June 10, 2019
The Mayo Families’ Connection (MFC) is an organization of spouses and significant others of Mayo Clinic residents, fellows, research fellows, and learners.
The MFC helps spouses and significant others find a community at Mayo Clinic. The group functions as a support system and provides a way for families to get plugged in through programs and social functions with a variety of special interest groups.
Some of the special interest groups include an art group, a book club, intramural sports, a Bible study, playdates for toddlers and babies, and outreach groups.
MFC member, Amber Dowling, wife to a five-year surgical resident, said she found a group of friends through the special interest groups, specifically the book club and art club. She went on to explain, "Following a spouse or significant other to a new city for training has a number of challenges, but the members of MFC are all navigating these life changes together. Through MFC I've been fortunate enough to make friendships that will undoubtedly last long after our time in Rochester is up."
MFC Vice President Cheyenne Labott is one of many spouses who found a tribe in MFC. Labott’s husband Josh is a medical student and they relocated to Rochester from Milwaukee. “When I moved here, I knew no one,” she explained. “It wasn’t until I went to my first MFC event that I met a dozen of friendly faces going through exactly what I am going through. This community helps me to remember that I am important and valued; this is sometimes hard to remember when your life choices and decisions center around your spouse. I highly recommend any spouse or significant other to get involved in MFC. It makes the transition much easier.”
Currently, the MFC is solely held on the Rochester campus, but Katie Cushwa, MFC president, said, “If there are folks on the ground in Arizona and Florida who are interested in getting it going we would love to support them.”
One of the signature events, the Welcome Brunch, takes place in July and coincides with the start of the academic year as new learners step on campus. The Welcome Brunch gives those new to Rochester an opportunity to make new friends, learn about the Rochester community, and the special interest groups that MFC offers.
In closing, Labott said, “MFC is itself a community here in Rochester full of so many faces in all stages of life and from all over the country and the world. MFC is really unique and I am proud to be a part of it.”
The photos in this article are provided by Sonya G Photography.