Busy and fun week of orientation prepares the OUWB class of 2026

After a whirlwind week of orientation, the OUWB Class of 2026 is ready to hit the ground running when classes begin Monday.

The busy week for the school’s newest enrolled cohort of students began on Sunday and concluded on Friday, when the highlight of the day was a visit to the TreeRunner Adventure Park on the Oakland University campus to team up and bond.

Sandwiched between the two days was a packed week of preparation as students experienced all facets of the school, including meeting with faculty, learning details about its curriculum, and programs like PRISM and Embark, a full day dedicated to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and more.

“Orientation week for the Class of 2026 went very well,” said Berkley Browne, Ph.D., associate dean for student affairs.

Browne said he was especially happy about a theme that came up throughout the week.

“I was thrilled to see that almost every speaker, from the White Coat Ceremony to the PRISM mentors to the variety of session presenters throughout the week, emphasized that we want them to approach their medical school education in a way that makes them feel better. allow to choose. collaboration, cooperation and compassion for others over competition,” she said.

Jamie Vassel, Student Affairs Coordinator, Student Activities and Events, saw the impact firsthand.

“As the week has gone on, it’s been fun to watch them go from being very, very quiet to being very, very talkative,” he said.

‘It’s a wonderful feeling’

A picture of OUWB student teamwork
Students participated in team building activities on Friday.

Friday had a more relaxed feel for students as the week progressed.

There were three main components: the visit to TreeRunner; a presentation session of the Art and Practice of Medicine (APM) course; and lunch with the current Executive Board of the Medical Student Government (MSG).

In TreeRunner, students were divided into two groups: one focused on team building and the other focused on climbing and running the actual course. After a while, the focus areas changed.

Team building activities allowed students to bond with each other in unique ways, such as crossing between three platforms using only two planks of wood, lifting a hula hoop in unison without grasping it, and lining up on a rope in alphabetical order without speaking and for only being able to step on the rope.

Browne said that the activities on TreeRunner were “a great way to reinforce for the class everything that the various presenters tried to show them during the week.”

Arooj Imran said that he feels that an activity like this helps people get out of their comfort zone and meet new people.

“With an activity like this, you have to bond with the teams because if you leave someone behind, obviously they will be left behind,” he said.

“Working together really helps each other bond and learn to work together.”

The students were happy that an activity like this was included in their orientation week.

“I think it’s a wonderful feeling that we have a community experience. And we can participate in these group activities so we can get to know each other a little more,” said Max Kuang.

“I don’t know of many medical schools that are likely to do something like this, but the fact that Oakland is doing this is incredible,” he added.

Students also learned more about the OUWB APM course from their directors on Friday. They also learned more about the OUWB’s standardized patient program.

In the middle of the day, students ate lunch and learned more about how they can get involved in the student government of the current OUWB Medical Student Government Executive Board: Suhani Gupta, President; Nataly Salman, Vice President; Verna Halim, Treasurer, and Kristin Sarsfield, Secretary.

“One of our goals as the executive board of MSG was to build a very close relationship with incoming M1s and seniors,” Gupta said. “These are going to be people that we rotate with and look forward to working with in the future, so we really want to let them know that we are here to help them in whatever capacity they need us in.”

Many of the new students had questions for the board members on a wide variety of topics.

“I remember being in his shoes a year ago and feeling really nervous and overwhelmed,” Gupta said. “I’m glad so many of them had the courage to ask us what they had in mind.”

‘Very excited’

The week began with an event called “Sundaes on Sunday”.

The students registered with OUWB for the first time. They collected laptops, tablets, and locker assignments, completed necessary paperwork, participated in a student organization fair, and even enjoyed ice cream. Students also had the opportunity to tour the campus.

Students like Felicia Fong generally expressed feelings of excitement and nervousness.

“I have been working to achieve this for a decade,” he said. “I’m so excited to meet everyone and start learning.”

“When I looked at schools, I was looking for service-focused schools and this was one of them,” said Jashan Khaira. “All the free clinics they have and then volunteering is a big part of the medical students…so that aligned with my goals.”

Doria Morante did her undergraduate degree at OU.

“I’m very familiar with the campus and everything,” she said. “So OUWB was my number one choice, and I’m glad I’m here now.”

Hoon Oh said that he was “looking forward to meeting new people, new colleagues and just getting started.”

focus on improvement

On Monday, Duane Mezwa, MD, Stephan Sharf Dean, OUWB, welcomed everyone.

He shared personal details about his education, family, interests and hobbies, and career.

“I wanted to at least give you an idea of ​​who I am as a dean, where I come from, more specifically where you are sitting in your seats, how I became a dean,” Mezwa said.

“And for some of you, you can take the same journey. Part of my message to you today is that you have no idea where this career will take you,” she added.

Students in general expressed feeling impressed.

“I think I made the right decision. He seems like a very good dean,” said Erika Curka. “He’s very nice, very sociable, very friendly.”

“It sounds like a lot more fun than I thought it would be, I thought it would be very serious, but his presentation and his talk were great,” said Forrest Bohler.

After Mezwa, the OUWB Student Affairs department took center stage.

Jennifer Root, Ed.D., Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Professional Development, and Vassel led the session and introduced the entire team to the students.

They presented their mission and the guiding principles they follow to give students the best opportunity for success.

“Our focus is really on their improvement. We want to make sure that each of you is successful here during your four years,” Root said. “We see them as our junior colleagues in training and we want to support that professional side of where they are headed next in their career.”

Monday afternoon was dedicated to the OUWB 2022 White Coat Ceremony. (More about the ceremony can be read here.)

On Tuesday, students spent most of the day immersed in diversity, equity, and inclusion. (More about the day can be read here.)

Wednesdays and Thursdays were generally dedicated to students meeting with faculty and learning about the OUWB curriculum, including courses such as Anatomical Foundations of Clinical Practice (AFCP), Medical Humanities and Clinical Bioethics (MHCB), Advocacy and health maintenance (HMP).

Students also learned more about OUWB programs like PRISM and Embark.

New for 2022 was a session led by Root and LaTina Jackson, Senior Advisor at the medical school, showing students how to implement and integrate all of the information, resources, expectations, and support shown this week.

Among other things, the session allowed students to develop an individualized schedule and get real-time feedback from OUWB academic support staff, as well as identify which learning resources might be most appropriate for each of their needs.

“I am grateful that we have taken the time this year to focus a bit on implementation, and I look forward to seeing how the information from this new session helps our students make an even smoother transition to their courses next week,” he said. Brown.

By the end of the week, the students said they looked forward to their OUWB experience even more.

“Everyone here is very friendly and welcoming,” said Nathan Huang. “I appreciate how friendly the teachers are…and I like how we have access to so many resources to be successful.”

“I can already feel the sense of community that exists among medical students and we’ve only known each other for a couple of days,” said Brody Dams.

“The orientation has been very informative,” said Wesam Almasri. “I got a good idea of ​​what to expect as I progress through OUWB.”

For more information, contact Andrew Dietderich, Marketing Writer, OUWB, at [email protected]

To request an interview, visit OUWB Communications & Marketing Web page.

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