Kaili Delos Santos is a senior at St. Andrew's Schools - The Priory. She is an active student with a passion for dance – an activity which has influenced her future career goals. As part of Priory in the City, Kaili works as an intern for Jennifer R. King, D.O., at Pali Momi Medical Center. In the future, she hopes to become a doctor in either sports or dance medicine so she can provide young athletes who suffer injuries with the care they need, similar to the help she received from her own doctor.
Article written by Priory in the City senior Natalie McKnight-Sur.
1. Why did you want to learn more about the sports medicine field? Is there one specific moment that inspired your interest?
"Ever since I was young, I wanted to be a doctor, but I was unsure of which specific field. Then a couple of years ago, I visited a pediatric sports medicine and dance medicine doctor for a dance related injury. I was inspired by her story and decided that I wanted to incorporate one of my hobbies into my career, and that I wanted to be a dance or sports medicine doctor. Even though I had a general idea of what a sports medicine specialist does, I still wanted to learn more."
2. Why did you choose to intern at Pali Momi Medical Center?
"My doctor was the one who initially inspired my interest, and I also found her career really interesting – something I could picture myself doing in the future – which is why it felt right to try and do my internship there. Another reason I wanted to intern at Pali Momi is that whenever I visit the office, I am always warmly greeted by the staff and doctors. I knew I wanted to be in a place where I felt comfortable, and that is the type of friendly atmosphere I got from Pali Momi Medical."
3. What is your favorite part of your internship, or something you look forward to doing? What do you feel is most valuable?
"One part that excites me is learning about the different types of injuries athletes experience. The injuries can appear similar at first, but they are different in certain ways. For example, each patient initiates the injury in a different way. Over the course of my internship, I have seen a couple of wrist injuries. The interesting part is that each person has a different story. Listening to them and trying to figure out how or why the injury occurred is always a new experience."
4. What is one surprising thing you've learned since starting? Is your experience any different from what you expected?
"One surprising thing that I have learned since starting my internship would be the complexity of each injury. While I knew that all injuries involve some part of the body, I was unaware of the full extent of the body they affect. Even if it's a small injury, there can be many joints, tendons, and muscles involved, which makes it much more complex. As for my overall experience, I had a general idea of what I would do, so it isn't too different."
5. What are some goals or aspirations you have for your future?
"My aspirations for the future are to be happy in the career I choose and to help others overcome injuries, just like my doctors have helped me. I especially want to help children with disabilities and long-term injuries to achieve their dreams because I don't believe that any type of impairment should hold a person back."
6. How do you hope to affect people's lives with your work?
"I hope to show people that you shouldn't overlook injuries because they can start off small, and grow to become more serious over time. It's important to listen to your body because it will tell you when you're pushing yourself too much and need to rest."
7. What is the best advice you ever received, and who gave it?
"One of my teachers told me that 'what is meant to be yours will be yours no matter what, you can't worry about it, don't ever give up, keep working, you need to move on.' Basically, it means that whatever happens is meant to be, so we shouldn't dwell on the negative things that may happen in life. Instead, it's best to use them as a learning experience to make yourself even better."
8. What is one surprising thing about you that not many people know?
"When I was younger, I used to play soccer, but I broke my arm during practice and refused to go back. After breaking my arm, I got two pink casts. Since I went to Disneyland almost every school break, we took one of them to Disneyland and got signatures from many of the characters."
9. What are your favorite activities outside of school?
"My favorite activity outside of school would definitely be dancing, which has been my hobby for many years. Dancing is a way to exercise, but it has also taught me life skills such as time management, discipline and perseverance."