Peer Support Network
The Peer Support Network is a group of students who have volunteered their time to meet with other students to support them in different aspects of their journey through medical school.
Our UMSOM peer support leaders are Certified Peer Educators through the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA). They have been trained in active listening and resource management and help use their personal experiences to help support your journey. Examples could include wanting to chat, finding resources on campus, emotional support, questions on specific courses, residency applications, USLME step studying etc.!
Students interested in becoming a Peer Support Leader have the opportunity at the beginning of every academic year in August to apply to be trained and become a volunteer. You must be an MS2 or above to apply and invitations to apply will come via email to the class list-serves.
Peer support leaders are NOT therapists and meeting with them is NOT a form of Mental Health Treatment. Meeting with a peer support leader should not be substituted for Mental Health Treatment. If you need help connecting with mental health treatment, a psychiatrist or a therapist, please contact the University of Maryland Baltimore's Student Counseling Center at 410-328-8404 or go to http://www.umaryland.edu/counseling/ . You can also connect with regional mental health support through 988. *If you are having an emergency health situation, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.*
Your connection with a peer support leader will be confidential and the things you share with the peer support leader will stay confidential, unless there is imminent dangerousness involved (at which point the peer support leader will work with you to connect to the correct resource/person for help).
If you are interested in being connected with a peer support leader, please fill out the form at the top of the page.
Someone from the Peer Support Network will be in contact with you within a week.
MS4 Erik Gunnarsson
Hey! I’m Erik (MS4), and I’m thrilled to be a part of the Peer Support Network this year. Medical school is really tough no matter how you look at it, and leaning on friends, family and other supports (like us!) is so important. I’m here for whatever you need – questions about resources, worries about any step of the process, imposter syndrome or literally anything else that’s on your mind, I’d love to chat and help you through it. Nothing is too big or too small!
MS4 Nansen Kuo
Hey y’all, I’m Nansen, super stoked to be a part of The Peer Support Network! Medical school can be quite the rollercoaster ride with its highs and lows, all the while life outside still goes on. I’m grateful for the peer support I had throughout this process which carried me to where I am today. Stressed, anxious, excited? Reach out, let's talk through it. I'm happy to chat and listen about anything, whether it be class, step, rotations, shelf, or life! Look forward to meeting y’all.
MS4 Priya Patel
Hi! I’m Priya (MS4) and I am super excited to be a part of the Peer Support Network! Having support from mentors and peers was one of the keys to staying sane in medical school for me. Like everything in life, school has its ups and downs and talking it through with someone can really relive some stress. I would love to be of support to anyone who is feeling stressed or worried – whether it has to do with medical school, life, mental health, or anything else that comes to mind! I am always open to anything that you would like to talk about and promise that I will try my best to help or connect you to the right resource for your success!
MS4 Michael Sikorski
I'm Michael! In my eighth year on this campus as an MD-PhD student, I can earnestly share that your keys to success will be support and community, both of which are abundant at UMSOM if you are willing to ask someone for help. I joined the Peer Support Network to pass forward the same support I received from others, sometimes in formal mentorships and meetings, but also in passing on a rotation or while struggling through my studies. I look forward to helping peers navigate success on the wards, career planning, family planning, Shelf/Step 2 study plans, (how to have fun and productive) research, and everyday medical school stressors.
MS4 Emma Silverman
Hi! I’m Emma (MS4), and I am so excited that we now have this Peer Support Network. I know that I definitely would have benefitted from talking to a peer during my medical school experience (medical school can be hard and your 20s can be hard – or any age for that matter !!!). I’m here for whatever you want to chat about. No judgement, just peer to peer time to vent or ask questions. I’ll be here to listen and will always try my best to help you and/or connect you to the right resources!!
MS4 Sarah Sulkowski
Hi! I’m Sarah (MS4), and I am thrilled to be a part of the Peer Support Network. As I look back on the last four years, I am so thankful for the community of faculty, peers, and friends that supported me. The path through medical school is undeniably challenging, introducing distinct stressors to our personal and professional lives. It is a journey that no one will face alone. I am excited to get to know you and chat about anything and everything! No question or stressor is too small to talk about.
MS4 Garret Wegner
Hey, I’m Garret! The Peer Support Network is a great addition to our resources as medical students, and I am excited to be a part of it. It is no secret that medical school can be demanding, both academically and personally. I'm always available for a chat about whatever is on your mind, and I'm looking forward to meeting you!
