Jacob L. Erickson, D.O.

What attracted you to medicine and family medicine?

I have always enjoyed problem-solving and working with my hands. As a young kid, I spent a fair amount of time in doctors' offices, and I was always amazed at the fact that they seemed to be prepared to care for anything that came through their doors.

I wanted a job that I could be proud of, that challenged me and allowed me to better the community I lived in. Family medicine seemed to tick all the boxes for me. It is a field where I get to evaluate the patient first. This affords the greatest opportunity to catch disease early and dramatically impact people's lives.

What makes the Mayo Clinic Family Medicine Residency unique?

I wanted to train in a place that gave me all the tools to be a complete family medicine physician. The answers were consistently "yes" when I asked if I would get training in all the procedures I wanted to or get enough exposure to a certain area of interest.

Mayo Family Clinic Kasson was a big part of my decision. The patients that we get to see here are unlike any other primary care clinic. We get all types of visits at Kasson, along with urgent care-type and emergency department-type visits, such as lacerations and myocardial infarctions. We have our "home base" in Kasson, Minn., and we also get a lot of training in downtown Rochester, Minn., with the world-renowned specialists. It truly is the best of both worlds.

At Mayo, patients come first, with education being a very close second. No matter how busy the day may be, the consultants always take time to teach about the patients or other useful topics. The program's mission is to train world-class physician leaders and this is what I aim to be.

When it came down to it, I just felt that this was the place for me to train. The family medicine team really made me feel comfortable and welcome.

What is living in Rochester, Minn., like for you?

Rochester is great. It has a big small-town feel. It has a bustling downtown with lots of culture and at the same time has small-town charm with the warm, friendly people.

What does your future look like right now?

It's wide open. There are lots of possibilities. I am applying for a fellowship in sports medicine, which could take us anywhere in the country. My wife and I are both from Wisconsin, but we love the west part of the country, so we have some decisions to make on where we'll ultimately end up. It's good to have options.

Sept. 25, 2013