is your position?
a staff dermatologist at Penobscot Valley Dermatology in
Bangor, Maine, practicing medical and surgical dermatology. This
means no Botox, fillers, or lasers in my practice. While these are
interesting and desired therapies, I am focusing on helping
patients with skin cancer, psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, acne and
the thousands of other diseases and manifestations of diseases that
can present in the skin.
What sparked your initial interest
in biology and in medicine?
My interest in biology was sparked by
my fascination with the natural world. My interest in medicine was
sparked by my fascination with the workings of the human body.
Clinical medicine combines science with the art of working with
people to help treat and prevent disease.
What experiences did you have in
the Saint Michael's College biology department and the college as a
whole that prepared you for your career?
Nearly all of my biology classes
helped me prepare for a career in medicine. The biology department
does an excellent job at teaching critical and scientific thinking
and helps develop the skills you need to comprehend and learn the
large and ever changing body of knowledge needed to practice
The college as a whole, through
programs such as MOVE, helped me learn the value of
service to others. At its core medicine is a service provided in an
effort to help those in need.
Within your field, what options do you see for Saint Michaelís College biology graduates?
Medicine is a very broad field.
Dermatology alone is very broad, with many subspecialties. Just
within dermatology you could focus on lab and/or clinical research,
immunology, pigmented lesions, vascular lesions, pediatrics,
surgery, cancer of the skin, pharmaceuticals and many other areas of
you think biology majors should pursue before graduation?
If you have even a hint of interest
in medicine, I would suggest taking the pre-medical curriculum while
at Saint Michaelís. This should prevent you from having to take
these classes after graduation. I taught high school science for two
years before going to medical school. This was an educational and
challenging experience in its own right, but having already taken
the pre-med classes at Saint Michaelís allowed me to apply to
medical school without needing extra college classes.
Finally, what advice would you
give current Saint Michael's College students interested in a career
If you have a real interest in
medicine, try to find experiences that help you explore the field.
This can be as simple as shadowing some people within medicine. For
me, medical school was something that was in the back of my mind
while at Saint Michaelís and I sought out these experiences after
college. Like me, many of my medical school classmates had pursued
other interests for a few years before entering medical school.
Medical training is long and it can be hard to take time off once
you get started, so I recommend exploring other interests first. I
graduated from Saint Michaelís 11 years ago and I am only two
months into starting my practice after finishing medical school and
It is important to work hard in all
your academic classes, not just the science classes. Most
importantly, take advantage of all Saint Michael's has to offer. The real uniqueness of Saint Michaelís can be
found in programs like the Alternative Spring Break, various other
MOVE programs, The Wilderness Program, Fire & Rescue, Campus
Ministry, Study Abroad, and many other extracurricular programs. You
canít be involved in everything, but take some time to explore and
find some extracurricular programs you enjoy. These programs help
you meet new people, have new experiences, and become a part of and
serve the community. Being involved in and serving your community is
enjoyable and something I think graduate admissions committees pay
attention to, because this is what makes you unique as well.