Dr. Calvin Sun: 5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me When I First Became A Doctor

An Interview With Jake Frankel

Authority Magazine Editorial Staff
Authority Magazine
Published in
21 min readOct 4, 2022

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Don’t travel looking for “something” you don’t have; rather travel is to change up your environment to better appreciate that you actually already have everything you need.

As part of my series about healthcare leaders, I had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. Calvin Sun.

Dr. Calvin D. Sun is based in New York City and worked as an Emergency Physician and Clinical Assistant Professor in Emergency Medicine at emergency rooms all over the city during the COVID-19 pandemic. He recounts the early months of Covid-19 in his upcoming book, The Monsoon Diaries: A Doctor’s Journey of Hope and Healing from the ER Frontlines to the Far Reaches of the World. Dr. Sun has been a frequent guest on national and international new programs to help inform others of the pandemic situation in New York City. He brings medical knowledge and empathy to the story of COVID-19 and is no stranger to grief himself, having lost his father when he was just a teenager, and his grandfather to COVID-19. Over the past twelve years, Dr. Sun has traveled to over 200 countries and territories, while also completing medical school and going through medical residency. With his organization, the Monsoon Diaries, he has led other everyday travelers around the world on memorable adventures.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! What is your “backstory”?

Thank you for having me! Grateful to be here.

In 2006 my father died of a sudden heart attack and my mom was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. I was 19. And mired in student debt and with no job or any foreseeable sustainable source of income, I spent the next few years getting by with a few odd jobs and a handful of bartending gigs.

After the death of my father, I initially rejected medical school believing it was his dream for me to be a doctor, and not my own. However, after starting to travel internationally something stirred within my subconscious: perhaps I was rejecting an idea — an entire career in medicine — because of him. What if I was…

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