Nicole Parentala '22
Early in my high school career, the National Youth Leadership Forum on Medicine in Boston exposed me to what a future in healthcare could offer. After shadowing a handful of physicians who became irreplaceable mentors to me, I learned that they didn’t see their work as a job but as both a calling and a lifestyle. Just as they were unable to see themselves doing anything other than practicing medicine, I found myself feeling similarly following my time spent on recurring medical service trips to Honduras.
My first experience in Central America as an undergraduate student established my love for serving those in great need globally. My time on each mission consisted of serving in week-long, mobile primary clinics, offering care for both acute and chronic problems as well as vision and dental services to patients. With each subsequent trip, my time spent with the Honduran people affirmed my dream for being a vital leader on a healthcare team and taking on the responsibility for patients’ minds, bodies, and spirits. Being able to witness the positive effects on someone’s health as a result of my interventions is why I feel my purpose lies in medicine. UNE COM certainly has provided me with the privilege to learn in a prestigious, healthy, and inspiring environment that fosters my interests in both global health and pediatrics.