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Alumni Spotlight: Drs. Fine and Morrissey

In our alumni spotlight we aim to emphasize the residency experience and pathways our graduates have taken after Highland. We've got an incredibly inspiring community of grads distributed across the globe, each with a unique story of career and personal development. This month is featuring one of Highland's favorite alumni couples, Dr. Lauren Fine, Class of 2012, and Dr. Ben Morrissey, Class of 2016.

Dr. Fine answered our questions for our alumni spotlight, please read on below:

Can you tell us a little bit about where you work now and why you're working there?

Right now Ben & I work at Baylor University Medical Center (BUMC) Dallas, part of the Baylor, Scott & White healthcare system. The system is the largest not-for-profit healthcare system in Texas, and one of the largest in the country. BUMC is the hub hospital and tertiary care center for the northern half of Baylor, Scott & White. Our hospital has over one thousand beds. The ER has 74 beds, 4 trauma bays, and is a Level 1 Trauma center. We have medical students as well as rotating IM, Ortho, & OB residents - and are likely starting an EM residency enrolling its first class in 2020. The best way to describe our ER is as if Highland, Kaiser, and UCSF had a steamy three-way and produced one behemoth child that cared for the urban indigent population and the fancy people that have buildings named after them. CHO would be noticeably absent from this tryst - we see very little pediatrics as there is a nearby large academic Children's hospital.

I think we both enjoy working at BUMC because of the patients and the staff. We see a lot of acuity and a lot of pathology. We see the poor and the uber-rich. We take care of the Cowboys and real cowboys. Our nurses are great and our colleagues are a pretty young, smart, and laidback group overall. We drive only 10 minutes to work and are compensated well and we really do like where we live - just across from a lake with a 9 mile trail around it that manages to still be in the middle of urban Dallas.

Ask Ben about the time we tried to go kayaking 2 minutes from our house. :)

What is your favorite Highland memory?

I think I just have to say the people. I know that sounds generic- but it is actually incredibly specific. There is no other place where you will find such an interesting and diverse group of truly good souls. The friends I made in residency are in my blood. I would not be the person or doctor that I am today without the people that grew alongside me.

If you could choose any Highland shift to work now, which would it be and why?

Any night shift. I'm not normally a night shift person in general, but in residency I brought a George Foreman grill to every night shift I basically ever had - along with sourdough, white cheddar, tomato, & basil. There was (almost always) a time to stop, plug in the grill, and make a grilled cheese. Often if it was slower we would sit and talk about a case, or the shift, or life. It wasn't that slow that often - but I really relished the communal nightly grilled cheese.

What are you looking forward to in the next 5 years of your career?

I'm looking forward to continuing to work clinically. I really love just being a doctor. But...with the looming residency, I think there will be more opportunities for teaching, and I think that will be exciting too. I have a couple of pet projects I'd like to see materialize as well (I have been battling for our ER to get sexual assault nurse examiners & we are working on improving our identification of human trafficking victims).

One more thing in general about the next 5 years....I'm looking forward to continuing to be a mom Stealing a line from my own mother here, my children bring me unsurpassed joy. Audrey is 3.5 and Zoey is 1 and they are just such magical beings. I love my work, but nothing brings me more joy than my children. I love having a job that really lets me have it all.

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