by Kate Alfano, CMS Communications Coordinator

Medical students from Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine and the University of Colorado School of Medicine convened Aug. 13 at CMS headquarters for an engaging evening of socialization, giveaways and small-group sessions focused on work-life balance, public health, the practice of medicine and the business of medicine. The faculty comprised real-world experts from a variety of settings who shared their experiences on each topic and answered the students’ questions to help them navigate their future. Student attendees praised the ability to have candid conversations with doctors about topics not always covered in their curriculum. Faculty complimented thoughtful and energetic students who show great promise in their careers.

Medical students: Get involved in the Medical School Component of the Colorado Medical Society by emailing

Feedback from attendees and speakers

There is so much that can’t be taught in a standard medical school curriculum and WCW filled in those gaps about what kind of practice setting is right for me, how to stay excited about medicine and not get burned out, the logistics of practicing underserved or international relief medicine, and how to set myself up for success financially and legally as a future physician.

Sofiya Diurba
University of Colorado School of Medicine

The business of medicine session was invaluable. This is what we don’t get in medical school. We’re learning invaluable pieces of clinical medicine. Until tonight, no one had taught me to negotiate.

Danielle Coleman
Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine

Other state societies aren’t as engaging of students as the Colorado Medical Society. With CMS we have had the support to get involved, especially with policy issues. Following the success of the MSC Medical Student Day at the Capitol in March, we knew we had to do something to bring the next group of students into the CMS family.

Rachel Landin
Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine

It was very enjoyable spending the evening with this group of bright and attentive medical students.  Visiting with them bolstered my hopes that I will be well cared for in my old age!

Mark B. Johnson, MD, MPH
Executive Director, Jefferson County Public Health

It was wonderful to see the enthusiasm of medical students embarking on their new careers in medicine with such thoughtfulness as to what their paths should look like while learning from those of us further along in our careers. When you spend so many years trying to get into medical school it can be daunting to think about what comes after it but these students are trying to learn as much as they can so they can make a plan for what their lives will be once they become doctors.   

Yadira Caraveo, MD
Representative, Colorado State House, District 31

Health care continues to evolve and I believe we have a responsibility to draw upon our insight and experience to help prepare the next generation of physicians. It is invaluable to expose medical students to the realities they will face through opportunities like the White Coat Wisdom event. These sessions provide students a chance to connect with physician leaders and their peers while they dive into topics that complement what they are learning in medical school. In particular, understanding how to navigate the business side of medicine is essential and equips students to manage the ever-changing demands that occur in the world of medicine.

Gerry Zarlengo, MD

I thoroughly enjoyed meeting with medical students to talk about what “life is really like” as a physician.  It is always energizing to be around students who really are committed to making a difference.  It renews my hope for the future of medicine.

Kathleen Cowie, MD
Family Physician, Chief Medical Officer, Summit Community Care Clinic

It was a great evening of exchange with curious, energetic students thinking about the future of medicine.

Chris Tonozzi, MD
Physician, Director of Data Quality
Mountain Family Health Centers

Categories: Communications, Colorado Medicine