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Faculty Focus: Jon Van Heukelom, MD

Date: Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Jon Van Heukelom, MDWhat is your hometown? 

Sibley, Iowa

How/when did you become interested in science and/or medicine?

I knew I wanted to be in the science field early on in school, but didn’t really think about medical school until sometime during the latter half of my time as an undergraduate. 

When did you join the University of Iowa faculty?


How or why did you choose to join the faculty at the University of Iowa?

I knew that I wanted to be involved with teaching students and residents. I went to medical school here and knew that I would fit in well with the emergency medicine faculty and culture of our department. Those things, and the fact that my wife and I loved living in Iowa City made it a natural fit.

Is there a teacher or mentor who helped shape your career?

I’ve been very fortunate to have had many excellent teachers and mentors over the years. Two that do stand out though are Dr. Philip Sharpless and Dr. Dan Worman who were two of my faculty during my residency training.

What is the biggest change you've experienced in your field since you were a student?

The new/renewed emphasis on provider wellness. We’ve all chosen highly demanding and stressful careers. We can’t take excellent care of our patients unless we’re also taking care of ourselves. It’s important for all of us to find things outside of medicine that contribute to our own health and wellness.

What one piece of advice would you give to today's students?

Figure out whatever it is that makes you scared, makes you feel incompetent, or that you feel like is a weakness of yours. Run towards (not away) from those experiences. That’s the only way to develop confidence and competency in those areas.

What are some of your outside (personal) interests?

Being involved with or coaching my children’s various activities, reading non-medical books, and all things Hawkeye sports.

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