Friday, July 1, 2011

Greetings, Earthlings!

[note: to see a super official version of this blog, check out the Penn Med website at]


Despite all four of my better instincts I’ve decided to blog once again because I will be spending the next 7ish weeks in Gabarone, Botswana.

[If for some reason you happened to miss my last blog (perish the thought)…you can find it at]

I thought I’d start with some basics. Perhaps you may be wondering what would possess me to spend my last free summer halfway around the world in Botswana.

What/where is Botswana?
Botswana is a small country in Southern Africa, home to 2 million citizens (called “Batswana”).

What the heck am I doing in Botswana?
“Fine,” you’re thinking, “I know where Botswana is now. I could have Wikipedia-ed that for goodness sakes. Why are you going to Botswana? Didn’t you just come back from Malawi?”

One of the reasons that I chose to go to med school at the University of Pennsylvania is that Penn has an unbelievable partnership with the Republic of Botswana. Because I had such an incredible experience in Malawi, I knew that I wanted to spend my summer back in Africa.

Given my concurrent interest in dermatology (and NO, I do not want to do Botox thank you very much) I was put in touch with Dr. Kovarik who is basically a guru of all things international dermatology related (she’s also basically just a guru of all things in general but I’ll write about her in a later post). She generously included me in one of her research projects that is examining viral contributors to vulvar cancer (more on that in another post).

Med school is so awesome. I basically thought about my ideal summer and here it is, coming to fruition. I’m working on a project that I find fascinating and on top of that I get the opportunity to spend time in Southern Africa. MLIA (translation for those less savvy about inane internet slang… aka my grandmother: MLIA = my life is awesome). I am so excited.

Signing off for now,

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