To say Dr. Sudip Bose wears many hats is an epic understatement.
With a resume that includes emergency physician, Iraq War veteran, professor and entrepreneur, it’s hard to pick which role best describes the 39-year-old Naperville native.
“Education is what drives me,” said Bose, a 1992 graduate of Naperville Central High School. “My goal is to help the most people with the medical degree that I feel lucky to have received. As one doctor you can only do so much, but if you teach 10 doctors, you have kind of multiplied your impact.”
Today, the former U.S. Army major splits his time between Odessa, Texas, where he is an attending emergency physician, and Chicago, where he is a professor of emergency medicine at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
When he is not in a hospital or classroom, he is sharing his expertise in other ways, as an international speaker, television correspondent, and founder and CEO of several national medical education companies.
Neil Johnson isn’t surprised by his childhood friend’s success.
“As much as I was very impressed, I was never surprised,” said Johnson, of Oswego, who met Bose at Lincoln Junior High. “He has always been very driven and is someone who thrived in an academic environment, not only because he is competitive but because he loves to learn.”
After graduating from Naperville Central High School in 1992, Bose was admitted to the Northwestern University Honors Program in Medical Education.
“I was accepted straight out of high school into medical school,” he said. “I was very lucky and fortunate to be part of that program, and I think it speaks a lot to the Naperville educational system.”
Bose has fond memories of his Naperville upbringing, where he ran track and cross country at Lincoln Jr. High and for the Redhawks.
“I don’t think you realize it when you are going through it just how lucky you are,” Bose said. “There are teachers who taught me that I will never ever have a chance to thank; it is just really something that shaped my life in many ways.”
While a medical student, he joined the U.S. Army. And after doing his residency in Fort Hood, Texas, Bose served a 15-month combat tour, one of the longest combat deployments by a physician.
He said his military experience has helped him be a better physician.
“I had the opportunity to be in mass casualty triage situations on a daily basis,” he said. “I gained a lot of experience in trauma management and taking care of multiple patients at a time.”
During Operation Iraqi Freedom, Bose provided front-line emergency care for thousands of wounded soldiers and Iraqi civilians, and was the physician called to treat Saddam Hussein shortly after his capture.
For his service, he received presidential recognition and earned several awards, including the Bronze Star, Combat Medical Badge and the Army Commendation Medal. And while honored, he said there are many others who deserve recognition.
“In order to save a life on the battlefield, it doesn’t just take the medic or the doctor,” he said. “It takes the person carrying the stretcher, the pilot who flies the helicopter, the person who fills the fuel on the helicopter, and none of those roles are any less important.
“Although I was getting honored, there are so many more people who do things, and they are the unsung heroes, those on the battlefield that gave their lives.”
That’s one of the reasons that Bose founded The Battle Continues (www.thebattlecontinues.org), a forum to promote a better understanding of health-care issues while raising awareness and funding for wounded veterans and families of fallen soldiers.
“When soldiers get back (from combat) it’s not easy,” the doctor said. “Whether it is post-traumatic stress disorder or an injury they still suffer from, the battle still continues.”