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Segundo Barrio Resident Realizes Physician Dream

Updated: Mar 29

Dr. Jesus Guzman reflects on every step of his journey at Texas Tech Health El Paso leading up to National Doctors Day


Jesus Guzman, M.D., didn’t always dream of becoming a doctor. More than a dozen years ago, he didn’t even know what he wanted to be. That was until he watched the Foster School of Medicine host its first white coat ceremony for incoming students. He hasn’t stopped dreaming since.


Jesus Guzman, M.D. - Texas Tech Health El Paso

“I grew up in El Paso’s Segundo Barrio and watched many people in my neighborhood go without medical care,” said Dr. Guzman, who was working as a theater technician at the Chamizal National Memorial Theater where the 2009 white coat ceremony was held. “I didn’t know how I could help, but I knew I wanted to. When I realized there was a medical school in my hometown, I finally knew how.”


Dr. Guzman is one of the hundreds of Borderplex doctors to be honored on National Doctors Day, March 30. With the day approaching, he reflected on his medical journey, starting with the construction of the medical school.




As a preschooler, Dr. Guzman and his mother crossed the U.S.-Mexico border daily at 5:30 a.m. While his mother worked, Dr. Guzman would gather a blanket and pillow and nap under her desk before school started. As he slept, his mother dreamed he would have a bright future. Little did they know, when he wasn't sleeping under her desk he was watching his path to success come together. He often would stare at the construction of a new building, the future home of the Foster School of Medicine.




In 2019, his mother’s dream came true when he graduated from the Foster School of Medicine and then completed residency training at Texas Tech Health El Paso. He’s now a second-year fellow in the Department of Internal Medicine’s Division of Gastroenterology and plans to stay in El Paso.


His journey as a student, resident and fellow reflects Texas Tech Health El Paso’s mission of growing our own health care heroes to overcome health disparities in our community by offering a path for bright local students to become physicians in our Borderplex.




Before the Foster School of Medicine opened, El Paso County’s average number of physicians per 100,000 people was 75% less than the national average. Since then, El Paso County has grown its number of physicians from 1,034 to 1,715, a 66% increase and direct result of having a four-year medical school and several residency programs in our Borderplex.


“There are many aspects of the medical profession that bring a sense of fulfillment; however, one of the most rewarding feelings is knowing I’m meeting a vital need in our community,” Dr. Guzman said. “As a doctor, I’m constantly reminded to remain empathetic and recognize the privilege of having patients entrust me with their health and well-being.”


As Dr. Guzman moves forward with a clear dream of completing his fellowship and practicing in El Paso as a gastroenterologist, he has a desire to do even more than provide much-needed health care to our community. He also wants to create a mentoring program to empower students to find and follow their dreams.



Future Physician - Like Father, Like Daughter

“So many young, talented students have abilities that can truly change lives, but they don’t know that until doors open to paths they never knew were there,” said Dr. Guzman, who added he wouldn’t have pursued medical school if it wasn’t located in his hometown. “As a doctor from our area, I can help show those trying to find their dream that they can do it, just like I did.”


Currently, 22% of Foster School of Medicine students are native El Pasoans, just like Dr. Guzman. And Texas Tech Health El Paso offers 22 residency programs and fellowships, allowing over 320 medical residents to train at three major El Paso hospitals. Since 2013, more than 800 resident physicians have completed their residencies at Texas Tech Health El Paso.


On March 30, Dr. Guzman and doctors around the world will be honored during National Doctors Day, an annual observance that serves as a moment to honor the dedication, skill and commitment of physicians who provide care worldwide.


 

YOU CAN HELP

Help transform health care in our community and beyond by making a gift to Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso. CLICK HERE to learn how to give.

At TTUHSC El Paso, we are committed to growing our own health care heroes and changing the state of health care in our Borderplex. For more information about how you can help, please contact andrea.tawney@ttuhsc.edu or craig.holden@ttuhsc.edu or visit ttuhscep.edu/elpaso/ia/giving/.


 

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