Cambridge Medicine Personal Statement

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My work with undergraduate students over a year developing an abdominal adhesions sensor kindled my interest in medicine. While shadowing a doctor in a postnatal ward, I witnessed the satisfaction she derived from using her clinical skills to benefit infants. She communicated complex neonatal issues, such as meconium aspiration and Moro reflexes to parents effectively. It was vital to convey complex information to parents from a variety of backgrounds. I developed this ability by collaborating with a diverse group of people on various women’s advocacy campaigns while interning at UN Women. I learned to persuade, cooperate and problem-solve. Developing the sensor also taught me to work with students from a diverse range of subjects, just as NHS doctors must work with a wide variety of professions in a multidisciplinary setting.

I volunteered to talk to HIV patients weekly this past year. Some refused HAART or continued to use unclean hypodermic needles for recreational purposes. Initially, I struggled to comprehend this but then grew to empathise with them and appreciate the complex reasons why people do not comply with treatment or abstain from unhealthy practices.

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My regular volunteer work at a school for disabled children and at an elderly care home has helped me develop compassion and kindness. One patient with severe dementia was constantly distressed, so I patiently held her hand and consoled her for hours at a time. As Pemberton noted in ‘Trust Me, I’m a (Junior) Doctor’, “What mattered to [patients] more than the medicines and the operations and the tests, was that someone was by [their] side.”

The reality that learning medicine does not end with a medical degree were laid before me when I took part in the 2017 SmileAsia trip to Cambodia where I prepared patients for surgery and calmed them before sedation. I also volunteered to translate between Chinese and UK doctors treating children with cleft palate. The desire of the doctors to learn each other’s surgical techniques emphasised the global and ever-changing nature of medicine. I took the initiative to learn the necessary terminology in Mandarin to facilitate this. Through preparing for the Chemistry and Biology Olympiad, I was able to expand my knowledge of biochemistry and human biology and develop resilience through continuous, deliberate practice. I demonstrated initiative by teaching myself extension material and the topics taught in the Upper Sixth. The prospect of continuously extending my knowledge throughout my career greatly excites me.

My passion for learning and research led me to write two essays on poisonous substances and cellular waste disposal respectively, in addition to my IB coursework. Throughout this experience, I learned to consolidate conflicting sources, think critically and manage time. I learned to build on the constructive criticism my supervisor gave me. Considering iatrogenic errors are the third leading cause of death in the US, my willingness to acknowledge and correct my weaknesses would improve my quality of care. I also enjoyed learning more about physiology and pathophysiology.

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Starting taekwondo at 14 taught me resilience, which is important in the fast-paced working environment of the NHS. These qualities were developed further in my Gold Duke of Edinburgh expedition that taught me to persevere despite my asthma. I could not carry much but I found my own way to contribute by administering first aid and teaching my teammates about Lyme’s disease. Similarly, by organising various Model UN conferences, I have learned to work with a wide variety of individuals and lead councils through various topics. Through working in groups for debate as well as in the RCS Chemistry Analysts Competition, I was able to lead and collaborate within tight time constraints. This skill would help me in the fast-paced environment of an NHS hospital.

I believe my passion for medicine and my character will propel me through my medical career.

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University of Cambridge

University College London

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Please note, this personal statement has been provided for reference purposes only and should not be utilised or replicated. Any attempts at plagiarism will be detected by the automated UCAS plagiarism checker and the dedicated UCAS verification team.

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University of Oxford (Exeter College)

Queen Mary’s University (Bart’s)

Please note, this personal statement has been provided for reference purposes only and should not be utilised or replicated. Any attempts at plagiarism will be detected by the automated UCAS plagiarism checker and the dedicated UCAS verification team.

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