Career Services : Recent Alumni Profiles

Vanessa Cutler, MPH ’12

Medical Student (M3), Rush University in Chicago, IL

How did your MPH prepare you for what you’re doing now?

I think that a broad knowledge of public health topics is essential for true clinical understanding of disease processes and ultimately for success as a physician. I think that most physicians are no longer just masters of diseases, but are instead driven to treat the whole patient, to educate the patient, to teach others around them, and to contribute to further understanding of sickness, healing, and prevention. I don’t think that I’m alone when I say that I aspire to be a culturally, emotionally, and economically competent physician, and I think that my education in public health has certainly pushed me toward becoming the consummate medical professional.

Please provide a description of what you’re doing now and what you like best about it.

I am currently a medical student and have about 1.5 years until I will earn my MD. While medical school requires a lot of discipline, effort, and sacrifice, there is nothing else I would rather be doing with my time or with my life. I look forward to all of my clinical encounters with my patients, and each patient teaches me more about disease, pharmacy, prevention, and healing. Additionally, I love being surrounded by individuals who are constantly asking questions and who also love the learning process.

What advice would you give to prospective and current MPH/MSPH students looking to do something similar to you?

Get involved in as many extra-curricular projects as possible (health fairs, volunteer work at the hospital, and clinical or bench research), study very hard, and greet each day with an open mind and intellectual curiosity.