During my high school years growing up in Afghanistan, I was the proud owner of the only sphygmomanometer in my neighborhood; I would regularly check our neighbors’ blood pressure as needed. Curious about how hypertension, diabetes mellitus, thyroid disease, and other chronic ailments could be managed, I interviewed neighbors regularly and made a point to visit everyone within walking distance of my house who was ill. Not only did I have my heart set entirely on Medicine as the profession to which I would give my all, but by the time I began medical school, I had already become most passionate about Internal Medicine in general, especially Endocrinology. I now have sufficient experience here in the USA in Internal Medicine to hit the ground running in your fellowship program and distinguish myself as an especially hard worker in the battle against endocrine disorders. I hope to be selected to participate in your highly competitive fellowship program in Endocrinology.
While statistics are lacking, especially at the national level, it is clear to all observers in the medical community that diabetes mellitus is on the rise in Afghanistan – and has been for some time. During the third year of medical school in Afghanistan, when we started our hands-on clinical experience, I was ecstatic, as I most enjoyed talking to patients with diabetes mellitus, thyroid disorders, or other endocrine pathologies, explaining to them their medical condition and how they can manage their needs in the internal medicine ward. I started going to our university teaching hospital even throughout our winter recess. I wanted to volunteer so severely and be with the patients that I braved brutal winter weather to get there. After graduation, I did a one-year internal medicine externship at our university teaching hospital before starting my internal medicine residency at Ibn-e-Sina, a busy emergency hospital in Kabul, Afghanistan. Moved by many patients I saw with diabetes mellitus complications and thyroid disease, I decided to apply to a three-year internal medicine residency program based on a competitive exam and was selected, learning a great deal in that position about endocrine disorders.
During my internal medicine residency program, I came to appreciate the singular importance of preventive medicine as an integral part of internal medicine. I became a lot more knowledgeable about community health issues. I also had the opportunity to teach medical students a class in Public Health. During the second year of my residency, I was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to earn a master's degree in public health with a concentration in Epidemiology at Saint Louis University’s School of Public Health in Saint Louis, MO. Making the MPH has given me a more sophisticated understanding of critical health problems such as obesity, and how it drives diabetes mellitus in the United States.
After completing my MPH, given the situation in Afghanistan, I decided to apply for asylum in the United States. After overcoming several critical difficulties related to my transition to America, I was selected for and am currently working towards completing a residency in Internal Medicine at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center in New York City. Here, I have had the opportunity to help attend to various endocrine pathologies and had an excellent opportunity to learn more about Endocrinology.
Working as an English language teacher and running an academic center through my years in high school and medical school, I had the opportunity to build enduring relationships with patients and other professionals. I enjoyed talking to and explaining things to others. That experience helped me during my internal medicine residency at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center. I have been working with people of diverse backgrounds and have seen a diverse population of patients with various endocrine disorders. I am passionate about endocrinology because it directly puts an understanding of biochemistry, cell biology, genetics, physiology, and pharmacology into patient care.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, which struck NYC especially hard, I witnessed high mortality rates from COVID-19 in patients with obesity and uncontrolled diabetes mellitus in our hospital. This has reaffirmed my devotion to this cause. I now look forward to spending the rest of my professional life helping patients with endocrine pathologies, including diabetes mellitus, thyroid disease, obesity, and other endocrine disorders. Positive feedback from patients and their relatives whom I have taken care of, interns, residents, and attending physicians has inspired me to become a great clinical endocrinologist and clinician-educator.
Thank you for considering my application for a fellowship position in Endocrinology.
Fellowship Endocrinology Personal Statement Editor