We are Focused on You.
The School of Medicine seeks to affirm and support your development into physicians. Programs and initiatives tailored to M.D. students are complimentary to resources available to all OHSU students through the Joseph B. Trainer Health & Wellness Center (JBT).
Megan Furnari, M.D., M.S., is the Director of Medical Student Wellness and Leadership in the School of Medicine.
Dr. Furnari completed her undergraduate studies at Brown University, studying human biology. Her desire to further understand human beings and the science of healing directed her to Georgetown University for a master's degree in mind-body medicine and physiology with a focus the stress response. For medical school, she attended the University of Massachusetts where she studied mindfulness-based stress reduction and taught an elective on integrative medicine to her peers. She came to Portland for her pediatric residency and created the "Well Resident" program, a wellness curriculum for primary care residents at OHSU, which she directed for two years during her residency. With the help of OHSU medical students, the curriculum for residents was adapted and made into a medical student elective, which she taught. Her last year of residency Dr. Furnari was the president of the House Officer's Association and started working on leadership programming for women medical students, the WLDP. Realizing that well-being often comes from having vision and purpose, Dr. Furnari emphasizes developing leadership skills. She completed the relational leadership institute program at OHSU to improve her ability to understand the interprofessional healthcare team, and will be the moderator at the annual Oregon Medical Association Conference in September 2018. It is her life goal and passion to combine and teach leadership development and wellness in the medical school to ensure that trainees have fulfilled, inspiring, healthy careers in medicine.
The Grad Gallery
July 12th from 12-1pm was the reveal of the 3 student winners for "The Grad Gallery" space in the RLSB 5S entrance where the School of Medicine Deans' offices are located. This project was made possible by medical students Taylor Anderson and Maggie Aulet-Leon who led efforts to organize and create this space with Dr. Furnari. Funding came from an OHSU SOM wellness grant and Dr. Furnari's own grant from the Oregon Medical Education Foundation. 40 faculty representatives from all graduate schools housed in RLSB voted on the winners from a large number of student entries from all the healthcare programs. The top three pieces were selected based on voting results and are now hanging in the entrance. Two of three winners were medical students, Chris Graulty and Aubre Gilbert. The goal of this project is to encourage students to find artistic venues to express themselves and their journey through medical education. Every year there will be another selection process to continue to celebrate our local creative talent and bring a personal touch to our learning space.
Heart & Spade Farm
The Student Wellness Committee helped to support the efforts of Heart & Spade Farm and farmer Annika La Fave, partner of OHSU medical student Alec Berman. Many students have purchased vegetable shares or CSAs that are delivered weekly to the medical school for pick-up. CSA stands for community sponsored agriculture. The photos feature students picking up vegetables from the Heart & Spade Farm stand. The farm's goal is to create sustainable, organic, affordable vegetables for our students to purchase for the growing season. It creates community, opportunities to eat more healthfully, and food that is locally sourced and organic. Volunteering at the farm is possible on Saturdays for those students wanting to understand and assist with vegetable care and harvesting.
Their website is: https://www.heartandspadefarms.com/about
- Wellness at Orientation: Dr. Furnari greets the incoming class with strategies on maintaining wellness through medical school along with featuring resources unique to OHSU to help students on their journey.
- Student Wellness Committee: First year medical students assist Dr. Furnari with program development and execution based on class needs and talents. The committee is large, thus students are divided into subcommittees including nutrition/food access, mental health, community building, physical exercise, financial wellness, and mind-body medicine. Student meet monthly all together and then between meetings coordinate events for their peers like healthy cooking demos, yoga classes, runs, education on local community sponsored agriculture (CSA) food options, and themed potlucks
Enrichment Week Wellness
The bulk of wellness activities are scheduled the week following exams when students are able to pick from a buffet of activities. SWC and Dr. Furnari coordinate the events listed above during this time. It's perfect for students to rest, relax, and rejuvenate with their peers after completing exams.
Dr. Furnari coordinates the "Resiliency Workshops" given three times during the year as part of the college experience. Students pick two, 1hr long workshops to learn new skills in areas of their choosing. The topics for 2018-19 include: container gardening, peer to peer suicide prevention, physical therapy to reverse poor posture and habits from studying, and sleep hygiene. The workshops are co-lead with or by an OHSU medical student to further the relevance and connection to the medical school community. The hope is that the information learned will improve our students' abilities to thrive using these skills for the rest of their careers.
Second-Year medical students
- The Nourish Program is in its pilot year and was created to help 2nd year students succeed and feel supported during the Step 1 Study Process. The program features weekly tutoring sessions on high yield topics, runs, yoga, guided relaxation, affirmations and gratitude to build community and minimize feelings of inadequacy and loneliness during this process. There are 50 students in the program currently, roughly 1/3 of the 2nd year class. Our goal is to help these students get through the process, stay nourished and feel ready to take and pass their Step 1.
- Transitions to Clinical Experience (TTCE) Wellness Workshop: Dr. Furnari does a presentation on staying well in the 3rd and 4th year with Dr. Sydney Ey (Residency and Faculty Wellness Program Director). This is part of the orientation that 2nd year students go through in preparation for their transition into clinical years. The presentation features background on why it's important to have a wellness routine, coping strategies to combat burnout, along with background on how the medical establishment is working hard to improve burnout in the profession.