A person types into a laptop while standing next to a patient's bed.
BGSU sophomore biology major Ethan Edelbrock works as a medical scribe, which provides an up-close look at his future career as a doctor. (BGSU photo/Craig Bell)

From medical scribe to ER doctor: BGSU student experiences early look at future career

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Ethan Edelbrock accompanies doctors on patient visits, further igniting his passion for becoming a doctor

By Laren Kowalczyk ‘07

Bowling Green State University student Ethan Edelbrock spends a few nights per week in an emergency room, getting an up-close look at his future career as a doctor.

As a medical scribe, the sophomore accompanies doctors on patient visits, documenting patient history, physical exam findings, diagnoses and more. 

Although Edelbrock doesn’t assist with patient care, he said being in the emergency room has further ignited his passion for becoming a doctor.

“Emergency rooms are pretty hectic, but I like the fast pace,” Edelbrock said. “My job has definitely helped me envision a future in emergency medicine.”

As a biology major at BGSU following the pre-professional medicine track, Edelbrock said his classes and job as a medical scribe complement one another, bolstering his knowledge inside and outside the classroom. 

“It’s beneficial to learn about various things in anatomy class and then relate that to what I’m seeing in the emergency room,” Edelbrock said. “I’ve also seen things in the emergency room that help me better understand things we’re doing in class.”

Building a medical vocabulary is one of them, he said.

“It’s almost like doctors are speaking another language sometimes because they’re so educated,” Edelbrock said. “I might not know everything they’re saying, but because of my classes, I can understand more of their thought process and reasons for their decisions.”

Edelbrock's early exposure to the medical field is helpful for medical school applications, with research also playing a significant role in that process.

A person standing in a hospital room and a patient in the background.
As a biology major at BGSU following the pre-professional medicine track, Ethan Edelbrock said his classes and job as a medical scribe complement one another. (BGSU photo/Craig Bell)

For that reason, Edelbrock joined the lab of Dr. James Metcalf, an associate biology professor at BGSU.

Through a grant from the Center for Undergraduate Research and Scholarship (CURS), Edelbrock is studying how the presence of cyanobacteria in farmland soil could affect the food people consume.

“I really like working with Dr. Metcalf,” Edelbrock said. “He’s super knowledgeable, and he genuinely cares about his students and the research they’re doing. I really enjoy being in the lab.”

Metcalf said Edelbrock’s drive to succeed in everything he does has been evident since the start. He designed his experiment, applied for funding and collected the soil samples to begin the project.

“Without question, he’s driven to succeed,” Metcalf said. “Ethan is engaged in lab meetings and discussions. He’s not afraid to ask questions or offer new ideas. These are all qualities that will benefit his future medical career.” 

Edelbrock’s decision to become a doctor originated from an early interest in science, which he said was fostered through a youth program at BGSU called Kids’ Tech University.

As a Bowling Green native, Edelbrock attended the semester-long program several times throughout middle school and recalled the formative experience of being introduced to scientific concepts through hands-on activities.

“We would do a seminar in the morning and an experiment in the afternoon on what we had learned about earlier. I vividly remember being 10 years old and thinking what we were doing was so awesome,” he said. “That’s what really got me into science, and that passion continued through high school and now into college.”

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Media Contact | Michael Bratton | mbratto@bgsu.edu | 419-372-6349

Updated: 04/23/2024 02:33PM