Students interviewed Region 5 Representative Wyatt Eikermann, DO, for their latest Resident Council Spotlight interview to learn more about why he volunteered for the resident council, what a typical day looks like and a few words of advice for current students.
Wyatt Eikermann, DO, PGY 2
University of Missouri (Mizzou) Family and Community Medicine in Columbia, MO
A.T. Still University Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine
Missouri University of Science and Technology
July 31, 2023
Why did you choose this residency program?
I wanted to be a part of a larger program at an academic center so I could learn from a variety of other residents and have opportunities to see things I wouldn’t get to see in smaller rural hospitals. With the plan to go into the rural communities for the rest of my career, I wanted to learn as much from an academic center.
Why did you choose family medicine?
I love the variety that family medicine offers. You can go from one room seeing patients in their 90s, to a newborn, to a pregnant patient while doing a variety of procedures and other skills in between. Family medicine allows you to make your career in medicine anything that you want. I also enjoy the continuity and helping patients get and stay healthy.
What is a typical day like in your life as a resident?
A typical day for me currently is going to my rotation (whether inpatient, pediatrics, emergency medicine, obstetrics, etc.) taking care of the patients for that rotation, and then commuting to my continuity clinic about 30 miles away from the hospital in the rural town of Fayette, MO where I see a variety of patients.
What do you like to do in your time outside of residency?
With my time outside of residency, I am usually either hanging out with fellow residents, taking care of my raised bed gardens, doing yard work, and if I have an entire weekend free; going to my family’s farm about 2 hours away to help my father with the different projects and chores.
Why did you volunteer to join the Resident Council?
I volunteered for the ACOFP because I am passionate about family medicine, and specifically osteopathic family medicine. The osteopathic profession allows family medicine doctors to be more prepared and have different skill sets that can help patients (OMT). Not all patients know about the osteopathic profession, so helping advocate for the profession and meeting other passionate physicians is one of the best experiences I have had.
Were you involved with ACOFP as a Student?
I was involved with the ACOFP as a student and started volunteering with the national organization during my 3rd year. I was on a few different committees with the student organization and was then appointed to the position of Student Governor in my 4th year of medical school.
What is your one word of advice to students?
My one word of advice to all pre-med and medical students is to do the activities or volunteering that you are passionate about. Doing something “because you are told it can help you” is not that attitude to have and will make you lose your energy and vision for why you wanted to become a physician. Do things because you enjoy it and have passion, it makes the day-to-day things much easier and enjoyable.
When was the first time you realized you wanted to be a physician?
I realized I wanted to be a physician after I had cut my leg open a few different times from accidents on the farm growing up as a child. Each time I went to the emergency room the nurses and doctors were very nice and helpful. I decided I wanted to be more like them and continued to learn about the field of medicine.
If you could meet one famous dead person, who would it be?
Johnny Cash. I have always loved his music and as I have learned more about him and the events, he had been through in life, I would find it interesting to hear some of those stories in person.
What would you title an autobiography or memoir?
“The Physician Farmer” – I am passionate about sustainable farming and will have a farm in the future dedicated to sustainable practices.