On November 22, 2014, JMSA held a panel discussion at the Japanese Weekend School in Port Chester to introduce students to careers in the health professions and the steps to becoming a physician in both Japan and the US.
The event attracted HS students from the Hoshuko and Keio Academy, as well as college students, parents and teachers, and other members of the community. The panel featured JMSA physicians and student members with a wide variety of backgrounds in medicine. This panel discussion marks the first of many events that JMSA hopes to sponsor in order to support students in their quest to pursue careers in healthcare.
The event started with a presentation on motivations to becoming a physician, the different professions within healthcare, and the requirements to becoming a physician in both the US and Japan. Students were also introduced to the new JMSA physician-shadowing program, which provides opportunities for high school, college and medical students to gain exposure to various healthcare fields by shadowing JMSA healthcare providers.
The panelists described their motivations for pursuing medicine, the different careers within medicine, and the challenges and rewards of being a physician. The panelists also answered questions from the audience. Dr. Oishi and Dr. Anzai gave excellent insight into differences in the way medicine is practiced in Japan and the US. Dr. Asoma described the variety of paths that his colleagues have pursued with an MD degree. Dr. Kano, the panel moderator, stressed the importance of keeping an open mind and pursing one's passions and interests. Kenji Fujitani described the importance of volunteering, and gave helpful advice on applying to college. Machiko Yamamoto and Yoshi Toyoda described life as medical students, and Alisa Prager described what she did during her gap years. The event gave students early exposure to a career in healthcare and a glimpse of what it may be like to have a future in the medical profession.
Students who are interested in participating in the JMSA shadowing program can sign up by filling out this form. Healthcare providers, who would be willing to provide shadowing opportunities to students, should fill out this form.
This event was part of the “8thSenior Week” co-sponsored by the Japanese American Association of New York (JAA) and the Japanese Medical Support Network (JAMSNET) and was held in collaboration with the JMSA and the Japanese Weekend School of NY.