Dr. Wylie R. Rogers, Jr., surrounded by the biggest influences in his life: proud parents Wylie Rogers & Beverly Rogers and uncle Kenneth Earl. (Photo by Brad)
He is a proud product of Chicago’s Austin community. The son of a Chicago Police Officer and Cook County Sheriff’s Deputy, Wylie Rogers, Jr., says he was allowed to follow his interests and had the opportunity to explore different paths. His road to medicine was a long and winding one.
Dr. Rogers attended Our Lady Help of Christians Elementary School, graduated from St. Angela School in 1986, and earned his high school diploma from prestigious St. Ignatius College Prep in 1990. He worked at Rush Hospital in food service during high school. But, he never really thought he would go into medicine as a profession.
Dr. Wylie R. Rogers, Jr., credits his parents, St. Angela School, and his childhood in Chicago’s Austin community with guiding him into a successful and rewarding medical career and adult life. (Photo by Brad)He attended the University of Illinois at Urbana, majoring in English, with a Chemistry minor. He had the chance to participate in a special program called Minority Organization for Pre-health Services (MOPS). Rogers then entered a program of Med-prep for non-science majors pursuing a medical career at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. Each step is drawing him closer and closer to a medical career, but he says he still did not fully realize it and he certainly wasn’t narrowing his focus on a specialty. He did learn, however, that some medical schools are seeking students with non-science majors because they often have better communication skills and greater abilities to relate to patients. They also have a broader world view.
After graduation, Rogers spent the summer preparing to take the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT). He entered medical school in Philadelphia in 1997 and graduated in 2001, serving his internship at Lutheran General Hospital in Chicago from 2001 to 2002.
Dr. Rogers then went to The George Washington University Hospital in Washington, D.C., for an internship in Anesthesiology that lasted until 2005. He chose his specialty because of a supervising doctor who impressed him and influenced his decision.
Currently, Dr. Rogers is in private practice and works primarily at GWU Surgicenter. He says he is exploring opportunities for going into the business and management side of medicine.
When asked what advice he has for students, the 38-year-old physician urges young people to develop a love for learning and going to school. He says learning didn’t come easy for him. He says he studied 12 to 14 hours a day. So, he advises, explore all options. Be sure you enjoy what you are doing. Listen to other people’s suggestions, but don’t get pushed into anything. Make your own decisions at your own speed after gathering all the information you need.
Looking back, Dr. Rogers says family, schools, and his Austin roots guided him into making all the right decisions.