STRITCH SCHOOL OF MEDICINE
Hometown: Thousand Oaks, California
Major: Doctor of Medicine
Expected date of graduation: 2022
Kendall Frisoli has incorporated Loyola’s Jesuit mission into her approach to patients as she cares for an individual’s mind, body, and soul. For Kendall, a person is not defined by their illness. With that philosophy in mind, she knows there is so much more to a patient than a vital sign on a chart.
Here, Kendall shares her journey to finding her passion in family medicine and how this specialty allows her to serve the needs of her patients and her own varied interests in medicine.
What is your major and why did you choose it?
I never thought I would be a family physician. It wasn’t until my third year rotations when I realized I loved being with the patients and especially loved the mental health aspect of family medicine. It didn’t matter if it was surgical oncology or the burn unit—I felt like something was wrong if a patient didn’t confide or cry with me. It is great in the operating room to do craft work with your hands, but I also enjoy getting to know my patients.
Family medicine is a field that allows me to be me, wholly. I can teach and mentor. I can do preventive health care. I can go abroad and create something in a country. I can do something that I really love: music therapy in medicine. I believe music is medicine. It is the universal language, and it brings people together. Family medicine caters to the different and unique modalities of healing. Not every patient is the same, and family medicine allows the development of creative treatment plans.
What’s the most valuable lesson you’ve learned from your time at Loyola?
When finding your journey—or specialty, in medical school—you need to find the one that allows you to be you. We are more than medicine; we are humans. If we remember that, are our best selves, and take care of ourselves, we will be the best we can be for patients. By listening and figuring out your patient’s passions and what makes them a whole human, you can help them heal. People want to be heard. Maybe a person’s diabetes is uncontrolled because of stress at work or because they have five kids at home. We have to become a team with our patients—and our fellow staff—and realize we have a shared purpose.
How has Loyola prepared you for your future goals?
I did my family medicine rotation at Amita Health in LaGrange, and I was in love. It was unreal that I could be a dermatologist, an OB/GYN, a psychologist, and a pediatrician all in one day. The opportunities and exposure I had to being in the community, having continuity of care, knowing patients and colleagues, doing service, and having a variety of clinical exposure allowed me to find family medicine. Also, on the academic side, having faculty who enjoy teaching and have that life-long learning mentality also fits into family medicine. I wanted a safe space for learning and being vulnerable, and Loyola has allowed me to feel that.