STEM Spotlight: Medical Club

%22STEM+Spotlight%22+is+a+new+Aquila+repeater+showcasing+STEM+clubs+and+their+initiatives+during+the+pandemic.

Michelle Liu

“STEM Spotlight” is a new Aquila repeater showcasing STEM clubs and their initiatives during the pandemic.

by Sabrina Zhu, Assistant STEM Editor

STEM Spotlight is a new repeater exploring what clubs at Harker have been doing during remote learning. This week’s featured club is the Medical Club, whose goal is to increase interest in health care fields and instill a love for medicine.

Medical Club, a club at the upper school with over 100 active members, has continued to host regular speaker events and other interactive projects, despite challenges with the virtual environment. Throughout the past year, officers have invited multiple doctors and physicians to speak with club members, in hopes to inspire them to pursue medicine.

“What we try to do is provide opportunities for club members to get involved in medicine. We want to share with them the experiences we’ve had and give them new experiences they can partake in,” Medical Club President Suman Mohanty (12) said. “We’re just continuing on with that mission of sharing our mutual passions in medicine with everyone.”

On Feb. 5, the club invited speaker Dr. Simon Conti, Director of the Stanford Kidney Stones Center and Clinical Assistant Professor of Urology, who discussed his experience as a urologist and his research. The transition to the online environment has largely been smooth, and speakers can easily give presentations through Zoom. However, interacting with the professional doctors has become more difficult, which Suman considers a loss.

“I would say one drawback to having the speaker events online is we can’t have the same connection with the speakers. Some of my good memories from events in the past are even after the event ends, the speaker will stay back and answer questions. The little interactions, that’s something I definitely I miss,” Suman said.

Besides inviting speakers, Med Club has been continuing their mentorship program. Each year, about sixty doctors are partnered with club members to serve as guides and to assist them with essays. Additionally, the club has hosted multiple diagnosis events and has released awareness announcements on topics such as cancer and substance abuse. The club’s strong student leadership has made it possible for members to participate in and enjoy a wide variety of interactive activities.

“Suman, this year, has really taken that and continued running with it, just really interested in providing as robust a club as possible for our members to get as much out of it. The officers just get together on their own and basically come to me when they need something, which is almost only if they need my Zoom room,” upper school biology teacher and Medical Club adviser, Dr. Matthew Harley said. “They really are doing everything and doing a great job of it.”

Dr. Simon Conti, Director of the Stanford Kidney Stones Center and Clinical Assistant Professor of Urology, discussed his experience as a urologist and his research with Med Club. Club speakers can easily give presentations through Zoom; however, interacting with the professional doctors has become more difficult. (Sabrina Zhu)