What Alumni Are Saying

Isahaq Abdullahi


I felt that medicine was a subject I could get into that would allow me to contribute in a positive way to people’s lives. It was a subject that I grew to love given my interest in biology and physiology. It has been a fulfilling career that always provides challenges to overcome. Obstetrics and Gynecology provides a wide variety of therapies and treatment options to address women’s health issues.

Dr. Esse

Abdulrazak Esse

I pursued a career in medicine because of my love of science and my desire to help people. Medicine is a lifelong learning process and is also a bit like being a detective. The patient tells you their complaints and through the interview process and labs/imaging/consultants, you arrive at a diagnosis. Sometimes you are right and sometimes you need to do a bit more detective work. I enjoy being able to learn, diagnose and treat patients and help them during their time in the hospital.

Adebisi Alimi, MD

Adebisi Alimi

 At an early age, I was fascinated about how medications/vaccines work in the human body and coupled with my love for science fueled my desire to become a physician. Medicine allows me to help people when they are at the most vulnerable time of their life and helps me foster a long term relationship with my patients which is a true blessing of being a physician. 


Anna Magembe Juern

I have always wanted to help people in a profound way, and healing/taking care of humankind in the capacity of a physician was the best way to fulfill my dream. Growing up in Tanzania and Botswana in Africa, there were no dermatologists that I knew of therefore I was drawn to the subspecialty. After moving to the US, I also realized there is a paucity of dermatologists of color and I wanted to fill that gap.

Anthony Williams cropped

Anthony Williams

[Medicine] is the perfect blend of dynamic problem solving, empathy, teamwork, and applied science.  My training at the University of Minnesota (medical school & residency) has been fantastic. So much, in fact, that I continue to brave Minnesota winters even though each year for the last nine years I've promised myself it will be my last.


Christopher Warlick

Not sure what drew me to medicine originally.  I have always wanted to be a doctor for as long as I can remember. I chose urology as a specialty, because it is a great blend of surgery and long-term patient relationships.

Cuong Pham

Cuong Pham

My community and family have given me so much and medicine is one way for me to give back.  The moments I have seen people lift their lives up from me just listening or advocating will always be priceless. 


Eduardo Miguel Medina

Family Medicine allows me to practice a full spectrum of care from pediatrics, to geriatrics, to obstetrics, primary care and prevention and hospital medicine while supporting the family as a functional unit in the health of many patients.


Edward Mairura

I loved math and science when I was in high school and it seemed to come to me naturally. I also perceived myself in high school to want to use this love for science to one day help people and make a difference in the world. Medicine seemed to have the direct impact that I was seeking. When I shadowed doctors in hospitals in trying to understand medicine, I fell in love with it and decided this is what I wanted to dedicate myself to for my career. Once this decision was made in high school, the rest seemed to fall in place through God's grace.

fran wu

Fran Lebajo Wu

I initially worked as an engineer in the medical device industry, but it was medicine’s ability to touch individual lives in a personal and profound way that made me realize my true calling to become a doctor. Even before this, it was my goal to serve others in cross-cultural settings, and medicine has been a great fit for that. Though medical training was a long, hard road, it was worth getting to this point, and I have never once regretted changing my career.


Hope Ukatu

As an American-born Nigerian, I became intimately familiar with the stark differences in resources available here in the states versus in my parents' home country. Those differences are often a matter of life and death, and I grew up in an environment where reminders of this were painfully frequent and close-to-home. News of yet another family member, friend, or neighbor dying unexpectedly of preventable or easily treatable illness remains commonplace. This inspired me from a young age to pursue a career in medicine, where I might contribute to efforts to improve access to quality healthcare both at home and abroad.

jenny zhang

Jenny Zhang

Medicine is an exciting career path that can take you many different directions and help people through various avenues, whether it's through direct patient care, advocacy and policy, research, or education. It's a career where I will always be able to find something that invigorates me.

jimmy huang

Jimmy Haung

I felt at a young age great affinity for biology and pursuing work that directly helps and impacts others. Medicine allows me to do so and at the same time keeps me on my toes as it is continually evolving as new information constantly streams in. Internal medicine provides a wide variety of pathology and conditions and keeps me continually interested. It is very gratifying work helping others.



John A. de Gorostiza Villanueva

As a physician, I am honored to have the privilege of forging a covenant of trust with my patients, who vulnerably share their hopes and concerns with me. In return, I validate my patients’ existence in this world by empathetically listening to them and giving them a sense of worth. With self-worth, my patients can hopefully take proactive measures to respect their bodies and follow my recommendations to sustain their overall health and function. 

julen harris

Julen Harris

My goal as a physician is to serve not only as a clinician, but as an advocate for my patients' well-being both inside and outside of the clinical setting, and to train future medical practitioners to think beyond their exam rooms in terms of caring comprehensively for their patients.


