Frankie Smith of Elkhorn is a fourth-year medical student at UNMC. She is halfway through a four-week rotation at CCCH. (Johnson Publications photo)

Fourth year med student on rotation at hospital

    Frankie Smith from Elkhorn is attending the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) and will graduate in May before beginning a four-year residency.
    Smith is halfway through a four-week rotation at Chase County Hospital and Clinics.
    She has chosen pathology as her field of expertise.
    She said she has always wanted to directly help people, and she likes science and math. Medicine, and more specifically pathology, was a good way to combine all three.
    “Pathology feels closer to science than other areas, and it’s behind the scenes. I want to understand the physiology of diseases and how it affects patients,” Smith said.
    She is hoping to do her residency at UNMC, but she is applying to other academic hospitals in the midwest as well.
    Much of the work in pathology involves a lab, she said. She is interested in learning how physicians utilize labs so she can be more well-rounded in her field.
    “Working in smaller hospitals and communities teaches me different dynamics from large hospitals,” Smith said.
    There are pros and cons for both, she added.
    Large hospitals have more resources readily available, whereas small medical facilities allow a person to get to know patient populations better.
    “I really enjoy going to outreach hospitals like Wauneta to provide health care. Larger hospitals and cities don’t have much outreach,” she added.
    She is trying to learn as much as she can before she goes into her specialty.
    Smith’s parents and three younger brothers still live in Elkhorn. She said she also has a boyfriend who teaches high school English in Omaha.
    She loves animals, she said.
    When at home, she has a house she shares with two cats, two guinea pigs, three finches, a rabbit and an aquarium full of fish.
    She also has three chickens in a chicken coop outside that provide her with fresh eggs.
    When she travels for training, she has one cat she brings with her.
    “I always bring him because he is a good traveler,” said Smith.
    Other than taking care of her critters, she enjoys embroidery and reading fiction.

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