(May 4, 2012)
In a few weeks, Melody Covington will begin a primary care medical residency in Charlotte.
But today, she was one of 73 East Carolina University medical students at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium celebrating the completion of four years of studying, tests, clinical rotations, research and service projects.
“I feel like I’m fulfilling the Brody mission,” Covington said Thursday before the Brody School of Medicine’s annual awards day. She’s aiming for a career in internal medicine – a primary care field – and is staying in her home state of North Carolina. She’s keeping the door open to practicing in a rural town. And she said she feels well-prepared after four years in Greenville.
“We have great faculty,” she said. “There’s a lot of camaraderie among my peers. I got great primary care training, and it led me to choose a primary care career.”
Twenty-two percent of Brody graduates will be going into another primary care discipline, family medicine; ECU leads the nation in the number of graduates entering that field.
Class member Nik Collins said graduating from medical school will be bittersweet.
“You’re leaving your family you’ve made after four years,” he said. Leaving the security of school and moving on to residency is also full of challenges. “It’s exciting and terrifying at the same time,” he said.
Collins married after his first year of medical school. His wife, Ashley, has been pursuing an online doctorate in social and community service while her husband has been in medical school.
“It’s been really neat to watch him grow and watch him learn,” she said. “We kind of did this adventure together, and we’re ready to start this new adventure as a family.”
Collins, who was an emergency medical technician before entering medical school, is headed to Maine Medical Center for a residency in emergency medicine.
Dr. Harry Adams, a longtime faculty member and clinical professor of medicine, praised the class. He will be the speaker for the school’s convocation, scheduled for 5 p.m. today in Wright Auditorium.
“They’ve been academically very strong, did extremely well in the match” Adams said. “Beyond that, they’re very caring people. It’s also been a class that’s been very committed to service, community service.”
As an example, graduates Mary Windham, Wesley O’Neal and other Brody Scholars led a free stroke screening event for residents of Tarboro this spring. Edgecombe County has the highest rate of stroke death in the state.On Thursday, the following graduates were recognized at the medical school’s annual awards day:• Deidra Ansah, Sarah James, Andrew Best Service Award
• Holly Bullock, Emily Cullen, Negin Misaghian, Reema Padia, Vontrelle Roundtree, N.C. Schweitzer Fellows
• Jonathon Bringolf, Society of Academic Emergency Medicine Excellence in Emergency Medicine Award
• Jacob Frady, Edgar T. Beddingfield Jr. MD Family Medicine Award
• Amy Shipley, North American Primary Care Research Group Student Research Award
• Amy Shipley, Golden Living Center Award
• Holly Bullock, Department of Bioethics and Interdisciplinary Studies Award
• Andres Afandor, Holly Bullock, Sarah James, Kenny Johnsen, Andrew Justice, Brad Langston, Nicholas McLean, Reema Padia, Vontrelle Roundtree, Amy Shipley, Tabetha Simpson, Holly Stegall, John Yoon, Gold Humanism Honor Society
• Kimberly Limentani, Department of Internal Medicine Best Student in Medicine Award
• Negin Misaghian, Jacob Furth Award
• Joseph Padgett, Eugene D. Furth MD Award
• Garrett Franklin, Mary Windham, Microbiology and Immunology Achievement Award
• John Yoon, Stephen C. Green MD Award
• Amy Lenfestey, Alex Warren, Mary Windham, Ruth A. Carson Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Award
• Mary Windham, William E. Laupus Pediatric Award
• Amanda Sayed, Jon. B. Tingelstad Pediatric Award
• Emily Cullen, James Mathis Award
• Amber Lynn Melvin, Frank H. Longino Award
• Amy Lenfestey, Vontrelle Roundtree, AMWA Malene Irons Award
• Mary Windham, Faculty Award
• Melody Covington, Tiana Nicole Williams Award
• Wesley O’Neal, Mary Windham, Brody Scholars
• Holly Bullock, Nik Collins, Michael Harris, Piper Hughes, Kenneth Johnsen, Reema Padia, Vontrelle Roundtree, Amanda Sayed, Rondell Smith, Jessica Taylor, David Willis, John Yoon, Leadership Fellows Award
• Ransom Loftis, Mary Windham, Greenville Community Shelter Outstanding Achievement Award