Morehouse Alumnus Makes History at Duke University Medical Center
22 Oct 2013
Posted by Elise Durham
Morehouse alumnus Isaac O. Karikari ’02 is making history as the first African-American faculty member in the department of Neurosurgery at Duke University Medical Center. Dr. Karikari also was the first black Chief Resident in Neurosurgery at Duke. He is the second Morehouse alumnus to train in neurosurgery at Duke University Medical Center. The first was Dr. Estrada Bernard, who graduated from Morehouse in 1979. Dr. Karikari will join the faculty at Duke in August. He is currently completing a spine fellowship at Washington University in St. Louis.
Here is more on Dr. Karikari from Clutch Magazine:
Name/Alias: Isaac O. Karikari
Current Gig/Occupation: Neurosurgery Resident. Duke University Medical Center
Motto: Whatever you do, strive to do it so well that no man living and no man dead, and no man yet to be born can do it any better. (c) Dr. Benjamin E. Mays
Favorite Quote: “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. (c) Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Q: What makes you one to watch in your opinion?
In my opinion, I am one to watch because I am going to be an extraordinary neurosurgeon. I am ambitious, focused and determined to make a difference in the lives of my patients. I hope to be the next Ben Carson, making the impossible…possible!
Q: What’s the most important lesson you learned so far?
Surgeons commonly are compared to God because we hold people’s lives in our hands. However, I have learned that when one [surgeons] feeds into this belief, more mistakes are made and his patients and his family become victims of malpractice. It is important for us to remember that we are not God, but are vesicles that make God’s power possible.
Q: If you could meet anyone dead or alive who would it be?
If I could meet anyone, I would want to meet Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. so that I could thank him. It is his dream that provided the opportunity for many African Americans to achieve their dreams, including me.
Q: Describe a typical day.
A typical day begins at 5:00 a.m. with morning hospital rounds. The rest of the day is spent in the operating room and/or providing patient care. My day ends around 8 p.m.
Q: What’s one thing most people don’t know about you?
My second passion in life is criminal justice. I hope to one day join the FBI or CIA and use my medical knowledge to help solve criminal crimes.
Q: What do you bring that hasn’t been brought to your craft?
I bring diversity, sincerity, compassion and a belief in a higher power. I believe in the power of prayer and I am not afraid to pray with families who share the same beliefs.
Q: Where do you hope to be in five years?
I hope to be in the final stages of my neurosurgery residency training and evaluating different job opportunities.
Q: What’s the one thing you are still trying to overcome or master?
The balance between fulfilling my duties as a husband and as a neurosurgeon without compromising either one.