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Simulation at UT-Houston - A Tool for Excellence
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By: Shane Appel, MS-4 and Joseph Ponce, MS-1

In the medical setting, our community needs leaders who communicate effectively, adapt to their surroundings, and act on what they know. Simulation allows students to practice these skills, creating better medical students and residents.

With this goal in mind, our Emergency Medicine Interest Group (EMIG) sent our first medical student team to compete at TCEP’s Sim-War competition in the spring of 2016. Our team consisted of five third-year medical students who had minimal practice before the competition. Regardless of this, we tied for first place and were proud of our accomplishment. 

Because of our success, we set out to build a strong simulation group at our school. We started meeting in January of 2017, with upwards of twenty medical students present at our first few meetings. A team of five MS1’s formed from our group, with the goal of competing at TCEP this year. Through hard work and clutch team work, our team was very successful. These attributes will continue to be our model as we mature in simulation at our school. 

We send an invitation to all Texas medical schools interested in simulation and inter-medical school collaboration. Let this be a common cause for us to gather around. Let’s work together. Let’s learn together, grow together, and, ultimately, simulate together. 

Shane Appel (MS4), Joseph Ponce (MS1), John Peacock (MS1), Grace Guvernatory (MS1), Joseph Moffitt (MS1), Alexander Smith (MS4)

“Emergency Medicine simulation is a crucial training method that helps prepare students for caring for real patients, especially those in need of critical medical or surgical intervention. I’m so proud of the work ethic and effort that our team put into preparing and executing at this event. I really hope that we can continue to grow and develop a student simulation program for Emergency Medicine and Surgical Skills. With the proper resources and mentorship, we can create a program that produces exceptionally skilled and qualified future residents for Emergency Medicine and Surgery.” – Joseph Ponce, MS1

“As a medical student entering into Emergency Medicine, it’s important to engage in, both, active learning and leadership-building activities. There is no better way than simulation to focus on both of these. By engaging in simulation, our group has recognized the benefits of the simulation experience and plan to sustain a passion for it within the Emergency Medicine Interest Group at UT-Houston.” - Shane Appel, MS4

The Team:

Pictured from left to Right: John Peacock (Team Lead), Grace Guvernator (Physical Exam), Shane Appel (coach), Joseph Moffitt (Airway Management), Rishi Goel (Medical Historian), Joseph Ponce (Labs/Imaging, Consultation), Alexander Smith (Coach, not pictured).
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