Name: Britney Lugmayer
Hometown & undergraduate/prior university:
I graduated from Vanguard University with my bachelor’s in Cultural Anthropology and a minor in English.
Hobbies: traveling, cooking, and hanging out with friends!
What is your role in Peer Navigators?
My role as a peer navigator is support for non-traditional students, overall mental health, and all things Clinical Skills! The peer navigator team works to provide support and encouragement for the new class as they are transitioning into med school life.
Why did you get involved?
I really enjoy being a resource for people to help them succeed. I think the peer navigator role is an amazing way to be available for the MS-Is because we can relate to their struggles and provide encouragement. Being a peer makes approaching us less intimidating, and we can offer first hand advice and perspective that is difficult to find elsewhere. Being a medical student is really tough. Your family and friends may try so hard to relate or be supportive, but few have an idea of what it is like to experience this kind of pressure and stress. We can fill that gap by listening and being truly empathetic, which is often all you need to keep pushing forward.
What are some of the most valuable ways you think Peer Navigators serve the student body? (to the mentors and mentees)
Being a peer navigator facilitates upper classmen comradery with the incoming class. It allows the MS-Is a safe space for anything they may need as well reminding them that “they will get there”. For me, it’s a great reminder of how much I have learned during my first year at CUSOM. This is really encouraging on the tough days!
The peer navigators provide many resources to the new class, including a survival guide with lots of tips, previous year outlines and charts, and anki decks which are amazing study resources and time savers. We also organize help sessions for transitioning into medical school, advice on how to study, how to use anki, and maintaining a healthy school life balance.
This year the most impactful project we have done was our mock OSCE practice that allowed 75 first years to complete a full OSCE and SOAP note. They also received feedback from a second year (nearly 50 volunteers!) along with a graded rubric for the encounter. Based on all the feedback we received, this was an amazing experience for the students and helped to reduce their anxiety around the upcoming formatives.
What would you want fellow students or future students to know?
I want to remind everyone that the peer navigators are here as a resource for them! Even if you just want to say hey and need a break from the books we are always happy to chat! We are committed to your success and are here to help! Don’t suffer in silence, I promise, you’re not the only one!
If you have any suggestions for future events or help sessions please let us know!