From the small village of Paradise, St. Andrew’s to emergency rooms of major hospitals in the U.S.: I am an Emergency Medicine Physician making critical decisions every day that affect the lives of the people who come through the doors of the ER. Never in my wildest dreams did I think this was going to be my life.
I attended St. Andrew’s Anglican Secondary School, and it was there that the subject of Biology sparked my interest in the anatomy and physiology of the human body. Although the thought of studying medicine was not a career choice I had contemplated in my high school years, Biology quickly became one of my favorite subjects. I migrated to the U.S. shortly after graduation and started my college education. Deciding on a major was not difficult. However, to obtain a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology, I had to take Calculus I and II. This meant overcoming my fear of Mathematics. Math was not one of my strong areas and I could not have gotten through it without constant studying/practicing, corroboration from my family, and the assistance of math tutors at the college.
During my junior year of college I had to decide what direction I wanted the rest of my life to take, and that was not an easy decision. I thought about medical school, but I questioned myself: Would I be able to handle the challenges that come with studying medicine? Upon deep soul searching and prayers I decided to step-up to the challenge and apply to medical school. My years of medical school brought out determination and strength I never thought I possessed. The courses, frequent exams and constant studying became, at times, overwhelming and there were times I wanted to “call it quits.” I felt like I had no life outside of the books. I was missing out on many events and family trips, but praise God I remained on the path and overcame.
Four years later my hard work paid off and I graduated from Downstate Medical School with my Doctorate in Medicine. Following graduation I did my residency training in the very competitive field of Emergency Medicine, and for the past six years I’ve worked in several hospitals as an Emergency Medicine Physician saving lives. I love what I do and would not trade it for anything. I can truly say that without my faith in God and awe-inspiring support from family and friends, I would not be where I am today.
I decided to tell my story in the hope that it will motivate others to always believe in themselves—never thinking anything is impossible. Life may throw many obstacles in your path. Just remember: with God, anything is possible. I am Dr. Robert-Gibbs and #IamGrenadian.