In the time of diagnosis, treatment and recovery, I met truly sick children. Determined to learn how community health can drive change, I joined a free clinic in the Bronx. Consider the following example: I want to become a physician to provide reassurance to a patient awaiting their lab results, and laughter to a patient who needs an uplift after a week of chemotherapy. They give them a better glimpse of who the applicant is than simple scores. Even though she writes about tutoring first grade students in Chicago, their role in the story is to highlight how she is dedicated to helping her community and empowering students from backgrounds like hers. Through the Walker Vascular Institute internship program last summer, I confirmed my motivation to apply to medical school. To bring physical relief, a cold compress, a warmed blanket, a message to a nurse, filled me with such an intense joy and sense of purpose that I applied for a volunteer position at the hospital even before my release. Simply because they must have stood out in other parts of the application, such as the personal statement. Do Be Interesting. 7. Yet, these experiences assured me that medicine was the best fit for me. In the grand scheme of helping this man transition out of homelessness, it is hard to know what impact this moment had, but I’d like to think that I provided him with some comfort when he needed it. The problem with these statements is that any applicant could have written them. I was naively trying to determine the severity of my successive brain traumas to confirm or, rather, dispel my teacher’s report. Let’s look at some examples to clarify: I endeavored to give her the best care… (giving), This powerlessness I felt inspired me to pursue medicine to help future patients… (inspired), I had volunteered as one-on-one tutor for the past six years, but this was my first time teaching a large group. I became captivated by the challenges that teaching science posed on my own understanding of the material, and by the challenge to spark appreciation for the material among students. Although the people of Tupana lacked many opportunities, they had an enthusiastic and positive outlook on life. Whether you are working on your AMCAS personal statement or getting ready to write your AACOMAS personal essay, this blog is your ultimate guide to writing the perfect statement. Your guide is on its way. I witnessed this firsthand while volunteering at the county hospital. He mentions her weight loss, improvements in mental health, and increase in energy. I’ve broadened my contextual understanding of medicine in the lab and in Nepal. If you're addressing a poor evaluation, ensure that you take responsibility for your grade, discuss what you learned and how your performance will be improved in the future - then move on. Remember, you will be getting a lot out of your med school experience, but the school will be getting a lot out of you, as well. This dedication to others’ well-being captivated me, as it mirrored much of what I had seen in my grandfather growing up. Through my journey in sports, travelling, and meeting some incredible individuals such as Michael, I have shifted my focus from thinking solely about the physical well-being, to understanding the importance of mental, spiritual, and social health as well. Even though the advice to “Show, don’t tell” is commonly given, students rarely know what it actually means to demonstrate or “show” their qualities rather than simply listing them. Once you've isolated the elements you want to explore in your essay (usually 2-4 key ideas), you can begin building your outline. 1. The AMCAS personal statement offers a unique opportunity to share your story and describe your path to medicine–however you want to. That B+ meant so much: it was a tangible result of Azra’s hard work, but it was also symbol of our dedication to one another and the bond we forged working together. Did you get involved in medical research? In choosing to become a physician, I have found a profession that seamlessly combines my unwavering curiosity for science and medicine with my passion to help others. In terms of structure, this should follow the standard academic format, with an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. Karen saw the confusion brewing in my eyes, grabbed the carton from my lunch tray, and pried open the carton lips in one swift motion. If your essay is not quite there yet, or if you're just getting started, don't sweat it. As her personal story unraveled, I found out that experiences of racial discrimination had breached every area of her life, including her healthcare—as a result, she felt alienated and left with inadequate treatment. The TMDSAS personal statement is one of the most important pieces of your medical school application. Use words that you believe most people understand. I worked in mobile rural health camps that offered tuberculosis care, monitored the health and development of babies and children under 5, and tended to minor injuries. Medicine is no different. It has become clear to me that the doctor-patient relationship is not some miracle black box that performs some magic and outputs a healthy patient but rather an opportunity to ease a patient’s suffering in real-time. Check out our video to learn how to create a killer introduction to your medical school personal statement: The introductory paragraph and, even more importantly, the introductory sentence of your essay, will most certainly make or break your overall statement. Leila made me aware of the unprofessional treatment delivered by some doctors. What are your key strengths, and how have you developed these? If you’re a high-achieving applicant with a strong GPA, MCAT score, and rich extracurricular activities, you may get into less-desirable schools than you’d hoped. In May 2016, I began an immunology-based research internship. Seeking to understand how communication was used clinically in medicine, I was fortunate enough to shadow my father, a psychiatrist, and observe how careful he was with his words and mannerisms when interacting with patients. Medicine is the only path I truly desire because it satisfies my curiosity about the human body and it allows me to directly interact with patients. Two hours with Leila opened my eyes to a huge, preventable problem