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Welcome to The Medicine Mentors interview series. Our mission is to create a platform for top physician mentors to share key insights, traits and best practices based on their experiences to guide medical students and residents.

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Nov 17, 2021

Suresh Ramalingam, MD, FACP, FASCO, is the Professor of the department of Hematology-Oncology, Roberto C. Goizueta Distinguished Chair and Assistant Dean for Cancer Research, Director of Division of Medical Oncology at Emory University School of Medicine. He is also the Deputy Director at Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University. Dr Ramalingam completed his medical school from Kilpauk Medical College University of Madras and residency in Internal Medicine from Wayne State University. He pursued a fellowship in Hematology and Medical Oncology from University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute. Dr. Ramalingam currently serves as president of the Georgia Society of Oncology. Dr. Ramalingam is nationally recognized as an investigator and a physician in the area of small cell and non-small cell lung cancer. He has been awarded the James Eckman Award for Excellence in Teaching at Emory, and the NCI Cancer Clinical Investigator Team Leadership Award.

What makes an exceptional mentor and how do you go about finding one? Dr. Suresh Ramalingam explains why enthusiasm and your ability to “do the homework before you go to someone” compel the most impactful mentors to pay it forward, investing in improving the lives of patients not only by their own efforts, but also by the future efforts of those who share in their wisdom. Listen to Dr. Ramalingam’s unique journey from Chennai to Atlanta to learn more about how identifying your strengths, knowing your gaps, and doing your homework can initiate meaningful mentorships and propel your career in medicine.

Pearls of Wisdom:

1. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel. You need to learn how to reach out and move it forward in a way that helps you progress in your career and life.
2. Focusing on your strengths first gives you the confidence to objectively look at your gaps and figure out who can help you fill them.
3. To approach the right mentor, invest in learning first and realizing why you need a mentor in the first place.