Leadership Officials for 2016-2017
From left: Amol Utrankar, Christopher Li, Caitlin Curcuru, Ada Gil Jimenez, Esi Dickson, Billy Tran, Michael Wentzel
Not pictured: Bryant Loosle
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Esi Dickson, Chair
Esi has taken a non-traditional path toward medicine. She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, where she received a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing. After two years of working on a cardiovascular surgery unit, she returned to school in order to obtain a post-baccalaureate certificate in critical care nursing. Esi was exposed to the field of anesthesiology during her seven years as a CVICU RN. It was also during this time that she made the decision to pursue a career in medicine. As Chair, Esi hopes to utilize her leadership experience to fulfill the ASA’s mission to advance the practice and secure the future of anesthesiology. She believes that this can be achieved by encouraging students to become involved current policy and advocacy issues.
As a current second year medical student at Oregon Health and Science University, Esi serves as the treasurer of the school’s chapter of the Student National Medical Association (SNMA). Her duties include fundraising and managing the chapter’s budget, as well as assisting the co-chairs with planning community outreach events aimed at introducing low-income high school students to health professions. As OHSU’s Anesthesiology Interest Group leader Esi hopes to expand student awareness of anesthesiology as the excellent specialty that it is by establishing a Big Sib/Little Sib program that will allow students to shadow and obtain mentorship from senior residents. Esi is extremely interested in health care delivery in developing countries, especially the need for critical care and perioperative services in her native country of Ghana. She plans to pursue a fellowship in cardiac or critical care anesthesiology in order to help address that need.
Caitlin Curcuru, Secretary
Caitlin Curcuru is currently a 5th year medical student in the accelerated and combined six year BA/MD program at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine. She was drawn to this year-round program by its immediate exposure to basic medical sciences and clinical skills. As Caitlin’s passion for anesthesia developed, she began actively looking for ways to become more involved. She helped establish the Anesthesia Interest Group at her school and was elected ASA delegate for both the 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 terms. Caitlin was able to combine her passions for both research and anesthesia as a FAER summer scholar at Washington University in St. Louis, MO. She also serves as Student Representative for the Council on Curriculum and Event Coordinator for the Association of Women Surgeons at UMKC.
As Secretary on the ASA Medical Student Governing Council, Caitlin plans to utilize the quarterly newsletter to promote interest and knowledge of anesthesiology. She is passionate about advocacy and will work to broaden student awareness of current legislative issues in order to initiate positive changes at local and national levels. Caitlin hopes to serve as a resource for aspiring anesthesiologists and encourages students to contact her directly with any ideas or questions.
Christopher Li, Senior Advisor
From the beginning of my medical career, I’ve been interested in anesthesia. Medical school has been a long road, and I was pulled in many directions along the way, but have stuck true to my original dream. I’ve worked with plenty of anesthesiologists, learned multi modal pharmacology, and intubated patients. I’ve lobbied with my future colleagues on Capitol Hill for the ASA and participated in Virginia Society of Anesthesiologists board meetings. I’ve even been a part of the ASA-MSC Governing Council for the past two years as a delegate to all things AMA. Utilizing my long-standing interest for anesthesia, my parliamentary knowledge of the advocacy process, and my experience on the MSC Governing Council, I believe that I can truly be a valuable asset to young, inspired students that may be toying with the idea of anesthesia, but still have gnawing questions. Helping not only these students, but also those upperclassmen already set on the path would be my goal for the year, to steer individuals toward a common goal we all share. I’ve been blessed with incredible anesthesia mentors along my ride of medical school and I would be deeply appreciative of the opportunity to pay that forward in aiding the future leaders of the perioperative world.
Michael Wentzel, Member-at-Large
Michael Wentzel wears two hats at the University of New Mexico (UNM). With one hat he is a 3rd year medical student at the School of Medicine and the second hat, he is a part-time hospital nursing supervisor at Sandoval Regional Medical Center. During his time at UNM, he served as treasurer with a recently reactivated AIG and as president the following year. Through AIG, he has generated widespread interest in anesthesia through coordinating difficult airway and central line workshops and organized an annual Halloween charity event raising several thousands of dollars for UNM Children's hospital over the past three years.
