PGY-1, Class of 2024
- Shelby Armstrong-Kager, DO | University of North Texas
- Rebecca Dehnel, MD | UCSD
- Jodie Guller, MD, MPH | USC
- Jovanny Lucero, MD | Tufts
- Samantha Mohammad, MD, MPH | UCLA
- Haley Oosterhouse, MD | USC
- Jessica Sokol, MD, MPH | Wright State
- Ashley Williams, MD | University of Washington
PGY-2, Class of 2023
- Valerie Burstein, MD | Ohio State University
- Connor Farrell, DO | Western University
- Guiyu “Lutetia” Li, MD | Case Western Reserve University
- Arissa Ma, MD | UCSD
- Jennifer Perdomo, MD | USC
- Julie Schafer, DO | Western University
- Andy Shen, MD | UC Davis
- Frank Valdez, MD | UC Davis
PGY-3, Class of 2022
- Cecilia Huang, MD | University of Pittsburgh
- Kenneth Job, MD | UC Davis
- Rochelle LaCaze, MD, MPH | Virginia Commonwealth University
- Ariana Martinez, MD | UC Davis
- Eric Pai, MD | Loma Linda University
- Christian Ramirez Haro, MD | Universidad Autonóma de Guadalajara
- Nam Thai, MD | UC Irvine (chief resident)
- Farida Valji, MD | USC (chief resident)
Shelby Armstrong-Kager, DO – University of North Texas
From: Amarillo, TX
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? When it came down to choosing a residency program, one of my biggest priorities was to be in a culture that created a family-like feel and fostered a positive learning environment. Despite interviews being held over Zoom, I was blown away by how well the residents interacted with each other and how many genuinely positive things they had to say about the faculty and program. They not only emphasized the great, rigorous training but also how supported they felt every step of the way. You pair that with a progressive curriculum in an underserved community that offers areas of concentration in things that are important to me like LGBTQ medicine, community medicine, street medicine and sports medicine (to name a few, lol) and my decision to choose Long Beach was a no brainer. I could not be more thrilled to spend the next 3 years here!
Medical Interests: Integrative Medicine, preventive medicine, LGBTQ medicine, community medicine, street medicine & sports medicine
Hobbies: I love spending time with my wife, traveling and trying ALLLL the food, working out, and just about any outdoor activity. Our newest adventure is rock climbing!
Fun Fact About Yourself: My ultimate bucket list item would be to look down on Earth from space!
Rebecca Dehnel, MD – UC San Diego
From: San Diego, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? Even before my interview, Long Beach Memorial had already checked all of the boxes I was looking for in a residency program: focus on underserved communities, a well-balanced curriculum, opportunities for family planning training, and a warm and welcoming learning environment (not to mention proximity to the BEACH!). Even in a virtual format, all of these characteristics came to life during my interview. Through meeting the residents and hearing how highly they spoke of their program, faculty and experiences, the family feel of the Long Beach Memorial FM Program really came through. I am so excited to be joining the LBM family!
Medical Interests: Family planning, gender-affirming health care, global health, refugee/immigrant health, community medicine, mentorship and teaching
Hobbies: Camping with our doberman (Adobe-Wan Kenobi), free diving, yoga/spinning, video-gaming, plant-obsessing & tennis-fanning
Fun Fact About Yourself: I grew up with four dogs, three horses, two goats, one brother and a llama, but no partridges or pear trees.
Jodie Guller, MD, MPH – USC
From: St. Louis, MO
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? Long Beach stood out to me from the very beginning. I had such a fantastic time on interview day and felt excited by everything I learned the program had to offer. I also saw myself reflected when I talked to the residents, which made me feel right at home. I even had “that feeling” people talk about, which I wasn’t expecting at all with our fully virtual interviews. I found myself comparing every subsequent program to this one for the curriculum, faculty and residents I wanted in a program. Throughout interview season it became clearer that this program uniquely offered the full-spectrum and community-based training I sought, with the ability to incorporate my many family medicine and public health interests into one residency experience.
Medical Interests: Pediatrics, adolescent medicine, women’s health, community medicine, health policy, public health & health equity
Hobbies: Spending time with family and friends, trying new restaurants, cooking, traveling, picnicking & hiking
Fun Fact About Yourself: I saw the Cardinals clinch the World Series in 2006 at Busch Stadium (the peak of my St. Louis fandom)!
