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"The personal statement is important as a way
of gauging motivation and enthusiasm". Head Of Admissions,
Hamid Jahankhani, University of East London.





Doctor - Unedited

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Medicine is the beginning of a commitment to providing others with first-class health. It is a serious decision to enter the field of medicine, but an even more serious decision for non traditional students who have established careers before making the decision to return to an academic setting. As one of these non traditional students with career experience in another field, I have experienced several important elements of personal growth that have led me to this important point.

My professional background, which includes a MA in Management and a covenant position with a Big Four accounting firm, has contributed to my experience in doing information systems and financial audits and reconciliations. It was from this position that I transitioned to becoming a student again and learned a critical lesson about life. I always assumed that professional and financial success would surely bring personal satisfaction. But I became frustrated when I realised after some time of working in my professional career, that I did not enjoy my position and was puzzled that my friends felt the same way about their jobs. I decided to interview for similar positions, and through this process, it dawned on me, slowly, that this entire career field is not a fit for my needs. I came to discover that a job, even a good income, absent another significant purpose, will not bring satisfaction. I need challenge and meaning. This lesson came as a surprise, but I felt a tidal wave of relief once I decided to accept the nature of the problem.

A second realisation I later unveiled is that I care more for solving problems than I do for the other elements of a successful corporate career. In my business career, I worked hard to understand my company’s line of business and to communicate that understanding. The economy is constantly changing and is difficult to understand, and my detailed programming and financial analysis identified many profitable opportunities for the company. But after completing one project in which I worked one hundred-plus hour weeks for over three months, I felt little pride or satisfaction - despite a successful outcome. I was doing all of the right things, but something was still missing.

The next life lesson I have come to discover is my love of caring for others. When I look at my past, I see a pattern of volunteer work and leadership. I know that I want real responsibility, and I want a career that reflects my desire to care for others. Last is the need for change. I have learned through experience that an information technology career is inadequate for my personal fulfilment. I have assets, namely an affinity for problem solving, a strong work ethic, and a desire to take care of people. I know that a mere job is inadequate, that I need to be challenged emotionally and intellectually. Fortunately, I have an opportunity to make a change, something for which I could not be more grateful. I have taken stock of myself, considering my skills, experiences, and goals. I have looked to family and friends, some of whom are doctors, for advice. I have decided to pursue a career in healthcare.

I am very excited about science and about helping people, so I have set off on the path of applying to medical school. If anything, I am more idealistic about it than many of my peers for whom the goal is to prove themselves or attain a good job. I have already had more fun than I deserve, but I need the long-term challenge and reward of helping. I hope to exemplify to other students the relative unimportance of superficial rewards. In conjunction with becoming a doctor, I expect to pursue an additional role in health care policy or public health, a long time interest of mine. I also plan to take some refresher Spanish classes to better serve my expected patient population. Such a rich variety of meaningful challenges would never be available to a financial professional.

While a person can "grow" as I claim to have grown, he or she has to demonstrate the commitment required to become a doctor. I think my record indicates a combination of serious mindframe, talent, and preparation that should be adequate tools for medical school. I have succeeded at school while volunteering part time, spending time with family and friends, and working part-time. It has been difficult at times, but I have never lost confidence, and I will not lose any of my full confidence that I will perform well above average in medical school, and that being a skilful and caring doctor will be a fully rewarding career for my future.