These 4 Best Friends Are All Heading to Med School
One of the best things about having a group of girlfriends is cheering each other on through professional and personal achievements. For this quartet, it looks like there will be a whole lot more cheering than normal.
Four best friends at the University of Calgary were all accepted into medical school at the same time, and they’re calling it more than just a win.
"For me, this isn't just my victory and this isn't just a victory for the four of us, this is a victory for our Black communities as a whole," Nicole M'Carthy, valedictorian for the Class of 2020 Bachelor of Health Sciences program, told the CBC.
M’Carthy, who will be the first physician in her family, was referencing the fact that she and her friends — Whitney Ereyi-Osas, Elizabeth Dayo, and Ruth Legese — are all Black women.
Their respective achievements are particularly poignant when you think of the lack of Black female representation in medicine in North America. According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, 50.7 percent of medical school enrollees in the U.S. are women, which may seem like a lot. Until you see another statistic: Black female doctors represent a mere 2 percent of physicians in this country.
It's not better in Canada, where neither med schools nor the two largest national medical organizations "keep statistics or demographic information on visible minorities," according to Adam Kassam, a Canadian physician who penned an op-ed in The Toronto Star titled "Canadian Medicine Has a Diversity Problem."
As for which medical schools they’re off to, M'Carthy will head to the University of Toronto, while Ereyi-Osas and Elizabeth Dayo will attend the University of Calgary, and Legese will attend the University of Alberta.
Notably, M’Carthy will be one of 24 Black students in her program, Ereyi-Osas and Dayo will be two out of four Black medical students in theirs, while Legese will be one of three Black students in hers.
The foursome met while enrolled in the University of Calgary’s health sciences program and have “been each other's closest friends and cheerleaders,” according to the CBC.
“It was a really beautiful end to our undergraduate degrees to all end up in places where we wanted to be," M’Carthy told the news outlet. "It's a really cool accomplishment.”
Getting to celebrate successes on your own is fun, but doing so four times over is definitely even better. Congratulations to these four women — we wish you all the best on your medical school journey.