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July 2016

The Fellow and the Professor Revisited

Author Affiliations
  • 1Oregon Health & Sciences University, Portland
  • 2Legacy Devers Eye Institute, Portland
JAMA Ophthalmol. 2016;134(7):727. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2016.1156

Physicians are often grateful to patients. Frequently their determination and resilience in dealing with illness inspires us and helps us cope with the challenges of life.

Similarly we are grateful to students, residents, and fellows. A good trainee questions his mentor. A good trainee supplies his mentor with new perspectives. A good trainee keeps an old attending young. Seneca, a Roman philosopher, noted this reward from teaching 2000 years ago in observing, “When we teach, we learn.” Recently a former student called me for advice. In the process, the mentor became the mentee.

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