Kalkena Sivanesam, STL

Every month, we’ll get to know one of the Student Tech Leads!

Kalkena Sivanesam

Class of 2023/Spokane


I grew up learning science and math in Malay, the national language of Malaysia where I grew up!

What’s your pre-med school technology background?

In graduate school, I was in charge of all the tech in my group. I networked computers, maintained a local server, and was the general IT go-to person for my school group. When I started working as a medical assistant, I was once again the “tech guru.” I helped troubleshoot surgical systems, update computers, fix printers. I never go looking for it, but somehow the tech jobs just keep finding me.

What’s your favorite app? 

Notability, hands down. When I was in my pre-clinical years, I used it to learn anatomy, and it was the absolute best way to take notes while I let Sketchy teach me all about microbiology and drugs. In my clinical years, it has been great for downloading textbook pages and then marking it up with the millions of notes I take on rotation.

What’s the best part about being a Student Tech Lead? 

I love helping people with their tech stuff, especially if I have learned a tech shortcut. And of course, goes with saying that the Office of Technology at the C.O.M. is the absolute best team, and I am so grateful to be a part of it.

How do you plan to incorporate technology into your practice as a physician? 

I am going to be an anesthesiologist, so understanding machines and tech will be the bread and butter of my job. But I hope that I go beyond that and use tech in other parts of my practice, including in administrative areas as well.

Aside from technology, what do you nerd out over? 

Superhero movies. Before the pandemic, I went to every Marvel movie on opening day. It was the absolute best. Can’t wait to get back to that soon.

What is your number 1 tech tip for med students or faculty?

Get in touch with the Office of Technology! I feel like a lot of people are unaware of a lot of the free resources the school provides, and they spend a lot of time, money, and effort procuring it for themselves. My advice would be, if you need something—books, an app, whatever—always check with your friendly Office of Technology team to see if we already have it available.

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