When Reese Logan was in Joan Montgomery's kindergarten class at Clinton Park Elementary, he broke his arm while playing on a zip line.
"The next week, they all sat in a circle at school for sharing time," his mom, Melody Logan of Clinton, remembers. "Joan asked what each of them wanted to be when they grew up. Reese said, 'I want to be an orthopedic surgeon.'
"He has never varied from that," Melody Logan said of Reese, a first-year student in the University of Mississippi School of Medicine and May graduate of the University of Mississippi.
"When he was accepted into medical school, he sent me a text in the middle of the night. It scared me to death. He said that his dream was going to come true."
Logan and Reese's dad, Rob, were among hundreds of proud parents attending Family Day Aug. 8 on the UMMC campus. Led by student tour guides from the School of Medicine, family members of the 145 new first-year students visited laboratories, classrooms and other areas of campus where the M1s are now spending much of their time.
"When he was in his senior year of college, Reese looked at every medical school in the area but this one," Rob Logan said. "He visited UMMC, and said he had no idea how fantastic it is. He could have gone anywhere, but he said he was going to UMMC."
Here's what those attending Family Day learned, in addition to how big the campus is: Don't expect to see your relative. Don't expect a call. And don't bug them.
Ashley Sullivan, left, a fourth-year medical student, guides Clinton residents Melody and Rob Logan as they intubate a patient simulator during an Aug. 8 campus-wide tour that is part of Family Day, a gathering for parents and families of entering medical students. The Logans’ son Reese, a May graduate of the University of Mississippi, was among first-year students who received their white coats during a ceremony at Belhaven University.
On one of the tour stops, parents sat in a large classroom and watched a medical student examine and question a woman posing as a patient plagued by migraine headaches. UMMC professor of family medicine Dr. Judy Gearhart watched as the student carried out the mock office visit.
"Did you see anything he could have done better?" Gearhart asked. It's important, she told family members, that medical students learn to greet patients warmly by name, introduce themselves, and avoid using medical jargon in their conversations.
In another setting, Dr. Jeff Orledge, associate professor of emergency medicine and a physician in UMMC's Emergency Department, explained how lifelike patient simulators are used to educate students. Brandon resident Katie Parker Boyte, wife of M1 Matthew Boyte, listened to one stimulator's heartbeat with a stethoscope as another voiced his pain and symptoms.
Matthew Boyte is the son of Dr. Rick Boyte, UMMC professor of pediatrics and director of pediatric pain and palliative medicine.
Family Day was "the culmination of everything," said Katie Boyte, a nurse who, like her husband, graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi. "Matt's a non-traditional student. He's married, in the workforce, has two kids, and is a homeowner. We both have a great support system from our families."
She knows the years ahead will be an interesting journey. "We've weathered a lot of storms together," Katie Boyte said.
She and her husband have an agreement.
"He's been working an 8 to 5 job. That's his time away," she said. "He won't study at home. When he's home, he's ours."