Meet Ibrahim Hakim, MD

Name: Ibrahim Hakim, MD
Hometown: Troy, Mich.
Medical School: Stanford University School of Medicine
Professional Interest: Quality Improvement, Academic Hospitalist

Residency Program Experience:

What was the most inspirational thing you witnessed while working at the hospital? There is no singular moment for me, but instead the multiple family members with whom I have held goals of care conversations with in the UH MICU over the last two years. Whenever I take a step back and think about the adversity they face, I am inspired by their strength and selflessness.

What is the biggest sacrifice you have made in your medical training so far? Living apart from my wife as we have had to do a few years of long distance.

What trait do you most admire in talented physicians? Humility

One thing I wish I knew before starting the residency program? Everyone here is so friendly and supportive - from our amazing program director, Dr. Armitage, to the support staff and residents. This made a huge impression during my initial interview and I'm happy to say nothing has changed.

What was the most difficult thing during your intern year? Just as you finally get comfortable with how things work and team dynamics, the block is over and you start a new rotation on a different team.

At work I never… drink water, though I am trying to be better about that.

What is the key to making the best of this residency program? I was surprised by the amount of resident autonomy we are afforded and it is truly a "resident-run" hospital. Take advantage of this opportunity to lead rounds, advocate for your patients, and become very comfortable with independently performing procedures. Despite this, you will never feel alone. Someone is always there to help and to guide you through a difficult clinical decision if you ask (even when you are a PGY-3).

What is the one item somebody starting residency should absolutely invest in? Comfortable shoes and a power bank for your smartphone

What's the best advice you've been given? Like most, I was nervous two years ago right before starting residency. A close friend told me, "Intern year is all about getting things done. The knowledge and comfort will come on its own." Though simple advice, it held true.

A Few Words About Cleveland

How would you describe Cleveland to somebody who has never been here? A taste of the Midwest "big city" life without the traffic and chaos.

What neighborhood do you live in? Downtown

What are some of the spots to go to fall in love with Cleveland? Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Cleveland Museum of Art (free!), and numerous beautiful metro parks surrounding the city.

Best kept secret about Cleveland is… Mitchell's Ice Cream - not a well-kept secret once you move to Cleveland, but it's truly the best ice cream I've ever had. I was also surprised to find we have some of the best mountain biking trails outside of the West.

Your favorite spot for a quick bite around the hospital: Poke bowls at Kenko Sushi & Teriyaki

A good burger: Gunselman's Tavern - fresh ground beef from West Side Market

Dinner with friends: Momocho

Great patio: I'm not a huge patio person, but the view at Bar 32 downtown is amazing. It's essentially the penthouse of the Hilton skyscraper overlooking Lake Erie with outdoor seating in the summer. Alternatively, Barroco is great.

A night on the town: East 4th Street


Cope with sleep deprivation: Arrive 45 minutes to one hour before sign out in the morning. An extra hour in the morning (when no one knows you are there) will save you three hours later in the day, leaving you with more time at home.

Avoid burn out: I try to make the most of my weekends on outpatient and travel to either Michigan or Chicago. I also find taking the time to call my wife, parents, or sister on the drive home from work keeps me energized and my relationships healthy.

It's a Toss-Up

East Side or West Side: West Side

Staying in or going out: Staying in

UH or VA: University Hospitals


Sushi or tacos: Tacos

Lease or buy a car in Cleveland: Buy

Own or rent a house in Cleveland: Rent (or buy if you plan on staying in Northeast Ohio)

Getting Personal

On my bucket list: W Circuit of Torres del Paine National Park (Patagonia)

I can't live without: The internet

Bad habit: Procrastination

If you were given three additional hours a day, what would you do with them? I'd sleep and set aside more time for playing my guitar.

Fun fact most people don't know about me is: I'm obsessed with Queen. The entrance song at my wedding was "You're My Best Friend."

When I'm not on call you will find me: Cooking fancy meals or exploring the Cleveland outdoors.

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