Dr. Daniel Sugai ʻ04 and Medical School Applications

It’s application season for medical school and it has been great mentoring young minds. It definitely brings me back to where I came from and what kind of obstacles I had to overcome. ⁣

Despite this pandemic, I am proud to say that I am still able to mentor premedical students virtually and one in-person. ⁣

4 years of undergrad: those late nights to 7-eleven Just to get away from the 📚 books and grab a frozen burrito with my buds. You will hear the doubters question you with noise like “you went to a state public school in Hawaii- do you think you have a chance getting into med school when you’re up against those from the mainland?”⁣

4 years of medical school: I remember the first day of medical school at U of Hawaii. Many of my classmates went to great mainland colleges including my wife (UC Berkeley) and many were older than me with tons of work experience. I sat in that large auditorium during orientation not knowing anyone (many classmates knew each other as most went to one of the two most prominent private schools in Hawaii). I was in the minority- I went to public school. Instead of feeling like I didn’t belong, I studied my butt off and scored in the top percentiles of my board exams and honored my rotations. Instead of listening to people saying, “wow it must be so hard getting into dermatology when Hawaii doesn’t have a dermatology program…” I applied anyway. With hard work, dermatology interview offers came pouring in and I matched!⁣

Intern year: packed with ICU, oncology/bone marrow transplant, liver and kidney transplant services and the wards, and I never complained a day about work after that year. Moreover, it prepared me for parenthood. ⁣

Three years of derm residency: made the best friends and met the best mentors while dedicating 3 full years to learning complex medical derm, surgery, pathology and cosmetics. ⁣

Good luck to those just starting their journeys, ignore the noise/doubters and enjoy the ride! 🤙😃⁣

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