Sharing insights, passion with pre-professional health students

Imbler graduate returns for Health Speaker Series at EOUNick West to speak on campus March 6

Feb. 27, 2018 LA GRANDE, Ore. – 2009 Imbler High School graduate Nick West will present at Eastern Oregon University’s Health Speaker Series on Tuesday, March 6.

This collaborative project between EOU and Northeast Oregon Area Health Education Center (NEOAHEC) aims to connect current undergraduate students with graduate students pursuing health careers.

West earned his bachelor’s degree from Oregon State University in BioResource Research, with minors in toxicology and chemistry. After being accepted to OHSU’s School of Medicine, he was selected to receive a Scholars for Healthy Oregon scholarship that provides full tuition for a limited number of eligible students. In return, he has agreed to practice in a rural or underserved community in Oregon following his residency. He is also an AHEC Scholar, meaning he has committed to a designated track for students interested in practicing in a rural area.

West’s passion for his community guided him toward practicing medicine in a rural setting, but he also looked to role models in his own family. His sister, Jamie Jo Haddock, works in Elgin as a family nurse practitioner and was named one of Grande Ronde Hospital’s Distinguished Physicians of the Year in 2017.

“My grandfather was a family doctor in Cut Bank, Montana. The impact he made on this small community inspired me to pursue his profession in an attempt to emulate his service to others,” West said. “I chose to become a doctor because I find purpose through combining my intrigue for science with my love for people.”

Upon earning his MD in 2019, he hopes to attend the Cascades East Family Medicine Residency in Klamath Falls to finish his training to become a family doctor. His ultimate goal is to return to Eastern Oregon to practice family medicine.

“Medicine is this incredible profession where the bond between physician and patient is cemented through incredible hardships,” he said. “Being able to comfort and care for those [who are] suffering is a real honor, and one that I do not take lightly.”

The presentation will be held at 6 p.m., March 6 in Huber Auditorium (Badgley Hall, Room 102) on the EOU campus. Community members and high school students are invited to attend. More information about West is available on the NEOAHEC blog.


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