Saving lives on a daily basis
Dr Christina Theodore (MBBS) is a frontline healthcare worker, University of Adelaide graduate and former recipient of a life-changing gift, the Augustus Short Scholarship.
Demonstrating the impact that scholarships have on the broader community as well as the individual, Dr Theodore is ‘paying it forward’ as a doctor, crediting the Augustus Short Scholarship as an important stepping stone on her professional path.
Christina grew up in a single-parent, migrant family, raised to deeply value education. “My socioeconomic status, ethnicity and gender were never suggested to be limiting factors in my life and career aspirations. This allowed me to choose my study path based purely on my interests and strengths,” she shared. The Augustus Short Scholarship supported Christina while she travelled interstate to undertake a clinical elective in Paediatrics at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, a unique opportunity to gain experience in a large tertiary centre. The scholarship also alleviated pressure on Christina to work long hours at a part-time job during university semesters.
“The scholarship enabled me to focus on study, which was an immeasurable help and empowered me to succeed. It also prevented me from relying further on my family, who had already sacrificed so much for my education throughout my schooling"
Christina graduated in 2018 and today, is a Resident Medical Officer in the Central Adelaide Local Health Network. Shining a light on the ups and downs of the medical profession, Christina notes, "the work and hours can be exhausting at times,” but recognises connecting with patients and colleagues as a highlight of her career.
“I enjoy connecting with people and families at a vulnerable time. Taking the time to be kind and empathetic provides a beneficial therapeutic relationship in both directions. It increases my job satisfaction, and helps patients feel more human and less like a cog in the wheel of a busy hospital system," she said.
Christina is one of many vital healthcare professionals who have helped keep the community safe throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. During the virus’ first wave, Christina worked in the COVID-19 response unit at the Royal Adelaide Hospital where medical and nursing staff banded together to treat patients and prevent the virus spreading. “The constant uncertainty, patient load, and quickly evolving protocols brought us all closer together. We needed to work together to problem solve,” she said. Despite the challenges of a global pandemic, Christina says that managing patients in a busy hospital environment is an incredible experience.
A message for our donor community
Thank you to everyone who has donated towards the Augustus Short Scholarship Fund. Costs of living and education are difficult to manage with a full-time study load, therefore the scholarship was an incredible help. I remain incredibly grateful and honoured that I was chosen as a recipient.Dr Christina Theodore