by Prajukta Ghosh

The University of Missouri Pre-Medical Society hosted a meeting on October 12 for all pre-med students of all grades at Parker Auditorium in Stewart Hall from 6 to 7 p.m. 

The meeting began with pre-med mentorship, an opportunity for all the pre-meds to get to meet the Mizzou medical students on campus one-on-one. 

“I think it’s important because a lot of people come to college knowing they are pre-med but they don’t know how to get there, so it’s important for them to see examples of people who have gone through the process,” Luke Baxter, president of the society, said. 

The mentorship meeting featured many presentations about the Operation Smile Mizzou foundation, which was founded in 1982. The purpose of the foundation is to promote development for health that can be improved through secure measures.

The meetings are designed for pre-meds at MU, but students of any major are allowed to attend. In their meetings, they generally bring either physicians of different specialities who share their experiences or advisors from campus.

The meeting was attended by 60 people with everyone wearing a mask and following  COVID-19 guidelines. “Tonight we won’t have a lot of juniors and seniors since they already made a commitment elsewhere, but usually we have 80 members in total from the organization present for the meetings,” Baxter said. 

Operation Smile was the highlight of the evening. The internationally reaching organization is the largest charity in the world that provides free surgeries to children born with cleft lips and cleft palates. 

Service opportunities are lined up for the students in the organization, since it is required for active membership in the club and to run for elections at the end of the year. Those opportunities include Loaves and Fishes Soup Kitchen, American Red Cross and Missouri Crisis Line. 

“[It’s helpful] just to be advised on how to go about entering the pre-med track, how to get involved in research or set up my resume and other things like that, especially since I am a freshman,” said first-year student Elizabeth Pickering.

After the mentorship meeting, the speaker for the day, Iman Poostdozan, shared his experience with medical school and discussed medical opportunities that students can sign up for. 

“One thing that I remember from one of the meetings is how hard it is and how difficult it is going to be, and it just puts into perspective what being a doctor will be like,” Pickering said. 

Edited by Ryan Cohen