Revitalizing Healthcare

Dr. Maria Sturchler: It's Never Too Late or Too Early to Follow Your Heart

February 07, 2023 Season 2 Episode 10
Dr. Maria Sturchler: It's Never Too Late or Too Early to Follow Your Heart
Revitalizing Healthcare
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Revitalizing Healthcare
Dr. Maria Sturchler: It's Never Too Late or Too Early to Follow Your Heart
Feb 07, 2023 Season 2 Episode 10

Dr. Sturchler is a double board-certified palliative care and emergency physician who is an immigrant and first-generation college graduate and achieved her calling as a physician on a nontraditional pathway. An experienced former educator, she earned master’s and doctoral degrees in mathematics education and educational leadership, respectively, while teaching full-time. Her doctoral dissertation addressed the gender gap in STEM fields and rekindled her desire to become a physician. A previously avid runner and cyclist, Maria was a 3-time Ironman competitor; these days in her spare time, she enjoys hiking and biking with her husband and children. Her passions include mentoring pre-health studies students, empowering women in leadership/STEM/medicine, and improving access to healthcare in marginalized communities.

Maria shares her journey from being a teacher, a path she chose after an unfortunate incident in which a math professor discouraged her from attending medical school. She ultimately went to medical school and shares how this early setback strengthened her commitment to the medical field and spurred her to advocate for women to pursue their dreams in STEM fields.

Maria finished her emergency medicine residency at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. She shares her experience as a resident, being pregnant, and ultimately making tough choices to protect her health and her family. She shares how this experience forced her to clarify her values and led her to pursue a palliative care fellowship.

Andrea and Maria discuss changing how we think about being emergency physicians. Maria discusses feeling "survivor's guilt," leaving traditional emergency medicine. Andrea suggests that emergency medicine residency is more about a mindset/way of thinking and that we should embrace being an emergency physician life-long, regardless of our specific practice environment. To learn more about this philosophy, check out

Are you a healthcare professional looking to empower yourself and advance in your field? Then, you won’t want to miss the transformational Women in Medicine Summit, September 13-14 at the Drake Hotel in Chicago. This event is a powerhouse of inspiration designed to elevate and celebrate women in medicine.

Dr. Austin, host of this podcast will be there and hopes you will be too!


MicroSkills is built on one core, easy-to-learn principle: every big goal, complicated task, healthy habit, and, yes, even what we think of as character traits, can be broken down into small, learnable, skills that can be practiced, and incorporated real-time. Pre-order wherever you buy your books or on Amazon; launches Apr 16.

Support the Show.

  • Connect with Andrea on Instagram (@revitalizingdoc) or LinkedIn about the show and more, or visit her website www.andreaaustinmd.com.
  • Sign up for her newsletter, “Revitalizing Healthcare.” It is your go-to source for insightful content on transforming the healthcare landscape and staying well while changemaking.
  • Join this list to keep up to date on the launch of her forthcoming book, Revitalized: A guidebook to rediscovering your heartline. This book provides a beacon for channeling emotional intelligence not only to survive but thrive in medicine.
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Show Notes

Dr. Sturchler is a double board-certified palliative care and emergency physician who is an immigrant and first-generation college graduate and achieved her calling as a physician on a nontraditional pathway. An experienced former educator, she earned master’s and doctoral degrees in mathematics education and educational leadership, respectively, while teaching full-time. Her doctoral dissertation addressed the gender gap in STEM fields and rekindled her desire to become a physician. A previously avid runner and cyclist, Maria was a 3-time Ironman competitor; these days in her spare time, she enjoys hiking and biking with her husband and children. Her passions include mentoring pre-health studies students, empowering women in leadership/STEM/medicine, and improving access to healthcare in marginalized communities.

Maria shares her journey from being a teacher, a path she chose after an unfortunate incident in which a math professor discouraged her from attending medical school. She ultimately went to medical school and shares how this early setback strengthened her commitment to the medical field and spurred her to advocate for women to pursue their dreams in STEM fields.

Maria finished her emergency medicine residency at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. She shares her experience as a resident, being pregnant, and ultimately making tough choices to protect her health and her family. She shares how this experience forced her to clarify her values and led her to pursue a palliative care fellowship.

Andrea and Maria discuss changing how we think about being emergency physicians. Maria discusses feeling "survivor's guilt," leaving traditional emergency medicine. Andrea suggests that emergency medicine residency is more about a mindset/way of thinking and that we should embrace being an emergency physician life-long, regardless of our specific practice environment. To learn more about this philosophy, check out

Are you a healthcare professional looking to empower yourself and advance in your field? Then, you won’t want to miss the transformational Women in Medicine Summit, September 13-14 at the Drake Hotel in Chicago. This event is a powerhouse of inspiration designed to elevate and celebrate women in medicine.

Dr. Austin, host of this podcast will be there and hopes you will be too!


MicroSkills is built on one core, easy-to-learn principle: every big goal, complicated task, healthy habit, and, yes, even what we think of as character traits, can be broken down into small, learnable, skills that can be practiced, and incorporated real-time. Pre-order wherever you buy your books or on Amazon; launches Apr 16.

Support the Show.

  • Connect with Andrea on Instagram (@revitalizingdoc) or LinkedIn about the show and more, or visit her website www.andreaaustinmd.com.
  • Sign up for her newsletter, “Revitalizing Healthcare.” It is your go-to source for insightful content on transforming the healthcare landscape and staying well while changemaking.
  • Join this list to keep up to date on the launch of her forthcoming book, Revitalized: A guidebook to rediscovering your heartline. This book provides a beacon for channeling emotional intelligence not only to survive but thrive in medicine.