“MSIH is the only foreign medical school in Israel that accepts students of all nationalities, not just North American,” explains Eliane Rozanes, in her perfect, slightly-accented English. Now completing her third year, Eliane has a fascinating life history.
“My mother, the daughter of Holocaust survivors, grew up in Frankfurt, Germany. My dad is Israeli and they met while my mum was visiting family in Israel. After getting married they moved to Switzerland for professional reasons.”
Eliane, the younger of two siblings, is fluent in five languages. She effortlessly slides between English, Hebrew, German, Italian and French.
“I know that familiarity with several languages is a very useful tool in cross-cultural medical environments” she says. “Personally, I also know how it feels to be in a situation where you don’t fully understand a language; I’ve been through it many times with my parents’ frequent moving around. I believe this makes me very empathetic to the non-Hebrew speaking patients I encounter.”
Non Traditional Medical School Applicant
Moving to the UK from Switzerland to study at University College London (UCL), Eliane completed an undergraduate (B.Sc.) degree, then continued – on a full scholarship – to a master’s degree in Biochemical Engineering (M.Sc.). She graduated in 2013.
“After a trip to Central America, I came to Israel to visit my grandma in 2014. While I was here, someone introduced me to an entrepreneur from the startup Softwheel. He offered me a job and I took it. Softwheel is an Israeli company that developed an in-wheel symmetric and selective suspension system – initially for wheelchair users. As we move toward sustainable mobility solutions, optimal energy efficiency is crucial, and very quickly the system was explored for use in electric bicycles,” explains Eliane.
But it was during her 18-months at Softwheel that Eliane learned something crucial about herself:
“I can’t sit in front of a computer screen for countless hours every day. I was proud to be doing work that improved peoples’ lives but working in an office was not for me. I needed contact with people. I knew I wanted a scientific, innovative career – but not only in front of a computer screen.”
The natural choice, Eliane knew, was medicine.
Enabling Dignity, Security and Sustainability
“We live in a world where a small part of the population is exploiting the rest for their personal comfort, consumption and lifestyle,” says Eliane. “The inequality of how people live is seen in healthcare but also far beyond. Some of us are lucky to be born – purely by chance – in the correct part of the world. But this means we should do everything we can to enable everybody on the planet to live with dignity, security and sustainability for future generations. This includes basics like water, nutrition, education and of course, healthcare.”
Ultimately Eliane would like to use her education to improve peoples’ lives.
“Technology is one of the best tools we have to broaden healthcare accessibility in resource-scare countries,” she explains. “In the end, I’m grateful to MSIH letting me become a doctor, here in Israel.”
To learn more about MSIH doctors and doctors-in-training who are working on changing healthcare across the globe, download your copy of the 2018 Medicine and Global Health Report.