intern spotlight: Dr. Raina Muthukumaru

Get to know Dr. Raina Muthukumaru, PGY-1 in Internal Medicine.

First things first. How do you pronounce your last name?

I always tell people it looks intimidating at 11 letters but it’s phonetic! So moo-thoo-koo-mar-ooh.

Tell us about you.

I was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri but the majority of my extended family still lives in Malaysia and the Philippines.  I love traveling and spending time with my parents and younger brother who is a nurse in STL. I also love watching hockey (Go Blues!).

Why did you choose UMMC for residency?

An obvious reason, which I’m sure many other people have cited, is the people. But I’ll gladly say it again because it deserves to be recognized as it is not something you see at every program. What I saw on my interview day is exactly what I have experienced since joining the UMC family. I have the most supportive co-residents who genuinely make it a joy to come to work. The administration is responsive to feedback and care about resident well-being. And lastly, the caliber of training at UMC is second-to-none. I was on house medicine last month and almost every week we had patients with  incredibly interesting and/or rare pathology. I say all this having been here a little over 3 months, but I have already felt a great deal of both personal and professional growth in that time.

What could you give a 40 minute presentation on with absolutely no preparation?

Food, which I realize is really broad, but I’ve traveled a good bit and I love trying new things especially in different cities, states, and countries. I’m still a novice in the kitchen, but it’s a work in progress.

What are some small things that make your day better?

I love any random acts of kindness, things that surprise me or take me off guard. Someone unexpectedly holding a door. Smiling and saying good morning. The chiefs leaving snacks in the resident lounge :). A colleague recognizing an extra effort put in. A patient saying I made some kind of a difference in their care. My parents calling to say they’re proud of me.

What profession would you have chosen if you weren’t a physician?

I would be one of those professional YouTubers traveling the world trying new food and documenting it for others to try on their journeys.

See below for photos of Dr. Muthukumaru and her family:

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