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Bethany Werner receives 2019 Ho Din Award

Bethany Werner had hopes of becoming a physician since she was in elementary school. Fast forward 20 years, and she not only achieved a childhood dream​ but received UT Southwestern Medical Center's most prestigious award, the Ho Din.


[Narrator] Bethany Werner knows what it takes to succeed.

[Bethany] My parents told me to give 100% in everything I did.

[Narrator] A lesson in perseverance that put her on a path to becoming a doctor. From a young age, this Dallas native had a love for medicine.

My first exposure to medicine was through my dad, he's a retired now, paramedic and firefighter. So he would come home and tell stories about cases that he'd seen, patients that he'd worked with.

[Narrator] At just 14, she quickly found out what it was like to be a patient.

When I was in high school my left lung collapsed twice and it required two different hospitalizations and then the second time I had surgery.

[Narrator] Two years later, she was surrounded by physicians again. This time, comforting her mother, diagnosed with cancer.

Being on the other side and kind of the vulnerability that you feel gave me a little bit of a unique perspective.

[Narrator] Another unique perspective Werner had was being a student athlete in college. She went on to play volleyball at the University of Texas at Dallas, where she graduated magne cum laude.

So I got a degree in biology, I was a part of the UT-PACT program.

[Narrator] Which made for an easy transition to UT Southwestern Medical School.

[Bethany] I look back to where I was in MS1, like how much I've learned from the attendings and residents and everyone here. I feel like the growth that I've experienced here has just been wonderful.

[Narrator] All of that growth over the past four years along with a 4.0 GPA was recognized by Werner's professors and mentors.

I knew she was very impressive from when I first met her and she's only continued to impress me throughout the past two years that I've worked closely with her.

It was hard for me to find words when I first found out.

[Narrator] The 24 year old was chosen to receive the Ho Din, UT Southwestern Medical School's oldest and most prestigious student award, presented each year by the Southwestern Medical Foundation.

It represents the most well-round and exemplary student, both academically and professionally. It's really the student that we always hope every medical student aspires to be.

Just kinda feels surreal and I'm so excited and just very grateful. But to know that I was chosen to kind of represent our class with this award is also very humbling because my classmates are great and I think all of them would be so deserving as well.

[Narrator] Bethany Werner is about to embark on another chapter at UT Southwestern. She recently matched in the Obstetrics and Gynecology Residency Program.

From the very beginning I knew I wanted to be in a specialty where the patient physician relationship was one, built on trust, that it had an opportunity to become longitudinal to where I could see patients multiple times. I'm gonna do everything I can both academically, but also to support them with compassion, empathy, whatever it is they need.