Moments

Departures and Arrivals

BY KATIE VLOET
PHOTOGRAPH BY LEISA THOMPSON

Winter 2020
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FOR JASON CORRELL, it was “seriously humbling” to try to get around campus in his first weeks as a medical student during the summer of 2019. “With thousands of hours navigating planes around the world as an Air Force pilot, I found myself struggling to figure out how to ride a city bus to school and get to Taubman Library,” Correll recalls. But he has found his footing, and his inner compass, as an M1 who balances his studies with a busy home life. Wife Sam is a registered nurse at Michigan Medicine; together, they are raising sons Graham, age 7; Hudson, age 3; and Whit, age 1. 

I WAS ALWAYS INTERESTED IN MEDICINE, but it was through some great mentorship and life experience that I developed a passion and desire to serve in rural America. When I was in undergrad at the U.S. Air Force Academy, I had a physician mentor me as I considered turning down my pilot slot to pursue medicine straight out of college. He offered me the perspective that I could gain so much life experience and solidify my passion while undertaking the adventure of flying … conversely, going to flying following medical education was more difficult. It was great advice. I went on to work in hospitals in Afghanistan and across the Middle East as well as flying MEDEVAC around the world. I was able to work in free clinics and see rural health care’s needs. One thing that really stands out about UMMS: They assemble a class that is a team of talents, backgrounds, ages — you name it. You have old guys like me who know how to potty-train a 3-year-old next to fresh-out-of-undergrad students who can teach you every mechanism in biochemistry and how to efficiently manage new technology for education. It really makes a great team to be a part of.” 

—Jason Correll