Nancy M. Holekamp, MD: Dairy Debt With Commentary by Seenu M. Hariprasad, MD

By Seenu M. Hariprasad, MD


Working with Nancy M. Holekamp, MD, while I was in fellowship in St. Louis at the Barnes Retina Institute a little more than a decade ago exposed me to her unique brilliance and humility. She never made fellows feel bad when she was right (and they were wrong) about a clinical diagnosis. Instead of berating the fellow for a mistake, she would say, “You owe me an ice cream cone.”

Nancy M. Holekamp is a professor of clinical ophthalmology and visual sciences at the Washington University School of Medicine and is director of the retina service at the Pepose Vision Institute, both in St. Louis.

Dr. Holekamp was photographed at the 34th annual meeting of the American Society of Retina Specialists in San Francisco in August 2016.

By the time my fellowship was finished, I probably owed her a thousand of gallons of ice cream. The fact that she has not come to collect on that dairy debt taught me a lot about how mentors should treat mentees—chiefly, that patience yields higher dividends than scolding, and that a good attitude can produce a great doctor.

—Seenu M. Hariprasad, MD


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About New Retina MD

New Retina MD delivers cutting-edge content to retina specialists in their first 15 years of practice. Each issue provides fresh insight from younger physicians plus established mentors on clinical and nonclinical issues affecting ophthalmologists in the earlier stages of their careers. NRMD features surgical pearls, clinical research endeavors, practice management, medical reimbursement and policy, continuing educational requirements, financial planning, innovations, and more.