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Growing Jewish Identity through Tikkun Olam and the Medical Field

Tufts sophomore Matthew Karofsky is applying for medical school, and he acredits JewBer for some of his inspiration.

Since Karofsky can remember, he has been interested in medicine. He even was planning to be an EMT over the summer of 2020, but due to the risk of COVID-19 Karofsky and his family decided it would be best if he found something else to focus his passions into.

“I was kind of at a loss of what to do,” Karofsy said. “But then I found JewBer.”

Temple Beth Elohiem in Wellesley had a posting about the organization, and Karofsky knew right away he wanted to help out.

Karofsky volunteered with JewBer, delivering Shabbat meals to Frontline Heros at hospitals as well as to individual’s homes. He was able to talk with a few of the hospital workers, giving both parties more of a sense of hope.

“That was really nice,” Karofsky said. “They offered a couple words of thanks and then ran off.”

It also showed Karofsky a more realistic picture of the medical field.

“It’s not the glamorous job that TV shows make it out to be,” Karofsky noted. “Things were so hectic over the summer, as they continue to be.”

Karofsky said he was able to expand his interest within the field as well.

“It grew in tandem with my Jewish ideas of selflessness and kindness and Tikkun Olam,” he said. “It combined to make a more coherent picture that I want to go into the medical field and give back.”

Today, Karofsky works as an EMT for Tufts’ Emergency Medical Services. He said the “grit and determination” he saw within the professionals he delivered food to has inspired him within his own work.

Looking ahead, Karofsky hopes to get into Tufts’ medical school and then later become a doctor, possibly within pediatrics.

“The patient focus care is what drives me to medicine, and working with kids is always rewarding,” Karofsky said. “The thing that really draws me to medicine is being able to connect with people and have an impact in their lives.”

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Susan Shevitz
Susan Shevitz
21 may 2021

How inspiring you all are-- seeing a need and having the commitment and skills to mobilize quickly and effectively. Kol hakavod. (Susan Shevitz, Hornstein professor emerita)

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