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  1. So I work as a phlebotomist for a staffing agency for a big healthcare company and had a placement in a health center where there are about 8 or so doctors, a PA, and an NP. During my lunch breaks I would see one of the doctors in the break room and we began exchanging pleasantries and I made him laugh once at a joke and we introduced ourselves. His office was right next to the break room and I always saw him with the door open. This was my 2nd week at this new job and I approached him and mentioned how I am interested in becoming a PA and heard there was a PA in the health center and inquired if I could potentially shadow him. The dector was very friendly and offered to introduce me to him and walked me across the center to the PA's work area where I was told to wait for a few minutes until he comes back out and I can introduce myself to him. So I did. The PA was very friendly and open to having me shadow him but advised me to talk to the health center manager first about the health center's policy regarding shadowing. So I walked over to the office manager and told her I spoke with the PA and he is willing to have me shadow him and instructed me to come see you about getting whatever approval I need. She seemed very open to the idea and said she will check into it because she isn't sure and for me to come back the following day. I come back the following day on my lunch break and she has papers ready for me to sign. I jokingly apologize and say sorry I don't mean to be a pest or anything but I am trying to become a PA and shadowing is an important step in that process. She said okay now I will send this in and we will see what happens basically. So I come back the next day and she says she had to send it to her boss's boss and it's in the hands of administration now so we just have to wait, and to not worry, that we'll take care of you. So I say great, thanks, I'll check back next week. 2 days later I am let go and am removed from that assignment and am given a "do not return" by my staffing agency to that location. My staffing manager said that the complaint that the health center had about me in their report was that I made the office manager feel uncomfortable, awkward, that it was inappropriate how I asked to shadow, and that I should have spoken with the office manager first. Did I do something wrong?
  2. I would be willing to exchange statements for editing/critiquing or would like to send mine to someone open to helping me!
  3. Hey guys, I would really appreciate any thoughts and/or critiques about the flow and overall theme of my statement. Is there anything missing or not well expalined? The door flew open and slammed against the adjacent wall. I entered a darkened room where I could only make out the outlines of other patients and hear the noise of chatter and children crying. As my eyes adjusted to the sharp contrast from the glaring sun outside, I slowly made my way to the counter. “Sign in,” said a voice and I looked down to see a chewed-up pin and a pile of torn paper. I wrote my name and date of birth and handed it to the clerk, who pointed out seats against a wall nearby. "Have a seat; we’ll call you when we’re ready.” I took a seat alongside a crowd of young women and children and patiently waited my turn to be seen at my local health department. As a teenager without health insurance, I spent many years “in the system,” seeing first-hand the demand for affordable primary care. My experiences at the local health department made me dread going, never knowing if I would ever see the same provider again. Like many others in my situation, I eventually stopped going. After these experiences, I decided to make a career in healthcare, where I hope to be part of the solution of providing stability for the underprivileged and financially burdened. I began my journey as a pharmacy technician, a job that solidified my interests in the science of medicine and furthered my awareness of the huge role of primary care providers in the health system. This perspective grew substantially when I began working in registration at the emergency department of my local hospital. Just as I had at the health department years earlier, patients without options sat for hours to be seen for fevers and headaches. My observations pushed me to continue with a career in medicine. After graduating from college, I moved home to pursue my career, climbing from being a unit secretary to becoming a patient care technician. There I got my first hands-on experiences with patients. One morning as I was assisting a patient to the bathroom, she began sweating and complaining of blurred vision. I immediately called for someone to come in so we could check her blood sugar levels; it was 37 mg/dL. With the nurse at my side, we got the patient back to bed and gave IV glucose. It was a rite of passage for me; I was happy to have recognized symptoms and then reacted appropriately without hesitation. Moments like this led me to see that I wanted to not only treat patients but learn to diagnose as well. Many of us have mentors who helped guide us in our journeys. After nearly nine years in healthcare, I began working with Mike, a physician assistant on the cardiothoracic surgery unit. I watched him take the extra time with patients to go over each medication, not only to ensure there were no drug interactions but also to explain the purpose of each. When his patients need refills, instead of asking for “the little blue pill,” they can confidently ask for their blood pressure medication. I saw first-hand how understanding a patient’s problems and taking the time to address them can greatly reduce complications and improve the quality of life for those in our communities. PAs play an important role in this mission and they do so as part of a team. A team-based care system is very important to me. I learned the value of a solid support network while struggling after the death of my cousin. The pain of losing my best friend had a profound effect on me and my grade suffered. The personal disappointment I felt after failing two semesters made it difficult for me to continue on my career path. However, with the backing of my friends and family, I was able to push forward and overcome these trials. I was taught stress-management and determination through these hardships and they will aid me as I endeavor this challenging and evolving career as a PA. With my professional training in the medical field, I have a good understanding and appreciate everyone’s roles in healthcare. We come from several backgrounds and experiences that allow us to integrate together and ultimately provide better patient care. I am confident in my ability to translate my skills into my studies as well as future practice and become a successful PA. I am also confident in my ability to relate and help close the gap in available healthcare as a primary care provider. Thanks in advance!