Lan Luu

I met a lot of awesome Med-Peds physicians during medical school training that showed me what this specialty has to offer. I love taking care of adults and children with complex medical needs. It’s never a boring day in my specialty! There’s something special about switching from talking to parents about their newborn to having meaningful goals of care discussion with my older adult patients. I received amazing training at the University of Minnesota Med-Peds program. 

liz alm

Liz Medina Alm

Medicine is the vessel that allows me to serve my community through a profession that I am continually intellectually stimulated by and spiritually passionate about.

june lightbourne

Marissa Lightbourne

My goal is to help kids with endocrine disorders transition into adulthood. Why endocrinology? I like medicine that involves physiology. When you understand the pathways about how the body functions you can change the course of the disease. This can be as simple as controlling diabetes can decrease heart disease or as complicated as apolipoprotein particles directing the clearance of lipids.

Michael Kim Cropped

Michael Kim

I am an Internal Medicine & Pediatrics Academic Hospitalist who loves working with both children and adults. Every day I work I look forward to the challenges and joys of working with a wide variety of patients, staff, and learners.

monica youssef

Monica Youssef

It's fairly simple, really. I grew up in a culture where one of 4 different fields was generally favored: Engineering, Dentistry, Pharmacy, and Medicine. Back in Egypt, one of these careers allowed one both job security and professional respect. Because my parents are Egyptian immigrants, I was influenced to possibly consider one of these 4 fields from a very young age. I found in primary and secondary school that I had a natural affinity for the biosciences as opposed to mathematics, thus considered one of the 3 health fields as above. The more I progressed in my undergraduate rotation, shadowed, learned about the careers, the more I felt that medicine was more appropriate for me. I see things very holistically and really enjoyed the possibility to incorporate the biosciences, social sciences, psychology and spirituality, and teaching as a means to provide healing. I was attracted to the several avenues and opportunities one can take with Medicine as well. The more I have progressed through medical training, the more I have been persistently validated that this is the right field for me.

nan lin

Nan Lin

Pediatric neurology had the perfect combination of working with the pediatric population and their families as well as the cognitive challenges of neurology. I also had an excellent mentor in this field that was very supportive and represented the type of physician that I wanted to be. 

NgozikaNgozika Okoye

As a child, I had an inquisitive mind and I found the inner workings of the human body intriguing. I enjoyed helping people and was always the first on the scene with my bright orange lunch box full of ointments and bandages when my siblings sustained minor injuries during our adventures as children so naturally, I gravitated towards a career in medicine.



For me, medicine personifies a service profession that combines humble hard work, high academic achievement with social awareness and advancement of our quality of life. This may sound naive given the administrative and public health challenges we currently face in American medicine but I held that conviction a million years ago when I applied to medical school and I maintain that conviction now. I would do it all over again; I love my job and I feel privileged that I have been provided the opportunity to facilitate healing.


Sancia Ferguson

I contemplated medicine during my undergraduate years, but landed on public health. I did my MPH in epidemiology prior to starting medical school and I deeply enjoyed public health and its lens. I did an elective in the emergency department at HCMC and I realized how much I enjoyed patient care. Pursuing medicine was the right decision for me, I deeply value the unique relationship between physicians and patients. The public health perspective has been immensely useful in my work in clinical operations and leadership.  Medicine has the unique combination of being highly rewarding and highly humbling. I am grateful for the opportunity to do this work, and for how the work affords me the opportunity to continually refine myself.

setty magana


I have always been fascinated by the immune system and the nervous system so neuroimmunology seems like the perfect merging of these two passions. My father was a neurologist and I vividly remember the tremendous impact he had on his patients through his medical knowledge and compassionate bedside manner and how fulfilling that was--that is what inspired me to become a physician.

Shaquita Bell

Shaquita Bell 

I am thankful for the excellent training that I received at the University of Minnesota Medical School.  It has prepared me to practice primary care pediatrics in a community that looks like and feels like the one I came from.  It is my honor to help address issues of health equity and health disparities in my daily work.


Suzanne Garber

In my specialty, I am involved with the patients at some of their worst times in their life. My patients want answers, but I have found that for them, it is more important to have someone to listen to them and to give them reassurance. In doing this for them, I feel blessed and privileged to be in such a position to try and help.


Titi Adegboyega

I chose medicine because it combined my passion for service with my fascination with anatomy and biology. It's still a great fit and grateful for a profession that continually provides rewards while challenging me with ever changing knowledge.

Vivi Stafford

Vivi Stafford

I feel that my specialty chose me rather than I chose my specialty. I had a desire in medicine to treat patients with the goal of improving community health. I eventually committed to earning an Executive Masters in Health Administration...My goal is to improve the general health of the community through healthcare policies and change.


Viviane Leuche

I was inspired by my own pediatrician while I was growing up, to become a doctor. I loved science growing up, I would read a medical atlas for fun and I love the ability to have learned so much and being able to provide care or reassurance in times of illness, comfort and compassion in times of vulnerability to families. I loved my time at the University of Minnesota, the support I got from the Minority Affairs and Diversity Office, the friends I made who have become life friends, the mentors that have provided career guidance along the way.


Warren Manyara

Internal medicine provides a challenging and fulfilling broad scope of practice. Helping people maintain good health is an important and exciting profession.

whitney wellenstein

Whitney Wellenstein

I have always been curious about the human body and the science behind the way it works. As a people person and aspirational leader, it was an easy decision to enter into this field. My "why" has evolved into paying it forward to young people of color with similar dreams. One of biggest passions is to help improve minority representation within the medical field for the good of our patients, our communities, and our legacy.