Student Profile – Ben Johnston ’17

Ben Johnson

The Alumni Association has been asking students to complete a questionnaire so that we can introduce them to you as they would like to be introduced.  These are current students at the College of Medicine for SUNY Downstate.  Most of them have benefited from one or more of the Alumni Association programs and have volunteered to assist us in connecting with Alumni.

  • What is your name? Benjamin Johnston
  • What is your class year or anticipated class year from SUNY Downstate College of Medicine? 2017
  • Where did you do your undergraduate education and what did you study? Middlebury College – Biochemistry, Mathematics, German language
  • Who is/was your favorite professor at SUNY Downstate College of Medicine and why? Mert Erogul – His joint focus on medical knowledge education and healthy living (physical and mental) really emphasized to me how interconnected and essential both are to being a successful physician. As an ER physician, he has a chaotic job every day including incomplete patient histories, urgent medical matters sprinkled in between routine cases, and split second decisions, all of which can cause stress during and after the day. He has done very well to share his methods of dealing with his stress and finding time to live a comfortable life with his family outside of the hospital. Work-life imbalance has direct negative implications on patient care as well as physician unhappiness, and I am extremely glad we have someone to address this issue, both in the context of the stress of learning infinite information in finite time in medical school and our future lives as physicians.
  • What is your favorite memory so far of your time studying at SUNY Downstate College of Medicine? Quite honestly, the Winter Ball/Spring Fling formal that Downstate puts on every year. It is an elegant, catered event taking place in the gorgeous event room at the Brooklyn Museum, that, in the context of endless studying and seemingly insurmountable challenges, that we are really taking part in something special at Downstate.
  • What is/will be your specialty? Pediatrics
  • How has the Alumni Association for the College of Medicine at SUNY Downstate helped you (scholarships, clubs, events, white-coat ceremony, senior week, research, summer research, technology, healthcare in developing countries elective or other)? As class president and a member of medical council, students are constantly coming to me for help with all issues, including funding for their individual medical exploits. The Alumni Association has emerged as a way to make these individual exploits, such as presentations at conferences, medical conferences, clinical work abroad, and research projects more accessible through providing funding that Med council might otherwise not be able to provide.
  • Is there anything else that you think Alumni would like to know about you? In my spare time I enjoy playing tennis, home brewing beer, and biking around NYC with the goal of participating in the NYC Century Bike Tour this year.
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