  4. You guessed it! I am a first time applicant and you guys are the only ones that can help me with critiquing my personal statement. Im actually pretty surprised I stayed under the character limit for my rough draft. Please look it over and tell me how bad it stinks! The door flew open and slammed against the adjacent wall. The room was dark and all I could make out were figures and the noise of chatter and children crying. As my eyes adjusted to the sharp contrast in darkness from the blaring sun outside, I made my way to the counter. “Sign in,” said a voice and I looked down to see a chewed up pin and a pile of ripped up pieces of paper, on which I wrote my name and date of birth. The voice came out again “have a seat; we’ll call you when we’re ready.” I turned to see a room, no bigger than a two bedroom apartment, full of young women and children of various ages. I took a seat and waited for my turn to be seen at my local health department. As an adolescent without health insurance, I have seen first-hand the demand for providers that can offer available healthcare. My experiences at the local health department made me dread going, never knowing if I would see the same provider again. Like many others in my situation, I just stopped going. After these experiences, I knew I wanted to be the stability for the underprivileged and financially burdened. I began my role in healthcare as a pharmacy technician. It was this job that solidified my interests in the science of medicine. It was also this exposure which showed me that primary care providers play a huge role in the health system. However, it was not until I began working in registration for the Emergency Department of my local hospital that I could see just how important this role is; patients sitting for hours to be seen for a fever and headache because they do not have any other option for healthcare. These observations pushed me to continue in medicine. After moving home to pursue this career, I climbed my way from a unit secretary to a patient care technician where I had my first hands-on experiences with patients. I remember a particular incident where while I was assisting a patient to the bathroom, she began sweating and complaining of blurred vision. I immediately called for someone to come in so I could check her blood sugar levels; it was 37 mg/Dl. With the nurse by my side, we got Ms. Kay safely to the bed and began treating her with intravenous glucose. I was so excited and proud of myself for recognizing the symptoms and being able to react without hesitation. It is moments like this one that I recognize my desires are not only to treat patients, but also diagnose illnesses. After working closely with many health providers for nearly ten years, none stood out to me like Mike, a physician assistant on the cardiothoracic surgery unit. I have seen him take the extra time to go over every medication a patient had not only to ensure there was no drug interactions but to explain and write down the uses of each for when they returned home. When this patient needs a refill, instead of asking for “the little blue pill,” they will confidently ask for their blood pressure medication. Understanding these problems and taking the time to address them through patient education and support can greatly improve the quality of life for those in our communities. PAs help to carry out this idea of preventive medicine over episodic care as a team. A team-based care system is very important to me. I learned the value of a solid support network while struggling after the death of my cousin. The pain of losing my best friend, and the personal disappointment I felt after failing two semesters, made it difficult for me to continue on my career path confidently. However, with the backing and trust of my peers, much like a PA in their practice, I was able to push forward and overcome these trials. I was taught stress-management and determination through these hardships and they will aid me as I endeavor this challenging and evolving career as a PA. With my professional training in the medical field, I have a good understanding and appreciate everyone’s roles in healthcare. We come from several backgrounds and experiences that allow us to integrate together and ultimately provide better patient care. I am confident in my ability to translate my skills into my studies as well as future practice and become a successful PA. I am also confident in my ability to relate and help close the gap in available healthcare as a primary care provider.
