The Undifferentiated Medical Student

The TUMS podcast is about helping medical students to choose a medical specialty and plan a career in medicine. The list of career options available to medical students is long, but the time to explore them all is short. Moreover, mentorship in medical school is lacking, and many medical students tackle the task of career planning alone, most struggling and almost all clutching to the hope that 3rd year clinical rotations will definitively resolve their remaining uncertainties about how they want to specialize. However, having been distracted by the relentless pace of their pre-clinical curricula and the specter of Step 1, 3rd year medical students are eventually confronted with the reality that there are simply too many specialties to explore in one year and that they may not even get to finish their clinical rotations before important decisions about their careers need to be made (e.g., the planning of acting internships) if they are to be competitive applicants. Thus, mentorless and clinically unexposed, many medical students are forced to make wholly uninformed decisions about their futures. By interviewing at least one physician from each of the 120+ specialties listed on the AAMC's Careers in Medicine website 1) about their specialty, 2) how they decided this specialty was right for them, and 3) for advice about long-term career planning irrespective of the specialty they went into, this podcast aims to enumerate the details of every specialty and provide virtual mentorship on how best to go about moving past being an undifferentiated medical student.
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The Undifferentiated Medical Student



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Now displaying: February, 2017
Feb 24, 2017

Help Ian interview all 120+ specialties by referring him more physicians!

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Dr. Gray is a former United States Air Force Flight Surgeon who has since retired from the military and clinical practice to pursue his passion for helping med and pre-med students on their journey to and through medical school.

Dr. Gray completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Florida in 2002; his medical degree at New York Medical College in 2009; and his intern year at Lemuel Shattuck Hospital in 2010 after which he served 5 years in the Air Force, the first 2 as a flight surgeon and the last 3 as Chief of Aerospace Medicine.

Dr. Gray is best known for his podcasts which have combined for over 1.2 million downloads and which include The Premed Years podcast, The OldPreMeds Podcast, The MCAT Podcast, and most recently Specialty Stories, a podcast that features stories of specialists from every field of medicine. Dr. Gray is also the author of The Premed Playbook: Guide to the Medical School Interview. Through his book, his podcasts, and his website at, Dr. Gray has helped thousands of students successfully navigate the path to and through medical school.

Dr. Gray lives outside of Boulder, CO with his wife Allison, who is a Neurologist, and their daughter Hannah.

Please enjoy with Dr. Ryan Gray!

Feb 21, 2017

Help Ian interview all 120+ specialties by referring him physicians!


Dr. Maronian is the Program Director of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery, as well as the Director of the Voice and Swallowing Center at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center.

Dr. Maronian completed her undergraduate degree at Allegheny College in 1987; her medical degree at the University of Rochester in 1991, where she also completed an otolaryngology residency in 1998; and then completed a fellowship in Laryngology and Voice Disorders at the University of Washington in 1999, eventually joining the faculty at University Hospitals in 2006.

Dr. Maronian’s research interests include neurolaryngology, tracheal disease, and dysphagia. She has published nearly 40 papers in peer-reviewed journals about laryngology and voice disorders and is a reviewer for the journal Laryngoscope.

Also a frequent presenter and speaker on laryngeal disease at local, regional and national meetings, Dr. Maronian has been voted Top Doctors in Cleveland by Cleveland Magazine, as well as voted Best Doctors in America by Best Doctors, Inc.

Please enjoy with Dr. Nicole Maronian!

Feb 17, 2017

Help Ian interview all 120+ specialties by referring him to more physicians!

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Dr. Zacharias, DO, is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center in the Division of Cardiology and Section of Heart Failure and Heart Transplantation. He is also currently the Medical Director of the Mechanical Circulatory Support program.

Dr. Zacharias completed his undergraduate degree at John Carroll University in 2003; completed his medical degree at the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2007; completed an Internal Medicine residency, followed by a Cardiology fellowship both at the University of Massachusetts Memorial Medical Center by 2014 where he also served as a Chief Resident and as a Chief Cardiology Fellow. He then completed a fellowship in Advanced Heart Failure and Cardiac Transplantation at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics in 2015 before returning to Ohio to join the faculty at Cleveland Medical Center where he remains today.

