I want very much to attend the XXXX Medical School at XXXX University because I have always imagined that I would have the privilege of spending my working life as a medical doctor, saving lives, curing ailments, alleviating pain, and contributing to making life better for everyone with whom I engage professionally. In my experience working as a paramedic, I have had the experience of pulling the sheet over the victim's head. The first time I did this I began to tremble. I had learned my first great lesson of medicine: that for all its power, it cannot always prevail. I had experienced what is perhaps the most disheartening and demoralizing aspect of the practice of medicine and faced it head on. I have also demonstrated that I know how to cope with life and death emergencies with confidence, a confidence instilled in me primarily by my certification as an Emergency Medical Technician. I now have the ability to take charge of a desperate situation and help someone in critical need and my experience as an EMT has reinforced my decision to pursue medicine as a career.
Of course, healing, curing, and saving lives is much more rewarding than trying and failing. As an EMT I have been exposed to the satisfying aspects of medicine in a setting very new to me urban medicine. I spent most of one summer riding along with an ambulance team in Houston. Almost every call we received dealt with Latino patients either speaking only Spanish or very little broken English. And, I suddenly realized the critical importance of understanding a foreign culture and language in the practice of medicine, particularly when serving under-served, minority populations. In transporting patients from the field to the hospital, I became aware of this community's reduced access to medical care as a result of a lack of physicians able to communicate with and understand their patients. I decided, therefore, to minor in Spanish. Having almost completed my minor, I have not only expanded my academic horizons, I have gained a new sense of cultural awareness that I feel is indispensable in today's diverse society.
Throughout my undergraduate years at XXXX, I have combined my scientific interests in medicine with my passion for Hispanic culture and language. During my sophomore year, I volunteered at a medical clinic in the rural town of XXXX, Mexico. For one month, I shadowed a doctor in the clinic and was concurrently enrolled in classes for medical Spanish. It was in XXXX that I witnessed medicine being practiced as I imagined it should be: seeing the doctor treat his patients with skill and compassion, as fellow human beings, rather than simply diseases to be outsmarted. I realized he was truly helping the people of XXXX in a manner unique to the practice of medicine.
Fascinated by my exposure to this very hands-on approach to clinical medicine, I was thrilled to see medicine making such a difference in people's lives. For me, the disciplines of Spanish and science have become inseparable, and I plan to pursue a career in urban medicine that allows me to integrate the two. Later, I intend to practice somewhere in California with a large Hispanic population.
I see medicine as a multi-faceted profession. I have witnessed its healing power, especially in rural Chacala, and I have seen its weaknesses and limitations, facing death as an EMT. Inspired, in particular, by the Latino community of Houston, I realize the benefits of seeing medicine from a holistic, culturally sensitive perspective.
I want to thank you for consideration of my application.