  5. Hello, I'm a first time applicant - any tips/edits would be appreciated! While sitting outside on my lunch break at the community pharmacy where I was employed, I heard a young girl yelling, “Help! My sister needs help!” Shocked that no one was responding, I ran over to the vehicle and noticed that there was a young woman having a seizure in the front seat. I put on her seat belt to limit her movement, called 911, and kept both girls calm until the ambulance arrived. Upon reflecting on this incident, I realized that I had not one moment of hesitation to help. I kept calm, rapidly processed the information, and acted in a way that produced a favorable outcome for all involved. This was the exact moment that I realized that I wanted to be a physician assistant as I realized that I possess the traits to be an asset to the field. Academically, I have always known that I process information in a unique way. Since I was a child, my processing and decision making times have always been faster than my peers. My brain works like a file cabinet; I receive the information and “file it” into categories. When I feel that I have enough information, I then am able to make a quick decision on what I feel the problem is and work towards solving it. This particular skill is very well suited for diagnosing problems, and would serve me very well in diagnosing pathophysiological conditions, in particular. I enjoyed using this skill during my pathophysiology examinations. Although these exams represented fairly simplistic patient case examples when compared to a real life situation, I was able to take the information as a whole, filter out the important parts, and suggest possible explanations for the “patients’” problems very quickly and efficiently. While academic ability is undoubtedly important, I believe that my particular life experience is what will actually provide me with the greatest advantage while pursuing a physician assistant degree. During my undergraduate years at The University of Michigan, I became physically unwell. At that time, my medical team was unable to make a diagnosis and I struggled physically for a very long time. I was forced to make the decision whether to continue my education in a limited capacity or to withdrawal from the University and come back when and if I was physically able to attend classes. I chose to stay enrolled and as a result, my undergraduate GPA is far from reflective of my true academic abilities. As a result, I will forever be explaining the discrepancy between what my early transcripts report and my actual academic skills. I would not change my decision as learning has always been my greatest enjoyment and I refused to let my illness take that joy away from me during such a difficult time. I have displayed my aptitude for science in particular with my post-baccalaureate classes, and I will continue to prove my capabilities with further educational endeavors. After many years of investigation, I have been diagnosed with sarcoidosis. While it has been a difficult journey, I believe that it has taught me occupational skills that I would not have learned otherwise, with the most important being empathy. In a busy healthcare environment, finding a line between speed and efficiency is difficult. I have recently had the privilege of serving as the coordinator of a specialized unit for patients undergoing treatment that were not sick enough to require a hospital stay and were not well enough to go home. There were eighteen patients on this unit and one coordinator, so weighing patient needs was paramount. One of my goals as coordinator was to remember what it felt like to be undergoing treatment for my condition and try to provide what I wished for during my experiences to my patients. It is difficult to feel such a loss of control and dignity and it was a daily goal of mine to validate concerns and provide unconventional solutions to assist in the most helpful way possible. My experience as a patient without a doubt made my patient care more effective, and I hold my service recognitions from these patients in high regard. I will continue to keep my empathy skills on the forefront as I continue my career as a physician assistant. Throughout my career in healthcare, I have had the pleasure of working closely with many mid-level practitioners, most of them being physician assistants. I truly believe that our current medical model is ideal and lends itself to better patient care than a physician-only model. I am privileged to witness the impact on patient care that my physician assistant co-workers provide, and I believe that I have the intelligence, fortitude, and advocacy skills necessary to be a vital member of the medical team.
