Krista Niezwaag, Idaho

Krista Niezwaag comes to us from Idaho and is a second year medical student. She attends Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine (ICOM), and is this year’s recipient of the Fred and Diana Bradshaw Scholarship and Giving Back Scholarship Award. She also holds the distinct title of being the very first ICOM student to receive a scholarship from the foundation.

Krista told us a story about a young boy who she saw after receiving a cut to his head. Both he and his parents were visibly upset, and Krista knew that she wasn’t only treating the cut, but the associated trauma. She took an extra 15 minutes to play with the child, calm his fears, answer his questions, and negotiate a fair way to clean and bandage the cut, thus giving the child an ability to process the trauma in the moment. “It is so easy in medicine to treat the injury or the illness instead of focusing on the health or the person behind both. We have an opportunity to affect lifelong responses to trauma by focusing on health”.

Kristine P. Pultorak, DO said this about Krista, “While still in her first academic year she has stood out amongst her peers to become class president. She has started a grass roots development of a clinic (in Mexico) to care for locally underserved medical patients. While these accomplishments speak to her drive and versatility, it is her ability to get down to the core of the individual, to focus in on their unique story, that will make her a successful Osteopath”.

Lora L. Bennett, MD and Family Medicine Assistant Professor at ICOM stated, “She has the maturity, life experience, and vision to understand the importance of her education in achieving the goal of becoming a caring and competent osteopathic physician. I believe she will accomplish great things as a physician and help as many others as she can along the way”.

Krista sums up her goals like this, “I see my medical practice as such a small piece to improving the health and well-being of my community. Caring for the whole patient means showing up for their life and the lives of everyone around them in all ways, not just medicine”.

We agree with you Krista, and the foundation looks forward to seeing where this takes you. Job well done.

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