Ep17 | Why Would a Physician Get an MBA?

An episode of Medicus

By Medicus
If you're a healthcare professional, student, or just interested in the many facets of medicine you've come to the right place! We are a team of current medical students discussing a broad range of topics with peers, residents, physicians, researchers, administrators, and allied health professionals. You'll hear about hot topics in medicine, practical advice, success strategies, research, and much more. Look for a new episode each Friday!
Ep17 | Why Would a Physician Get an MBA?
With 500 medical students getting an MD/MBA combined degree every year, along with many attending physicians enrolling in executive MBA programs, it is increasingly common to see practicing physicians taking a role in healthcare administration. Today we invited Nelly Gonzalez who pioneered her own dual degree program here at Loyola to talk about her experience and the importance of having people with clinical experience in administrative roles. Nelly Gonzalez-Lepage is currently a 4th year MD/MBA student at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. She graduated from University of California Berkeley with a double major in Molecular Cell Biology and Cognitive Science. She has over 8 years of work experience in health policy, management, research and public health. She is a 2016 Schweitzer Fellow and 2019 MOLA Scholar (Medical Organization for Latino Advancement).  She will be applying to residency this fall 2019. Also, you might recognize that we are joined by a new host and producer for this episode. Dave is a dual degree student at Stritch, working on his MD as well as a master's in public health with a focus on policy and management. Before starting school, he has worked as a scribe in an emergency department and rheumatology clinic, and briefly worked in healthcare tech. Links for the topics we discussed: Episode produced by: Nate Burstedt | | Donate:
April 19, 2019
Ep16 | The Syrian Refugee Crisis and Islamophobia - Amal Kassir
In September 2018 our local chapter of Physicians for Human Rights hosted an event where guest speaker Amal Kassir gave a talk called “The Syrian Refugee Crisis and Islamophobia.” A few members of the Medicus team were at this event and we thought her message was worth sharing, so we’ve decided to play the audio from this event on the podcast. She delivers her message with a mixture of poetry and storytelling about her experience growing up as a Muslim-American, her extended family living through Syrian Civil War, and the importance of empathy. Amal Kassir is a Muslim Woman, born and raised in Denver, CO to a German-Iowan Mother and a Syrian Father. She is an international spoken word poet, having performed in 10 countries and over 45 cities. She has conducted workshops, given lectures, and recited her poetry in venues ranging from youth prisons, to orphanages to refugee camps to universities to churches to community spaces for the public. She designed her own undergraduate degree called 'Community Programming in Social Psychology' and she is a major proponent in education and building individual agency in particularly underserved and vulnerable populations, especially through writing. She hopes to take part in the global effort for literacy in war-struck areas and refugee camps, Insha'Allah.  You can see Amal's TEDx talk here: Amal Kassir's Social Media Links: Facebook Instagram Twitter Website For the introduction to this episode we are joined by Abdallah, the president of a local chapter of Physicians for Human Rights, an organization that “works at the intersection of medicine, science, and law to secure justice and universal human rights for all.” You can find out more information about them at Outro Music: Chillin Hard - Kevin Mcleod  Episode produced by: Nate Burstedt | | Donate:
April 12, 2019
Ep15 | MS4 Perspective: Internal Medicine
In this 4th year medical student (MS4) specialty episode, we investigate the field of Internal Medicine. Our specialty series with 4th year medical students consists of three parts. Part I is a discussion about the field. Here, we will learn about the reasons why our guests have decided to a pursue a career in this specialty, likes/dislikes about the field, and common stereotypes surrounding the field. Part II explores what it takes to match into the field. Our discussions in this section include ways in which medical students can become a competitive applicant for this specialty, tips for rotations in this specialty, advice on structuring your curriculum, and ways to evaluate which residency programs to apply to. Part III is the general advice section. Here, our 4th year students will reveal the secrets to success for each year of medical school, as well as advice for pre-med students, gap year students, excelling on board exams, and more. Our guests in this episode, Dipan Karmali and Dhruv Kumar, are completing their medical education at the Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. Episode Produced by: Alek Druck | | Donate:
April 5, 2019
Ep14 | Healthcare on the Hill: Working for the AMA
Listen as current medical student Blake Murphy coaches us on how to get educated about healthcare policy and become involved in advocacy. Serving as this year's Government Relations Advocacy Fellow (GRAF) for the American Medical Association (AMA), she has been learning how policy is informed and enacted at the national level. Our discussion will leave you eager to become involved with issues impacting healthcare delivery and patients across the US! Stay up to date on healthcare and policy news with these resources recommended by Blake- Axios Vitals Newsletter: AMA Morning Rounds:  Politico Pulse:  Episode produced by Alek Druck and Mara Peterson. | | Donate:
March 29, 2019
Ep13 | Healthcare Behind Bars
If you ask most medical students why they decided to go to medical school, there’s a good chance that they will say it was, at least in part, to help an underserved population.   While every patient population has its own unique features and challenges, one demographic that is often overlooked is prison inmates.    In this episode, we sat down with Dr. Chad Zawitz (Assistant Professor at Rush University Medical Center, and Director of Infectious Diseases at Cook County Jail) to discuss the fascinating world of correctional medicine.  He shares his insights from his 15 years of experience working at Cook County Jail, which happens to be the largest single-site jail in the US, housing approximately 6500 detainees at one time.  In this interview, Dr. Zawitz explains how healthcare in the prison system works, the differences in how he approaches medicine in the jail setting (including many of the challenges that he faces), and the barriers his patients face after rehabilitation.  Throughout our interview, Dr. Zawitz shares impactful stories where he recalls some of his most formative patient encounters.  Some of the stories you will hear are graphic, yet educational. For a humbling learning experience, take a listen to this correctional medicine episode!