  6. I am struggling to figure out how I should incorporate the fact that I am a re-applicant. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!! "To say I was an accident prone child is an understatement. I frequented doctors’ offices and emergency rooms for a variety of injuries and ailments. I remember staying home sick from elementary school, curling up on the sofa to watch marathons of “Medical Mysteries” and “Trauma: Life in the ER”. My squeamish parents were somewhat disgusted by my gruesome choice of entertainment and were puzzled by my infatuation with medicine. Even so, my interest and enthusiasm for medical care persisted. In 2006, after I was involved in a serious golf cart accident, I knew for certain that I would pursue a career in healthcare. I suffered extensive injuries after being ejected from the vehicle, run over, and dragged along the pavement. I remember the rushed atmosphere and commotion of the emergency room as I lay there feeling shocked by the gravity of the situation. Then, Michelle walked in, a smiling brunette clad in a crisp white coat. I assumed she was a physician as she explained the imaging procedures and tests I would soon undergo. She addressed me not as a naïve thirteen-year-old but simply as a concerned patient. She answered all my questions and stayed engaged in our conversation even as she performed an intra-articular injection to determine if my knee joint had been compromised. I was in awe at the combination of her technical proficiency and calm disposition. Not until years later, after attending a physician assistant symposium in college, did I realize Michelle was a physician assistant. After my accident, my passion for medicine persisted. In high school, I enrolled in Honors Anatomy and Physiology and was fascinated by the field trips to watch an open-heart surgery and visit a cadaver lab. My teachers noted my enthusiasm for the subject and nominated me to attend a medical leadership conference at Georgetown University. When selecting a college major, I chose Nutritional Sciences because of the strong focus on biological science; it also provided a unique perspective on clinical work and emphasized the critical thinking skills necessary in practice. I worked assiduously because I knew exemplary academics were necessary when applying to graduate programs. However, despite struggling with a personal crisis during my sophomore year, I was determined not to let one semester mar the academic record I had worked so hard to achieve. I made significant changes in my life and learned how to maximize my academic potential while managing stress in a healthy way. This experience was a critical point of self-exploration, and I am confident it was an important step in preparing me for the rigors of PA school. Once I was comfortable managing the challenges of a science-heavy course load, I began to focus on gaining more experience working in healthcare. Although my interest to learn the intricacies of medicine was undeniable, I was still unsure about which career would be the best fit for me. I spoke with doctors, nurses, and PAs to determine the differences between these types of practitioners. While trying to make a decision, I repeatedly thought of Michelle, my earliest inspiration. I saw clearly that compared to other healthcare professionals, PAs have a unique opportunity to build a rapport with their patients by getting to know them on a personal level, which is what I value most. However, it was not until I became a certified nursing assistant at an assisted living facility that I truly understood how much I valued being a part of someone’s healing process. Initially, I saw the job as an opportunity to work collaboratively with other healthcare professionals, but I realized quickly the magnitude of this experience was much greater than I anticipated. It is remarkable to watch the aging process unfold and see the devastating progression of diseases. It is my responsibility to not only provide care to the residents, but also to be vigilant about changes in their condition, to be compassionate about the struggles they endure in light of their impending mortality, and to listen to them when nobody else will. These moments make me realize what an honor it is to be a healthcare provider. Although my academic journey has always been aimed towards a career in medicine, my unique life experiences are what inspired me to become a physician assistant. The PA profession encompasses my passion for scientific knowledge and my desire to build relationships with patients. Pursuing such a fulfilling and exciting career leaves me with a profound sense of purpose and the definitive notion I will be a successful physician assistant."
