Medicine an Elusive, Tempestuous Creature

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Admissions Essay - Medicine an Elusive, Tempestuous Creature We shall not cease from exploration/ And the end of our exploring Will be to arrive where we started/ And know the place for the first time T.S. Elliot Four Quartets Medicine has proven to be an elusive, tempestuous creature. It has appeared to me in visions nightmarish and calm, despairing and joyous. My pursuit has been an odyssey, taking me farther into my heart than I ever dreamed possible. However, before I could even begin to approach the emotional, physical and Intellectual demands of a physician's life, I had to gain a better understanding of myself, my identity and beliefs. Only with this stronger sense of self have I felt the confidence to give my best and my all, and to make my contribution to society. My first in-depth exposure to medicine was as a high school Intern at the Children's Cancer Research Institute (CCRI) In San Francisco. It was a disturbing, If fascinating, Introduction to oncology. I witnessed a holocaust from within --pain, fear and horror in patients my own age and younger. The Internship compelled me to reconsider my commitment to medicine, and persuaded me to resolve my feelings about death and dying and perhaps investigate other careers. At the same time, the patients so inspired me, and I felt so glad to be alive after I left CCRI, that I could never really forget. It became an image seared into my memory, a standard by which I judged all other experience. In college, opportunities for travel and exploration beckoned me away from medicine. I researched and wrote about America's heartland and the California coastline for Let's Go: USA. My interest in Americana led to an Internship at Common Cause In Washington DC, where I organized citizens' lobbying efforts. I found Journalism and law pleasant diversions, but under no circumstances would I wish to remain. Though extremely worthy professions, they did not suit my particular tastes. Nonetheless, they did give me a firm grasp of my stand on political and social Issues, and further piqued my Interest in travel and exploration. During my junior year in England, I did some serious introspection. My British friends, though in a friendly manner, challenged my most basic assumptions, and by doing so, challenged me. Everything, from the way I held my dinner fork to my egalitarianism, was fair game.

In this essay, the author

  • Opines that the end of exploration will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time
  • Describes their pursuit of medicine as an elusive, tempestuous creature. they had to gain a better understanding of themselves, their identity and beliefs before they could approach the emotional, physical, and intellectual demands of the physician's life.
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