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Holly Andersen, MD: Fortifying Hearts and Communities

When Holly Andersen, MD, arrived at Dartmouth as an undergraduate, she had no intentions of becoming a doctor.  But that soon changed when she  began learning from physicians and scientists at the medical school.  Her interest in brain and behavioral sciences spurred her pursuit of a Dartmouth degree in neuroscience, and she graduated with a new-found passion for medicine and improving lives.  She is now an associate professor of clinical medicine, attending cardiologist, and director of education and outreach at the Ronald O. Perelman Heart Institute at the New York Presbyterian Hospital-Weill Cornell Medical Center.   She is driven  to make a difference in the health of vulnerable communities.  Her HeartSmarts program has strengthened the health of communities in need in New York City and empowered individuals to take control of their health.

Andersen comes from a family legacy of dedicated educators, and believes it is her responsibility to educate young physicians. “When you are a doctor it’s your duty to educate other doctors. We teach by the Socratic method. We learn, and then we teach, and that has always been a great joy for me,” she says. “The fact that Dartmouth is so closely tied to Dartmouth medical school was greatly influential to me. I was able to take courses at the medical school and be exposed to physician scientists at an early level... that connection with the medical school, those research opportunities, those people that were made available to us was priceless.”

Though her schedule is busy with her family and demanding career, Andersen balances it all and finds time to give back to the Dartmouth community. She is a member of the Geisel School of Medicine Board of Overseers, an advisory panel that helps shape the mission and goals of the medical school to provide the best medical education to Geisel students.