  7. I slowly approached the room with shaking feet and trembling hands. For a moment, everything stopped and my whole attention was on this one room. I turned the knob and pushed the door open. The medical ECG monitor showed no activity. My heart dropped. There lay my uncle, covered from head to toe with a white sheet over him. I never wanted to hear his voice more than this one time. I came closer, and touched his feet and hands. They were ice cold. The blood circulation in his body had stopped, his heart had stopped beating, and his brain would no longer think of anything anymore. The grief and sorrow I felt had turned into empowerment and motivation. I had lost my uncle that day but gained a clearer vision as to why I want to become a physician assistant. My uncle was a diabetic and blood pressure patient and visited his physician for regular checkups. However, his physician neglected his apparent jaundice, drastic weight loss, and minor stomach pains. Soon, when his stomach pains had become unbearable, he complained only to find out that he was suffering from the final stage of liver cancer that had metastasized to his kidneys and bladder. He was admitted since then and battled for his life for two weeks until he passes. Sometimes I wonder if only he had been diagnosed at an earlier stage of the illness, his life could have been saved. This was when I realized my passion for oncology and patient care. I knew if I followed a career in becoming a physician assistant I would never let a vital symptom go by that would cost a person’s life. My curiosity and love for science leads to my interest in becoming a PA. From chemistry to cellular/molecular biology and the study of biological systems, especially the human body itself, has bought new motivation and insight towards my passion for pursuing a career as a physician assistant. To test my aptitude for the qualities needed in a healthcare career I began a research project under the supervision of Dr. Shanti Rywkin from BMCC. The focus of the study was to test out and find the mechanism behind the treatment of topical cancers such as colon cancer and mouse prostate cancer cells using four different Phenothiazine dyes and Photodynamic therapy. Working in the lab immeasurable hours honed my communication, teamwork, patience, observation, motor and sensory skills. It was behind closed doors and in front of mirrors where I prepared to present my research project countless times for symposiums, presentations, and national conferences. Communication is the most important part of patient care and presenting my research numerous times helped sharpen and master that skill. Additionally, working in sync with three other students proved that I possess the characteristic of a physician assistant where working in a team is necessary to provide the best patient care possible. Our lab symbolized a hospital where Euri, Teiba, Oliver and I could have been physician assistants working under the guidance of our doctor, Professor Rywkin, to cure our patients, the cells. Looking over my data, this newly found piece of information, and realizing that this small piece of information can potentially change the way topical cancers are treated is an indescribable emotion. I had fallen in love with research so much that I wanted to turn research into my career, however, since my uncle’s suffering from medical neglect I realized that the distant analytical approach would not help show compassion I have for treating patients. I have been surrounded by medicine my whole life. Since I can remember, my father and grandparents visited the physician to keep their sugar levels and blood pressure under control. My grandmother is a heart patient. My grandfather suffered from lymph node cancer due to excessive smoking, which he survived. My uncle broke his tibia and punctured his lungs in a motorcycle accident. My sister is an asthma patient. My brother is obese and is counseled by his pediatrician for weight loss. And I, myself suffered from seizure disorders from 2009 to 2012 and a skin condition called lichen planus. With various diseases running in the family, I was exposed to the hospital environment at a very early age. I experienced patient care provided by oncologists, pediatricians, dermatologists, cardiologists, surgeons, and neurologists at a very personal level. Aside from oncology, I also have interest in neurology. One of the best advantages of becoming a physician assistant is that one can specialize in various specialties whereas a physician has to complete another residency to work in another specialty. This is another reason why the physician assistant route is more suitable for me. Additionally, I have been selected to volunteer at the New York Hospital Queens and hope to gain more patient/doctor interaction experience and in-depth knowledge of various specialties later on this January. Overall, my experiences have help shaped what career path I want to follow. I believe that I possess all qualities needed to become a successful physician assistant. From compassion, integrity, and concern for others, to strong intellectual, conceptual, integrative, and quantities abilities, to excellent observation, communication, motor and sensory skills, I have it all. If accepted, I will become a great asset to any hospital I work in in the future and the neglect that my uncle faced will never be an issue under my care.
