Features

Destined to be a doctor

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Josh Lukas believes the key to being a good doctor is getting to know who the patient is.
“Being a doctor means so much more than the medical examination,” shared junior Josh Lukas. “It’s about getting to know who the patient is.” And for the first time in 20 years, the doctor who saved Lukas’s life got a chance to do just that. Lukas has a special history with doctors, which begins when he was about three days old. At that time, he underwent an experimental procedure that had a three percent chance survival rate. Under the care of Dr. William Rhine from Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford, Lukas beat the odds in a miraculous display of medical technology and perhaps some divine intervention. This past summer, Lukas contacted Dr. Rhine for the first time, to thank him for saving his life as an infant. In a telephone conversation, the two discussed the procedure that forever changed one young man’s life. Dr. Rhine asked if he could meet Lukas, who was now blazing his own trail to “doctor-hood," and a trip to San Jose was arranged. Through his connection and relationship with Dr. Rhine, Lukas participated with Dr. Stevenson in the Neonatal Resuscitation Program this past summer at the Center for Advanced Paraneonatal Education (CAPE) at the very same hospital from his beginnings. “I got to scrub into surgery,” shared Lukas. “The first surgery I saw was a CDH (congenital diaphragmatic hernia) repair; I was infatuated.” He’s also planning to work with Dr. Stevenson this summer doing neonatal research on bilirubin (a protein which, in excess, may appear as jaundice). A vibrant and excitable young chemistry major, Lukas says his dream is to become a physician, researcher and professor all at once, modeling after Stanford professors. “I’ve grown up with the highest regard for doctors,” stated Lukas. Juggling several balls at once seems to be his niche even now, as Lukas not only double-minors in biology and piano performance but is also involved with two singing groups at Bethel. He ebulliates passion for his field, evidenced by big smiles and energetic discussion regarding anything medical, but this bright-eyed future doctor expresses a fresh exuberance and unabashed zeal that seems to characterize his entire being.
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