Resident Spotlight

Dr. Swethaa Manickam

Dr. Swethaa Manickam

Dr. Manickam is one of our many outstanding rising PGY2 residents. She couples matched here at ECU internal medicine with her significant other, Dr. Alexandru Bradu. Since arriving to our program, Dr. Manickam has excelled in all aspects of her career. She has been described by many as hard working, intelligent, dedicated, and a comforting physician to her patients. Recently received our “intern of the year” award at our 2022 graduation ceremony. Dr. Manickam will continue on as one of our stellar new senior residents this upcoming academic year. We look forward to seeing all the other great things she will accomplish, as she strives toward her goal of obtaining a GI fellowship!

Alumni Resident Spotlight

Samantha Thomas-Nadler

On my road to VMC, I was influenced to pursue internal medicine. Each patient has a unique story beyond the pathophysiologic processes, diagnoses and treatment regimens. I admired my supervisors who took the time to explain what was going on to the patient. I realized throughout my time in internal medicine that it was not always the treatment that put the patient at ease, but also the communication between the patient and the doctor. I learned that just prescribing was not always the perfect solution. I always want to strive for excellence not only for myself, but also for my future patients. I want to constantly reevaluate myself both as a clinician striving towards perfection and as a person striving towards empathy for my patients.

In Greenville, I saw an opportunity to grow and learn, not only from my colleagues and supervisors but also my patients. At VMC, I knew I had multiple opportunities to be the best physician for my patients. I also felt a great sense of community and friendship within the residency and fellowship program that I felt drawn to.

What I realize now is that life as a physician is not about getting one answer and being satisfied, it is about the challenges and learning opportunities and to never stop learning. Every day is a new journey and chance for me to learn. It is not enough for me to know how to make a diagnosis and provide treatment. I always need to understand the rationale behind a decision that I make so that I may always do what is best for the patient.

Jackie Smalls

There are many reasons why I chose Internal Medicine. Perhaps the most important reason was my exposure to many caring and brilliant internists who have taught me that as a doctor, I have the ability to impact the lives of people in their greatest time of need. This has inspired me to not only be a knowledgeable physician, but to be a caring one who puts the patient first.

To be such a physician is something I aspired to since my time in medical school in Dominica. There I worked in healthcare and screening clinics around the island and served people who normally did not have access to basic medical care. Wanting to continue in the vein of altruistic medicine was one of my main reasons for choosing ECU.

Here in Greenville we work with a very unique and underserved population. The opportunity to help treat and motivate them, as well as learn from them helped me realize how blessed we are as physicians in America. We have such a wide array of resources at our disposal, and abilities that are instilled in us during the course of our careers that I feel motivated to give back to those in need. Currently I am interested in joining Serving in Mission, an international Christian mission organization.

Another reason why I was interested in ECU as a residency program is because of the fellowships that are offered at this institution. I aspire to a career in nephrology, but I am also interested in medical education as a whole. A program where staff and faculty relish teaching, and where I have the pleasure of interacting with medical students on a daily basis was at the top of my list. ECU provided that and much more.

My main reason however for choosing this program was the internal medicine residents themselves. During my interview I found the residents to be diverse, and enthusiastic about the work they do here on a daily basis. Working with these individuals side by side I found my initial impression to be more than correct.

Aside from the program and it’s many attributes Greenville itself has been a wonderful place to live for me, and my lovely wife Allison. As outdoor enthusiasts the North Carolina mountains and beaches have made for many pleasant getaways. We have also enjoyed trying all the local restaurants, and have found quite a few favorites.

As a current second year resident I have thoroughly enjoyed the last two years at ECU, and I look forward to what my final year as a senior will bring.

Anna Tomdio

Growing up in Cameroon, Africa, I always wanted to be like the one woman I knew best, my mother. It was her that inspired me to pursue a career in medicine.

As a medical doctor from Ukraine, her blonde hair and green eyes made her stand out in our city Douala. However, it was her dedication to her patients that truly made her special. Although she died young, she left a lasting impact on people. As a child at the time, I did not realize this until a large number of her patients came to pay their respects at the funeral. That level of devotion and commitment to patient care is what I strive for.

While my mother began her medical career as a doctor, I started mine as a nurse in Washington D.C. However, like anyone with big dreams, I came to a point where I had to make a decision about what I wanted my life to look like. Even with the added challenge of raising my son as a single mother, I knew it was time to take the plunge and train to become a medical doctor. A more holistic approach to patient care, and the satisfaction of seeing the difference my work brings to those that come in ill turned out to be the right career move for me.

Being a people person, I chose Vidant primarily for the people. However, the opportunities available to me such as the fellowship programs and the exposure to areas such as the cardiac center were contributing factors. Ultimately, I chose Vidant because I know that here, I can become the best doctor that I can be and closer to my heart, the type of doctor my mother would be proud of.

Theodros Solomon Tsegaye

Born and raised in a developing country where there was a big shortage of doctors, I had to wait long lines and many hours before being examined by a doctor. There as I child, I began to realize the irreplaceable value of physicians and my interest of becoming a doctor sparked.

I trained in medicine in a country where infectious diseases were prevalent. Realizing infectious microbes can be the culprit behind both communicable and non-communicable diseases, autoimmunity and even cancer compelled me to dig deeper in to molecular medicine and immunology. Hence, before starting internal medicine residency, I spent time in doctoral and postdoctoral studies in biomedical research that allowed me to have a zoomed-in understanding of an aspect host-pathogen interactions.

I like internal medicine because it is a field of medicine that is dynamic, interactive and expanding. I feel internal medicine is the mother of all other medical specialties. My short and long-term career goals are to practice academic internal medicine and hospital medicine.

I chose Vidant Medical Center Program at East Carolina University The Brody School of Medicine because it offers a unique and comprehensive opportunity to train in internal medicine. As a large primary and referral medical center, Vidant has almost all the medical specialties and experts. The pathologies encountered are diverse and complex. This makes it an ideal environment for all-round training in internal medicine. Vidant is a place where young doctors get the best training experience to grow professionally. I am glad to be part of this evolving team.

Paul Woodard

I originally grew up in Raleigh where I went to NC State, and eventually Saint George’s in Grenada for medical school. However, I spent the majority of my formative years in the eastern part of NC.

From an early age fishing along the coast was a hobby I was privileged to enjoy. At times we would travel 30 miles offshore to chase monster fish that were not only a joy to catch, but also a pleasure to cook. In addition, surfing and swimming in the ocean have remained some of my favorite activities.

As a resident being back in the coastal region has been a wonderful opportunity for me to focus on my medical training while also maintaining a balance with my personal life. I thoroughly appreciate being in Greenville in regards to both its proximity to the ocean as well as to my hometown Raleigh.

To be able to enjoy the activities of both Greenville and the capital city are exactly what I was looking for when choosing a place to do my training. As an internal medicine resident at ECU, I feel honored to be able to serve and give back to my Eastern North Carolina community. Not only that, but working with our unique population I feel well prepared to graduate next year, and take on any challenges I might face while practicing outpatient primary care.

My experience at ECU has not only prepared me to be an independent physician, but has also helped shape me into a more mature and confident adult. I am thankful for the opportunity to have trained at such a choice program in such a special place