Reflections Hear what Slotnick Fellows Have to Say

Gilberto Ruiz, MD

Diplomat of the American College of Emergency Medicine, Staff Physician, Doctors Medical Services, Las Vegas, Nevada
Fellow, 1990

Coming from a Spanish speaking household in San Fernando, California, I had 
to be very blessed and lucky to walk the halls of the UCLA School of Medicine. Through the hard work that I learned from my parents, I took full advantage of the opportunities that lay in front of me. The Jim Slotnick Fellowship was one of those opportunities.

I knew firsthand the color and faces of impoverishment from growing up in rural Mexico and later in San Fernando, California. But the summer of the Jim Slotnick Fellowship changed all that. I quickly realized that poverty crosses all colors and cultures. I suddenly felt close to and identified with the many patients I was now caring for.

The Jim Slotnick Fellowship experience taught me to be even more sensitive and understanding to people who did not have my brown color. Finally, the compassion and generosity of the staff gave me tremendous reassurance that I had ventured into the right profession.