in medicine, and I couldn't ignore it. It was devastating to imagine losing my father, my idol, at the mere age of eleven. After seeing mental and physical health intimately intertwine, I plan to incorporate both aspects as a physician for the betterment of my patient’s overall well-being. I participated in this event all 4 years, raising over $6k for the Children’s Miracle Network, in the hopes that in the future, every family could be as lucky as mine and have a tiny loved one come home alive and healthy. Do not approach this section as space to plead your case. These events have influenced who I am today and helped me determine my own passions. I had just finished packing my suitcase for my first trip to see snow when the phone rang. Seeing the stark improvement in the child made our previous encounter that much more rewarding. Although he was visibly in discomfort, he refused the chair I pulled out for him. Through my work in Mexico, and later in North Carolina and Virginia, I have learned that exploring local understandings of health, to discover systemic factors that affect individual patients will be an important part of my work as a doctor, though not the only one. I want to understand the mechanisms behind treatments in order to assist patients in choosing the best treatments. Wouldn't it be better if I include more than 2 or 3 experiences in my statement? Rather than feel weighed down by the research findings I was eager to get off my chest, I felt light as well. After giving you a step-by-step guide for composing a statement, you will read 18 MORE outstanding medical school personal statement examples that will get you inspired to write your own! So, despite my desire to get into the science, I restrained myself from overwhelming her. I witnessed compassion’s power in medical settings when bringing water to patients in the ER or distributing warm blankets to patients receiving chemotherapy. To satisfy my intellectual curiosity, I decided to apply the knowledge that I had mastered in the classroom by getting involved with research. The students themselves never get in the way of us learning about the applicant. Another important piece to highlight is how the applicant uses showing vs. telling differently across the first two paragraphs. You should aim to provide admissions committees with a holistic view of who you are across your entire application, not solely through your personal statement. There was a sense of certainty about this dream that motivated me to devote countless hours to its practice. (Note: Discuss your formative experiences in the body paragraphs in chronological order, as long as it doesn’t disrupt your essay’s flow. While communication and research skills are important, they are just pieces of a larger puzzle. By drawing on specific evidence and observations, you can show the admissions committee what unique and specific insights you have about a so-called obvious idea. SIUC Writing Center A Sample Personal Statement for Med School “I hear and I forget. Within a few years, I witnessed my father go from being sluggish and tired, to being energetic and active. The goal of this article isn’t to allow you to compare your personal statement to the sample we’ve provided. CLICK HERE TO SCHEDULE YOUR COMPLIMENTARY 30-MINUTE CONSULTATION TO ENSURE YOU LEAVE NOTHING TO CHANCE. And since working with each patient constitutes an entirely different experience, I know my medical career will never cease to be fulfilling. The consistent theme throughout my extracurricular work is that, whereas I initially pursue experiences–clinical, volunteer, or otherwise–to learn, what sticks with me even more than newfound knowledge is the compassion I develop for the people I serve. To better help you envision what this looks like in practice, here is a sample introduction that hits these main points. Make the transition and move on so you can achieve more depth later. And when in doubt, ask family members and friends. I became engrossed with the brain’s mechanics and the overwhelming amount of distressing research findings. This experience taught me the importance of learning new research methods from my peers to achieve the best results possible. However, I believe social interactions and diligence can be equally important for individual success. Introduction With Strong Words. By following these instructions on how to avoid clichés, you can write a memorable personal statement that stands out to admissions committees. However, I was always bothered that I could not treat Felipa’s cancer myself. Through reviewing thousands of patient data points, I concluded that the digital readings from this new technology are analyzable. What motivates you to learn more about medicine? I can say now with utmost certainty that I am committed to becoming a practicing clinician not only because of the opportunity to treat illness but because of the tremendous privilege of building relationships with patients along the road to recovery. Let’s start with the example of building homes in New Orleans. 2. One of his patients was an injured former athlete who was having trouble standing. In medicine, just like in research, a physician uses all of the tools at his or her disposal to uncover clues that will ultimately help diagnose and treat the patient. Connect your experiences to the qualities desired by medical schools. I found myself itching to contribute to our understanding of this incredibly promising and fascinating body system. To answer the personal statement prompt more easily, focus again on the question of what you want admissions committees to know about you beyond your numbers and achievements. I could tell she instantly felt more hopeful, she said, “If you could do it, then I can too!” When she passed, receiving a B+;I felt as if I had passed too. Show the admissions committee that you are someone they want to meet. I’ll then provide specific writing techniques you can use to make your essay truly stand out. They were refugees from El Salvador who had asked PEDS for a donated acoustic guitar. The mission statement will articulate the overall values and priorities of each university, giving you insight into what they might seek in candidates, and thus what you should try to display in your personal statement. My friendship with Karen emerged from her act of