This month’s feature is by Masumah, a first year medical student from the University of Manchester
What made you want to pursue medicine?
Just like every medical student, I have loved science for pretty much as long as I can remember. What fascinates me about Medicine is the perfect balance between the application of science and human interaction – and that is what initially drew me towards it.
There is something special about being able to talk to people and listen to their stories and be in a place to be able to do something that will hopefully make a difference to them.
How was the process of applying? (Any tips)
I only applied last year, so the whole process is still very fresh in my mind. It was probably one of the most challenging things I have put myself through. So much effort and emotional energy is needed to get through the whole application process, so it was definitely stressful.
My main tips for those applying would be to try to gain as much experience as possible; in the form of work experience, voluntary work and take any other opportunities that come your way. The more you see of Medicine and the more you are able to reflect on those encounters, the better position you will be in when it comes to writing your personal statement and interviews.
Also, make sure you make full use of all the resources that you have around you – the internet is a great place to start! There are endless resources and tips available to you if you just take the time to look. Do not be afraid of asking any med students you come across for any tips and hits; I am always willing to help and I am pretty sure many others will be too.
What is your medical school like?
I love it at Manchester! We are a huge medical school with around 400 in just one year group and that makes it all the more exciting! We have a lot of small group teaching (since our main form of teaching is PBL, with an integrated approach) and we tend to be placed in different groups with every new session which is really good because that way we get to meet so many different people. What I love the most is how we have many different forms of teaching: PBL sessions, dissection, lab practicals, communication sessions, lectures, clinical placements… It is so varied and every week of our timetable tends to differ from the one before!
Do you have any plans for the future?
Nope, not at all yet. At the moment I am just keeping an open mind and taking every opportunity that comes my way. I have only had one year of med school so far so I have not really seen much yet in order to be certain o which field I would like to pursue. One thing I do know is that I would love to be involved in some form of teaching incorporated within whatever I choose to do in the future, because that is something I have always enjoyed.
Any last comments/tips for future medical students?
I do not think I am in much of a position to be giving tips to future medical students as I feel as though I am still finding my feet. But one thing I would say is just how helpful it is to speak to older years. Whether you are applying and you talk to first years or in first year and talk to second years…speaking to those who have just been through what you are about to is possibly the greatest help you could receive!
That being said, I am more than happy for anybody who’s applying (or even thinking of applying) for Medicine to get in touch with me via my blog or any of my social media platforms!
If you are a medical student and would like to share your experience of medical school, then feel free to get in touch with me by commenting below or through my contact form.