97 Jr. Miss plans to come home to practice medicine

Posted: Tuesday, April 09, 2002

1997 Alaska Junior Miss, Skyview graduate, and Rotary scholar, Hillary Moore, was home recently for a brief internship with Dr. Alex Russell, Soldotna Pediatrician.

Ms. Moore is currently in her first year of medical school at the University of Washington, part of the WWAMI program, Hillary is finishing her first year at Anchorage, then will complete her medical training in Seattle, "I haven't exactly decided what specialty I will go into, but I'm very interested in returning to the Kenai Peninsula area to practice," Moore recently told the Soldotna Rotary Club.

According to Moore, the many extracurricular activities that she participated in during high school, such as the Junior Miss program helped to prepare her for the college lifestyle adjustment, but said her academic life was very difficult at first, "I worked really hard to eventually meet what I really wanted to do, but I feel I was prepared well by this community," said Moore.

Why is Moore planning to return to practice on the Kenai Peninsula after she graduates? "I've spent 4 days now with Dr. Russell, and it's been extremely rewarding to see familiar faces and he's just been fantastic to work with. I knew that I wanted to be a doctor that knew my patients and it's more difficult to do that in a bigger area. It feels really good to know the people here and to be back," explained Moore, who has talked with high school classes while she has been home.

"This community has supported me very well, as a beneficiary of scholarships that are funded by programs like the Rotary Rose sale. It's so true that every dozen roses really does make a difference to a students education," said Moore.

The WWAMI program, supported by the State of Alaska, stands for Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana, Idaho, and allows 10 Alaskan students annually to attend the University of Washington graduate school for in-state tuition.

According to Moore the program was responsible for her being accepted to medical school, "Our tax dollars do go toward the WWAMI program, and there are many doctors in Alaska that have gone through school because of the WWAMI program and have been supported by Alaskan dollars, and it definitely encourages us to come back to Alaska," said Moore.

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