Medicine personal statement
For me there is nothing more remarkable than understanding how the human body functions. Applying this understanding enables doctors and scientists to heal injuries and cure diseases, an ability which amazes and intrigues me. Along with my desire to directly improve peoples lives, the opportunity to study the intricacies of diseases and their cures is the main driving force behind my desire to study medicine.
To gain an insight into medicine, I spent two weeks shadowing doctors in a local cardiology department. Sitting in on a cardiac follow up clinic made me realise the need for doctors to have a strong sense of empathy and good communication skills, as these enable them to gain a patients trust and confidence. Observing procedures such as coronary angiograms demonstrated the high level of skill doctors need in order to perform such delicate procedures, and the huge responsibility they must shoulder on a daily basis. The placement impressed upon me the importance of teamwork and communication in medicine, as without the help of nurses, paramedics and other medical staff they would have been unable to treat their patients. I also volunteer at a local hospital where I have assisted elderly patients at mealtimes. These situations have improved my communication skills, as I have sometimes had to speak to patients with difficulty hearing or seeing, or whose condition has made them irritable and upset. The state of some of the patients was distressing to observe, but seeing how the doctors and nurses were able to make even the slightest difference has cemented my ambition to study medicine.
During the summer I traveled to Ghana for two weeks, where I taught in small village schools with other volunteers. We were given no guidance or instruction, and the challenge of controlling a class and producing appropriate lesson plans required me to improve my organisation and communication skills, traits which I believe will help me to cope with the pressures and demands of studying medicine. I have recently helped to start a charity named T.E.A.CH (Time to Educate Africa's Children) with several of the volunteers I met in Ghana, aimed at building schools and helping to educate the African people.Through this I hope to learn to empathise more with people and to better appreciate the opportunities I have been given in life.
I subscribe to the New Scientist and have been intrigued by many of its reports, most recently an article detailing how gastric bypass surgery has affected peoples appetites. I also enjoy fiction, particularly fantasy novels, as I find they help me to relax and relieve stress, enabling me to maintain a clear, calm state of mind. In my spare time I engage in a wide range of sports, including, cycling, climbing and several martial arts, which I hope to continue whilst at university. I am a voluntary mixed martial arts instructor, a job which has greatly developed my leadership skills. I am fully qualified in First Aid, and have been able to utilise some of these skills to treat minor injuries in martial arts training. A job tutoring children in English has improved my confidence on all levels as well as my time management, a skill which I feel will help me deal with the academic challenges of medicine.
Through my voluntary work and personal experiences I believe I have gained a realistic insight into the challenges of a career in medicine. However, I also believe that I possess the skills required to overcome such challenges, and relish both the social and academic aspects of the opportunity to study and practice medicine.
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