Jovanny Lucero, MD – Tufts
From: Lynwood, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? I chose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine for a variety of reasons, not the least of which are their commitment to underserved and marginalized populations, expansive areas of concentration (AOCs), and general warmth of the admin and current residents. I was raised up the street in Lynwood, CA, and am very familiar with the types of populations they work with, including the Latinx population, which I am passionate about serving. The program is also greatly involved with community outreach, including various pipeline programs, something I feel strongly about because it’s important for kids/teens to know that their hopes and dreams don’t only have to be only that. Last, but not least, what’s not to love about perfect weather, great restaurants and close proximity to the beach?!
Medical Interests: Underserved populations, academic medicine, preventive medicine, sports medicine and more!
Hobbies: Cooking, hiking, reading (mostly fiction, lots of magical realism), playing basketball and tennis, board games (anyone up for some Settlers of Catan?), trying new restaurants & live music
Fun Fact About Yourself: I won “Deepest Dimples” in my senior year of high school, I can solve the Rubik’s Cube, and I collect records old and new.
Samantha Mohammad, MD, MPH – UCLA
From: La Puente, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? Social medicine has always been a passion of mine, and as a family medicine provider I knew I wanted to train in a program that would allow me to learn skills to increase access for marginalized communities. From this it was important for me to train in an extremely diverse city and in a program that provided access to a wide range of opportunities such as serving at the Long Beach LGBT Center and family planning training that included abortion care. I also wanted to enter a residency that had tracks focused on community medicine and health policy to advance my knowledge of how to advocate across multiple levels. It also helped that, on my interview day, I remember seeing the residents hugging and playfully joking with each other in a way that felt genuine and very much like a family, which is exactly what I was looking for in my program.
Medical Interests: Health equity & social justice; women’s health & reproductive justice; adolescent medicine; gender-affirming care; community & preventive medicine; serving underserved populations; public health and increasing healthcare access for all; medical mentorship & education
Hobbies: I’m obsessed with the outdoors and love hiking, backpacking, and rock climbing. In my lazy spare time I can binge watch TV shows like no other while crocheting amigurumi.
Fun Fact About Yourself: I am half Mexican, half Palestinian, and the youngest of 12 siblings. I am absolutely obsessed with dogs and a proud dog mom to my giant, 85-lb black lab/shepherd mix, Kona.
Haley Oosterhouse, MD – USC
From: San Jose, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? I chose Long Beach Memorial because of the kind and passionate people I spoke with on my interview day, the wide variety of opportunities in my areas of interest and beyond, and the reputation of the program for having well-trained residents who are very happy. Also, the idea of living by the beach didn’t hurt!
Medical Interests: Sports medicine, women’s health, inpatient medicine, HIV medicine & community medicine
Hobbies: Exercise and sports, cooking and eating out, traveling, spending time with my dog, friends and family
Fun Fact About Yourself: I was a swimmer for twelve years including college, and I was born on Friday the 13th (spooky!).
Jessica Sokol, MD, MPH – Wright State
From: San Antonio, TX
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? It was important for me to find a family medicine residency that would make me into the type of doctor I wanted to become. I found this at Long Beach Memorial because of their focus on underserved communities, healthcare policy, and LGBTQ+ medicine. I also loved the idea of working in a community hospital that focused on the unique needs of the community it serves. Despite all interviews and socials being virtual last year, I still felt so welcomed and accepted by all the faculty and residents and knew I had found my program and my people.
Medical Interests: LGBTQ+ medicine, HIV medicine, healthcare policy, community medicine, underserved communities & public health!
Hobbies: Netflix binging, hiking, swimming, non-fiction books, cooking & spending time with my sister!
Fun Fact About Yourself: When I was in middle school my mother, my sister and I taught cooking on our local morning show!
Ashley Williams, MD – University of Washington
From: Seattle, WA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? I discovered the Long Beach Memorial program via the (virtual!) National Conference. They were a really positive, engaged, and organized group, and I came away from the conference really impressed and interested! I learned more about the program via the website and my interview day, and I was struck by what a robust training experience the program offered. It was important to me to choose a program that would both provide me with a strong foundation for my life as an attending and allow me further to refine and explore my personal passions (including health policy, behavioral health, youth health and family planning). My Long Beach interview day and resident social were among the most warm, relaxed, and fun I encountered on the interview trail! The fact that I could still get a sense of the “we’re a family” vibe of the program over Zoom made me feel like it would be a genuinely supportive place to train. I couldn’t be happier to be a member of the Long Beach Memorial team!
