Shivani Dave, a second-year medicine resident at Queens Hospital Center in Jamaica, said her aim is to eventually become a hospitalist—a dedicated in-patient physician who works exclusively in a hospital—and that she longs to eventually be able to share the knowledge she has gained in her field with others.
Dave grew up in Farmingdale on Long Island, attended New York University and went to St. George’s University for medical school. She is currently in her second year of residency at Queens Hospital Center.
Dave’s parents were born in India. Her mother moved to New York at age 24, while her father emigrated to Flushing when he was 7 years old and attended John Bowne High School before moving to Long Island.
Although her parents and several family members are in the medical field—her mother is a dentist, her father works as a pharmacist and her uncle is a physician—she said that her decision to pursue a medical career stemmed not from pressure, but passion.
“My parents said, ‘You can do whatever you want that makes you happy,’” she said. “My father told me to pick a career in which you don’t feel like you’re going to work every day—but instead, you enjoy it. As an undergrad, I was an economics major because I wanted to see if I liked anything else. At the end of the day, I liked medicine.”
Dave said that, as an only child, her parents were supportive of her volunteering and extracurricular activities, and that she was inspired to pursue a career in medicine after witnessing how much her family enjoyed the field.
“Everybody is in the medical field in my family,” she said. “I wasn’t pushed into it, but I was encouraged. I knew how much they enjoyed helping others. It made me want to do it also.”
Dave started her second year of residency in July. Currently, she is focusing on internal medicine. As she rotates through the ICU, she has also gained experience in the primary care clinic and subspecialty clinics.
“I’m more interested in general medicine,” she said. “Once I graduate, I will try to be a hospitalist and work on the general medicine floor. You get to see a little of everything, rather than just cardiology or radiology. As a hospitalist, it’s more about being able to keep in touch with the new people becoming doctors and the research to see what the latest guidelines are. You’re training with new doctors and keeping up with the most up-to-date methods. Plus, I like being in a hospital setting.”
Dave said that she also likes that being a hospitalist would likely give her the opportunity to share her medical knowledge with others and provide mentorship.
“I like medical students and being able to teach them,” she said. “I like being able to pass along what I’ve learned to others. It would be nice to give them advice. Growing up, when you’re trying to go into medicine, you’re always looking for someone to guide you.”
– Nathan Duke