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Medical alums form support network

By Sana Yaklur     11/12/14 7:58am

Rice Alumni in Medicine, a network of Rice University alumni in the medical field, officially launched with a lecture and alumni-student mixer the day before Homecoming.

“RAM was formally launched this year just before homecoming but has been in the works over the past year as we [recruited] alums [for] the initial leadership body,” RAM President Freddy Nguyen said.

Rice alumni in medical and health care professions had expressed a desire to give back more to the Rice community by helping Rice students interested in medicine. There was also a need for alumni to band together to support Rice’s large body of pre-health professions students, leading to the creation of RAM, according to Nguyen (Lovett ‘02). 

Nguyen said RAM allows Rice alumni in medicine to support Rice pre-health students by mentoring students and hosting networking events, among other activities.

“Rice alums already participate in a number of programs throughout campus on an individual basis,” Nguyen said. 

Some of these programs include Rice Pre-Medical Society’s mock interviews for juniors preparing for interviews, as well as RPMS’s Big Owl, Little Owl program, where Rice pre-medical students learn about medical school and the medical field from medical students and physicians, according to Nguyen.

“RAM will look to further strengthen those programs in working with the Rice Pre-Med Society,” Nguyen said. “This allows for easier access to these opportunities for alumni instead of reinventing the wheel each time. RAM is also looking into potential opportunities with [the] Rice 360 Institute for Global Health Technologies.”

Some pre-medical students said they supported a network for alumni in medicine.

“I believe RAM will be helpful because it is kind of like networking and will help the [pre-medical students] have connections even after graduating,” Tamer Ghanayem, a Duncan College sophomore, said.

Other students had some ideas for how such a network could best help them.

“It’ll be great if each alum gets paired with one or two students and serves as their mentor,” Wenting Li, a Sid Richardson College sophomore, said. “Personally, I would love to have a designated mentor who’s there to give me advice when I need it and ... it’s a more personal connection.”

Nguyen said he believes a network for alumni in medicine is essential, because even though Rice alums in medicine have been involved on an individual basis, a network will allow for more alumni to support Rice pre-health students. Additionally, RAM would allow support of Rice pre-health students even after they graduate from Rice.

“RAM will provide an opportunity for Rice alums in medicine to come together to network and support Rice students and alumni during not only their time at Rice, but also as they embark into their lifelong trek in medicine through medical school, residency, fellowship and profession,” Nguyen said.

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