b'Georgia. The first class represents a diverse group with an averageAfter graduating in 2017 from Boston College with a degree in age of 25 made up of approximately half women and half men,biology, Perez returned home to Florida to prepare for the Medical with the majority from Georgia and Florida. College Admission Test and apply to osteopathic medical schools, including PCOM.This is our target number, it is smaller than most medical schools, but it allows us to have reasonable growth, says Jones. We knowWhile I was working, I received a call at 10 a.m. that Ive been this number will also give our students a good rotation schedule. waiting on for months, says Perez, explaining that she was on PCOMs waitlist for admissions. I screamed with excitement all For Aliza Perez, being selected was both an honor and a whirlwindover the hospital and told all my colleagues I was going to medical experience. school. After immediately resigning from her job at the University of Miami Hospital, where she worked alongside a physician as a scribe, Perez knew her life was about to change dramatically.I had been accepted to PCOM [South Georgia] during the first day of orientation, she says. I had to figure out a way to get from Miami, Florida to Moultrie, Georgia by the following day at 8 a.m. Healthcare Solutions: Joanne Jones, campus officer, PCOM South GeorgiaWithin a few hours, Perez had packed her belongings, said goodbye to family and friends, and started the The community continues toseven-hour drive to Moultrie.welcome me and the rest of theI was moving my entire life to a totally different state in a matter of hours, says Perez. Once in the car, having PCOM students. In fact, manytime to reflect, I was filled with such joy and adrenaline, members of the community havethen reality kicked in. I was moving to a new city where I knew no one, had no place to live, and only three duffle asked me what they can do tobags with a few of my belongings. facilitate our studies and successAfter living in a local hotel for a few days, Perez was able in Moultrie. Thus far, I haveto get an apartment with a PCOM classmate.nothing but positive things to sayWith the help of the hotel staff, I found a store to buy a bed to sleep in and a desk to study, she says. I about Moultrie and look forwardloaded the furniture into my truck, and when I got to the to my next three and a half years. apartment, the maintenance staff helped me unload the furniture up to my apartment. - ALIZA PEREZAfter completing her first semester, Perez says she is adjusting to the fast-paced life of medical school and her new home in Moultrie.PCOM The community continues to welcome me and the rest of the PCOM students, she says. In fact, many 26 SG MAGAZINE | WINTER 2020 BUSINESS + CULTURE 27'