Isabel Strouse and Daniel Oheb
Isabel Strouse and Daniel Oheb

Match Day Profile: Daniel Oheb and Isabel Strouse

Thomas Kelly
Thomas Kelly
Isabel Strouse and Daniel Oheb
Isabel Strouse and Daniel Oheb
Couples matching, Oheb and Strouse’s bond helped guide each other through medical school

Every third Friday in March, fourth-year medical students across the United States learn where the next chapter in their careers will be written. Match Day is the day when the National Resident Matching Program releases results to applicants in sealed envelopes, revealing where they will spend the next several years in residency, training in their chosen specialty. After years of preparation and study, it is a long-awaited and well-deserved day to celebrate. The University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix is profiling several students for Match Day 2024.

Meet Daniel Oheb and Isabel Strouse 

Daniel Oheb was born and raised in Granada Hills, California. He attended the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) for his undergraduate education, receiving a degree in psychobiology. Having applied to pediatrics residency, his goal is to become a primary care pediatrician.

Strouse and Oheb have been a strong source of support for each other throughout their studies
Strouse and Oheb have been a strong source of support for each other throughout their studies
Oheb credits his family and partner — Strouse, who has been his rock throughout medical school — as his greatest supporters. His parents sacrificed a lot to help him get to where he is today, and they raised him to be hard working, ambitious and, above all, kind.

Oheb’s younger sister is another source of inspiration. She builds him up whenever he feels down. He is proud to serve as her role model.

Isabel Strouse grew up in Tempe, Arizona, with her mom, dad and younger sister. She, too, began her undergraduate education at UCLA, but she ended up finishing her degree at Arizona State University. In 2019, she graduated with a dual degree in biology and psychology. She hopes her next step will be a residency in family medicine.

Like Oheb, Strouse feels blessed to have family, friends and a partner whose love has carried her to this point. Her mom and younger sister have been tremendous role models throughout her life. And although he passed away when she was young, Strouse holds her dad's memory close in her heart as a source of unwavering support.

She truly believes she would not have made it this far without the unconditional encouragement and belief in her potential from her community — her stepdad, friends, mentors and relatives.

Path Toward Medicine

What was the spark that led you to become a physician?

Oheb: My interest in medicine started when I was in high school when my pediatrician let me shadow him. I immediately fell in love with pediatrics — the opportunity to help children grow and be a part of the ups and downs of their lives.

Strouse: I loved the arts growing up, and for a long time dreamed of a career as a dancer or photographer. In high school, though, I found that the sciences challenged me in a new and exciting way. I followed this outlet for learning and creativity.

In college, I discovered that medicine would allow me to apply my background in science and the skills I developed from my own experiences with adversity to lead a life in service to others. While I initially thought I wanted to become a neurosurgeon, I have felt drawn to spaces that showed me how to build long-term relationships to advocate for social justice and for the needs of people from under-resourced backgrounds. This was ultimately the ‘spark’ that drew me to a career as a family medicine physician.

Choosing a Specialty

Do you have a specialty? What is it and why did it interest you, or what led you to it?

Oheb: I am interested in becoming a primary care pediatrician, which involves being the first line of defense for a child’s medical care. My own pediatrician led me to this interest while I shadowed him. I am fascinated by the possibility of continuity of care — the ability to watch my patients grow up and feel that I have helped them stay healthy. I can’t wait to serve as an advocate for my patients’ physical and mental health, helping them be the best version of themselves.

Strouse: Within family medicine, my interests include health equity, women’s and reproductive health care, and academic medicine. I grew up in a multicultural household with kind, compassionate parents who taught me the importance of embracing diversity. I attribute my own passion for health equity and advocacy work to the example they set. Experiences in preclinical women’s health research in college carried over into my current clinical interests, and I have been inspired by incredible teachers across my journey who make me want to be an excellent leader and mentor to future trainees.

What’s Next

Post-Match Day, what are your goals moving forward?

Oheb: I look forward to starting the next stage of my life with my partner Isabel as we navigate entering residency. As a pediatrics resident, my goal will be to make time for mental health advocacy, promoting mental health access for children in the community I will be serving. I look forward to getting a well-rounded education in pediatrics, so I can be an effective primary care physician.

Strouse: One of my favorite quotes is from Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist, and it says: ‘When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better, too.’ This is the sentiment I like to carry with me in times of change, which can be scary to navigate. My goals after Match Day are to continue to embrace what life has in store for me; to train to become not only a strong clinician but also a health care leader; and to warmly welcome the next chapter of my life with Daniel.

The College of Medicine – Phoenix Culture

What will you miss most about the College of Medicine – Phoenix? Any advice for incoming medical students?

Strouse and Oheb will both miss their classmates and the culture at the college
Strouse and Oheb will both miss their classmates and the culture at the college
Oheb: I will miss my classmates most. The friends I’ve made throughout this journey have been invaluable to my growth, and I will cherish these relationships for the rest of my life.

Strouse: I agree with Daniel. The community at the College of Medicine – Phoenix and my friendships are what made the whole medical school experience for me. My advice to incoming students is to be kind to yourself, take each day one at a time, lean on your classmates, be open to new (even difficult) experiences and remember to trust that who you are is what has gotten you here. Stay optimistic and it will be an amazing experience.

Couples Matching

What does it mean to be able to take the next step in your journey together?

Oheb: I always tell Isabel how lucky I am to be going through this process with her at my side. We are always there for each other and have built each other up time and time again. It means the world to me that we have the opportunity to take the leap into residency together, and I look forward to continuing our personal and professional journeys together.

Strouse: It has been such a special and wonderful surprise to have found Daniel on this journey. The love, acceptance and grace he shows me daily have been a gift, and I am so grateful to have him by my side. Starting this next chapter with him means continuing to help each other become the best physicians, people and partners we can be — while navigating life’s ups and downs together.

About the College

Founded in 2007, the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix inspires and trains exemplary physicians, scientists and leaders to optimize health and health care in Arizona and beyond. By cultivating collaborative research locally and globally, the college accelerates discovery in a number of critical areas — including cancer, stroke, traumatic brain injury and cardiovascular disease. Championed as a student-centric campus, the college has graduated more than 800 physicians, all of whom received exceptional training from nine clinical partners and more than 2,700 diverse faculty members. As the anchor to the Phoenix Bioscience Core, which is projected to have an economic impact of $3.1 billion by 2025, the college prides itself on engaging with the community, fostering education, inclusion, access and advocacy.