kindness in that instance. This is the time to get brutal, honest feedback. As a doctor, I will diagnose symptoms and give my patients the necessary treatment they need. Step 5: Discuss your most formative experiences that led you to medicine. THERE'S NO REASON TO STRUGGLE THROUGH THE MED SCHOOL ADMISSIONS PROCESS ALONE, ESPECIALLY WITH SO MUCH ON THE LINE. By picking one of these options, this student could write an entirely unique personal statement introduction. My Saturday mornings at the center are usually spent participating in healthy eating workshops or volunteering with the “fresh prescriptions” program. What my sister went through pushed me to strengthen my knowledge in medical education, patient care, and research. Having worked closely with the underserved populations of New York City, I am acutely aware of the inequality in education and health that many face. In contrast, the unique paragraph from example 1 about the English tutor in Chicago tells us about the applicant’s passions, commitments, and initiative. After finally getting a job that allowed her to build a supportive social network, Aria felt empowered to recover from her addiction. Have someone you trust to read the essay and ask them what they thought of it. “Really? Medical School Personal Statement Example 1. Ensure that you have a creative and captivating opening sentence that draws the reader in. Admissions committees look for candidates that can bring unique insights and different perspectives to their programs. Start over. Intending to support the construction of new homes in the Lower Ninth Ward, our plans fell through when a miscommunication led us to arrive without the appropriate tools. As our brains process information differently, depending on whether we're taking in visual or auditory information, this can also help you understand where the connections between ideas aren't as evident as you would like. I watched as 3 daughters, around my own age, incrementally lost their father. During my junior year, I designed and taught a semester-long course sponsored by UT’s Public Health department; this course focused on the US obesity epidemic from a biological and community perspective. You'll have opportunities to demonstrate several of your great qualities through your AMCAS Work and Activities section, your secondary essays, and even your interviews. “Why didn’t I pursue medicine sooner?” Is the question that now occupies my mind. But I found myself reflecting on a moment that had occurred months earlier. While I understood diabetes to be a manageable disease in the U.S., I soon came to appreciate the social factors underlying such a prognosis in this part of the world. Without basic knowledge of diabetes, the community members equated it with amputated limbs and blindness. I didn’t consider pursuing medicine until my senior year of high school. Researching concussions for countless hours, becoming aware of neurology’s intricacies, and observing Dr. Sandhofer sparked my keen interest in becoming a highly skilled yet compassionate physician who readily serves others. Despite my modest role in their care, the patients genuinely appreciate my approach and dedication to the job. So, when I rethink “why medicine?”, I know it’s for me – because it is a holistic discipline, because it demands all of me, because I am ready to absorb the fascinating knowledge and science that dictates human life, and engage with humanity in a way no other profession allows for. 5. And while all languages can communicate compassion, medicine encapsulates the essence of compassion. A lot of students make the mistake of verbalizing their personal attributes with a bunch of adjectives, such as, "This experience taught me to be a self-reliant leader, with excellent communication skills, and empathy for others..." In reality, this does nothing to convey these qualities. It felt as if the world was going to end on that faithful day in the ER when I first witnessed someone die. In addition, they end on a high note by mentioning how enthusiastic they are about their medical career. If you see yourself as someone who is committed to community service, and you have a track record of such service, your story should feature this and provide insight into why you care about your community and what you learned from your experiences. If you know someone who is an editor but do not feel that they can be objective, try and find someone else. A good medical school personal statement can be the difference between an acceptance letter and a rejection. Instead, I asked her to share details about the wonderful interventions she had procured for her son—speech and physical therapy, sign language lessons, special feeds, etc. These exemplary medical school personal statement examples come from our students. 4. The personal statement is an essay about your journey to medical school. You are showing how you live such principles, rather than just telling your reader that you have such principles. Researching vascular medicine, collaborating with highly skilled health professionals, and shadowing several surgeons taught me that medicine has a steep and constantly evolving learning curve that I am excited to take on. Yes, for the most part. Through our conversations, I realized that she was really looking for reassurance—for doing a great job caring for her son. When I was 5 years old I was blessed with a little sister, who was as adorable as I had imagined for those long 9 months. Rather, we want you to have a framework for evaluating your work to ensure that it conveys your outstanding qualities, engages the reader, and describes your authentic journey to medicine. So, when writing your personal statement, think about how each experience made you feel, and what you learned from those feelings and that experience. There’s significant showing vs. telling, which continues to maintain the reader’s engagement. Each clue slowly revealed how this group of genes function together to synthesize a molecule central to human metabolism. Remember that your complete application includes multiple written sections: your personal statement, Work and Activities section, and secondary application essays. Commitments, be prepared to spend 6-8 weeks with Dr. Smith ’ s progressive memory loss, in... 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