Becoming Someone Who Has the Power to Help
Roma Nagin knew she was ready to start her journey towards becoming a physician. All she needed was a chance.
And now, as a first-semester student at Ross and the recipient of an Opportunity Scholarship, this Surrey, British Columbia native is on her way to making it happen.
Roma’s journey into medicine has been more than a decade in the making. When she was 12 years old, a close family member had to be rushed to the hospital—an experience that left her feeling completely powerless. “I had no idea how to help her, and I never wanted to be in that position again,” said Roma.
But in the midst of her fear, a thought struck her: Maybe, one day, she could be someone who did have the power to help.
“That’s when I first thought about pursuing a career in medicine,” Roma said.
For the next several years, Roma did her due diligence—and then some—in an effort to confirm whether medicine truly was the best fit for her. In her science classes, she found herself especially fascinated by the human body and the myriad ways it adapts to survive. That was a good sign. But Roma knew this decision “wasn’t one to be taken lightly,” and figured some real-world experience would be the true test.
So she spent the next several years volunteering at three local hospitals. There, she did everything from helping families find loved ones in the emergency department, to leading exercise groups for patients in the transitional care unit. Meanwhile, Roma studied biology at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver and worked as a laboratory research assistant at UBC’s Biomedical Research Centre.
The verdict? There was no denying it—she was ready to take the next step and pursue her MD.
Roma was attracted to Ross for a number of reasons, including residency placement rates, organizations like the Canadian Student Society, and the positive firsthand accounts from friends already studying at Ross. And now that she’s been in Dominica for nearly two months, she’s found even more to love about it.
“So far, one of my favorite areas is the anatomy lab,” Roma said. “We get hands-on experience with dissecting cadavers and learning the material up close. Plus, Ross provides us early training in clinical skills that we’ll use in our rotations—not to mention, the rest of our lives.”
She added, “The community here is so kind that you can ask anyone for help and they’d be willing to go out of their way to help you, whether they’re a student or a professor. And I’ve already made so many good friends that I know will last a lifetime.”