NEWS OF MEDICAL
COLLEGE AND GRADUATE
I recently watched The Music of Strangers, a documentary about Yo-Yo Ma’s exploration
of the music of the Silk Road. The film was beautifully shot, and its visual beauty and
haunting music intensified the story of Ma’s increasing interest in the intersection of
cultures, music, and shared humanity.
What struck me most about the film was Ma’s frank exploration of his crisis of confidence
in his career and life. He was a man who had established a “safe zone” both for his
musical repertoire and his relationship with fame. Then, in midlife, he became tired of
the “same old, same old” and embarked on a search for something new. While casting
about for he really didn’t know what, Ma happened upon the music of the ancient Silk
Road—and it has proven to be a source of inspiration, exploration, and growth for him
for the past fifteen years.
As I reflected upon his journey, I thought of our preparation at Weill Cornell Medicine.
We were given the tools to develop our medical repertoire. But we were also given implicit
license to go beyond this; to continuously grow. Many of my classmates have had
multiple careers, all of them marked by expertise and professional reputation, but many
of them sharp departures from their previous lives. I don’t believe this is an accident. We
were all selected for being more than merely good students; we had the potential to excel
and become more than we then imagined.
The same is true of the students at WCM today. They are ever more able, both in terms of
their test scores and grade point averages—but, more impressively, by their potential to
make a difference to their profession.
Those of you who attended the recent Reunion and were exposed to these students could
see it for yourself. And you also saw the incredible facilities that are available to them to
foster their learning in a creative and safe environment. Our Reunions are an opportunity
to reconnect with old friends, rediscover the core values of WCM, and exchange ideas
with students and the Office of Alumni Relations. For those of you who did not attend, I
encourage you to consider a trip to New York City in 2018 for the next Reunion.
The Alumni Association is your association. We are here to engage and assist you. We
are involved with many student initiatives at WCM and plan to assist even more in the
future. We aim to facilitate alumni supporting alumni—especially our recent graduates,
many of whom train in some of the most prestigious programs in the country.
I am honored and pleased to be your president, and I encourage you to speak to me with
any questions or concerns during my tenure.
Yo-Yo Ma once said that “one of the wonderful things about music is that we are always
learning.” Of course, the same is true about medicine.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Stuart Mushlin, MD ’73
President, Weill Cornell Medical College Alumni Association