Dr. Zacharias’ clinical interests include invasive hemodynamics, temporary and durable mechanical circulatory support, and cardiac transplantation. He sees himself as a clinician educator and mentors local students interested in pursuing a career in medicine. At the completion of medical school he was a finalist for the Dean’s Award and at the completion of his Chief Resident year he was the recipient of the University of Massachusetts Department of Medicine Recognition Award for extraordinary contributions to medical education.

Please enjoy with Dr. Michael Zacharias!

Feb 10, 2017

Help Ian interview all 120 specialties listed on the CIM website!

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Dr. Higgins is a Hospice and Palliative Medicine fellow at Johns Hopkins, as well as an Associate Professor of both Internal Medicine and Pediatrics at Albany Medical College.

Dr. Higgins completed her undergraduate degree at Siena College in 1985; her medical degree at SUNY Health Science Center – Syracuse in 1989; and then completed a combined Med/Peds residency at Albany Medical College in 1993, after which she practiced as an attending physician for 23 years before deciding to enroll in a Hospice and Palliative Medicine fellowship, which she will complete in June of 2017.

Before applying for her fellowship, Dr. Higgins has held several titles, including that of Med/Peds Residency Program Director at Albany Medical College (a position she held for 10 years until 2007), as well as Associate Dean of Student Affairs, a position she at the Medical College until starting her fellowship. For her work in medical education, she is a 3 time recipient of the Golden Apple Award (most recently in 2009) bestowed by the American Medical Student Association to highlight a professor deserving of notoriety due to their improvements or advancements in medical education. In line with her commitment to medical education, Dr. Higgins is also on the Advisory Committee of the AAMC’s Careers in Medicine program, whose website is the basis for most of the interviews featured on the Undifferentiated Medical Student podcast.

Please enjoy with Dr. Elizabeth Higgins!

Feb 7, 2017

Help Ian interview all 120+ specialties listed on the CIM website!

Show notes!

Dr. Briskin is a Pediatric Sports Medicine physician at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, as well as an Associate Professor of Pediatrics within the Division of Sports Medicine at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, OH.

Dr. Briskin completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Rochester in 1994; completed her medical degree at the University of Rochester School of Medicine in 1999; completed a residency in pediatrics in 2002 and Chief Resident year in 2003 both at Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital. She then completed a two year Sports Medicine Fellowship at Akron Children's Hospital before returning to Rainbow Babies and Children's to join the faculty in 2005.

In 2007, she founded the Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship at Rainbow. It serves to train both allopathic and osteopathic physicians in the field of Primary Care Sports Medicine, and Dr. Briskin oversees the fellows’ educational activities, including community sports coverage. 

Dr. Briskin is also heavily involved in the Cleveland community. She serves as Head Medical Team Physician at Case Western Reserve University, as well as two other schools, and serves as a medical consultant and concussion consultant for yet two more. Additionally, Dr. Briskin is also the medical co-director of the Ohio Youth Soccer Association North, as well as the team physician of their Olympic Development Program. 

Finally, Dr. Briskin is the Co-Director of University Hospitals Sports Concussion Center, where she has helped to develop a program to train primary care physicians in the community as well as University Hospitals staff in concussion diagnosis and management, a field which she is one of her primary research interests.

Please enjoy with Dr. Susannah Briskin!

Feb 3, 2017

Show notes!

Dr. Josephson is the Medical Director of the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, as well as a Professor of Medicine at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, OH.

Dr. Josephson received his undergraduate degree from The University of Rochester in 1977; his medial degree from the New York University School of Medicine (where he was also a part of the Medical Scientist Training Program, receiving a master’s of science in Pharmacology); completed his residency in Internal Medicine in 1985 and a fellowship in Cardiology 1988 both at Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, where he was also a research fellow in the Laboratory of Cardiovascular Sciences at the National Institute on Aging.

After his formal training, Dr. Josephson began his career in Akron, Ohio in private practice cardiology and grew what was initially a 4-physician group into a practice encompassing over 30 cardiologists. Over the next two decades, he worked at various Akron City Hospitals, where he assumed roles as varied as Director of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation, Director of Non-Invasive Cardiology, and Director of Cardiology Research and Education. He joined the faculty at Case Western and University Hospitals in 2007 where he remains today.

Dr. Josephson is heavily involved in cardiovascular research and has been supported by NIH funding for over 30 years. Lastly, Dr. Josephson has received numerous awards, most notable among them having been voted Best Doctors in America every year since 2004.

Please enjoy with Dr. Richard Josephson!