Nia Buckner, Class of 2024
Arizona State University, BS, Psychology
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO ATTEND PITT MEDICINE:
When it came to deciding where I wanted to attend medical school, I knew that I wanted to study medicine in an environment that would foster growth, where I could thrive, and also where I felt genuinely supported. From the first day I stepped foot into the Pitt Medicine family, I was greeted with warmth and connected with faculty who have my best interest at heart. Being the first person in my family to attend medical school, I sought out an institution where I would have the support to pursue any avenue in medicine from medical education, community outreach, to research, all while having the guidance along the way to make those dreams a reality. Pitt Medicine has offered me that and beyond, and I can truly say that I made the best decision.
DESCRIBE YOUR LIFE AS A MEDICAL STUDENT AT PITT MED:
Starting medical school during a global pandemic has been nothing short of a rollercoaster ride, but it has been great one. Like any medical student, I spend part of my time studying and participating student groups, but I also make time for the things I enjoy. Staying connected to my passions and hobbies has been super helpful throughout the year because it keeps me grounded and refreshed.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE THE PITT MEDICINE COMMUNITY:
The Pitt Medicine community is innovative, ambitious, and collaborative. The amount of innovation that has taken place over the past year continues to blow my mind. Despite this unprecedented year, Pitt Medicine students have risen to the occasion and continue to thrive.
WHAT STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS ARE YOU INVOLVED IN:
Student Council: Class of 2024, Secretary; Oath Writing Committee, Social Medicine Fellow, Longitudinal Alliance Program, ELEAP & CHAMP Steering Committees, Student National Medical Association (SNMA), and I’m a student interviewer.
WHAT DO YOU LIKE TO DO WITH YOUR SPARE TIME:
I enjoy cooking new cuisines, creating social media content, exploring the city, and traveling. When the dance studios open back up, I will be the first one there! Until then, I’m sticking to exercising and yoga!
DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR STUDENTS APPLYING TO PITT MEDICINE:
Showcase your personality! Through your personal statement, experiences, and all the way up to the interview, showcase your individual personality and your personality for medicine. We all aspire to be physicians; however, our perspective of medicine and our impact is individually unique. Be able to express yourself, your passion, purpose, and ambition for medicine fluently and effortlessly.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT BEING IN THE CITY OF PITTSBURGH:
Steelers games on Sundays, the food scene, and having the opportunity to go to festivals & try new things!
WHAT DID YOU (OR ARE YOU PLANNING TO) DO DURING THE SUMMER AFTER YOUR FIRST YEAR OF MEDICAL SCHOOL:
I am doing research and shadowing through the IMPACT Pre-doctoral Fellowship program with the National Institute of Mental Health. I’m also taking the summer anatomy lab to make-up for the Fall and Prologue to Physiology. In between all of that, I’m traveling too!
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE COURSE AT PITT MEDICINE:
I really enjoyed Anatomy and Advanced Physical Exam/Clinical Experiences!
ANY FINAL ADVICE FOR ACCEPTED STUDENTS:
Stay true to yourself and don’t be afraid to lean on your support system when you need it! There’s no doubt that medical school is hard, but when those moments hit, relying on what makes you happy and your support system will help you through it. Most importantly, take care of yourself! Mind, body, and spirit, we can only serve others when our cup is full!