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Lessons from Across the Pond: Part 1

What is this, a scene from Harry Potter? No, this is just a Thursday evening dinner. Rooted in tradition, the University of Cambridge continues to require gowns to be worn for formal dinners – and honestly, no one is complaining. Between the gowns, candlelit cathedrals, and well-manicured gardens, this surreal experience is like a scene from a movie.

Gowned-up and ready to matriculate

Sprinkled into accounting ledgers and bond valuation are weekend trains to London and potlucks with the national dishes of my classmates. The best part of this whirlwind experience, you may ask? That’s easy: my classmates. This international network of diverse humans that I have the privilege to study with has taught me about culture, geography, and the secret shopping page of Bloomberg. The opportunity to take a step back from medicine and see the world through the eyes of an entrepreneur, an investor, an accountant, etc. – has given me the chance to expand the lenses through which I see this world.

London calling

No, I did not forget about medicine and impacting society during this time. This year alone, my class has raised nearly £4,000 for charities including Movember and Aiducation, and had a little fun doing it. I even had the chance to walk the runway in a fashion show directed by a professional (yes, one of my classmates)! Did I mention our business school is inside of an old hospital?! Of course, I didn’t forget about Michigan either, and you may not be surprised to hear that there is another Wolverine in my class. To hear more about how the MBA will be applied to my medical career, watch this.

My attempt at punting down the River Cam

As I reflect on this year, I’m grateful for the opportunities that have come my way. Through our program we’ve gotten the chance to participate in business projects with real clients, applying what we’ve learned in our coursework. Opportunities to take on extracurricular health care projects are countless, and I look forward to beginning to work with a company introducing augmented and virtual reality into Orthopaedic surgical training in London. No matter how filled my schedule becomes, I always ensure that I have enough time to walk the grounds, go punting on the river (see picture above), and try not to get lost (true story: I actually got lost walking in Trinity College).

King’s College in all its glory

While I’m enjoying my time back in Michigan for the holidays seeing friends and family, I will gladly step back on the plane to start the second term and second part of this adventure. Stay tuned for more updates on adventures in Harry Potter Land! Oh and don’t worry – I’ll be back for The Smoker!

Stephanie is a fourth-year medical student at the University of Michigan taking a scholarly year to pursue an MBA at the University of Cambridge in the UK. Stephanie will be applying into Orthopaedic Surgery, and can be usually be found at Anytime Fitness either for a personal work-out or training a client.