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Gabrielle Samsock, 14, far left, is from Factoryville, Penn. She applied to the Make-A-Wish Foundation with a request to be a Harvard Medical School student. Pictured with her: HMS Dean for Students Nancy Oriol, center, and HMS student Cyndie Seraphin. Following photos by Steve Lipofsky.
The foundation worked with HMS to grant Gabby's wish. Pictured here, Gabby's mom, Melissa, left, and her father Charlie, right.
Gabby, second from left, spent Aug. 20-24 at HMS. Here she has an "orientation" with other students on her first day.
Gabby was welcomed to HMS by Ron Arky, the Daniel D. Federman, M.D. Professor of Medicine and Medical Education and master of the Francis Weld Peabody Society. Also pictured: Katherine Treadway, MD, Gerald S. Foster Academy Associate Professor of Medicine.
Gabby even received her own HMS white coat.
A perfect fit!
Excited to be on board at HMS.
Arky offeres encouraging words.
Celebrating with cake as the week begins.
The HMS team making Gabby’s wish come true, from left, top row: Kyle Koleoglou, Lauren Cotter, Sheila Nutt, Joan Reede, Melissa, Gabby and Charlie Samsock, Katherine Treadway, Jo Cole, Ron Arky, Neir Eshel, John Hatcher, Rebecca Grammer, Jayme Ranalli, Samuel Kim. Second Row: Alexander Blair, Benjamin Drew, Eubee Koo, Zena Knight, Cyndie Seraphin, Robert Kitts.
Gabby gets a big hug from Joan Reede, HMS Associate Professor of Medicine and Dean for Diversity and Community Partnership. Reede was instrumental in making Gabby’s wish come true.
Gabby with Robert Kitts MD, HMS Instructor in Psychiatry at Children’s Hospital. Kitts planned the agenda for Gabby’s week and organized all the students who participated.
Besides attending classes, Gabby was able to participate in a simulated gall bladder removal at the Shapiro Simulation & Skills Center. All following photos by John Soares.
With her mom, Melissa, and HMS student Erin West looking on, Gabby got a chance to do some hands on work in the simulation center.
Darren Tavernelli, RN, left, explains what needs to be done for the “patient.”
Tavernelli explaining technique.
Gabby, dressed in scrubs with stethoscope, was an attentive learner and a quick study, the RNs said.
Mike McBride, RN, left, looks on as Gabby gets more "on the job" training from Tavernelli.
Learning how to read the monitors.
Checking the stats.
An in-depth lesson. In the background, right, HMS student Erin West.
Gabby’s mom, Melissa, gets to try.
Working on an endoscopy.
Learning how to use more of the medical equipment.
Good eye and hand coordination is a must.
No easy task! All the pros said Gabby caught on quickly.
This work requires dexterity and concentration.
At the end of the lesson … elation!
Tavernelli, left and RN Mike McBride with Gabby.
For Gabby’s “graduation” ceremony, HMS students played music during a reception at Vanderbilt Hall. All photos below by M.R.F. Buckley.
Gabby was the guest of honor at a catered dinner.
Dr. Robert Kitts, who coordinated Gabby’s week, talked about what a special experience it was for all the students and doctors who participated.
Gabby’s parents enjoyed some of the special tributes paid to their daughter by the medical students.
HMS medical student Erin West says a few words about the week with Gabby.
Gabby shadowed HMS medical student Cyndie Seraphin all week. Seraphin said it was amazing how quickly the 14-year-old caught on.
The students gave Gabby a bag of HMS memorabilia to remember the trip.
Dr. Arky talked about what a special student Gabby was, and how proud her parents should be for raising what he called a perfect HMS medical student candidate.
Arky presented Gabby with a framed certificate for having completed a week of rigorous introductory courses.
Arky said he would love to see Gabby in medical school some day.
Thanking the members of the HMS community who made her wish come true, Gabby said her week at HMS was one of the greatest of her life.
It’s not many high school freshmen who have one of these!