She KNOWS in Her Bones
At age 21, Erinn Coe probably knows more than the average M1 about bones and orthopedic surgery. After helping her father manage two total hip replacements and managing her own bone condition, Erinn developed a deep interest in the field. In her first year at NEOMED, she has already set her sights on a career in orthopedics.
A native of New Middletown, Ohio, a farming community near Youngstown, Erinn is the first in her family to pursue a career as a physician. Her parents couldn’t be more proud: “When my mom goes to the grocery store, she’ll tell anyone about me,’’ she says. However, it is up to Erinn to finance her medical education, which she is doing through significant loan debt. She is extremely grateful for NEOMED’s Blue Fund scholarship, which eases the burden. Erinn appreciates the hand up that NEOMED offers hardworking students like her.
Erinn’s own compassion extends to orthopedic patients. Her parents are divorced, and she was the one who helped her dad get through his hip replacements when she was just a teenager and also managed household chores. “My father was a difficult patient in some ways, but he was determined to get better. He was out shoveling snow very soon after the surgery,’’ Erinn says. She admires his tenacity and has needed her own to deal with a rare bone condition, osteochondritis dissecans, with which she was diagnosed when she was participating in track and field events in high school.
Early on, Erinn had an interest in science. The chance to travel to stay on The Ohio State University campus in middle school for a hands-on workshop in watershed pollution opened her eyes to options in bioscience. As a BS/MD graduate of Youngstown State University, Erinn has felt comfortable at NEOMED from the start because she already knew some students in her cohort. Living in the Village apartments on campus increases a feeling of community. So does the emphasis on team-based learning at NEOMED, and a group of students who embrace friendly competition but stick together.
“We’re all in the same boat and we all rely on each other,’’ says Erinn. It helps tremendously to have faculty members like Dr. Dana Peterson in Human Development and Structure (HDS): ”She is so cool. She’s not intimidating at all. She’s very approachable and it’s nice to see how much effort she puts into helping students and even sitting in on other people’s lectures.’’
NEOMED is a place where Erinn Coe feels right at home.