“It was fantastic for me; I really thrived in that learning environment.”
For Amy Rosario, Rural Clinical School provided precisely the type of experiential training from which she learnt best.
Having undertaken a practical term in Albany in her nursing studies prior to medical school, Amy had already seen the opportunities facilitated by rural sites, including extra responsibility. Combined with the glowing reports of RCS from her cousin and others, she seized the opportunity when it arose in 2013.
“I am a very practical learner, so I wanted to get as much hands on experience as I could. Kalgoorlie had a really good reputation in helping people get through the penultimate year of medical school, which I knew was quite a tough year.
“I like to read about something, then see it done, and then try to do it myself. I think that’s how I learn best, and RCS gives you lots of opportunities to do that because there are not as many junior doctors around and the people who you are with are really willing to teach you.
“I had never done a clinical year and so this was all brand new.
“Everyone was very helpful. My GP mentor at the time, Paula, would take me to the nursing home or the hospital after hours to give me little tutorials about different clinical science and skills – that was amazing. I am indebted to her.”
So much so, that she did a surgical rotation back in Kalgoorlie as part of her internship in 2015 and then returned to the town this year to work in Paediatrics and Aboriginal Health as part of the Community Residency Program – in part to acknowledge their support and guidance of her career.
She now finds herself working with those who taught her.
“Everyone I worked with in RCS has been very important in my career development. I am kind of in awe of some of them for staying out here for so many years and really influencing the health of the community. It’s amazing.
“I think it is your clinical experience which teaches you the most, but we were also really well directed to appropriate texts and online resources here.
While medicine was always her dream (“I can’t really remember wanting to do anything else”), Amy is yet to decide the precise course of her career. Back in Kalgoorlie as a surgical intern, she is doing the Community Residency Program while in rural training in the GP pathway.
“I am lucky to have a job I am passionate about. General practice is definitely the direction in which I am heading, but I am always open to opportunities as they come up and being mentored by different people.
“RCS had quite a big impact in the way my career is going.”