Editor’s note: This is the first installment in a yearlong series that will follow 21-year-old Abdul Sabri as he completes his first year of medical school at the James H. Quillen College of Medicine in Johnson City.
As a young boy, Shahbaaz Abdullah "Abdul" Sabrire members his mother coming home, wearing her white doctor’s coat and stethoscope, telling her family about her day and the difference she was making in the lives of her patients.
As an undergraduate student at East Tennessee State University, Abdul remembers the parents of the youngster injured in a rock climbing accident. Abdul had been job shadowing the emergency department surgeon who cared for the boy.
"Right after that, the parents came up to the doctor. The mom is crying. Both of them are so relieved. They’re thanking the doctor and me. At that point, I realized I could have an impact ... and this is something I want to be able to do on a daily basis."
Today, Abdul, 21, is one of 72 first-year students at ETSU’s James H. Quillen College of Medicine. The class of 2014 is the largest ever at the medical school. The inaugural class at the College of Medicine, in 1978, had only 24 students.
Abdul isn’t the first in his family to walk the Quillen grounds. Nor will he be the last. His mother, Safia — who earned her medical degree in Pakistan — did her post-graduate training at Quillen.
Read the full report in the print edition or the enhanced electronic version of the Kingsport Times-News.