PERSEVERANCE AND PASSION: MEDICAL SCHOOL JOURNEY UPDATE

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It's April 30th and for many people, it's simply just the last day in April, but for hundreds of Pre-Medical Students, today holds a different significance. Today is what is known as "Traffic Day". According to the rules of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), admission officers and advisors are able to finally see Accepted Applicants and Accepted Applicants that have multiple acceptance should release holds at other schools. For students that have been accepted, the time to finally choose the school they will be attending next fall has arrived. For waitlisted students, like me, the hope that a released spot might become an acceptance is a possibility.

This was a long year for me. The Medical School Application cycle is LONG, and there is a lot of waiting. And after waiting for so long, I was waitlisted at 2 of the schools I interviewed at and told to wait some more... It happens. My first post-interview decision was a waitlist, but I kept hope... and then a rejection (it hurt, but again I stayed positive and optimistic for my final school to decide), and was waitlisted again. I am a glass-half-full kinda girl, but this medical school application process can cause even the most confident person to take a blow to their self-esteem. I told myself  I had 1 day to feel sorry for myself, and I took it... 

Perseverance and Passion, "Ariel, you have to have Perseverance and Passion, and if you have those, you will be a doctor", one of my interviewers told me. And I told him "I have them both". Although I am still waiting, my journey is not over. The day after my sulk day, I got busy! NO DEFEATIST ATTITUDES! I e-mailed my advisors and asked about next steps. Many schools even offer exit interviews for unsuccessful applicants, so if you're like me and you aren't sure where the weaknesses lie in your application, your best bet is the schools that told you "no". This is a unique opportunity...accepted students just get accepted so in truth, they never really know "why" they were chosen, but knowing why you didn't, gives you an opportunity to improve and strengthen.

This is exactly what I did for the one school I was rejected at... and it sucked to know that I was so close, but didn't have an awesome interview, but also helpful because interviewing skills is something that can DEFINITELY be improved (also it was my very first interview at one of my top schools, so I'm sure nerves got the best of me... but something I can work on)

My number one tip you're going into an application cycle is to always be prepared to re-apply. The sounds like you accepting failure before trying but, last year 51,680 applicants applied to medical school and 21,338 matriculated. As optimistic as I try to be, I am a realist so until I have an acceptance e-mail, I will continue strengthening my application and myself with more volunteering, clinical experiences and any opportunities that help will help me grow as a person and hopefully succeed as a medical student and eventually a Doctor!

**My number two tip is to take really take the time to improve your application, it's tempting to get the ball running again, but make sure that you not only discover your weaknesses but correct them!

My interviewer spoke to me of Passion and Perseverance, which I knew I had both, but more importantly, I knew I had Purpose, a true feeling of what I'm meant to do with my life. I know my Purpose (the reason behind it all) is to help and heal others, and my Passion (my drive and desire) for science and medicine fuels it, but my Perseverance (my strengthen and will to carry on in times of adversity) will get me through all!

Thanks for following along with my journey and hope to share good news soon!



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