Class of 2023
William Barge: A native of Chicago, Will received his BS in Economics and Physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Following graduation, he worked as a research assistant for the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts where he participated in projects focusing on microsim modeling of effects of healthcare reform proposals and effects on insurance coverage. As a student at the University of Illinois College of Medicine-Peoria, Will was elected to the AOA and Gold Humanism Honor Societies. Will has a strong interest in teaching and as a medical student has worked as a peer educator for junior medical students. He has also served as a cabin clinician at an American Diabetes Association Camp, coordinating an interprofessional team that provides care for children with Type I Diabetes. As a medical student he has also been active in a student-run a cappella group known as Docappella. We are thrilled to have such a gifted individual with amazing life experiences and a dedication to teaching others joining our program!
Nicole Damari: After graduating from Brown University with undergraduate degrees in Biology and Anthropology, Nicole went on to receive an MSc in pathobiology working on translational neonatal brain injury research. Following, she held an AmeriCorps VISTA position at the Arizona Department of Health Services in the Refugee Health Program. As a medical student at UNC Chapel Hill, she has demonstrated a continued commitment to addressing health disparities at the patient and population level which resulted with her election to the Gold Humanism Honor Society. She has been involved in advocacy and service initiatives to support the health of LGBT, refugee, incarcerated, and low-income patients. Nationally, she has served as the AMSA Vice President for Programming Development around educational and advocacy programming and AMSA national health policy chair. We are blessed to have such a dedicated advocate and leader joining our program!
Jorgen Madsen: As a medical student at the University of Utah School of Medicine Jorgen has be recognized as an innovator and advocate for his work co-founding Utah’s first free PrEP community health clinic which provides increased access to uninsured LGBTQ+ individuals as well as reducing the negative stigma of HIV through research, education, and advocacy. He was also involved in organizing a local World AIDS Day event two years in a row as a medical student that attracted over 600 individuals and was featured on local news radio outlets. Jorgen was elected to the Gold Humanism Honor Society as a medical student, trained and ran his first marathon, and served on the education in pediatrics across the curriculum initiative for his medical school. It is an absolute honor to have such a tireless advocate and leader joining our ranks this year!
Samantha Puckett: Prior to entering medical school, Samantha spent three years as a high school science teacher in Turkey, where she also lived with her parents during high school and attended an international high school with students from over 50 countries. During her summers as a student in Turkey she volunteered in a rural hospital in India which helped to foster her connection to other from different cultures and economic backgrounds. As a medical student at the University of Arkansas College of Medicine, Samantha was elected to the AOA Honor Society, and was active as a peer tutor and in volunteering at a local women's home for domestic violence and drug abuse. It is an honor to have such a capable and committed individual with amazing life experiences and a commitment to teaching joining our program!
Salima Sewani: Salima hails from our home medical school here in Cincinnati where we have been able to see her amazing commitment to others first hand! With her family Salima immigrated from Pakistan at the age of 9. As an immigrant she has developed a love for understanding differences and commonalities between various communities. Before entering medical school, she worked as an AmeriCorps VISTA fellow at the Health Justice Project, where she served as an advocate for low-income Chicagoans. As a medical student she has been involved in numerous service projects, including serving as president of the Initiative on Poverty, Justice and Health (IPJH) and as a health educator at a local women’s shelter. She has also served as a board member of UCCOM’s American Medical Association and helped organize resolution writing workshops and informational session on health policies. In recognition of her commitment to others she was elected to the Gold Humanism Honor Society. We are blessed to have one best and brightest from UCCOM’s Class of 2019 joining our residency!
Joogyu "Daniel" Song: Born and raised in California, Daniel also lived for six years in Korea. He earned his BA in public policy and global health/health policy from Princeton. As an undergraduate, he wrote a thesis on how tribalism shapes and affects stigma against people with HIV in Kenya, and also spent summers working with an HIV/AIDs program in Nakuru, Kenya. Between his undergrad and medical school, he spent a year working in an inner-city primary care center in Chicago that changed his life and made him passionate about healthcare in American cities. While in medical school at Yale Daniel and his wife (who is a family medicine resident in Cincinnati) lived in a low-income area of New Haven where they strove to become active members and contributors to the community. His medical school research focused on the mechanism of development of muscle insulin resistance in a rat model and was funded by the NIDDK. We are very excited to have someone with a sincere interest and dedication to becoming an inner-city primary care physician joining our program!
Dustin Walter: After graduating from Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas as the first college graduate in his family, Dustin matriculated to the University of Arkansas College of Medicine where he has had a superb performance and was elected to the AOA Honor Society. In medical school he has co-lead “March Madness 2018” a free health event for a medically underserved community, including collecting donations and recruiting and organizing volunteers. He has also tutored high school and college students through his faith community. Dustin is committed to increasing diversity in the medical field and has assisted minority students interested in careers in medicine by teaching in MCAT prep courses, hosting mock interviews, and educating about career options in the medical field. He also participated in research in medical school that focused on decreasing unnecessary ordering of labs in the Emergency Department. We are absolutely blessed to have such a strong advocate of diversity and service to others joining the ranks of our Med-Peds residency!