Exiting the Stage and Entering the ER

Racy Guinan with her son, Rory.
Racy Guinan celebrated Match Day with her son, Rory, on March 18, 2022, at the MU School of Medicine. Guinan will remain at MU for her residency training as an emergency medicine doctor.
Racy Guinan
Photo courtesy of Natalie Fiol
Before medical school, Racy Guinan spent six years in New York as a dancer, choreographer and theater administrator.

Racy Guinan left Columbia as a teenager eager to explore her childhood passion for modern dance. She completed a fine arts degree at the University of Illinois then moved to New York, where she performed, choreographed and worked in theater administration for six years.

“I studied it in college and lived the life, but it’s really difficult, especially if you want to be a parent,” she said. “Fortunately, I found something different that I loved.”

She liked science and had a knack for remaining calm in chaotic situations, so she decided to become a volunteer EMT. She loved the work … and fell in love with one of her co-workers, a Brooklyn-born fellow volunteer EMT. Soon, she enrolled in paramedic school and then set her sights on medical school, which led her and her new husband back to her hometown and the MU School of Medicine.

On March 18, 2022, Guinan made her way through the packed halls of the School of Medicine with her parents, husband and 15-month-old son, Rory, for the annual Match Day ceremony. When she opened her envelope, it confirmed what she already suspected, that she would remain at MU Health Care to serve her emergency medicine residency.

“I love the ER,” Guinan said. “I would work in the ER for no money, although I’m happy to get paid. I like that you treat everyone who comes in the door, regardless of where they come from and where they’re going back to. Everyone gets the same care. I think it’s a very egalitarian specialty. And I like chaos a little bit, so it’s a good environment for me.”

Guinan said she ultimately would like to dance again for fun or dabble in the arts in some way. Medical school and motherhood haven’t left her much free time for those pursuits, but she wouldn’t change a thing about the experience.

“I made really good friends, which was something I didn’t expect,” Guinan said. “I wanted to come here, learn to be a doctor, be the best doctor I could be. That was all true and real and occurred, but I also made six phenomenal friends who will be in our lives and will be Rory’s aunties forever.”

MU Match Day

Total students: 110
Match rate: 96%
Staying at MU Health Care: 30%
Remaining in state: 43%
High-need specialty: 35%