Meet the Olympic fencer training to be an orthopedic surgeon

Carly Behm -  

Kamali Thompson, MD, is an Olympic fencer who always wanted to be a doctor, according to a Dec. 22 interview with Teen Vogue. Having multiple fencing accomplishments on her resume, her next challenge is an orthopedic residency.

As an athlete, she is a 14-time national medalist, according to her website. Recently, she was on the 2019 U.S. national team and an alternate on the 2021 U.S. Olympic team in women's saber. 

She received her medical degree at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, according to USA Fencing. Now she's a first-year orthopedic resident at Temple University Lewis Katz School of Medicine in Philadelphia.

Dr. Thompson told Teen Vogue she admired her pediatrician growing up, and that having multiple mentors has been important in her fencing and medical careers. She also discussed the importance of humility as a doctor.

"You need to be comfortable with who you are and what you know," she told the publication. "When I walk into the hospital as a resident, I need to be confident that I am a doctor. Humility is something that comes up in specific situations. If I'm with a patient, I don't need to be overconfident. I don't have to prove that I know more than you. In fencing situations, I need to be a little overconfident because that's what athletics means. People who need humility are people who are trying to prove something to others. And if you can be comfortable with yourself, then you don't need to be arrogant." 

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