HCMP Major Explores Photography Passion, Prepares for Medical School

AUGUST 14, 2015 - Michelle Xu (NHS’16) has known for a long time that she wanted to be involved in health care. Over the past few years at Georgetown, she has had the opportunity to develop and refine that interest inside and outside of the classroom.

Xu learned of Georgetown’s reputation early on in her life. One of her best friend’s parents worked at Georgetown, and as she grew up, Xu visited Georgetown first as an elementary student and then as she applied for college.

Once at Georgetown, Xu decided to combine her love for health care with her interest in business and politics through the health care management & policy major at the School of Nursing & Health Studies.

Classroom Experience

Coming to Georgetown, Xu was drawn to the small class sizes in NHS because she sought to establish close ties with her classmates and faculty. Now a rising senior, Xu credits her experiences with NHS students as instrumental in deepening her course of study.

“I have a group of friends in my major that always study and work together,” she says. “We all know our strengths and weaknesses when it comes to group projects and presentations, and we trust each other to get work done.”

Hoya Photographer

Xu initially joined The Hoya to develop further her photography hobby. As time passed, however, she continued to explore her role in a deeper and deeper capacity, first as an assistant photographer and later as a deputy photo editor, then as a cartoonist and portraitist, and finally as a senior photo editor.

She says the leadership opportunities at the twice-a-week student newspaper provided her with great hands-on experience in management.

During her junior year, Xu also served as an intern at Partnership for Prevention, where she was able to focus on preventive health care, an issue that is deeply important to her.

Over the course of her internship, Xu conducted daily research for health news – including tobacco control – and assisted with day-to-day communications and design operations.

Looking Forward

Her experiences at NHS, says Xu, have informed her current and future goals.

“In my time here, I’ve been able to speak to different professors about a variety of issues that included internship searches, career plans, and major changes in my curriculum,” she says.

One of Xu’s long-term goals includes combining care for the individual patient with that of the community. The rising senior plans on taking a gap year, either in a research or in a hospital setting, to focus her efforts related to obtaining an MD/MPH.

By Celeste Chen (C’14, G’16)

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