Dr. Joy Zarandy Offers Advice to Future Female Physicians
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Women in Medicine Month 
Joy Zarandy, DO '13

September 20, 2023

During September, which is the American Medical Association's Women in Medicine month, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) recognizes our women physicians who serve as faculty members and role models for our students across all three of our campuses in Philadelphia, Suwanee and Moultrie. PCOM Georgia has selected a representative “Woman in Medicine” to feature in a web story, however we honor and celebrate all of our physicians and student doctors and their commitment to advancing equity and creating change.

Professional headshot photo of PCOM Georgia's Joy Zarandy, DOJoy Zarandy, DO '13, is a board certified family medicine physician. She attended the University of Georgia for her undergraduate studies where she graduated Magna Cum Laude and earned a bachelor of science with double majors in biology and psychology and a minor in Spanish. She graduated from PCOM Georgia in 2013, receiving honors as a member of the Sigma Sigma Phi national osteopathic medicine honors fraternity. She completed a family medicine residency at AnMed Health in Anderson, South Carolina.

After residency, Dr. Zarandy practiced outpatient family medicine in the North Atlanta area prior to joining PCOM Georgia as an assistant professor of family medicine. Her professional passions include primary care, preventative medicine, women's health, promoting mental wellness and training future healthcare providers.

Who or what encouraged you to pursue a career in medicine?

When I was in the first grade, I distinctly remember having a conversation with my parents asking them for advice on what I should be when I grow up. The only criteria for my future occupation was that I wanted to help as many people as possible. My parents suggested “doctor“ and my sights were set. My father, who is in the business world, has always instilled in me the importance of discipline, humility and being a life-long learner. My mother, an educator, has always been my role model as a selfless and compassionate leader. These traits have been invaluable throughout my pursuit of a career as a physician and beyond.

Joy Zarandy and her husband and two sons smile in a family portrait outsideHow are you creating change as a woman in medicine?

One of my proudest accomplishments as a woman in medicine is the day I took my five-year-old son with me to a doctor's appointment and he assumed the female nurse was the doctor and the male doctor was a nurse. I couldn't help but smile in amusement as I thought of the times in the past I've been called “the nurse“ after introducing myself as “Dr. Zarandy.“ My husband, to whom I humbly attribute many if not all of my professional successes, is an amazing physician (PCOM Georgia 2012) and equally a positive influence in our son's life. Therefore, despite both parents representing physicians from either gender, I was quite surprised to learn that my son's default impression of a doctor is a woman. This incident represents the promise the new generation brings for breaking gender stereotypes, and stepping toward gender equality in the medical field.

How can you support other women in medicine?

Women can best support women in medicine by advocating for and uplifting each other. I am fortunate to be part of PCOM because it is an institution that takes pride in creating a working and learning environment that cultivates and celebrates diversity, equity and inclusion. Through this platform, I am able to provide a meaningful support system for women in medicine at varying levels in training. Strong, caring leaders create strong, caring leaders.

What advice would you give to a young woman who is interested in becoming a physician?

“By being yourself, you put something wonderful in the world that was not there before.“ - Edwin Elliott.

Be a physician (be anything you want!) if that's where your passion lies; but be your own version of it. Do not change who you are at your core because you think people will better respect a different version of yourself. As a medical student and young resident physician, it is all too easy to allow “imposter syndrome“ to magnify your insecurities and make you think you need to change yourself to better fit a preconceived stereotypical image of a “physician.“ The fact is, a good physician may take many different forms; but above all they are honest and care for others.

I am a good physician, and I am also a physician who speaks in a high-pitched voice when I get excited. I love to laugh and connect with people; I use too many smiley emojis when I write emails; and I stand up for things I believe in. I don't like to wear my white coat when I am wearing a cute outfit, and I will work tirelessly to restore or maintain your health while treating you like I'd treat my own family member. My best strength is being me. Be YOU, because that is your strength, and you will be a wonderful physician.

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About PCOM Georgia

Established in 2005, PCOM Georgia is a branch campus of Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM), a private, not-for-profit, accredited institution of higher education with a storied 125-year history dedicated to the healthcare professions. Located in Suwanee (Gwinnett County), PCOM Georgia offers doctoral degrees in osteopathic medicine, pharmacy and physical therapy. Graduate degrees are offered in biomedical sciences, medical laboratory science and physician assistant studies. The campus joins PCOM South Georgia in Moultrie in helping to meet the healthcare needs of the state. Emphasizing "a whole person" approach to care, PCOM Georgia focuses on educational excellence, interprofessional education and service to the community. For more information, visit pcom.edu or call 678-225-7500. The campus is also home to the Georgia Osteopathic Care Center, an osteopathic manipulative medicine clinic, which is open to the public by appointment. For more information, visit pcomgeorgiahealth.org.

Contact Us

Jamesia Harrison, MS
Assistant Director, News and Media Relations
Email: jamesiaha@pcom.edu
Office: 678-225-7532 | Cell: 470-572-7558

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