March 22, 2019
Ep12 | Becoming a Resilient Physician
Many physicians will tell you that there will come a time where you are so fatigued mentally, physically and emotionally that you begin to lose sight of why you pursued a career in medicine in the first place.  These moments are extremely challenging and can leave you feeling isolated, disengaged from your work, and full of more questions than answers.  In this episode we sat down with Dr. Greg Ozark, the Vice President/Assistant Dean of Graduate Medical Education at Loyola Stritch School of Medicine.  In our discussion, he shares his strategies and insights on how to remain grounded through the highs and lows of this high-stress occupation.    Don’t forget to subscribe, rate, and review!  If you have learned something from this podcast then be sure to share Medicus with a friend!  We would love to hear your ideas and suggestions. Comment below or feel free to contact us here: | | Donate:
March 15, 2019
Ep11 | Should Step 1 Be Pass/Fail?
Every medical student knows of that one hurdle that can make or break their aspirations of getting into the specialty or program of their choice. It’s the bane of existence for every medical student in their first two years of medical school. That hurdle is the USMLE Step 1. The United States Medical Licensure Exam - Step 1, is a standardized exam that is administered by the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) and the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB). It was created to assess the ability of medical students to apply basic science fundamental concepts to the practice of medicine. The entire exam is divided into three steps, but in this episode we will be primarily be focusing on Step 1, which is typically taken after the second year of medical school.  On this episode of Medicus, Dr. Josh Hopps joins Nate and Neal to talk about the history and philosophy behind the exam, the controversies surrounding it, its place in medical education, and the changes that it might be undergoing in the years to come. Sound effect is "DunDunDunnn.wav" by copyc4t - available at | | Donate:
March 8, 2019
Ep10 | The Balancing Act
Part of being a physician is establishing a balance between personal life and work life. On this episode of Medicus, Dr. Bernadette Aulivola joins us to discuss how she is able to manage her roles as a mother and wife, while also being a physician in the demanding field of vascular surgery. Dr. Aulivola also dives into a variety of other topics such as her clinical area of interest, which is to save legs from requiring amputation with techniques to improve blood flow, as well as the progression of women representation in surgical specialties. Did we also mention that Dr. Aulivola practices transcendental meditation? Tune in to Medicus to learn more about how this amazing multitasker does it all! Follow Dr. Aulivola on twitter @baulivola Follow Loyola Vascular Surgery @loyolavascular | | Donate:
March 1, 2019
Ep09 | Caring for Vets: An Inside Look into the VA Healthcare System
There are many different types of hospitals in the United States, most of which fall under the broad categories of for-profit, not-for-profit, and government-owned (Department of Veterans Affairs "VA"). Although only a select demographic can utilize government-owned hospitals, our VA hospitals are a major component of the US healthcare system. From the US Department of Veteran Affairs website, “The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) is the largest integrated health care system in the United States, providing care at 1,243 health care facilities, including 172 VA Medical Centers and 1,062 outpatient sites of care of varying complexity (VHA outpatient clinics) to over 9 million Veterans enrolled in the VA health care program.”  We brought in Dr. Haralampopoulos, an internist at the Edward Hines Jr. VA hospital in Illinois for over a decade, to shed light on the VA system. She shares how medicine is practiced at the VA, discusses working with the VA’s patient population, and reasons why one should pursue a career at the VA. | | Donate:
February 22, 2019
Ep08 | Valentine’s Special Pt. 2: Being a Parent in Medical School and Residency
Welcome to Part 2 of our Valentine’s Day Special!  Here we explore what it’s like to be a parent while attending medical school and residency. For insight into this topic, we have brought in two “physicians in training” who have a three year old daughter and another baby on the way. We sure learned a lot from our incredibly talented and dedicated guests, and know you will too!
