By Wendy Sarubbi | January 7, 2011 1:54 pm

UCF College of Medicine faculty members and students celebrated their love of medicine and the Hispanic culture recently at the Pan American Association’s (PAMA) Doctor’s Day Gala.

Dr. Jose Borrero, assistant professor of surgery at the College of Medicine, is an active member of the organization and worked with PAMA to donate a major portion of the ticket cost so students could attend. And Dr. Borrero himself also made a donation to help pay for the tickets.

Dr. Borrero said he was thrilled the medical students could share in festivities “with our Spanish-speaking community of doctors and follow in our tradition of dancing and celebration focused on the family.”

Also attending the event were Drs. Juan Cendan, assistant dean and medical director, Clinical Skills and Simulation Center, and Judith Simms-Cendan, associate professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

M.D. student Renata Shraybman appreciated the opportunity to network with College of Medicine instructors and other community physicians who share her dedication to the Hispanic culture. “It was such an amazing night,” she said. “I am really thankful for PAMA and Dr. Borrero for letting us be a part of it. Who else can say they’ve danced salsa, the Twist and the Cha Cha Slide with their professors? The food, the dancing – but especially the company – were unforgettable.”

M.D. student Bobby Palmer spent a year in Chile after completing his undergraduate degree and said he was thrilled to “re-establish a connection with the Chilean culture that I left in July by meeting three physicians from that country. It was a great opportunity for which I am very thankful”.

And M.D. student Ruth Strakosha was struck by the comradeship of local physicians and their families with the UCF doctors-in-training. “The PAMA dinner was another great example of how supportive Central Florida has been of the UCF College of Medicine,” she said. “It was wonderful to see so many physicians, with whom I had interacted in a professional or academic setting in the past, enjoying themselves, sharing their personal stories with us, and introducing us to their families.”

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