MS3 Molly Carbonell
Hi all! I’m Molly (MS3) and I’m super excited to be part of this new network at UMSOM. One of the best parts of my experience here has been the network of friends, mentors, and faculty I’ve been able to create and the support I’ve received from all of them. Medical school can be difficult and isolating and, without people to lean on, things can build up fast. I’m excited to hopefully be part of your support network and a resource you can use for anything going through this tough but rewarding journey!
MS3 Radhika Gholap
Hi everyone! My name’s Radhika, and I’m so excited to be one of the new Peer Support leaders. Medical school can be incredibly difficult, and it is normal to feel anxious, isolated, overwhelmed, or just generally lost in the sauce. On the bright side, I know firsthand that talking it out with friends can be a huge form of stress relief to help process both the good and the bad. As a previous Crisis Counselor, I hope to be an empathetic ear and a sounding board to provide some support and encouragement. Whether you want to just vent or have specific questions on school or balancing emotional wellbeing with clinical demands, I’m here!
MS3 Maria Som
Hi! My name is Maria and I’m so excited to be a part of the Peer Support Network! Having gone through three years of medical school, I can speak to how exhilarating and exhausting this time of our lives can be. My family and friends have been an invaluable support system these past few years, but sometimes it's nice to talk to people within the medical community who just “get it”. I’d love to be a sounding ear for you – happy to chat about anything, give advice, be your cheerleader/shoulder to cry on, or just listen if you need to vent :)
MS3 Alanna Stefano
Hi all! I’m Alanna, an MS3, and I’m so excited to be part of the Peer Support Network. We all know that medical school is not only a great learning experience, but also mentally, emotionally, physically, and even socially draining! It can be hard to reach out for help, and even harder to admit that you might need it (trust me, I’ve been there!). Whether you need some motivation, a shoulder to cry on, a listening ear, someone to help you fight the imposter syndrome, or just a chat, I’m here to support you! Anything and everything is open for discussion - especially Grey’s Anatomy, pop culture drama, and whatever book you’re currently reading. This is always a safe and private space. I look forward to meeting you!
MS3 Sarah Sweet
Hello friends! My name is Sarah, and I am thrilled to participate in the Peer Support Network. Medical school should be an exciting time in our lives, however, often stress and exhaustion interfere. I hope to serve as a resource for anyone to speak with whether they are thriving or surviving this crazy adventure we are on together. Please do not hesitate to reach out, and I am excited to get to know more of our community!
MS3 Nicol Tugarinov
Hi everyone! My name is Nicol, and I am super excited and thrilled to be a part of the Peer Support Network! Medical school can be amazing and super overwhelming and all things in between at one point or another during these four years. It’s always helpful to be able to talk things out with others, whether it’s telling someone about what a fantastic day you had in the hospital, about something super interesting you learned, recapping a particularly difficult experience with a peer or a patient, or getting your thoughts out on the table about something that you’ve been struggling with. Nothing is too big or too small and I’m happy to listen to all of it. Please reach out to me if you want to talk, rant, vent, laugh, cry, etc. This is an open and safe space for all. Looking forward to meeting you!
MS2 Anna Christou
Hi, I’m Anna (M2), and I’m very happy to be a part of the Peer Support Network! The strong sense of community is one of my favorite things about UMSOM, and I’ve found that talking with my classmates has helped me navigate stressful situations. I’m excited to talk about study strategies, mental health, research, or just life in general with you all.
MS2 Hima Konduru
Hi! I’m Hima (MS2). In my own experience so far in medical school, there have been amazing, exciting moments as well as stressful ones. Through it all, a strong sense of community and support from those around me has been fundamental to appreciating this journey. I believe in having open, safe conversations about our highs, lows, and everything in between. I am so excited to be a part of the Peer Support Network and be someone who fosters this type of environment. I’m always here to listen and chat!
MS2 Sarina Maini
Hi! I’m Sarina (MS2). I’m thrilled to be a Peer Support leader and I’m passionate about fostering a supportive community where asking for help and talking about mental health should not be shamed. I eagerly look forward to chatting with my peers about a wide range of topics from academic challenges to time management and managing life and personal development beyond being a medical student. I’m excited to make this journey less isolating and more fun together!
MS2 Christine Wan
Hi there, I’m Christine (MS2)! We all know that medical school can be one rollercoaster of a ride, and I want you to know that you’re not alone in this journey. Whether you’re struggling with school-life balance, study strategies, motivation, or just want to chat, I’m here for you - so, don’t hesitate to reach out. Welcome to our supportive community!