Michael's interest in medicine has been quite the non-traditional journey. Michael grew up in a small rural town in New Mexico and promptly enlisted in the Air Force after high school graduation. Over time, he excelled and earned a ROTC scholarship to study nursing at New Mexico State University. After completing his BSN, he commissioned as a 2nd lieutenant and served as a critical care nurse officer at military trauma centers both stateside and overseas. During OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM, he served in Germany at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center and provided critical care medical support for the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. After nearly a decade of military service, Michael was honorably discharged as a captain and enrolled in a nurse anesthesia program. It was during CRNA school where he knew he had found his true passion, but also realized the numerous gaps in his anesthesia education. He ended up leaving the program to pursue biochemistry at Arizona State University and eventually applied to medical school.
As Member-at-Large, Michael wants to use his insight and experiences to assist the other officers with future endeavors. Having been exposed to anesthesia as a student nurse anesthetist and during his rotations as a medical student, Michael knows there is a difference and is committed to spreading awareness. Michael looks forward to working with the council and the ASA throughout his medical career to promote the physician-anesthesiologist profession and help securing its future.
Michael is an uncle to two nephews and a niece on the way. He enjoys putting up the good fight against metabolic syndrome in the gym and hikes throughout the Sandia mountains. When not working or studying, he enjoys brain-relaxing distractions such as Netflix, board games, and entertaining the idea of one day maybe getting a beta fish.
Billy Tran, AMA Delegate
Billy Tran is a fourth year medical student at the University of Vermont College of Medicine. He received his B.S. and M.S degrees in chemistry from the University of California, San Diego. He then worked at Arena Pharmaceuticals for a year before starting medical school. His passion for the interactions between molecules is what drew him to anesthesia. Since starting medical school, he has been an active member of the UVM anesthesiology interest group, shadowing the department throughout his first two years; taking over leadership of the group during his second year. In addition, he’s been an active member of the American Medical Association and served on a convention committee for the 2015 Annual AMA Conference.
As a part of the ASA Governing Council, Billy hopes to build awareness about of anesthesiologist in the patient experience and advocate for the field. He plans to use his experience with the AMA will allow him to be a strong voice for the ASA and further establish the anesthesia platform on the national level.
Amol Utrankar, AMA Alternate Delegate
Amol Utrankar is a third-year medical student at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, TN. He completed his undergraduate studies in Economics and Sociology at Rice University, where he was a lieutenant and Emergency Medical Technician-Intermediate for the campus’ first-responder service. After entering medical school, Amol discovered an interest in anesthesiology because the field extended upon the quick thinking and hands-on skills he’d developed in the pre-hospital setting. After finding his passion, Amol became co-leader of the VUSM Anesthesiology Interest Group to inspire others to deepen their knowledge and consider a career in anesthesiology.
Beyond the wards, Amol’s interests lie at the intersection of medicine and technology. He is President of VUSM’s Student Technology, which advises on and implements technologies to support medical education; helped found the inaugural First Aid-USMLERx Student Council to lend the medical student voice to education technologies used by students worldwide; and has served as a content developer for an EdX massive open online course (MOOC) on “Medicine in the Digital Age.” In the future, Amol hopes to integrate his interests in anesthesiology and technology as a clinical informaticist.As Alternate Delegate to the AMA, Amol is excited to work with the Governing Council, the larger Medical Student Component as a whole, and Anesthesiology Interest Groups nationwide to get medical students involved in the ASA’s advocacy efforts. He invites students to share their thoughts on anesthesiology, advocacy, and the ASA-AMA interface with him via email or Twitter (@amolutrankar).
Bryant Loosle, Alternate
Bryant Loosle is a 3rd year medical student at Des Moines University (DMU). Originally from Northern Utah, Bryant loves to ski, travel and spends most of his free time with his wife Amanda and son Davis. Prior to attending medical school Bryant worked at Nucor Steel Corporation as an Industrial Hygienist. He entered medical school intent on pursuing a career in occupational medicine. Through great mentors Bryant was lead to anesthesiology and has since found his passion. One of the most life changing medical experiences for him was observing the intricacies of anesthesiology during an arterial switch procedure on a seven day old infant.
As a member of the MSC Governing Council Bryant hopes to spread his passion for Anesthesiology. He feels that many medical students choose not to pursue anesthesiology because they don’t realize the capabilities of today’s physician anesthesiologists. He looks forward to working with the Governing Council to increase the medical student components social media presence and to provide open forums for students interested in the field. He hopes to help build the ASA by getting students interested early and helping them participate at a national level. Through increased participation and interest at a medical student level Bryant feels the future of anesthesiology will be even brighter.