My name is Uli Sanroman. I am currently a freshman at Antioch College, as a self-design major in Animal Sciences. When I first began school last fall, we could say that I was very lost. I always believed that I would get my MD someday, simply because everyone told me that eventually if I went to medical school, I would be successful and happy. After countless conversations, I believed them.
As the co-op quarter for Spring 2019 was getting closer, I kept pushing on getting a co-op that would include doctor shadowing opportunities or wellness involvement. With that being said, I am now doing a co-op at the Antioch College Wellness Center. My positions are as a front desk worker, lifeguard, and outside of the Antioch College Wellness Center, I shadowed a pediatrician, dentist, and their management teams ( nurses, technicians, front desk workers..etc) at The Rocking Horse Clinic in Springfield, Ohio. To be very honest and blunt, I hated the way my life was heading!
The team that the Antioch College Wellness Center has is by far the best team that I have ever worked with, simply because they are nice, funny, smart, and excited to work! But whenever I am lifeguarding between 5:45-8:15 am or working the front desk for 6 hrs in a row, I can’t seem to feel as though I made the wrong decision.
At the beginning of co-op, I managed to balance lifeguarding, working the Wellness Center front desk and shadowing for 40+ hrs, a week. I loved being part of the community. Where I could contribute to someone’s physical success, even if that meant being at the pool early in the morning, to make sure that there was a lifeguard to open the facility. I also loved getting people checked in and comfortable at the clinic, as well as watching the procedures for educational purposes. Overall these experiences were amazing! The teams, the people, the feeling of care and excitement, it all made me feel whole and happy, but as previously stated, I still felt like I made the wrong decision.
One of the big reasons for feeling this way, was because shadowing at the Rocking horse clinic made me realize that human medicine is not right for me. At the Rocking Horse clinic in Springfield, Ohio, I watched procedures and helped with patient check-ins. During the beginning of the co-op, I loved being a part of an organization that helped the community, especially the lower class community of Springfield, Ohio. It made me feel grateful for the people that have worked together to keep a clinic like that strong, and open. But it also made me feel in a way, empty. I felt like I wanted to do a similar thing that The Rocking Horse Clinic was doing, but instead of having a health center for humans, the dream would be to open and manage a health clinic for animals. With the help of those at The Rocking Horse Clinic, I was able to understand that pursuing a DVM and opening an animal hospital was my life’s goal. Therefore, I left The Rocking Horse Clinic to work 30 hrs a week at the Antioch College Wellness Center. I did this to have more time to strategically outline the ways in which I can make my dreams come true. I am forever grateful to the team at The Rocking Horse Clinic, and when talking to them, they were fully understanding and knew that this was a part of life. Currently, I am working with them to see if we can get one of my friends from Antioch into their pediatric shadowing program, and to layout the ways in which people from Antioch can help during the holiday season at The Rocking Horse clinic, so there is no bad blood just love!
The first step to change was to accept that my path to success and happiness wasn’t to pursue an MD, with the help of staff at The Rocking Horse Clinic I now understand, to instead pursue a DVM post-undergrad. I have always loved animals, and after working with so many people this co-op, I realized that I talk a lot about animals, and how my childhood dream job was to work as a veterinarian at the adventure aquarium. With that being said, I am now trying to create a balance between working the front desk at the wellness center, and hopefully, later on, shadowing a veterinarian, or volunteering at the Antioch College Raptor Center. This co-op has been an amazing way to understand what I truly want to achieve in life, and what path I want to continue in my educational career here at Antioch College.