Medical Interests: Adolescent medicine, health policy, behavioral health, family planning, gynecology, preventive medicine and practical wellness for all!
Hobbies: Movies, books (reading them and pretending I’m a writer!), music (choral, Korean pop, reggaetón, the phantom of the opera soundtrack, salsa classics, hip hop, Hans Zimmer’s dramatic movie scores, Disney soundtracks), dance, cultural celebrations and festivals, Myers-Briggs, travel & time with loved ones!
Fun Fact About Yourself: I’m a Spider-Man fan, and I got to meet Stan Lee at Emerald City Comic Con one year! Despite my love for the character, I despise actual spiders!
Valerie Burstein, MD – The Ohio State University
From: Camarillo, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? For me, it was important to find a family medicine residency that prepares residents to work in any type of setting for any types of patients. I looked for an unopposed residency in a diverse community with strong inpatient and outpatient training. Long Beach Memorial provided just that, along with a mixed feel of community and academic medicine. On interview day, I was surprised to see how friendly and enthusiastic the residents were about their program. I could tell that their unique interests were supported and valued by the faculty.
Medical Interests: Combined inpatient/outpatient medicine, academic medicine, refugee/immigrant health. Still exploring the many facets of family medicine
Hobbies: Naturally competitive, I love sports, especially soccer and tennis. When I need to relax, I like to read, sip on coffee, and maybe do some yoga alongside my Chesapeake Bay Retriever
Fun Fact About Yourself: I like to travel and practice my Spanish. I have been lucky enough to spend months in Panama, Bolivia and, most recently, Costa Rica.
Connor Farrell, DO – Western University
From: Pleasanton, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? I had the opportunity to do a sub-I at Long Beach Memorial during by 4th year of medical school. During my month-long rotation there were a handful of things I came to love about the program. First, the people were incredible! From the faculty to ancillary staff to the residents, everyone was kind, helpful and open minded, encouraged critical thinking/learning, and fostered a positive learning environment. Secondly, it checked all of the boxes I wanted out of a program: sports medicine opportunities through both an associated fellowship and area of concentration, a multicultural/diverse patient population, countless opportunities to be involved in the community through outreach programs, and an ultrasound curriculum. Because of all of this, I know that my experience at Long Beach Memorial will allow me to grow into the physician I want to be.
Medical Interests: Sports Medicine, Functional Medicine, Ultrasound, Health Policy, Healthcare Management and Administration
Hobbies: In my spare time I enjoy CrossFit, watching and/or playing sports (go Niners, Warriors, Giants and Sharks!!), hiking, traveling and adventure photography (goes with the hiking and traveling). Sometimes I’ll also sit down and read a book too!
Fun Fact About Yourself: I have two awesome Australian Shepherds (Rufus and Remy) with whom I do all of the aforementioned activities. 🙂
Lutetia Li, MD – Case Western Reserve University
From: Shanghai, China
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? My interview at Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine gave me a warm and tingly feeling, the only time I felt this on the interview trail. After the interview I was extremely excited and also terrified that I wouldn’t be good enough, and those feelings sealed the deal! Everyone I met during interview day was beaming with energy and happiness. My interviewers expressed excitement about my application. The program presentation included everything I want from a family medicine residency, health policy, including LGBTQ care, women’s health, underserved medicine, global health, etc. I am especially impressed that the program already has a family planning curriculum, which was very important to me.
My partner’s preference was also a priority in deciding the program. Luckily, he also liked Long Beach the most among all the other places I interviewed so everything worked out!
Medical Interests: Immigrant/refugee health, preventive medicine, women’s health, family planning, gender-affirming care, geriatrics, palliative medicine, and so much more!
Hobbies: Currently I am working on making my apartment a comfortable place. I do little projects such as making curtains, cushion covers and decorations. I love learning new things and my newest goal is to learn surfing someday!
Fun Fact About Yourself: I dance Argentine Tango!
Arissa Ma, MD – UC San Diego
From: Fremont, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? I actually decided to apply to the Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine program after reading about the residents on this website! After my interview day and post-interview dinner, everything I had read and heard about the residents and faculty rang true. I felt so warmly welcomed by both faculty and residents, and I could tell that everyone was truly part of a family here. In addition, the program’s curriculum and mission fit with all my career interests and goals – serving a diverse community, emphasis on full-spectrum training, community engagement, and strong training in all aspects of women’s health and OB. I knew that I would be well-prepared to pursue any career path I desired within family medicine with my training at Long Beach Memorial.
