Jill Eysaman-Walker always knew she wanted a career in health and planned her education accordingly. She attended West Virginia University as an undergraduate exercise physiology major and transferred to UB in her third year.
“I chose UB because it had a far more advanced program,” Eysaman-Walker said. “I fell in love with the Department of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences and what it had to offer me. Also, I am a native of Western New York, and I wanted to be able to get trained and one day work in the Buffalo area."
While in the BS/MS program, Eysaman-Walker said she enjoyed having access to numerous research opportunities. She became a research assistant for Lisa B. Rafalson, PhD, research assistant professor in the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine. “I helped her with a research project on prevalence and incidence of diabetes and acanthosis nigricans in 13 Buffalo public schools that had school-based health centers. This study was published in Clinical Pediatrics, and I was given second authorship.”
That research served as the start of her master’s thesis, “Differences in Physical Activity Between Overweight and Normal Weight Students in Three Buffalo Public Schools,” which she successfully defended.
Eysaman-Walker would go on to continue her education as a medical student at Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine. “I decided to become a doctor of osteopathic medicine because I feel that what I am learning now is geared to my previous education in public health,” she said.
“I was able to use my knowledge on lifestyle modification, exercise prescription and nutrition to help patients without excessive prescriptions of unnecessary drugs. Osteopathic medicine teaches us to see wellness as a state of health created before any disease occurs. By showing a patient how to stay well, we can help prevent sickness."
After graduating medical school in 2014, she would also complete a residency program in Osteopathic Family Medicine at Sisters of Charity Hospital in Buffalo, New York. During her third year of residency, Eysaman-Walker was named one of the chief residents. She graduated in June 2017. Currently, Eysaman-Walker is completing a fellowship in wound care at the Catholic Health Wound Healing Center in Buffalo, New York, which is the first wound care fellowship to be offered in New York State.
A proud School of Public Health and Health Professions alumna, Eysaman-Walker said that the school opened many doors for her. “The school fully prepared me for my future,” she said. “The four years that I spent at UB were absolutely wonderful and I tell every student that I speak to that my time at UB absolutely prepared me for medical school and beyond."