by: Stacy Alexander, Director of Alumni and Community Engagement
In some cases, our earliest interests as children stick with us for years afterward, and can inform and guide who we are as adults. Sarah Seifu ‘07 remembers having an interest in science from an early age. We asked Sarah to tell us what inspired her career in medicine, how Shorecrest impacted her path and what advice she has for future graduates.
Sarah shared, “I pretty much always knew I wanted to pursue medicine and I'm not sure I can put my finger on exactly why. I was passionate about biology and also about developing unique relationships with others. Medicine is the perfect mix! You witness such varying pathophysiology and meet so many interesting people so it's really exciting to experience the best of both worlds. As I continued with my education I began to realize that as a woman and a minority, my involvement would have a positive impact on diversifying the physician workforce and inherently on patient care.”
After graduating from Shorecrest in 2007, Sarah attended Vanderbilt University where she obtained a bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience. She continued to pursue her career in medicine with a master’s degree in Medical Clinical Sciences from the University of South Florida, before entering medical school at the University of Virginia.
While at the University of Virginia, she focused focused on primary care, working with underserved populations, and mentoring disenfranchised youths. She chose to pursue a residency in Family Medicine where she can continue to serve resource-limited communities both domestically and internationally. Sarah graduated in 2018 and will begin her residency in summer 2019.
During her time at Shorecrest, Sarah was involved in Key Club, an Upper School service club. Sarah says, “This provided me with what was probably my first real experience in community service. It helped me develop my core values at a young age and figure out the kind of person I want to be in the world - altruistic and a humanitarian.”
Her spirit of building relationships and giving back still rings true, Sarah teaches ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) to recently resettled refugees as well as volunteering at the Charlottesville Free Clinic. Sarah’s advice for future graduating Shorecrest classes, “Find good mentors who will support you in whatever it is you want to pursue career-wise; the relationships that you foster can be life-long, so start early and don't procrastinate. Don't be afraid to reach out to these mentors if you need help, because sometimes getting to your end-goal will be challenging or perhaps your goals in life will change...and that's ok! Follow your instincts.”
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