Medical Interests: Women’s health, family planning, OB, pediatrics, preventive medicine, mentorship/teaching and outpatient procedures
Hobbies: Cooking, eating, Netflix, traveling, cross-stitching, listening to true-crime podcasts, board games and spending time with family and friends
Fun Fact About Yourself: I studied abroad in Hong Kong in college and loved traveling throughout Asia!
Jennifer Perdomo, MD – USC
From: Los Angeles, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? I first learned about Long Beach Memorial when my colleague, Susie Sandoval, matched at this exact program. Later, the Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine program hosted an ultrasound workshop at USC and I had a great time learning from the residents and faculty who came that day. When I learned more about the program, including the diversity of training and opportunities that are available, it quickly became a top contender among other programs and ultimately won me over as number 1. After my interview day I was further reassured of these sentiments. Every person that I met was so genuine and down-to-earth and each had such varying interests within family medicine. Further, they were all so welcoming, and I could tell they were supportive and a family. As someone who has interest in women’s health, reproductive rights, and mentorship I knew that this was the perfect place as it offered me opportunities within my interests (if you can dream it, they’ve got it!). I especially love that it is a community program and that I have the opportunity to have such a diverse patient panel. I look forward to meeting patients from all walks of life who will aid me in becoming the best physician I can be with the support of the Long Beach Family Medicine training program.
Medical Interests: Women’s health, family planning, community medicine, mentorship and pipeline programs for underrepresented minorities in healthcare
Hobbies: Spending time with my partner of eleven years and family, trying new restaurants/food, eating my sister’s baked goods, yoga, and at home workouts
Fun Fact About Yourself: I have been fond of pandas since I was in third grade, when I wrote a report about them. I have a lot of random panda knick-knacks and even nicknamed my baby (due August, 2020) Panda puff.
Julie Schafer, DO – Western University
From: Mission Viejo, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? During my Sub-I at Long Beach Memorial I was struck by how incredibly kind, supportive and fun loving the entire faculty, staff and residents are. I knew from my first few days there that it was a good fit! The learning environment is collaborative and the patient population diverse and in need. Beyond that, the program cares about its patients and residents and strives to improve care in a meaningful way. I felt like everyone really supported each other and valued teamwork. Long Beach Memorial FM also has the opportunity for further training in women’s health/OB while still training well-rounded physicians. I also thought how the residents would work up their patients in the ER before admission to be a unique and invaluable experience for training. Overall, I am so happy to have chosen Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine for residency.
Medical Interests: OB/Maternity care and women’s health, community medicine and underserved care, inpatient medicine, and preventive medicine
Hobbies: Hiking and camping with my two dogs (Rufus and Remy), reading, baking, gardening and spending time with my family and friends
Fun Fact About Yourself: I taught a summer soccer camp with World Cup Champion Julie Foudy and I love to bake (and eat) pies!
Andy Shen, MD – UC Davis
From: El Monte, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? I chose Long Beach Memorial because of the dedication to diverse, underserved communities, the well-rounded, full-spectrum program, and the kindness and support from the entire staff. With a variety of community outreach programs and initiatives to improve the Long Beach community it was clear that Long Beach Memorial would be a perfect fit for me where I can thrive and grow to be a family physician. During my interview everyone was so open and supportive that I felt connected to the residents and faculty, and I’m incredibly happy that I was matched at Long Beach Memorial.
Medical Interests: Family planning, women’s health, LGBTQ+ medicine, HIV medicine, transgender medicine, community medicine, underserved communities, palliative care, healthcare access, public health and many more!
Hobbies: Cooking, eating, badminton, reading fiction, anime/manga and volunteering
Fun Fact About Yourself: 12 years of perfect attendance in the El Monte City School District and El Monte Unified High School District.
Frank Valdez, MD – UC Davis
From: Baldwin Park, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? When choosing a residency program I wanted to be somewhere in which the mission statement paralleled my own—caring for underserved communities similar to the one in which I grew up. What made LBM stand out among other programs was its strong training in my areas of interest such as mental health and LGBTQ+ medicine. Most importantly, I wanted to have a sense of family that I had during medical school at UC Davis. I immediately experienced that sense of family during my interview at LBM. Then, during my second look, I was welcomed back with tons of smiles and hugs. Despite not having a relationship with the residents, attendings and staff beforehand, I felt as if I was already a part of the LBM family and decided that this was the perfect place for me to thrive not only as a physician, but also as a human being.
