Eight years after arriving in West Virginia from Saudi Arabia for his education, Umer Rizwan, M.D., says the Mountain State has become his new home and that he hopes to remain here for years to come.
Dr. Rizwan’s journey to the West Virginia University School of Medicine began in 2013, when he and his family reached out to the Chief Academic Officer, Norman Ferrari, M.D., to enquire about if the program admitted foreign students. After that, Rizwan made the decision to come to West Virginia, where he enrolled in the biology program at West Virginia State University in 2014.
Upon the completion of his undergraduate degree, Rizwan said it was an easy decision to come to WVU for the next phase of his medical education.
“From the day I first arrived in West Virginia, WVU was always the plan for me,” Rizwan said. “I came to the U.S. to find quality, affordable education and WVU exemplified that.”
Rizwan said another factor that made coming to WVU an easy decision was his relationships with the faculty members. He said everyone he spoke with during his interview process and ahead of enrolling was extremely approachable and made him feel right at home.
Four years later in 2022, Rizwan achieved his goal of graduating from the WVU School of Medicine – but he says his time in West Virginia is just getting started. He will begin his residency training in the internal medicine program at Camden Clark Hospital on the WVU Parkersburg Campus in July. Rizwan said he is excited to have the opportunity to continue his medical education in West Virginia.
“I wanted to join this program because I know the well-rounded training will help me become a better doctor,” Rizwan said. “I feel so lucky to be in a position where I can provide care for people in West Virginia and be able to continue to represent WVU.”
He said that after he completes his residency, his plan is to stay in West Virginia to practice medicine.
“In these last eight years, West Virginia has become my home. I have made lifelong friends here. I have family here. I hope that after my residency I can continue to practice here so I can keep giving back to the state that has opened up so many opportunities for me,” Rizwan said.