Feb 23, 2023 / Spotlight

Get to Know our Staff: Shamrez Haider, Clinical Research

Scottish Rite for Children offers a Medical Student Research Fellowship (MSRF) for medical students interested in gaining experience in clinical research. Fellows work with a lead faculty mentor throughout the year and several project supervisors who are pediatric orthopedic faculty at Scottish Rite. Fellows work as a crucial part of the research teams in various Centers for Excellence at Scottish Rite and are responsible for a variety of research projects.

Meet Shamrez, a 2022 MSRF at Scottish Rite, who works with William Z. Morris, M.D., in the Center for Excellence in Hip.
What inspired you to apply for the MSRF position?
I had numerous reasons to apply to the MSRF program, but a main motivating factor was to gain the necessary skills and experiences in research that I will need in the future, as I hope to have a career in academic medicine as an orthopedic surgeon.
Have you always been interested in medicine and/or research?
I was previously on trajectory for a career in finance, but eventually pivoted to medicine and found my way to medical school at UT Southwestern. From there, I was interested in orthopedics from early on in medical school and hope to apply into orthopedic residency next fall. 
What is it like working at Scottish Rite for Children?
Scottish Rite is a welcoming and pleasant place to work. There is plenty of support and easy access to the faculty for guidance and networking. 
Can you share a few sentences about someone at Scottish Rite who has been a mentor to you and how they have impacted your experience? What project are you working on with that mentor?
My main mentor here has been William Z. Morris, M.D., who has been a fantastic mentor. He used his previous experience from doing a research year himself to prioritize all the things that he learned worked well in his mentorship for my experience. He is incredibly approachable, supportive and knowledgeable about research and always finds opportunities to educate. We are working on numerous hip projects together, including projects on femoral neck fractures, hip dysplasia and slipped capital femoral epiphysis (SCFE). 
How do you think this experience will impact your career path?
I hope this year in the MSRF program leads me to my next goal of matching to a great orthopedic residency program, so I can begin my career in orthopedics. 
What progress have you made toward your career goal since beginning the program?
Since beginning, Dr. Morris, the team and I have completed a review article on SCFE, which has been published in the Journal of the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society North America (POSNA). We additionally have finished two other projects for which we submitted abstracts to POSNA and hope to have completed manuscripts to submit for publication soon. 
What is your favorite project that you are currently working on or have worked on at Scottish Rite?
I don’t have a specific favorite, but the project we are nearly finished with about treatment of traumatic femoral neck fractures with locking plates has been very interesting. That is something that has not been previously studied in the pediatric population, so this project will be the first to report on locking plates for this specific injury. 
What advice do you have for future CORA/MSRF participants?
Specifically for future MSRF candidates, don’t be afraid to take an extra year to ensure your career goals are more within reach. Matching to an orthopedic residency is getting more competitive, and an extra year to knock out some projects could help make the difference. Looking toward the long-term target of a career in orthopedics, one extra year of training doesn’t seem to be much at all. 
What is one thing most people don’t know about you?
I used to be a marathon runner, completing five full marathons. Medical school has kept me busy and prevented me from running at a high level for the past two years. My year off has allowed me the time to renew my love for running and hopefully run a full marathon by this spring. I also ran a five-person relay with other CORA/MSRFs last December at the BMW Dallas Marathon. 
Anything else you would like to add?
Nothing else.
We’re recruiting Medical Student Research Fellows for 2023! If you are a third-year medical student looking to take a gap year before applying to residency, take advantage of this unique opportunity! Only three positions are available for 2023.
Learn more and apply here on our Careers page.

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