Medical Interests: Underserved populations, family planning, LGBTQ+ medicine and mental health, among many others!
Hobbies: Hiking, jogging, Netflix (drama, horror, independent films, docuseries), exploring new restaurants and spending time with my family and friends—especially my little niece, “Weasel.”
Fun Fact About Yourself: I wanted to be a writer growing up. As a child I was fascinated by R.L. Stine’s “Goosebumps” anthology series and TV show. I was inspired to write a book entitled Beware of Killer Trees for my “Mystery Horrors” book series in elementary school.
Cecilia Huang, MD – University of Pittsburgh
From: Munster, IN
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? I first heard about Long Beach Memorial at the National Conference of Family Medicine Residents and Students as a 4th year medical student. I met some of the current residents and faculty, and everyone seemed so happy, kind, and enthusiastic. I left our conversation with a big smile on my face and the idea that those were the kind of people that I wanted to work alongside. I also love how broad in scope the practice and curriculum are here at LBM, and I knew that the training I received here would prepare me for any kind of family medicine career in the future!
Medical Interests: Women’s health, reproductive justice, intimate partner violence, underserved populations, preventive medicine and patient-provider relationships
Hobbies: Horseback riding, cooking, baking, eating and hanging out with my husband and dog.
Fun Fact About Yourself: I know kung fu.
Kenneth Job, MD – UC Davis
From: Fresno, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? I chose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine because I was immediately drawn to the welcoming family environment among the residents. I first heard about this program through former classmates, and they each raved about the incredible bond between the faculty and residents. When I arrived for my interview I was able to experience that presence instantly. I was also drawn to the robust yet thorough training that is provided here. I have a strong interest in underserved community medicine and was drawn to the extremely diverse patient population that is treated here. I also have a passion for sports medicine and the sports medicine track aligned exactly with my future career goals. It was an easy choice to choose LBMFM and of course the amazing location and weather made it a no-brainer.
Medical Interests: Underserved community medicine, sports medicine, adolescent medicine, preventive medicine and mentorship
Hobbies: I am a huge sports fan and former athlete, so I enjoy playing and watching just about any athletic activity, binging TV, movies, anything that involves food, and I dabble with the piano from time to time
Fun Fact About Yourself: I am undefeated as basketball coach (4th grade elementary league in 2012 – Los Osos!)
Rochelle LaCaze, MD, MPH – Virginia Commonwealth University
From: Orange County, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? When looking for a residency program it was really important to me to find a program that trained well-rounded family physicians capable of working in any setting. Additionally, I have medical interests in both OB and community medicine, so I wanted a program that would provide me with a lot of exposure to OB and that integrated community medicine into the curriculum and provided opportunities to understand better and to address the health needs of the community. Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine offered all of that! In addition to receiving high quality training, I also wanted a program that made me feel comfortable and supported. Ultimately, I chose Long Beach Memorial because of how happy and amazingly kind the residents and faculty are. Everyone is so welcoming and supportive of one another. During my interview it became very clear to me that the residency was more than just a group of individuals working together, it’s a family, and having that sense of family was very important to me.
Medical Interests: OB, women’s health, community medicine, preventive medicine, underserved populations and pediatrics, I could continue on but I’ll stop for now.
Hobbies: In my spare time, I enjoy hanging out with the my husband and family. I also really enjoy reading a good book. My favorite genre is fantasy but I’ll read anything. If I have enough spare time then my absolute favorite thing to do is travel.
Fun Fact About Yourself: I have been fortunate enough to have traveled to 18 different countries and have flown well over 100k miles!
Ariana Martinez, MD – UC Davis
From: Oxnard, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? I chose Long Beach Memorial because it had everything I was looking for in a residency program, including a diverse patient population, a commitment to community engagement and full spectrum training. I was also looking for a community-based program with strong outpatient and inpatient training, strong pediatric training and an ultrasound curriculum. The program has it all! I was blown away by the various opportunities available to explore my interests in community medicine, sports medicine and global health. In addition, I loved all the different opportunities available to residents to be involved with underserved communities and outreach/mentorship programs. Residents, faculty and staff all made me feel right at home on interview day and I was impressed by the genuinely supportive environment. I felt this program would give me the best training and allow me to flourish as a physician. I’m very excited to be training at Long Beach!
Medical Interests: Community medicine, preventive medicine, sports medicine, global health and adolescent medicine.
