As a student you should be starting to prepare your personal statements over the summer. You’ll need to collate evidence of your grades and clinical work experience, as well as polishing up on your communication skills and ensuring your healthcare knowledge is up to scratch and ready for those all-important medical school interviews. Have you ticked all the boxes?
Many medical schools place emphasis on the personal statement; it is a declaration of your passion for medicine and working in healthcare. Though applications must fulfil the academic requirements, successful candidates will have a certain ‘je ne sais quoi’ about their application that will grab the attention of the admissions tutor. It really is worth doing your research into what individual medical schools are looking for -and never be tempted to have your personal statement written for you.
Writing your statement is likely to take far longer than expected; it is best to write everything down, make cuts, edits and rewrite where necessary. Presenting your passion for the subject and communicating the knowledge you’ve gained on the NHS and health care in general is important, so too is demonstrating you have the necessary ‘hands-on’ work experience, which you have reflected upon, to back up your academic excellence.
Work experience is extremely valuable when considering your application to medical school and is a prerequisite for gaining entry. It gives you a taste for medicine and helps you decide whether it is really for you. Your experiences can be of varying lengths and within varying settings and situations; anything that has clinical relevance is considered work experience to which you can highlight within your application, explaining what you did, what you learnt and how you can apply it in future.
Though clinical work experience will stand you in good stead, other roles such as caring and interacting with the public are equally valuable. Not only do they allow you to hone your communication skills, but combining this with academic work illustrates that you have excellent interpersonal and organisational skills.
Where can you gain additional work experience?
Understanding the shortage of qualified and specialised medical professionals in the UK, ID Medical School was founded with the intent of offering doctors of all grades the opportunity to develop their requisite skills and continue their professional development. Together with WatMed educational, a provider of high quality CPD accredited courses with a difference; potential medical students benefit from free places on clinical-based courses, as well as having access to a multitude of educational resources – an ideal way to gain additional work experience and knowledge for your medical school application and interview.
Caryn Cooper, Head of ID Medical School, comments, “To train and educate the next generation of healthcare professionals is our intention, and ID Medical School is committed to the grass roots of the profession. We are proud to offer medical students free places on courses delivered by WatMed educational.
“As the UK’s leading healthcare recruiter, we look at the ‘bigger picture’ of NHS workforce planning, ensuring we offer added-value beyond locum supply by upskilling and ensuring junior healthcare professionals have access to relevant courses and learning materials.”
Dr Kishan Rees founder of WatMed educational added, “Medicine is a completely different proposition now to when I applied for 2004 entry. I firmly believe we owe it to those following in our footsteps to ease their path.
“Medical students can never have too many resources. I recommend collating any articles from medical journals such as the BMJ which you are particularly interested in, and ensure you are able to understand from a scientific point of view, but explain to a member of the public. And – watch as many video tutorials as possible. The latter is ideal for when you’re on the move where you can learn and observe from your mobile devices.
“The information in our medical school application videos is essential knowledge for prospective applicants to the profession and these are freely available on the WatMed educational YouTube channel; so students can not only maximise their chances of success, but also make an informed choice as to whether medicine is right for them. WatMed educational takes pride in playing an active part helping recruit the most talented and suited into the profession.”
Email IDMSchool@id-medical.com to find out more about work experience opportunities and courses to enhance your medical school application.