The Feldsher’s Daughter
A physician assistant follows in her mother’s footsteps.
Growing up in Ukraine, Iryna Kylyukh, PA-C (MEDEX Seattle Class 50) remembers that her mother never hid her work from her seven children.
“I remember her telling us all these stories,” says Kylyukh. “She was in an ambulance car — just like a paramedic — but it was just her and her driver. She would deliver babies in that car.”Read More >
The Big Leap
From the circus to medical school, one student charts his own course.
Jonathan Trejo doesn’t remember the exact moment he decided to become a doctor, but he remembers the precise moment he wanted to feel free.
He’d just broken up with his boyfriend and found himself, alone on his 24th birthday, at Cirque du Soleil. Even in his sadness, he was astounded by the strength, grace and joy of the acrobats.Read More >
An alumni couple reflects on their lives together.
It was the first day of medical school, and Stefan Chimoskey — clutching a cup of coffee — was hurrying to his seat in the lecture hall. Then his heart stopped: There was a pretty, dark-haired young woman at the bottom of the stairs. Seeing the cup, she smiled at him and said, “Hey, that looks good.”
In what was to become a family legend, Stefan Chimoskey, MD ’99, MBA, extended the cup and blurted, “Would you like some?”Read More >