How Mentoring Students and Nurse Practitioners Leads to Engaging Medical Residencies

Most of us have had some experience with having a mentor at one moment in our lives, even if we don’t realize it. Whether that person was an older sibling, a friend, or a coach, there are various role models who’ve shaped and helped us grow. In the healthcare and medical professions, mentorship is a vital practice, due to the training, research and job responsibilities required.

Dr. Behnam Khaleghi, MD is a Rheumatology Specialist in Orange, CA with over 29 years of experience. At Pacific Rheumatology, we get students from medical assistance schools and Western University for physician assistants. Dr. Khaleghi has more experience with Arthritis and Arthropathy than other specialists in his area, and has continued to share his insights with our assistants. These collaborative relationships between experienced specialists like Dr. Khaleghi and early nurse practitioners (NP) or physician assistants (PA), play a crucial role in the personal and professional development for everyone involved. Here are a few key reasons why mentorship helps improve the overall engagement of medical residencies. 

Introduce new career paths. 

Mentorship gives students and early professionals deeper insights and an early preview into their career and education decisions they were initially curious about. Pacific Rheumatology hires students who want to go to medical school, NP school or PA school. For example, our current NP, Janet, worked as an medical assistant first, and after completing her NP school, she returned to work with us. Her brother worked the same way, until he went to medical school, and is now doing residency to become a physiatrist. 

Build strong connections

Both mentees and mentors can benefit from the professional relationships an mentorship can bring. Experienced professionals gain new perspectives and students gain trusted role models.  At Pacific Rheumatology, we have 2 more mentees who entered MED school, and one accepted in PA school. According to Dr. Khaleghi, his practice of mentoring has been ongoing for the past 10 years, and it is mainly through word of mouth.

Provide fulfillment.

Mentoring in the healthcare field can lead to long-term bonds and trusting collaborative relationships. Early NPs & PAs who experience valuable mentorships are often more willing to become mentors themselves when they’ve become specialized in a field. This is particularly important for underrepresented populations in healthcare and medicine.

Dr. Khaleghi and his office have now shifted to taking in telehealth appointments, accepting new patients, as well as mentoring a new wave of mentees as assistants. If you’re looking for your next potential residency, get in touch with our office to see where you can fit in with our rheumatology specialists.


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