Grateful and Giving Back
Mary Sewatsky always knew she wanted to be a doctor. But, growing up as one of nine children in a small Pennsylvania town, she knew her parents could not afford to send her to medical school. If she wanted to pursue her dream, she would need to find a place that offered affordability, and she would need a little help.
That help came in the form of a scholarship offered by Temple University School of Medicine, an act made possible because of another's philanthropy that she has never forgotten. And her dream was realized when that scholarship opened the door for her to the world of medicine, and in particular in Temple's philosophy of treating the patient first. "That is the hard part of medicine," she notes. "The people side. But that is also the rewarding part."
That patient-first philosophy made Temple her perfect match, and in the 30-some years since her graduation, Dr. Sewatsky has carried those values with her, in her practice of medicine and in her personal interactions. She works hard to ensure that visitors to her emergency room in Scranton, PA, receive the highest-quality medical care and the personal attention they deserve. "You aren't treating an illness or an injury," she says. "You are treating a person."
When Dr. Sewatsky and her husband were doing their estate planning, they thought of ways they might demonstrate, primarily to their children — both of whom are studying medicine themselves — the importance of those values, and of giving back. So they named Temple University as a beneficiary of their wills. Making this gift, says Dr. Sewatsky, was a way of living her values, and, she hopes, provide a teaching moment for future generations — that if you're not putting other people first, you're missing the most rewarding part.