  8. Hello! I'm looking for advice on how to strengthen my personal narrative. I've always considered myself somewhat of a weak writer and I'm honestly not sure what to write about. A little about myself: I'm 30, married, I have a 6 year old son, finishing up my BA in Natural Sciences/Mathematics, working as a CNA in oncology at a local hospital.... Any suggestions on how to spiffy this up? Thanks! I wasn’t the most studious high school student. I had terrible grades. It isn’t that I wasn’t capable, but I had lost interest. I did very well up until high school but for some reason I began to lose enthusiasm for learning. I didn’t see the importance of a good education. I eventually graduated and went on to receive my associate’s degree in Information and Network Technology. I still felt that something was missing. There was a certain curiosity that I had growing up but lost touch with as I got older. It wasn’t until I struggled with my own health that I became inspired to learn again, not only about human physiology but about the world around me. I was 24 years old and obese. I had high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and couldn’t spend much time on my feet without getting out of breath. I was depressed and I isolated myself from my friends, family, and my wife. My wife and I began talking about having children and I was scared at the idea of not being healthy enough to keep up with them. I also wanted to set a good example. I started reading books by various nutritionists and dieticians and signed up for classes at a local group workout gym. I was afraid of what the other people in the gym would think of me, but I was more afraid of what would happen if I didn’t begin to take control of my health. In about a year and a half, I lost over 100 pounds, reduced my blood pressure and my blood cholesterol levels. I had even gotten to a point to where my doctor and I felt that I no longer needed medication. I felt like I was on top of the world. This experience inspired me to go back to school for a health related career. Soon after looking into various career paths, a friend of mine told me about physician assistants and how one helped him take control of his health. I knew that I wanted to help empower others to take control of their own health. I was fascinated by human physiology. I began taking science and math courses and realized early on that I did well in these subjects. Volunteering in the hospital solidified my desire to be in medicine by giving me the opportunity to interact with patients and connect on a personal level. For me, medicine is a perfect blend of two important things that I value and that inspire me on a daily basis: science and compassion. As a physician assistant, I would get the best of both worlds. I would get to continually learn new things while caring for those who are often at a vulnerable time in life. While my interest lies mainly in primary care, I am someone who is interested in all aspects of medicine and being a physician assistant gives me the flexibility to work in other specialties. I value independence and autonomy, but I also like the idea of not necessarily being the final answer. The inherent collaborative nature of being a physician assistant affords me the opportunity to work with physicians to come up with a plan that works best for the patient. In addition to my healthcare experience, I worked in IT for several years and I believe this experience will make me a better physician assistant. Humans are immensely more complex than computers, but my experience troubleshooting and solving complex network and computer issues gives me the tools to be able to think critically and analytically as is needed in a physician assistant. As a physician assistant my enthusiasm for medicine would be apparent in the work that I do. I know that I would care for my patients in a way that we all deserve to be treated; with respect, dignity, and compassion. I sincerely want to thank you for your time and consideration.
  9. To anyone who wants to give their opinion, I'd love to hear thoughts about my narrative. And also if anyone thinks this narrative is a little TOO personal. I know it touches on several different things, maybe too many. Thanks in advance for any advice! :) Personal Narrative: The Path That Led Me to Physician Assistant Studies The first time I drove a car I was fourteen years old. I’d driven around the pastures and gravel roads around my isolated home a few times, but this was the real deal: making the 60-mile trip from home in rural Mississippi to the big city of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. In retrospect I took it all pretty well in stride, with my dad riding along beside me, gently encouraging and guiding me through the drive. It would not be the last trip we made with me acting as the unlicensed chauffeur, but this never stood out to me as odd or unorthodox. My father’s health had played a central role in my life for nearly as long as I could remember, so when he needed a ride to his doctor’s appointment I took on that responsibility as naturally as any adult caregiver would. But that is not to say that I handled all aspects of his illness so easily. I’d long grown used to the daily insulin injections and finger pricking, and had learned to do it for him by the time I was 10. Managing his Type 1 diabetes was just as much a part of our routine as was playing, singing, and watching our favorite TV shows together. It was over the next several years, after he was diagnosed with Guillain-Barre syndrome, that the signs of his poor health became more visible and began to greatly affect my life. There were many ups and downs, and many things I found myself unable to process at that point in time. To be sure, it has been over seven years since my father passed away and it seems only very