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School of Medicine

VCU School of Medicine

Welcome to VCU School of Medicine

Meet four Aesculapian Scholars

Welcome to Meet four Aesculapian Scholars

Each year, gifts to the medical school’s Annual Fund create Aesculapian Scholarships that are
awarded to deserving students. Meet four of the students who will benefit this year.

Bentley Massey

Aesculapian Scholar in the Class of 2018

Bentley Massey I have aspired to be a doctor since I was young. It was always my dream and after pursuing it through college courses, admissions testing and shadowing, I knew it was what I was meant to do with my life. I was encouraged to apply to the School of Medicine by two physicians from my hometown who graduated and completed their residencies on the MCV Campus. Once I was granted an interview and stepped foot in the McGlothlin Medical Education Center, I was sold. The school has amazing people, with state-of-the-art facilities, in a beautiful city. I could not be any happier.

Receiving a scholarship means that generous people believe in who you are, what you do and what you will become. It is definitely a morale and confidence booster. Aside from freeing up some of the burden of financial stresses, getting a scholarship makes you feel like you are a part of something that is bigger than yourself — you can sense the connection between your graduating class and those that came before you.

Hometown: Wilson, N.C.
Undergraduate: Barton College, B.S. in Chemistry and Mathematics

After graduation, Bentley will do his residency with the military followed by a minimum of four years of service. Meanwhile, he’s:

  • Co-president of the Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine Interest Group.
  • A volunteer with River City Buddy Ball.
  • A part of a big buddy-little buddy program.

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Britany Thompson

Aesculapian Scholar in the Class of 2018

Britany Thompson I grew up in a military family and consequently we relocated quite a few times during my childhood. When I was little and my family was stationed in Japan, my mom started developing symptoms from a previously undetected structural defect in her brain, a Chiari malformation. We came back to the states so she could have brain surgery, and I watched as a number of doctors worked to help my mother. I admired their compassion, leadership and expertise in helping people. This is when I became interested in medicine. From then on I sought any and every opportunity to gain more exposure to the field and learn more. After interning in a hospital, teaching first aid in underserved communities and working in emergency medical services, I became sure of my decision to pursue medicine.

I came into medical school with student loan debt from undergraduate school, so cost was an important factor when I was considering medical schools. When I found out about my scholarship, I hadn’t committed to a medical school yet. Becoming an Aesculapian Scholar lowered the cost of tuition far below the other schools I was considering and convinced me that VCU was the total package. After having an amazing first year here, I could not be any more proud of my decision to attend the School of Medicine. My scholarship makes an already difficult journey a little less challenging.

Hometown: Suffolk, Va.
Undergraduate: Duke University, B.S. in Chemistry

Britany is:

  • President of the VCU Chapter of the Student National Medical Association.
  • A tour guide for the medical school’s Office of Admissions.
  • A researcher in a Department of Surgery laboratory.
  • Plays two instruments, loves latin and jazz dance and draws in her free time.

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Raza Abbas Kazmi

Aesculapian Scholar in the Class of 2018

Raza Abbas Kazmi I was born in Multan, Pakistan, and my family and I immigrated to the US when I was still relatively young. It was extremely hard to work through everything that comes with being immigrants in America. I’ve wanted to be a physician since I was young. Learning more about what makes me happy in life, such as teaching and making a difference in the lives of others, has only confirmed that medicine was indeed the place for me. I want to serve impoverished populations across the world because I think one of the most profound things one can do for others is help improve their health so that they can live their life to the fullest.

It’s very intimidating to think about the cost of medical education, but what keeps me going is the knowledge that one day I will be treating and helping my patients in very profound ways. I was overwhelmed and honored to find out that the school was giving me an Aesulapian Scholarship. We had very limited resources growing up, and I’m glad I attend a school that plays its part in reducing the financial burden of medical education.

Hometown: Brooklyn, N.Y.
Undergraduate: New York University, B.A. in History

With a goal to be a physician for underserved populations both here in the states and abroad, Raza:

  • Participates in the medical school’s International/ Inner City/ Rural Preceptorship program.
  • Spent seven weeks in Peru providing care to the medically underserved with HOMBRE, a program that also takes medical students to Honduras and the Dominican Republic.

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Katie Doss

Aesculapian Scholar in the Class of 2016

Katie DossGrowing up I had a close family member with schizophrenia, so I was able to witness the impact that a physician could have on someone’s life. This inspired me to pursue a career in medicine. Deciding to go to MCV was an easy choice for me — the reputation of the School of Medicine is outstanding and it was by far the best interview I had. In fact, I felt so at ease that I forgot I was actually on an interview.

I am incredibly grateful and appreciative for the generosity of the donors who made my scholarship possible. I was surprised when I learned that I was receiving a scholarship, and it has truly been an honor to have one during my four years here. I quickly become overwhelmed when I contemplate the cost of medical school, but thanks to my scholarship I was able to choose a specialty that I’m passionate about without having to worry about how well it pays.

Hometown: Arlington, Va.
Undergraduate: University of Virginia, B.S. in Biology and Psychology

More about Katie:

Here on the MCV Campus Katie has been heavily involved with the International/ Inner City/ Rural Preceptorship program, which teaches students about practicing in underserved communities. This will be her fourth year with the program, and she plans on doing her capstone project on pediatric behavioral health in underprivileged communities as a result of her work with the program.

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