We had the good fortune of connecting with Jimmie Lewis III and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jimmie, what do you want your legacy to be?
My purpose is to promote and be the advocate for the field of podiatry. I seek to take an active leadership role to advance diversity at all podiatric medical schools across the United States. I am interested in working with middle schools and high schools within underprivileged communities in Miami, Florida, once I arrive at Barry University School of Podiatric Medicine, which will provide early exposure to the medical field for minority students. I must pass on the legacy that others have shared before me. I will continue to push for a community that is full of excellence and do everything possible to add to others’ educational experiences. I believe this is necessary to create a more diverse and functioning world. Many college advisors and health professionals do not even know what this branch of medicine, even practices. With my past volunteer and leadership experiences in college, I will incorporate my leadership strengths to increase enrollment and make this hidden gem more accessible. I have started a blog page called www.jlewispodiatry.com
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Entering my senior year of college, I received an email from Kent State School of Podiatric Medicine. When I received this email, I started to do more intensive research within the field. I learned from my research that Podiatry is a medical specialty that deals with the study, diagnosis, and surgical treatment of the lower extremities. Podiatrists are qualified to treat diseases of the foot and ankle. Whether it’s sports medicine, dermatology, pediatrics, wound care, diabetic care, surgery, or biomechanics related, podiatrists can treat the many diverse aspects of foot care. Podiatrists can also be one of the first doctors to see systemic symptoms of a patient, such as vascular disease and diabetes. Podiatrists are valued members of a community health care team and can help patients get back on their feet and living their best lives. Podiatrists receive their medical education and Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (DPM) from one of the nine podiatric medical colleges around the country. They also receive three years of hospital-based surgical residency training while undergoing board certification. After shadowing different podiatric physicians, I fell in love with the field as the doctors were very down to earth. With my father being an allopathic physician, I only knew about MD and DO routes growing up. Nevertheless, through my intensive research, podiatric medicine became my main interest. I graduated in the spring of 2019 at Prairie View A&M University and took the MCAT at the end of my junior year and the beginning of my senior year. I applied to allopathic, osteopathic, and podiatric medical schools before I graduated from college. I began the waiting for a response process starting in May of 2019 after graduation. I was dreading the idea of doing a master’s program; nevertheless, my parents persuaded me to apply; furthermore, I got accepted and went to a bridge program at West Liberty University in West Virginia. The bridge program had no diversity what so ever; therefore, it was challenging to succeed in that type of environment. I thought this program was apart of God’s plan. However, I came back to Houston, Texas, in January of 2020 and started to study for my MCAT again while working a part-time job. A few weeks later, I received an interview from Barry University School of Podiatric Medicine, Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine, and Kent State School of Podiatric Medicine entering the new year. During the beginning process of the coronavirus, I had just returned from Miami Spring Break with some of my friends. I received calls from all the podiatric medical schools that I had gotten accepted into the upcoming class of 2024. I couldn’t be happier with my decision. As I continue to learn about podiatric medicine, the more I love it! The podiatric medical community is positive and supportive, and Miami is a magnificent city to practice medicine. I am very grateful to continue my path to becoming a podiatric physician this upcoming fall.Graduating from college and not going into medical school, the traditional route can be very frustrating, especially with concerned parents who want you to be great. DO NOT GIVE UP! I’ve been in your shoes.I’ve felt the frustration of watching some of my friends enter medical school before me when I have not even received an email. But imagine if I had given up. Imagine if I had said that’s enough, I don’t want to try anymore. I would’ve never known that my blessing was right around the corner. I’m here to tell you that your blessing is right around the corner. That phone call, that email is coming, and you WILL become a doctor if you continue to grind and work hard. Study hard for your MCAT, and God will write your next chapter in your journey to becoming a future physician. Maybe not this application cycle, but very very soon. So pull yourself up and motivate yourself to keep going, revamp your application, and apply again!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I move to Miami Florida for school in mid August. I have only visited Miami Florida twice during Spring Break. I know based off experience that Ocean Drive is the scene in South Miami. They have excellent bars, eateries, and beach life. I can give you an itinerary on the HOT SPOTS in Miami starting in the Fall. You can check out my website and blog at j.lewispodiatry.com for more updates in the future.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to give credit first to God for allowing me to see another day. I would then like to give credit to my parents for making HELLA sacrifices to get me to this stage in life. Without them, I wouldn’t be the young man I am today. I want to thank the Prairie View A&M University Honors Program, Undergraduate Medical Academy, Eta Gamma Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Incorporated, and Student Partnerships & Outreach Team (SPOT) for allowing me to expand my mind and for creating my network that supports me in everything that I do. I would also like to give a shout-out to all my friends and associates who helped me during my lowest moments and my victories. Lastly, thank you to Barry University School of Podiatric Medicine for allowing me to continue my education to become a sports medicine foot and ankle surgeon.