Bishop encourages women to enter the medical field

Marion Bishop, an emergency room physician at Evanston Regional Hospital in Wyoming, followed an unusual path to become a doctor. Bishop spoke to USU students Thursday night at the request of the Women in Science and Medicine club. A Cache Valley native, Bishop said she became interested in medicine because she admired her father, a physician, for the way he treated patients and community members. Later, her father became the first Emergency Room director at Logan Regional Hospital. “I loved what he did,” Bishop said. Even though she became interested in medicine at an early age, Bishop said she originally pursued a different career because she believed people who told her a medical career would be too difficult for a woman who wanted a family. Bishop earned a Ph.D. from New York University and began teaching college English courses. “I picked my second favorite thing,” Bishop said. Though she doesn’t teach English anymore, Bishop said her educational background has helped her in her current vocation. “English is all about people and stories,” Bishop said. “Medicine is the same. It’s all about people and stories.” Women aspiring to enter the medical field don’t need to sacrifice their dreams of becoming a doctor or their goals of raising a family, Bishop said. In her early 30s, a divorce and a tough job market for English instructors prompted her to do some soul searching, Bishop said. She said eventually, she decided to follow her life-long ambition to become a doctor, overcoming concerns that attending medical school would be too complicated, too financially straining or too incompatible with her desired lifestyle. Yvonne Kobe is an academic advisor for students at USU who want to enter medical school. Kobe said one of the biggest concerns for women aspiring to jobs in the medical field is the desire to have both a successful career and a family. In a society that traditionally views women as mothers and homemakers, women in medical school often feel pressure to give up pursuing careers in medicine and pursue a career more compatible with family goals. “That’s something that’s not on the men’s plate,” Kobe said. While demanding, success in a medical career and success in family life are both attainable, she said. In medical school, Bishop said she learned keeping a healthy perspective is very important. While attending medical school, Bishop still found time to go skiing at Alta, where she met her current husband. The variety in her educational background helped her keep that perspective, and fellow students who also had that varied background seemed to cope better, Bishop said. “It’s easy to stop believing in yourself,” Bishop said. “Sometimes I would have to say to myself, ‘I’m a competent person doing something really freaking hard.'” After Bishop got her job in Evanston, she moved back to Cache Valley, where she now resides. Despite the commute, which can take more than two hours one way, Bishop said the schedule in the ER agrees with her personality and her family life. She said she will often work 24-hour shifts and then have three or four days to spend with her daughter without worrying about work. Bishop said even after leaving medical school, she sometimes still found herself being stereotyped or disregarded because…

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