Hobbies: Strength training, running, hiking, playing basketball, spending time with my family, watching sports (live and TV) and binge-watching Netflix
Fun Fact About Yourself: I’m very clumsy. I’m terrified of rollercoasters. I own a harmonica and can play one song (Happy Birthday).
Eric Pai, MD – Loma Linda University
From: Oak Park, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? Among the many outstanding family medicine programs in California, Long Beach Memorial stood out to me as a place where I would receive rigorous, comprehensive training to care for the underserved within a warm, supportive environment. I was looking for strong pediatrics training, active engagement with the local community and commitment to the medically underserved. Long Beach Memorial offers all of this as a community hospital with qualities of an academic teaching hospital. I also sensed enthusiasm, compassion and humility among the residents, faculty, and staff in what they do as part of this community.
Medical Interests: Urban underserved medicine, pediatrics, mentorship/teaching, whole person care and spiritual care.
Hobbies: I enjoy exploring and experiencing new sights and sounds through traveling, hiking, reading, playing/listening to music, visiting museums, trying out restaurants/cafes/dessert shops, cooking and doing art projects.
Fun Fact About Yourself: I have a fascination with owls, which is the mascot of my alma mater, Rice University. I have a growing collection of owl figurines from different parts of the world and I got to hold a live Indian eagle-owl on my arm while in Japan!
Christian Ramirez Haro, MD – Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara
From: Jalisco, Mexico
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? The program meets my goals in life. Build strong and continued physician-patient relationships. True continuity of care. An outstanding inpatient medicine curriculum plus the warm of a FM Program.
Medical Interests: Evidence-based medicine and healthy aging of our seniors. After residency I’d like to study a fellowship in Geriatric Medicine
Hobbies: On a personal note, I enjoy traveling, watching Netflix and spending time with my loved ones.
Fun Fact About Yourself: When I was a child my mom used to take me to Latino dance classes. She always told me it was going to be useful later in my life… It wasn’t.
Nam Thai, MD – UC Irvine
From: San Gabriel Valley, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? As a medical student I had many opportunities to work with the community of Long Beach during clinical rotations, including at LBMMC. These collective experiences allowed me to appreciate the breadth of diversity that this community offers, which is also reflected in the patient population that we serve. Our residency program is truly ingrained within the fabric of this community through a number of outreach efforts that all speak to my interests. From pipeline programs to free clinics, LGBT health, homeless outreach and health education at local schools, we have it all! I love that our program offers unmatched academic training in a community setting with a socially conscious mission. Our faculty members all have diverse interests and there are various areas of concentrations for you to foster your own passions. Additionally, every resident that I had worked with as a medical student and met on interview day was super nice and welcoming. I am ecstatic to be a part of this family!
Medical Interests: Outpatient primary care, underserved and community medicine, LGBT health, public health, mentorship and pipeline programming, ultrasound and geriatrics
Hobbies: Exploring and reviewing new food places on Yelp, exercising, spinning, taking walks on the beach, singing karaoke, drawing, painting and hand lettering
Fun Fact About Yourself: I was born in Vietnam and spent the first eight years of my life there before immigrating to the US. One of my favorite ways to keep up my Vietnamese is through singing karaoke!
Farida Valji, MD – USC
From: San Juan Capistrano, CA
Why did you choose Long Beach Memorial Family Medicine as your training site? When interviewing for residency, I knew I wanted to be in a supportive environment that would allow me to pursue my interests, but aside from that I had no idea how I was going to choose where I wanted to be. The advice “Go with your gut” didn’t take on any meaning until my interview day at Long Beach Memorial. Everyone I met during my day, from the program coordinator greeting us in the morning to my interviewers and the residents at noon conference were warm, inviting and inspiring. As I moved through the day, I learned about the training environment, the opportunities to work in and with the community, and the support system that was offered by the program, and there was no turning back for me! I believe that the diverse patient population that is served at the hospital and the thoughtfulness of the curriculum, including specialized tracks, the ultrasound curriculum and unique opportunities like the teen clinics, the clinic at The Center, and participating in outreach programs will allow me to become the best physician I can be. I am so excited to be able to join the Long Beach Memorial program and family!
Medical Interests: Women’s health and family planning, adolescent medicine, community medicine, health policy, teaching and medical education, mentorship and pipeline programs
Hobbies: Spending time with my friends and family, exploring new coffee shops (and eating pastries!), group fitness classes, yoga, hiking (that I define as casually walking outside to beautiful views), listening to podcasts, farmer’s markets, trying new recipes and board games.
Fun Fact About Yourself: I have a twin sister!