This is the personal statement of a future physician. I have had the pleasure to know him since his senior year of college. I look forward to teaching him as an M3 (third-year medical student) shortly.
"There are certain experiences that undoubtedly shape individuals into what they are meant to be. Those that most critically define me and my career trajectory are the times I spent caring for my 5 younger siblings while my mother was crippled by her addiction to alcohol and prescription drugs. I was constantly torn between accepting those things in my life that were out of my control and actively working on the things I could control. Through the years, I caught more than a glimpse of the unique capacity physicians possess to touch the lives of those entrusted to their care. I saw the incredible relief pharmaceutical drugs can deliver to patients after surgery and yet, I have also witnessed chronic dependence and debilitating mental illnesses that arise from their abuse. I want to do more than understand, I want to serve people who find themselves in need whether from physical, mental, or chemical dependence issues. My goal is to be the best-trained physician as it will allow me to do the most good for patients and their families.
I am dedicated to spending the grueling hours I know are expected of medical students and postgraduate training residents. I can envision no other calling that would require the degree of sacrifice yet present the many rewards in satisfaction with the relationships developed with colleagues and people who will be my patients. I am blessed with a supportive family, and as a physician, I will be able to pay it forward as well as repay them in ways for their love and support.
Regarding my journey, after graduating from college with slightly subpar qualifications, I knew I needed to prove to myself that I am an excellent candidate for your school. The vehicle I chose to strengthen my application has afforded me many opportunities to grow and expand my knowledge base and experience. I now have insight into the neurophysiologic pathways of addiction and feel this knowledge will make me a more compassionate physician.
I was employed all through high school and college to help with family expenses. I understand working hard and achieving goals. I remain active in sports and enjoy running, swimming, and weightlifting. I have two siblings in college, one in high school, and two in middle school; I am pleased to say they are doing well and remain very important in my life.
Spending time alongside preceptor physicians has taught me that they build relationships with patients where both parties benefit tremendously. Physicians witness so much, from diagnosing a disease or problem to seeing their patient improve with therapy. They see the direct impact they have on others from their medical knowledge and skill acquired through dedication and hard work. Several driving forces propel me every day to become a physician who can better serve my family and community. I am thankful for the opportunity to share a few of them with you."
Thank you for reading this story. I hope to share the positive side of why physicians go through the grueling years of medical school and residency training earning the privilege to take care of patients on their own at the end of their educational journey. They know, however, that the learning continues for the remainder of their life!