Postgraduate Medicine Personal Statement
My conviction for medicine has aptly followed a certain period of introspection. A recent family visit to South Africa encouraged thoughtful consideration of my reasons for applying to medical school, and also granted the opportunity to explore healthcare practice in my home country.
Whilst volunteering as a phlebotomist for a rural HIV clinic, the urgency with which the local community relied on medical staff for guidance, moral support, and treatment was poignantly placed at the fore.
It was awe-inspiring to witness the active role played by doctors as teachers, leaders and clinicians, more so amidst the dire supply of front-line staff at the time. Needless to say, this experience has only sought to reaffirm my passion for this gratifying and multifaceted profession, and has thus nurtured my understanding of, and suitability for a career in medicine.
At the crux of my degree in Biomedical Science was great emphasis on the importance of evidence-based learning and the need for reflective practice and professional development. Of particular interest was a module on Stem cells & Regenerative Medicine as it accurately highlighted the relationship between scientific theory and the ethical implications surrounding its application in society.
Eager to delve into the managerial side of clinical care, I also volunteered for a health service improvement program at St George's Hospital, which aimed to address the issues concerning patient flow on the wards.
Upon reflection, I feel that my contribution to this audit has instilled a more comprehensive view of the NHS; it is apparent that true patient care encompasses both medical treatment and the management of resources and protocols in equal measure, thereby ensuring that patients receive the finest care afforded to them.
Throughout my employment as a Healthcare Assistant at the Royal Marsden Hospital, it became progressively clear that medicine is a multidisciplinary field inherently reliant on teamwork and effective communication.
Working alongside Nurses and Physiotherapists, among other disciplines, proved insightful as it taught me much about the professional diversity required for personalised and holistic patient care. Central to my role in CCU was also the ability to comfort distressed relatives and empathise with palliative care patients, whilst upholding confidentiality and preserving patient autonomy at all times.
During this period, I also fostered an interest in Neurophysiology and subsequently published an article on Synaesthesia & Phantom limb pain for 'The Lumen' Medical Journal. This feat was promptly ensued by a clinical placement in Neurology, during which, the consultants were keen to prepare me for a life of emotional turbulence; stressing public expectations and the merits of a healthy work-life ethic.
Closely allied to the clinician's capacity to diagnose and treat patients, is the ability to contribute towards public education and to oversee the development of junior colleagues. I feel I have mirrored this obligation through my role as an Anatomy demonstrator and an A Level Science & Maths tutor.
As testament to my passion for anatomy and physiology, I was also awarded the opportunity to complete the topographical dissection of an embalmed cadaver during the summer of 2013. Aside academia, my position as Student ambassador and UNICEF Year Representative has been no sinecure; I have learnt as much about leadership and self-confidence as I have about the limits of my own competence.
Now currently working as a Biological Specimen Co-ordinator at the Institute of Cancer Research, I eagerly anticipate the opportunity to play an active role in the 100,000 Genomes Project over the upcoming year. This experience should undoubtedly hold me in good stead as I embark upon this sublime vocation of lifelong learning and personal fulfilment, wholly cognisant of the rewards and sacrifices that lie ahead.
This is the personal statement I used to successfully apply for Graduate Entry Medicine (2016 intake). Unfortunately, I've never really been good at entrance exams (UKCAT or GAMSAT), so I pretty much always devoted a lot more time into my personal statement. Like many, I was heavily reliant on the use of examples to help me write my personal statement so I'm hoping that this example can be of help to other people! Lol, the struggle is eventually worth it. Good luck! :D G.