February 15, 2019
Ep07 | Valentine’s Special Pt. 1: Relationships and Marriage in Medical School
In the Part 1 of our Valentine’s Day Special, we learn about managing relationships and getting married while in medical school. We discuss the obstacles, thought processes, and joys of planning a wedding from the perspective of two amazing (and hilarious) guests. From doing long-distance, transitioning to new jobs and cities, and having their perfect wedding, they've done it all. | | Donate:
February 15, 2019
Ep06 | MS4 Perspective: Emergency Medicine
In this 4th year medical student (MS4) specialty episode, we investigate the field of Emergency Medicine. Our guests in this episode, Shea Boles and Chase Thorson, are completing their medical education at the Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. Shea is a native of Sonoma, California, and completed her undergraduate degree at Santa Clara University. Before coming to medical school, she worked as a scribe in an Emergency Department. Shea is part of the Health Professions Scholarship Program (HPSP) with commitments to work as a physician in the Air Force upon completion of her residency at UC Davis. Chase is from Seattle, Washington, and completed his undergraduate degree at Gonzaga University. Following graduation, Chase went on to teach English in France for a year, and scribed in an Emergency Department upon his return to the States. Both Shea and Chase are passionate about the ideas of advocacy and community integration that comes with being an Emergency Medicine physician. For advice, tips, and a glimpse into the lives of medical students pursuing a career in Emergency Medicine, follow along!
February 8, 2019
Ep05 | Undocumented Physicians
Medical training is a stressful process. Sometimes we get lost in the grind and rely on taking each task one at a time, only focusing on what is directly in front of us. When we let our own stressors consume us it is easier to forget about the challenges that others around us are facing. It can be a shock to find out that our classmates are also dealing with difficult circumstances outside of school. In this episode, we interview Aaima and Cesar about the challenges of being an undocumented immigrant and physician in training. Read more about this topic and our guests:
February 1, 2019
Ep04 | Bioethics and Faith in Medicine
One of the most difficult questions that patients can ask a healthcare provider is “why me?”. To complicate things further, this question is often posed with spiritual or religions undertones, i.e. “why is X, Y, Z god doing this to me?” While healthcare providers seek to treat the physical, at one point in their career they will be challenged to respond to questions of spiritual and religious doubt. This is no easy task, as studies have shown that spiritual care is an enigmatic area for healthcare providers with multiple barriers ($=activity; John Hardt, Ph.D. is the Vice President for Mission Integration for Trinity Health Illinois and Associate Provost for Mission and Identity at Loyola University Chicago Health Sciences Division.  In his capacity as Vice President, he is responsible for the implementation, growth, and assessment of Trinity Health’s mission and ethics portfolio across the region. His grant research has focused on Ignatian spirituality and the formation of physicians and launched The Physicians’ Vocation Program, a four-year program for medical students at Loyola’s Stritch School of Medicine interested in exploring the concept of vocation in their own lives as future doctors. For more info on Dr. Hardt and this episode topic, visit
January 25, 2019
Ep03 | Must-Hear Discussion on Medical School Admissions
For students hoping to go through the rigorous process of becoming a physician, the challenge begins before they even set foot in a school. Navigating the application process is a daunting task. In 2018, medical schools in the US admitted, on average, just 4.1% of the applicants to their school ( That translates to 41% of the total 52,777 applicants claiming a spot in the first year class at a medical school this year. With thousands of qualified applicants vying for less than 200 spots, how does an admissions department approach the process of selecting the young men and women who will become future doctors representing their institution? To find out, we sat down with Sunny Nakae, former Assistant Dean for Admissions at Loyola’s Stritch School of Medicine. Sunny Nakae is Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Associate Clinical Professor of Health Sciences at the University of CA Riverside School of Medicine. Prior to her role at UCR, Dr. Nakae served as Assistant Dean for Admissions, Recruitment and Student Life at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. She has been in medical education since 2001 and loves sharing in the journeys of students. Dr. Nakae is a passionate ally and advocate for social justice and diversity, equity, and inclusion in medicine.
January 18, 2019
Ep02 | MS4 Perspective: General Surgery
In this 4th year medical student (MS4) specialty episode, we investigate the field of General Surgery with two students who are pursuing this as a career. Our guests for this episode, Steven Marincel and Allison Zarnke, are completing their medical education at the Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. For advice, tips, and a glimpse into the lives of medical students pursuing a career in General Surgery, follow along!
January 11, 2019
Ep01 | A Deep Dive into Medical Education, Med-Peds, and Much More
On this episode of Medicus, Dr. Nate Derhammer joins us to talk about medical education and how it has changed since when he was a student. He also discusses his role as the residency program director of Med-Peds at Loyola and offers his perspective on how students can do well in their clinical years of medical school, as well as match into Med-Peds for residency. You won't want to miss this!
January 9, 2019
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