AACOM's Council of Osteopathic Student Government Presidents (COSGP) is proud to announce the winner of its 2019 National Student DO of the Year (SDOY) award: Taran Silva, fourth-year osteopathic medical student at Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine (MSUCOM). The National SDOY award is presented each year to one osteopathic medical student who demonstrates superior leadership capabilities, robust research experience, and a strong commitment to community service.
This year, two additional students were selected as honorable mentions for the 2019 SDOY. They were Paige Ely, a fourth-year medical student the Pacific Northwest University College of Osteopathic Medicine (PNWU-COM), and Alixandria Fiore Pfeiffer, fourth-year medical student at Nova Southeastern University Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine (NSU-KPCOM).
Taran Silva, OMS-IV, MSU-COM
Taran Silva served as the Student Government Association President at MSUCOM, where he focused much of his efforts on policies and programs that place value on inclusion, diversity, and diversity appreciation within the osteopathic medical community. He represented MSUCOM on AACOM’s COSGP. Additionally, he served on the Board of Trustees for the Michigan Osteopathic Association (MOA), where he represented his fellow students at the state level as a delegate for the MOA House of Delegates and at the national level as a Michigan delegate at the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) House of Delegates. Mr. Silva currently serves as the National Student Representative on AACOM’s Task Force on Professionalism and Ethics. He is passionate about global health and traveled to Guatemala four times, Peru twice, and Cuba twice with MSUCOM for international medical mission work during his medical education. In addition to his active engagement within the osteopathic medical profession, he serves as a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Air Force.
Paige Ely, OMS-IV, PNWU-COM
Paige Ely is a fourth-year medical student and current undergraduate fellow in Osteopathic Principles & Practice at PNWU-COM. Before medical school, she majored in sociology, diving deeper into her passion for understanding the social determinants of health. She then served as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer, working on food security through community organizing, research, and client empowerment. During medical school, she has been involved in advocacy and public health projects, including creating a formal curriculum on advocacy and health policy. Last year she served as the only student on the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) Commission on Health of the Public, creating health equity policies and reviewing public health guidelines. This year she serves as the only student on the AAFP Commission on Governmental Advocacy. She is a National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Scholar and plans to work as a family doctor in an underserved area, helping to improve life and advocate for patients on the community, state, and national level.
Alixandria Fiore Pfeiffer, OMS-IV, NSU-KPCOM
Alixandria Fiore Pfeiffer is a fourth-year student at NSU-KPCOM. She was born and raised in Miami, FL and attended Coral Reef Senior High School. She attended college at Marywood University in Scranton, PA, where she played four years of NCAA Women’s Soccer. She is currently pursuing OB/GYN for residency and plans to participate in a fellowship in a sub-specialty in the field. She hopes to not only treat and empower women domestically, but also abroad—specifically in Haiti where her family is from. She has had the opportunity to hold various local and national leadership positions, which she could not have done without her faith in God, her family, and her community of friends surrounding her.