In this month’s feature we will hear from Jennifer Jeboda, a medical student and illustrator. We will learn about how she uses her illustrations to both learn and teach new ideas and her beliefs about her role as a female scientist being crucial in influencing future generations of women and girls to enter the field too.
“Science and creativity go hand in hand because science is creative, and creativity is science,” says Jennifer, describing the integration of the two seemingly separate fields.
Read on to hear about Jennifer’s influences, her views on the unique intersection of art and science, and the importance of a woman’s role in medicine and healing.
Barbados and United States
Degree and University:
Medical Degree candidate of Ross University School of Medicine
What is your field of work?
I am currently a medical student, but my number one goal is to become a pediatric surgeon.
What is your creative outlet?
My creative outlets are cooking, teaching, drawing, and painting. I draw both on paper and digitally (on my iPad). I love to draw anything, but since I’m in school and somewhat limited with free-time, I draw everything medical related. This helps me to retain the information I learned in school and also helps other students remember too.
What aspect of your career is creative? How do you bring creativity into your work?
It’s not hard to bring creativity into the medical field because I think it requires creativity to teach and learn medicine. For example, if I want to learn about the heart, or teach someone about it, the first thing we need to see is a picture or drawing of the heart. I’ve discovered that using vibrant colors makes learning much easier and allows the information to stick better. Being creative with learning also includes incorporating aides such as mnemonics to help with remembering facts. When I become a doctor, my creativity will definitely come in handy in the operating room and will help my patients (especially the young ones) understand a difficult concept.
To you, what, if any, is the relationship between science and creativity?
Science and creativity go hand in hand because science is creative, and creativity is science. In order for us to understand a lot of the scientific processes that we cannot see, it requires creativity and imagination. In order for us to stumble upon scientific discoveries, solve problems and make cures, it requires creativity and imagination. Science and creativity together are how we learn more about this world.
Growing up, what creative and/or scientific influences made an impression upon you? AND/OR Who or what are your current inspirations?
I remember very vividly, a video my parents bought for me and my brother around the age of nine. It was a cartoon about the systems of the body and they had little characters transported through the blood describing the functions of each organ. I remember being so captivated by it and not understanding why my brother didn’t enjoy it like I did. We always fought over the VCR on movie nights because guess which video I always wanted to watch?
Fast forward to high school, I was only interested in three types of classes: mathematics, science, and art. Every other class was “boring” to me so from that point on I just knew I had to go into the field of medicine. Initially, I wanted to become a forensic pathologist. Then I finally decided on becoming a pediatric surgeon (I know, a big difference!)
My current inspirations are seeing creative doctors use their artistic abilities to heal. This is something that keeps me going through this trying period (medical school) because, I too, have a passion to use my creative abilities to save lives and make them better.
What does it mean to you, to be a woman in your field?
To me, being a woman in medicine means opening the eyes and minds of other young women and leading them into a field where historically, we’ve been vacant. We need more female doctors because women have a natural ability to nurture. To nurture is to care for, support, educate, encourage, protect, and teach; all of which are great qualities of an amazing physician.
Thank you to Jennifer Jeboda for this interview.
Shop Jennifer’s vibrant and colorful products on her website and connect with her on social media.
Once a month a new interview will be released highlighting a woman in STEM discussing creativity and its intersection in their field. To participate or nominate someone you know, please contact us. Sign up for our newsletter to receive interviews right in your inbox.