Moultrie Support Critical for Medical Student SuccessMarch 28, 2022
For Shelby Flowers (DO ‘23), the choice to complete her medical education at PCOM South Georgia was simple: “There is an incredible need for physicians in the area, and I want to
be able to be a part of the solution.”
Flowers grew up in Tifton and Moultrie, graduating from Colquitt County High School
in 2015 and completing her undergraduate degree at ABAC in 2019. In August 2019, she
joined the inaugural class at PCOM South Georgia and began serving as a student ambassador.
“I had been considering going to medical school for a long time, but was reluctant to move away from my family and live in a city
much bigger than Moultrie,“ Flowers said. “When I started researching schools and
getting my application together, I learned that PCOM would be building a campus that
would be accepting a class at the time that I was graduating from ABAC. I knew that
PCOM South Georgia would be the perfect fit for me, so it was my number one choice.”
For Flowers, it wasn't academia or the brand new facility that made the difference. It was her family and being close to the support systems
she knew she would need during her education. After completing her first two years
of didactic learning in Moultrie, she is now completing many of her clinical rotations
at Tift Regional in Tifton.
“One of the most challenging aspects of medical school is that the world and the lives
of those around you do not stop just because you are in medical school,” she said.
“Sickness, loss, and tragedy still occur–but thankfully so do marriages, births, and
graduations. For me, going to medical school in Moultrie afforded me the opportunity
to be near my grandmother when she was battling cancer and visit her every week before
she passed. My husband and I were also able to be near when his grandmother passed,
to celebrate the birth of a nephew and cousin and participate in the weddings of dear
friends. I was able to better participate in these highs and lows of life by being
so close to my support systems.”
The unique opportunity to complete medical school and training in the region surrounded
by family and friends hits home for many PCOM South Georgia students.
Trent Griner (DO ‘23) said, “The opportunity to come back home for medical school
was too unique and special to miss out on. I recognized what an honor and a privilege
it would be to obtain my medical education in a place that means so much to me surrounded
by the people who raised and supported me my entire life.”
A Brookwood School and Berry College graduate, Griner jumped at the chance to stay
near his family.
“Attending medical school in my hometown, surrounded by family and friends, has made
the experience so much easier than it otherwise would've been,” he said. “It is helpful
to have my support system close by to cheer me up on bad days and to do little things
here and there for me that make my day-to-day life much easier. I know that if my
wife and I need anything, help is a phone call and a few minutes away.”
An additional factor was the chance to work alongside role models who impacted Griner’s
life. Before and during his time at PCOM South Georgia, Griner shadowed and worked
with a number of local physicians. He said spending time with and learning from these
local men and women have contributed to his success and his passion for health care.
“Many of our local physicians have mentored me through rotations or shadowing opportunities,”
Griner said. “Drs. Daniel York, Kirby Smith, Woody Weeks, Gary Swartzentruber, William
Huffman, William Stembridge and Franklin Davis have all supported me by giving me
valuable clinical experiences, but the most valuable discussion I have had with them
is what it's like to balance the responsibilities and obligations of being a doctor
as well as a husband or father. All of the doctors here in Moultrie that I have had the honor of working with have been incredibly gracious with their
time and sharing their knowledge with me. They all have a genuine interest in ensuring
that the next generation of physicians in Moultrie continues to uphold a tradition
of excellence and high-quality care that is founded on caring deeply about this community.
They don't just want us to be great doctors, they want us to be great people.”
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About PCOM South Georgia
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) extended its commitment to the
Southeast by establishing PCOM South Georgia, an additional teaching location in Moultrie, Georgia. PCOM South Georgia offers both
a full, four-year medical program leading to the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO)
degree and a Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences degree. PCOM is a private, not-for-profit
institution which trains professionals in the health and behavioral sciences fields.
Joining PCOM Georgia in Suwanee in helping to meet the healthcare needs of the state,
PCOM South Georgia focuses on educating physicians for the South Georgia region. The
medical campus, which welcomed its inaugural class of medical students in August 2019,
has received accreditation from the American Osteopathic Association's Commission
on Osteopathic College Accreditation. For more information, visit pcom.edu/southgeorgia or call 229-668-3110.
For more information, contact:
Public Relations and Social Media Specialist
Office: 229-668-3198 | Cell: 229-873-2003
Connect with PCOM South Georgia