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Learning medicine is a gift: Dr. Taylor Guinn

Woman donning on white lab coat on a stage
In 2015, Dr. Taylor Guinn beams with pride as she receives her white coat at the annual white coat ceremony marking students' transition into clinical training.

In advance of Match Day on March 20, we contacted five alumni from the Class of 2019 to learn how UT Southwestern specifically prepared them to become doctors. While UT Southwestern looks forward to honoring our medical students as they mark this milestone, concerns over COVID-19 will unfortunately prevent a community Match Day celebration on Friday. We recognize that this is disappointing for the Class of 2020 and we hope they will find inspiration in these stories. 

Attending UT Southwestern Medical School was a clear choice for Dr. Taylor Guinn, who grew up in Frisco and was familiar with its reputation.

“I knew that I would get an incredible education and that I would really have a leg up when it came time to match for a residency,” she said. “Finding out I was accepted to UT Southwestern Medical School was one of the most exciting moments ever for me.”

At Match Day last year, she was excited once again to be accepted at UT Southwestern, this time for residency. And she was thrilled to know that she would continue to have the same support from nearby family and friends that she enjoyed during medical school.

Related Video: Why UT Southwestern was Dr. Guinn’s top choice for residency

Now, as a resident training in emergency medicine at Parkland Memorial Hospital, Dr. Guinn has the opportunity to handle a wide variety of diseases and procedures.

“My favorite part of being a resident is that I really have an impact on my patients and can apply what I’m learning,” she said.

There’s no doubt that the ER of any hospital has its own energy and rhythm. Two hours – or even two minutes – are never the same.

“One second someone could be coming in with something like a cold, and a minute later someone comes in with a heart attack. You have to be able to adapt quickly and multitask. You’re always moving.”

Dr. Guinn started moving early, when she took karate lessons in elementary school and eventually earned a black belt. Her interest in science in high school  led her to declare pre-med as her college major.

“In college, people didn’t expect me to be a pre-med major. I often heard comments like, ‘We’ll see how long that lasts,’” she recalled. “Today, I would tell other young women to ignore what people say and do what you want to do. That’s all that matters.”

A key part of a medical education is the mentorship that students receive from more experienced physicians. In emergency medicine, Dr. Guinn is particularly grateful for the guidance she received from Dr. Deborah Diercks, Professor and Chair of Emergency Medicine; Dr. Christine Kulstad, Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine; and Dr. Mary McHugh, Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine.

Man and woman wearing Christmas sweaters and holding a small dog
Dr. Guinn and her husband Alex, a fourth-year medical student at UT Southwestern, grew up in the same neighborhood but didn’t start dating until they reconnected in medical school.

Like many others, Dr. Guinn came out of medical school with more than an education. She also reconnected with the person who would become her future husband. Alex Guinn grew up in her neighborhood, but the couple didn’t grow close until they were students together at UT Southwestern. Now married for a little over a year, they share a puppy named Lila and the excitement of serving in medicine. Alex is in his fourth year of study at UT Southwestern and also hopes to build a career in emergency medicine.

While her work at Parkland is exciting, Dr. Guinn will always remember the thrill of starting medical school at UT Southwestern.

“On that first day when you go into the anatomy lab, it really hits you that the opportunity to learn medicine is a gift that someone gives you.”

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