Merima Bucaj, D.O., FAAFP, AZCOM Class of 2011
Family Physician, Midwestern University Comprehensive Care Clinic – Central Phoenix
Clinical Assistant Professor, Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine
Program Director, Abrazo Family Medicine Residency
Chair of Family Medicine, Abrazo Central Campus
“ Find the specialty that speaks to you and awakens your curiosity and excitement for the field, and never let anyone tell you what specialty you can and cannot do. ”
What are you doing now/ where do you practice?
I am practicing at the Midwestern University Comprehensive Care Clinic on 19th Avenue and Bethany Home Road in Central Phoenix (which MWU acquired in January 2023). I am also the Abrazo Family Medicine Residency Director and the Chair of Family Medicine at Abrazo Central.
What is something you are most proud of?
I am most proud of our residency teaching and resident teams. We worked together to make sure our program is competitive and high-quality, with the mission to train family medicine physicians that our community would be lucky to have.
Who are your female role models?
My female role models include my mom, Dervija Bucaj, who sacrificed everything to offer me an opportunity to live my dream, so much so that it meant growing up without her physically present with me but supporting me from a different continent while caring for my ill father. My sister, Mubera Madar, is another of my role models. She showed me that anything is possible through hard work as she worked two to three jobs at a time while attending school, and worked her way to great success in her career. My other female role model is Dawn Noggle, a strong woman who, despite having a busy career, volunteered her time consistently to make those around her better and stronger with kindness and support, and always with grace.
Did you have a female mentor while you were at MWU?
Yes - Shannon Scott, D.O., current Medical Director, MWU Multispecialty Clinic, and Assistant Dean, Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine. She was always and still is so very knowledgeable, kind, and tough. She pushed me to be the best version of myself, gave excellent advice, and always was and is a great advocate and representative of family medicine and community outreach. She inspired me to always leave a place better than I found it.
What advice do you have for women who want to go into healthcare careers?
Stay true to yourself, work hard, and find your people. What I mean by that is find the specialty that speaks to you and awakens your curiosity and excitement for the field, and never let anyone tell you what specialty you can and cannot do.