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Residency Diagnostic Radiology: Saudi Woman Doctor

Updated: Jan 25


I am a Saudi woman born in Canada, raised and trained in Saudi Arabia, and now residing in Chicago. I finished medical school with honors at King Abdul-Aziz University, Jeddah. My goal is to undertake a residency in Diagnostic Radiology, sub-specializing in Interventional Radiology, in Canada, and after that, to pursue a fellowship in Interventional Radiology and, ultimately, to head a Radiology Department in a prestigious hospital in Saudi Arabia and teach Radiology.


I was raised in a demanding home environment in which I was expected to give 100% effort to everything I undertook and to be diligent, independent, reliable, and honest. I thrived in this demanding environment, which provided me with vast choices in terms of career and the tools to excel in all subjects. I chose to pursue medicine because I wanted to ‘make a difference rather than just ‘make a living.’ I have never regretted this choice which I consider a vocation rather than a mere career choice.


My experience in Medical School was thoroughly positive, and I was enthralled with what I learned about the wonder of the human body. I also saw how the knowledge I was acquiring related to clinical practice and that patients are not merely ‘bundles of symptoms’ but individuals with unique needs and personalities. I learned that not everything a good physician needs to know could be easily taught, such as the importance of recognizing and interpreting patient non-verbal communication. The challenging experiences during my medical school years also left positive marks on my personality and helped me mature. I learned how to be an effective team member and organize, lead and inspire a team, serving as my group leader for the last three years. I formed solid friendships during these happy years that I know will endure. When I graduated, it was not only with the highest mark for my final year but with the highest mark in each of the six years. I believe this success is less a measure of my intelligence than my passion for medicine.


I undertook various voluntary assignments at Medical School that may be relevant to mention. I was involved in the WHO ‘Stop Tuberculosis’ campaign in Saudi Arabia in 2010 and the ‘Breast CancerAwareness’ campaign in 2008. Breast cancer presents great problems in Saudi Arabia because of late diagnoses. I felt privileged to be part of the ongoing efforts to extend symptom awareness and for my countrywomen's need for early treatment. I was also one of the organizers of a ‘Diabetes Mellitus Health Field Survey’ in my fourth year.


During my rotations, I became particularly drawn to Radiology, my interest being initially fired by an expert in this field whose skill at putting all the pieces of the puzzle together and identifying the patient’s problem was astonishing. This relationship resulted in my choosing Radiology as an elective and the specialty I sought to pursue. I considered this choice carefully, and I genuinely believe I possess the exceptional observational and analytical skills required for this fascinating and vital work area. I am a ‘visual person,’ a photographer interested in handcrafts and painting. My artist's eye for detail and sensibilities will enable me to excel in this field. My decision led to my successful application for a Demonstrator (Residency) position in Interventional Radiology at King Abdul-Aziz University. This appointment provided me with an opportunity to teach and I have developed a love of passing on the torch to new generations.


I am deeply interested in the advancement of non-invasive procedures in interventional radiology. It is my aim, ultimately, to be able to offer further nonsurgical, less invasive options to patients and to advance the knowledge of ophthalmology in my home country. I now seek to join a residency program that will enable me to learn the most modern techniques from leading experts in the field. I also aim to pursue research and hone my teaching skills. I hope that I will be enabled, through participation in the program, to assist in the general advancement of healthcare in Saudi Arabia.


I have happily studied, worked, and socialized with people from many cultural and social backgrounds and look forward to extending such experiences during the residency if selected. I consider myself culturally sensitive and have an awareness of the importance of cultural and social awareness in a medical environment.


I know there will be many well-qualified applicants for the residency program, but I genuinely believe I am an exceptional candidate. My academic results will assure that I possess a highly developed work ethic, and I promise active participation in the residency program. The activities and leadership roles that I have undertaken will, I hope, provide evidence that I am a person who can always be relied upon to involve herself enthusiastically in her academic and working environment. My experience in this specialty will enable me to ‘add value' by bringing relevant knowledge and skills to the residency program.


Thank you for considering my application.


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