Awaking from a medically induced coma at age 26, Dr. John Wascow wasn’t sure what he would do with the rest of his life – but he knew he wanted to help people.
The Northbrook chiropractor visited Spartan Medical Club students October 25 at Glenbrook North. He told them about the severe head injury he suffered during an amateur motorcycle racing crash, the extensive physical therapy that got him walking again, and the rewarding aspects of his career in the medical field.
“My injury changed my life forever,” Wascow said. “I had gone to college for engineering, but the crash got me thinking about how I could help people in life, and so I went back to school to be a chiropractor.”
Wascow said he wishes he had thought about becoming a chiropractor earlier in life, as a teen. He offered the medical club students much advice, including taking business classes and “being prepared to study.”
“I dedicated my life to studying,” he said. “It’s difficult, but it’s worth it.”
Melissa Goldin, student president of the medical club, said she is also struck by the passion that doctors have for what they do.
“When I hear people describe the specific cases they had years ago, it really inspires me because there [are professions] out there that are so interesting and significant that they can be remembered years later,” Goldin said.
Goldin added that she was interested to learn about chiropractic healing in specific.
“I always thought surgery was such an incredible concept, but I never considered how unbelievably rewarding it can be to cure people with more natural methods,” Goldin said. “His visit definitely opened my mind to a new definition of medicine.”
Another medical club member Kate Abrams said she is glad to be able to build connections with local doctors.
“I really enjoy having the resources to really dig into medicine without having to be out of high school,” Abrams said. “I thought it was interesting that Dr. Wascow joined the world of medicine so late in his life. Much of the time, we hear that medical professionals knew they wanted to go into medicine right out of high school, so it’s interesting that he had a different experience.”
The Spartan Medical Club is open to any GBN student interested in learning more about the field of medicine. The club meets twice a month to listen to clinical speakers, participate in hands-on learning activities, or take a trip to a local hospital or clinic.