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Desai Call Number: R K5 x. Why Medicine? The Residency Match: biggest mistakes and how to avoid them by Samir P.

Desai ISBN: He also shows you how to avoid them so you don't fall into the same traps. Is a program with looser applicant requirements lower quality? Is getting into medical school really easier at that type of program in the first place? The answer to this is a little more complicated than you might expect.

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Some schools are definitely a bit easier to get into, but it depends on both the program and the applicant. Andrea Paul, co-founder and Chief Medical Officer for BoardVitals , mentions state schools that reserve spots for local students as an example. She says an applicant who demonstrates a desire to practice as a physician in their home state after graduating and completing residency will typically have an advantage over others. From a numbers perspective, we can see that location really does make a difference. You should also remember that every medical school program reviews applicants differently.

While some look for those with the highest grades and test scores, some weigh other factors more heavily. Paul explains. In this case, students with less common undergraduate degrees may have a leg up. But that also means good students who went the typical pre-med route during college could struggle to make their case during the admission process.

Dr. K, Author and Twitter Star Shares His Journey and Advice

They want to make sure admitted students have what it takes to be successful. Race and ethnicity may also be considered, but only when permitted by state law. Yes, some students will have an easier time getting into certain medical schools. Students often immediately gravitate to academic or scholarly subjects for these essays, but, sometimes the most compelling topics are those that are personal. These topics can often say much more about your character, values, ideals, and decision making. Ideally, you should also write about what you learned and how you grew or changed as a result of the challenge, failure, or adversity.

Students also consider writing about red flags for this topic such as a class failure, poor MCAT exam or institutional action. I had worked on my presentation for weeks.

I knew it was so important, not only for me, but for my principal investigator PI , that I present the work we had done succinctly and clearly since I would be speaking in front of the entire biochemistry department. Public speaking has never been a strength and I was very nervous. Before it was my time to speak, I could feel my heart racing and my palms sweating.

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When I got to the podium, I was literally unable to speak; I was shaking uncontrollably and had to sit down while my PI took over. It was the most humiliating experience of my life. I was able to calm down, and, rather than leaving the auditorium, I waited until the conference was over and apologized to my PI who was kind and forgiving. I then resolved to improve my public speaking skills.

Although I still get nervous before I have to speak, I have learned to actually enjoy speaking in public. It looked familiar. I realized that this essay my roommate had written on the works and life of Jane Austen contained the exact language I had seen elsewhere. Where had I seen it? Why was this so familiar? Then it dawned on me. When my roommate got this assignment for her literature class, we discussed it with our housemates from down the hall.

One girl offered to give my roommate a paper she had written on this topic for an AP class in high school. She printed out the paper and gave it to me to give to my roommate. Curious about the topic, since I am a Jane Austen fan, I read it before handing it to my roommate. The document on the computer in front of me contained parts of this paper that were copied, verbatim. The issues here were complicated. I should not have been looking at her computer even though we often shared our computers. But now that I was aware of what she had done, I felt an obligation to confront her.

That night, when my roommate returned home from studying, I first apologized for invading her privacy and explained that I had read the document on the screen. I then told her that I realized she had plagiarized and told her I thought this was wrong. She explained that she felt under tremendous pressure since she also had a big organic chemistry mid-term that week and it just seemed so easy to copy the paper even though she recognized it was not right to do so.

With my urging, since she had not yet handed the paper in, she stayed up late into the night to compose an original essay and, in the end, she thanked me for noticing and for encouraging her to do the right thing. I realized that even confronting my roommate, which was uncomfortable and awkward for me, encouraged her to make a better choice and reinforced for me the importance of acting ethically even if these easier choice would have been to look away.

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Medical schools have broadened their definitions of diversity and for essays like this you can write about your unique interests, talents, or experiences. Maybe you have a distinctive background, perspective, or outlook. Think outside the box when writing about diversity. Do you have a special hobby or accomplishment that sets you apart? I grew up in a diverse community even though my undergraduate college was quite homogeneous. I volunteered in a free clinic, tutored children in Africa, and traveled during my vacations, when possible. On a medical mission abroad the summer after my junior year, I worked in medical clinics helping to care for Mexican families, which helped me understand that such challenges and unfair inequalities in education and health care also exist internationally.

Through my experiences, I came to realize that all patients, regardless of their background, fare better when their unique circumstances, cultures, and outlooks are considered. I have learned the importance of listening and seeing situations through the eyes of those I help. Throughout such experiences, apart from realizing that I hope to work with these populations as a future physician, I was continually reminded of the pervasive societal inequalities and injustices both locally and internationally.

Whether playing a Beethoven or Brahms sonata, playing music has always been an outlet for me.

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Since the age of seven, I have emulated my mother, a professional cellist. In fact, even during college, my goal was to practice medicine while working as a professional pianist. While doing my premedical coursework and majoring in biology, I also minored in music and composed my own work.

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However, my musical interests will always be more than a hobby and serve as my escape from the stresses of daily life. Medical schools want to know that you have the qualities and characteristics they are seeking. Do this by showcasing how your interests and experiences are aligned with opportunities at the medical school, that you can benefit from what the medical school offers and that you will contribute to the medical school community.

My interest in geriatrics and emergency medicine evolved as I worked clinically in these two departments last summer.