Georgia Regents University

We’re in Augusta to learn about careers in the medical field with a visit to Georgia Regents University! We’re inspired by a doctor specializing in wilderness medicine, who was actually the first person in his family to go to college. But if those years of medical school sound daunting to you, we also learn about being an athletic trainer, the field of nuclear medicine technology, and the artistic career of medical illustration.

Icing & Heating Injuries

Icing & Heating Injuries

Our certified athletic trainer teaches us why it’s better to ice some injuries and heat others, for the fastest recovery possible.

Radiation

Radiation

We explore the field of nuclear medicine technology with an explanation of the two types of radiation and the important differences in them.

Classic South

Special Thanks To

Christen Carter, Denise Parrish, Timothy Johnson, Bill Andrews, Carl Eubanks, Chris Novack, Ksenia Braswell, Lisa Branon, Michael Caudell, Mimi Owen

GEORGIA REGENTS UNIVERSITY

VO

Today Fast Forward rolls into Augusta, Georgia. Of course Augusta is best known as the home of the most famous and celebrated golf course anywhere on the planet!

So...this is world class golf?

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VO

Welcome to another episode of Fast Forward. And we didn't actually pack our golf clubs, because today we've found another reason to visit Augusta--Georgia Regents University! That's a brand new name for one of the oldest medical schools in the South. With more than 9,000 students, 110-degree programs and nine colleges, GRU is training the doctors of tomorrow--today. Because you're never too young to become a doctor.

Okay, maybe this guy is.

But GRU is more than just a university. The hospital and staff provide award winning medical care. And if you think becoming a doctor is a long shot, give it another thought. And meet Dr. Michael Caudell.

MICHAEL

I grew up in a small town in northeast Georgia, Cleveland, Georgia- and came from a family that were working class people. I had no medical people in my family whatsoever. In fact I'm the first person from my family to go to college.

VO

Wow! How did you get through all those biology and anatomy classes?

MICHAEL

Hard work. Hard work and making sure that you know that it is worth it to achieve your goal.

VO

So what kind of a doctor are you?

MICHAEL

I do emergency medicine and wilderness medicine.

VO

Okay. What's wilderness medicine?

MICHAEL

You use the principles of wilderness medicine when you're an hour or more away from any definitive care. That's away from an ambulance, away from a hospital, away from everything.

VO

I get it. Like extreme survivor, super hero-doctor edition.

MIMI

I knew there had to be a superhero involved in this somehow.

VO

Okay wilderness doc, pop-quiz! What's the best way to treat a snakebite?

MICHAEL

Your car keys.

VO

Huh?

MICHAEL

You use those to crank the car, and drive yourself to the hospital so you can get treated.

VO

Not what I expected, but smart.

So where have you used your wilderness skills?

MICHAEL

I've been able to go to Everest base camp...

VO

Impressive!

MICHAEL

I have been to Africa and climbed Kilimanjaro,

VO

Very impressive!

MICHAEL

I just got back from the Atacama Desert in Chile.

VO

Wow, not your typical doctor's office!

And there are lots of interesting opportunities in the medical field. Just ask the folks at Georgia Regents University.

MIMI

I'm the program director for the nuclear medicine technology program.

BILL

I am the interim chair program director and professor of medical illustration.

LISA

I'm a certified athletic trainer.

VO

OK, Lisa tell me more about being an athletic trainer.

LISA

If you're watching your favorite sports team on TV and your favorite athlete goes down with an injury, the person that runs out on the field with the fanny pack on is me.

VO

You know, I've always wondered what's in those fanny packs.

LISA

Athletes come to me for every little bump and bruise and pain that they may complain of, and I'm maybe taping them, stretching them, doing some sort of treatment on them. Putting ice bags on them, that sort of thing.

VO

That reminds me--why do you put ice on certain injuries and heat on others?

LISA

Typically when the injury is acute and when it just happens it's a new injury you want to ice. That helps to decrease the swelling and decrease the pain. Heat would be when it becomes more of a chronic injury or maybe a muscle strain, a soft tissue injury that you're looking to, to relax the muscle and relax the spasm, that sort of thing. So initially it's ice, and then later it's, it's heat.

VO

And what's the best part of being and athletic trainer?

LISA

The coolest thing about my job is that I get, on a good day, I get to watch sports. That's what I get to do.

VO

Okay, but maybe I'm not into sports. Maybe I'm the artsy type. Can I get into the medical field?

BILL

It's worked for me so far.

VO

Go on!

BILL

My father was a physician and I had always drawn pictures and things for him on the side and one day he said have you ever thought about being a medical illustrator?

VO

And of course you knew what that was.

BILL

I had no idea what that was, and went to his hospital where he worked and he introduced me to their medical illustrator. I really loved the science, I like drawing. You mean you can actually make a living doing this as a profession?

BILL

It's one of the true professions where you get to combine left-brain, logical thinking and right brain creative thinking.

VO

Yeah, they take that right-brain--left brain stuff pretty seriously.

And speaking of what brains and organs look like, Mimi, why don't you tell us what you do.

MIMI

What I do, is help to educate and train students that want to work in medical imaging, specifically in nuclear medicine technology.

VO

So, it's kind of like x-rays?

MIMI

Well we do use radiation like x-ray does, but we use gamma radiation for the most part in nuclear medicine.

VO

To understand what Mimi does, you know what we have to have.

A teachable moment. Yep, time to take your medicine.

There are basically 2 types of radiation, and they're used for both diagnosis and therapy. The first kind of radiation that Mimi mentioned includes things like x-rays and gamma rays, which are essentially very compact forms of light. But the wavelengths of this light are very short. So a lot of energy is packed into a small area.

The second kind of radiation...and it's an important difference...is the kind Mimi mentioned that's used to look at specific organs in your body. This radiation is actually a set of atoms that are radioactive, meaning that they emit particles as well as radiant energy. Because they emit particles and energy, they can be detected inside your body and used to visualize body parts like organs.

Okay Mimi, let's wrap it up. Final thoughts about nuclear medicine?

MIMI

That is what I like to call a hot career that nobody ever heard of.

VO

And what about medical illustration?

BILL

It's that wonderful crossroads where art and science meet.

VO

And if becoming a doctor feels like a long shot, don't forget that our wilderness doctor was the first person in his family to go to college! How'd he do it?

MICHAEL

I think the ability to stay focused on that long term commitment is actually done by focusing on something you enjoy doing.

VO

Perfect for me, because I'm focused on what I enjoy doing-finding the best jobs in Georgia, and bringing them to you. And I'll do it again on the next episode of Fast Forward.

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