A Career in Medicine

A Career in Medicine
My experiences at home have helped prepare me for a career in medicine I grew up in an economically depressed area in San Francisco where my mother was a single parent. Growing up without a father, I developed self-confidence and a sense of independence at an early age. In order to help my mother financially, I unloaded produce trucks during my years in high school. As a result, I was unable to enjoy many of the activities most youngsters enjoy. However, I am thankful for the determination and inner-strength I developed while overcoming the hardships I faced.
After graduating from Lowell High School, I entered the University of California, Berkeley. The topic of nutrition interested me. Therefore, I embarked upon a rigorous course of study as a nutrition and food science major. My first year at Berkeley was very demanding academically. However, the toughest obstacle proved to be the separation from my family. Fortunately, I received great support from my loved ones during this period. For this reason, I attribute most of my success to my family.



During my first year at Berkeley, I noticed that there were few students with experiences similar to my own. I felt a need to share the knowledge I was acquiring with others in my community. Therefore, I accepted a position as a chemistry tutor in the Minority Scholars Program. For the past three years, I have taught a preparatory course for incoming freshman in addition to tutoring inorganic and organic chemistry. In my interactions with my students I have served as a role model as well as a teacher. I worked hard to sharpen my student?s analytical skills, but more importantly, I was able to ease the culture shock that many students felt upon matriculation at Berkeley.



My two years of work as a volunteer orthopedic technician and emergency room volunteer at San Francisco General Hospital have shown me the rewards of a career in medicine. My duties at sfgh varied from assisting in general emergency room and surgical procedures to assisting in reduction of fractures. In each case, I derived satisfaction from the fact that my actions contributed to the well-being of others.



In the area where I grew up, there are few accessible positive role models. Unfortunately the youngsters admire the criminals that drive expensive cars. Most youths feel that music, or drugs are the only alternatives available to them. As a practicing black physician in my community, I could serve as a positive role model for these youngsters. I feel well prepared to face the problems that young blacks in my area face because I overcame the same barriers and could provide hope in an environment characterized by hopelessness by providing quality care and health education.



During the summer of 1986, I was selected to participate in the University of California, San Francisco summer research training program. I was assigned to the laboratory of Dr. L. Jones, chief of cell biology at the Veteran?s Administration Medical Center. The majority of the project I participated in was to determine if the development of the secretory immune system of fetal rats is antigen dependent. I found the experience exciting and I learned the vital role research plays in health care. I was inspired by the fact that the results of the study could contribute to the understanding of immune deficiency disorders and to the understanding of the aging process.



My exposure to the clinical and research aspects of medicine have shown me that a career in medicine involves an extraordinary amount of sacrifice. I am willing to make the sacrifices necessary to achieve my goal to become a physician and practice medicine in my community. The trials I have faced and the lessons I have learned growing up in my community will allow make a special contribution to the medical profession and to the patients I serve.

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