Collaborating in classic Union style

Ajay Major '12
Hematology/Oncology Fellow University of Chicago
MAJORS: Chemistry, and Spanish and Hispanic Studies; Leadership in Medicine
RESIDENCY: University of Colorado School of Medicine
SPECIALTY: Internal medicine

Aleena Paul '12
Medical Education Fellow Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell
MAJORS: Biological Sciences and Sociology; Leadership in Medicine
RESIDENCY: University of Massachusetts Medical School
SPECIALTY: Internal medicine and pediatrics

Ajay Major and Aleena Paul met their first year at Union in a course on the U.S. healthcare system. Both entered Union as part of the eight-year Leadership in Medicine (LIM) program that leads to an M.B.A. or M.S. in healthcare management, plus an M.D. from Albany Medical College.

Ajay Major and Aleena Paul

Though their paths sometimes crossed in the classroom, they really got to know each other through their work as editors on the student newspaper, Concordiensis. “Though we were on track for medicine, we really caught the journalism bug,” Aleena said.

When they entered medical school, they considered establishing a student journal, but a physician journalist encouraged them to think bigger. So in between round-the-clock studies and clinical work, the two founded in-Training, one of the world’s first online magazines written for and by medical students.

Launched in 2012, it published an enormous breadth of content, and it also quickly became a popular forum for sharing the intense experiences of med school. It was recognized in the respected Scientific American Incubator blog and also inspired a book, “in-Training: Stories from Tomorrow’s Physicians.”

“We decided to build an online village where medical students from around the world could discuss important healthcare and social advocacy issues,” said Ajay. “Medical schools often exist as disparate islands. We wanted to transcend the isolation that has traditionally existed among medical students and create an intellectual gathering place.”

“When medical students have an outlet to reflect on their experiences and their voices can be heard,” Aleena said, “they will become better physicians and stronger patient advocates.”

The two enterprising alumni went on to found in-House, the online publication for residents and fellows, and Pager Publications, a non-profit that curates peer-edited articles for the medical education community.

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