As an 8-year-old child, Shaniya Cobb had aspirations of becoming a doctor. Cobb, now a Dyersburg High School junior, is still following her dream.
“I knew I wanted to become a doctor after talking with my pediatrician when I was 8,” said Cobb. “He told me to read the book ‘Gifted Hands’, the story of Ben Carson. Even though I didn’t read the book, I watched the movie, and from then on I knew I wanted to become a doctor.”
This past summer, Cobb was selected as a delegate to attend The Congress of Future Medical Leaders conference, presented by The National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Sciences, at the University of Massachusetts – Lowell. The conference occurred from June 25 — 27 at the university’s Tsongas Center in Lowell, Mass, just outside of Boston.
“I was nominated by Ms. [Angie] Pickens (Biology, Anatomy, STEM teacher at DHS), and was selected and the end of school last year,” said Cobb. “It [the conference] lasted three days and different people from the medical field spoke. We even got to watch a knee surgery!”
As for the conference, Richard Rossi, president and executive director of The Conference of Future Medical Leaders oversaw and emceed the event. All delegates spent the three days participating in events and classes, as well as being treated to speakers such as NASA flight surgeon and astronaut Dr. Thomas Mashburn, Nobel Prize winners Sir Richard Roberts and Dr. Michael Brown, bionic eye recipient Larry Hester, Dr. J. Craig Venter, recipient of the Nation Medal of Science and scientist, among many others. According to Cobb, there were approximately nine speakers spread out over the three-day conference.