Touro’s Lander College of Arts and Sciences
New York Medical College
Leah Gancz had originally planned to be a physician’s assistant, but after spending three years working in the emergency department at Maimonides Medical Center, she fell in love with emergency medicine as a career. “The opportunity to help people sounds cliché but it’s true. Nothing is as rewarding as coming home from work and knowing that you were there for people when they were at their most vulnerable and made a huge difference in their life.”
She chose Touro College because of its location and on-campus community – though her most amazing adventure may have been the one she had off-campus. “As an undergrad, there are so many opportunities to chart your own path. I wanted to go to Nepal and organize a medical mission, and Touro was there to help me succeed in bringing it to fruition. In Nepal, we ran medical clinics and provided medical education to people who had never had an opportunity to see doctors. This was an amazing experience that will help me be more compassionate in my career as a physician.”
After undergrad, she decided to stay within the Touro family, attending New York Medical College, an experience she valued for both the rigorous academics and the Jewish community. On the day of her interview, she saw someone putting on tefillin in the cafeteria and was reminded of the welcoming and friendly environment to which she’d become so accustomed during undergrad.
“Academically, it’s a wonderful program,” she says, confident that she’s well prepared for her future career. “In med school, there are hundreds of people who want to make a career out of helping people. The Jewish community on campus is small and students are very helpful. If people are struggling, they study together and do activities. I feel like I have a group of colleagues here that I could take with me for the rest of my life, people that I can rely on.”