Photo taken in:DnepropetrovskYear when photo was taken:1939Country name at time of photo:USSRCountry name today:Ukraine
This is me in the graduate year at the medical institute. The picture was taken in Dnepropetrovsk in 1939. My father wanted me to become a doctor. He thought it was the best thing to heal people. I liked that profession very much. After I had finished nine grades in 1935, I submitted my documents to the Dnepropetrovsk Medical Institute. Of course, I had worked very hard preparing for the exams, and succeeded. I passed all entrance exams and was enrolled in the first course of the therapeutic department. There were quite a few Jews in my group in the institute as well. Teachers were also of different nationalities, there were also Jews among them. There was even one German teacher, because close to Dnepropetrovsk there was a German colony, and there were many ethnic Germans there. I studied well. I wasn't involved in any Komsomol activities, I preferred studying medicine. Anatomy is the scariest subject for a freshman of the medical institute. I liked that subject very much, and I was aware that a good doctor wouldn't be able to work with poor knowledge in anatomy. In all the years of my studies at the institute I had mostly excellent marks in all subjects. First, I lived in the room which my mother rented from the elderly lady. Then I rented another lodging, closer to the institute. The hosts were common Jewish people. The host was a tailor and his wife was a housewife. It was a room in their private house, where the son of the hosts lived as well. He was a poor student at school, and the hosts asked me to tutor him in accordance with the school syllabus. Owing to that, they let me live in their house for free. When I was in my second year of studies, the host said that a student wasn't supposed to wear a coat that was too small for him. So he made a coat for me, and again he didn't take money from me. Besides, he recommended me to his neighbors, whose children went to school. I gave private lessons and was paid for that. I also got a scholarship for being an excellent student. My earnings were enough to buy food; my parents couldn't help me with money. Sometimes, my parents came for a visit and brought me some products. It was a good support, but I usually provided for myself. When I was in the third year of my studies, I was given a room in the hostel, close to the institute. It was a room for four people. My roommates were three Ukrainian girls. We made friends, did the chores together, went to the cinema and theater. In 1940 I graduated from the medical institute. I got a mandatory job assignment to Donetsk region, Gorlovka.