Helping others is at the heart of the medical field. Dr. Maria “Marel” Ver ’98, general, bariatric and trauma surgeon at Pali Momi Medical Center, says her time at Maryknoll School inspired her and instilled in her the value of giving back to others and to her community.
“One of the big things at Maryknoll that I’m very proud of is we learn about service. We become aware about the community around us and the needs of the community, and we’re confident in our ability to make a change,” she says. “That’s why many of my classmates are doctors, lawyers, entrepreneurs and innovators.”
Ver says her time at Maryknoll and the guidance that she was given helped her become who she is today. She gained a strong drive and confidence that enabled her to study pre-med at the University of Southern California, attend medical school afterward at New York Medical College and complete her general surgery residency at the University of Illinois Chicago, Mount Sinai Hospital.
“Maryknoll helps students flourish and figure out who they are and what they want to achieve,” says Dr. Ver. “You’re surrounded by like-minded students and extremely inspiring teachers and mentors. You realize your potential to do big things in life. You realize that you think differently and can change the world. When I graduated, I was ready for the transition to college, and I was excited to learn new things, meet new people and approach problems a different way.”
When it comes to finding a fitting career, Ver encourages students to keep an open mind and to not be afraid of failure. “Don’t be afraid. Try different things. I always tell people, especially students, that every experience is a learning experience whether you think it’s going to benefit you or not. Every lesson is a life lesson.”