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Stephanie Ferri-Lewis: 3 attributes learned from college sports

Being a 3-sport athlete helped Stephanie Ferri-Lewis succeed as physician

Stephanie Ferri-Lewis

Stephanie Ferri-Lewis took on a task most undergrads wouldn’t even consider — competing in swimming, cross country and soccer, all while being a full-time student preparing for medical school at Pfeiffer. Hard work and tenacity opened doors for her.


Stephanie Ferri-Lewis
Physician, St. John’s Emergency Trauma Center

Hometown: Cape Coral, Florida

Current city: Springfield, Missouri

School: Bachelor’s degree in biology, Pfeiffer, 1994; M.D., Ross University School of Medicine

Sports: Cross country, soccer, swimming

Interesting fact: As a former scuba diver, she has gone into frozen lakes on body and evidence dives for the sheriff’s department.

Now an emergency department physician at a Level I trauma center in Springfield, Missouri, Ferri-Lewis often calls on lessons she learned as a student-athlete.  Every day is a challenge balancing being a physician, a wife and a mom, but these skills honed as a student-athlete help her excel:


As a three-sport athlete at Pfeiffer preparing for medical school, Ferri-Lewis pushed herself athletically and academically. And because of it, tough obstacles now seem more manageable, she said. “When a day at the hospital is particularly challenging, either physically or mentally, I take on a ‘we can get it done’ attitude. The emergency department is a place where you don’t want someone to just give up if things get difficult, and my determination makes me well-suited for this specialty.”

Mental composure

Despite a busy schedule of overlapping athletic seasons and a rigorous academic program with visions of medical school, Ferri-Lewis never let stress get to her in college. Years later, that composure is a critical component of her work. “When a high-level trauma patient comes in and people’s lives are on the line, keeping a room full of medical professionals calm while coordinating care and making life-saving decisions is the norm for my profession,” she said. “Excelling at this makes a difference in my patients’ lives every day.”


Working at a Level I trauma center, Ferri-Lewis understands the importance of knowing what needs to be accomplished and how it can be done in an intense and sometimes chaotic work environment.

Setting lofty goals for herself in college and achieving them helps her continue to develop today in her career. “My professional goal is to keep up with new technologies and advancements in emergency medicine even after being in practice for 18 years now,” she said. “Recently, I added emergency department bedside ultrasound to my set of career skills to be able to better serve my patients.”

Click here to read more about Ferri-Lewis’ life after college sports.

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