Coming from the “City Too Busy to Hate” and armed with a medical philosophy from the “City of Brotherly Love,” five third-year medical students shared their thoughts about Moultrie, the "City of Southern Living,” GA-PCOM’s newest anchor site for third-year clerkships.
Anchor sites serve as hubs for medical training during the students’ third and fourth years. During four-week rotations, students apprentice with volunteer physician preceptors who provide practical experience and training in their specialty areas.
With a moniker referring to a gracious way of life, it’s no surprise that Moultrie, the third largest city in Southwest Georgia with a population of nearly 15,000, was described as "welcoming" by several of these pioneering students.
“You have a one-on-one relationship with your preceptor who is showing you everything you need to know to go out into the real world on your own,” said Ethan McBrayer (DO '19), who grew up in Tifton, Georgia, just 40 minutes away from Moultrie. “I chose Moultrie as my hub because I essentially want to come back to this area of Southwest Georgia to practice as a physician. This is where I want to be so there’s no better area to train.”
Lisa Ditomaso (DO ’19), who hails from Loganville, Georgia in metro Atlanta, said, “Everyone has been very welcoming and seems excited to have us here ... It feels like you’re staying with family and working with family.”
“Moultrie has taken us into their arms as students,” said Stephen Yarbrough (DO ’19) who grew up in Fitzgerald, Georgia, a little more than an hour away from Moultrie. “They’ve been there for everything we’ve needed.”
Rick Manrique (DO ’19), originally from Palmer, Alaska, enjoys the “small, tight-knit community,” while Iza Jordan (DO ’19) from Jacksonville, Florida, said she “wasn’t expecting them to be this welcoming.” She, along with the other students, was very appreciative when administrators from Colquitt Regional Medical Center made the decision to outfit a lounge for the students, often including homemade desserts.
Manrique said, “It’s not downtown Atlanta, but Moultrie has everything we need.”
Students said they enjoy dining in local restaurants, biking and walking on the city bike trail, kayaking and fishing at nearby parks, slipping away to the beach on weekends, and shopping in cities like Tallahassee, Tifton, Valdosta and Albany.
Woody Weeks, DO, the associate program director for the Georgia South Family Medicine Residency program, said, “The students are part of our hospital and community when it comes to medical specialties and the primary care aspect ... We’re small enough that we get to know each other on a personal basis, not just a professional basis.”
“We have full spectrum medicine with all of the sub-specialties needed in training,” he said, noting that the family medicine residency program offers “a very robust academic curriculum that helps to supplement learning during the third year of clerkships.” He explained that the students complete at least one of their rotations in the residency clinic “which allows the students and the residents time to get to know each other and to learn in a different environment.”
He added, “Colquitt Regional Medical Center and Georgia South Family Medicine Residency have really enjoyed the partnership that we’ve developed with GA-PCOM. Having third- and fourth-year students in our hospital is helping us grow into the academic institution that we are becoming.”
Established in 2005, PCOM Georgia is a private, not-for-profit, accredited institute of higher education dedicated to the healthcare professions. The Suwanee, Georgia, campus is affiliated with Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine which has a storied history as a premier osteopathic medical school. PCOM Georgia offers the doctor of osteopathic medicine degree, the doctor of pharmacy degree, the doctor of physical therapy degree, as well as graduate degrees in biomedical sciences and physician assistant studies. Emphasizing "a whole person approach to care," PCOM Georgia focuses on educational excellence, interprofessional education and service to the wider community. 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 pcom.edu or call 678-225-7500.
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