recently that I’ve begun to grasp just how much his life has influenced mine, in the most significant of ways. My last summer with my father was also the last summer I was a camper at Camp Bratton-Green, a wonderful, week-long summer camp I’d attended throughout my childhood. The following summer I returned to Bratton-Green, but as a camp counselor. The 12 girls assigned to my cabin, along with 100-plus other campers, were not what most would picture when imagining the typical summer camp-goer. They ranged in age from 35 to 72, with varying degrees of special needs. In the first five minutes, I felt myself questioning what I was getting into; those feelings quickly dissipated as I found myself captivated and amazed by each new person I met. I went fishing with Rachel, a 38-year-old who loved Garth Brooks, fancied herself a pool shark, and was born with an extra chromosome; I ate dinner with Ms. Christine, a 70-year-old who had resided in a group home for most of her life and liked to tuck each of us in every night. Each person’s story was even more unique, inspiring and humbling than the last. I left at the end of that week with a renewed appreciation for the people and things around me, and a fresh perspective on the future. Needless to say, I was drawn to return to Bratton-Green every summer thereafter for four years, and am certain I will return in the future. There are very few places to which I feel such a strong connection, and my time there played a chief role in the next steps I took towards a career. Choosing to study Psychology seemed only natural, and I was reaffirmed in this belief with each successive class, as I excelled and became more fascinated with the field. Things got more complicated when trying to determine how I would use this degree to create the life and career I wanted. My interest in the medical field was realized while in Human Anatomy class. As the material became more complex and in depth, I became more intrigued with the subject. I’d always felt the pull to work in the service of others, but this new education led me to refocus my goal away from a therapy-based career to one based on science and medicine. I was lucky enough to get a job as an Emergency Room Technician near my hometown after graduation from college, and my time spent there has made me realize my passion for medicine and social service to an even higher degree. The environment at my hospital is familiar in that it is a rural, community-based establishment to the likes of which I’ve been accustomed to since childhood. Yet it is also highly stimulating, as with each patient that comes through the door I have the opportunity to learn or do something new. More recently, I’ve also begun working as a scribe in a pediatric clinic, and I have discovered yet another vital entity of the medical field. From administering wound care and CPR to taking patient histories and interpreting test or lab results, my days are a perpetually changing cycle. But every day I am able to assist the doctor with some form of patient care, and it is a role in which I feel natural and comfortable. And in this role I strive to reflect the legacy of my father and the other special people I’ve met along the way, for it is to them I owe my current standing in life. I’ve been blessed to be able to constantly learn and evolve in a career that I love, and I can only hope to continue this on a higher level as a Physician Assistant.
  10. Any critique welcome and appreciated, thank you for your time! Word count: 4,409 Ga-ga is an Israeli variant of dodgeball in which you are enclosed in an octagonal pit with the goal of hitting your opponent below the knee with a ball while trying to remain untouched yourself. The first time I played this game I was not in Israel, but at a Christian camp in Michigan and landed myself in the emergency room with a broken nose and slight concussion. I found it ironic at that point, that after being a competitive athlete for ten years in a sport that crumbles if one member of the team cannot participate to their full potential, I had sustained my greatest injury after just one round of an individualistic game. My ten years spent on that team had taught me to calculate my actions based on the well being of the entire team, not just of myself. We grew together as a family and functioned similarly to a beating heart; my coach being the SA node that always kept us in pace with each other. Playing ga-ga reminded me that I thrive in the setting of a team that relies on each other. It was by chance that my doctor that day would actually be a physician assistant (PA) and change my perspective on that profession and ultimately my future. Up until that point I had no doubt I wanted to follow my fathers’ footsteps and become a doctor; but up until that point I also had no idea physician assistants functioned in alignment with them. The occupation they carry out reminded me fondly of the team I used to be a part of and made me want to become part of the physician assistant practice. As I sat on the hospital bed with my college minister, we talked about the highs and lows of my past year of college and how they had impacted the way I feel about my future. Between boiling points in my mother’s long-term battle with alcoholism, my best friend’s attempted suicide, and being sexually assaulted I was entirely overwhelmed and it was difficult to keep my focus on school and off the feeling that my life was unmanageable. Although only a few of my classes had faltering grades, I know that I could have done better if the circumstances were different. Through that year and a half I longed for answers to questions that haunted me and I felt incredibly alone, as I’m sure many patients that face difficult diagnoses do. The opportunity to relate to a patient and support them through what they are experiencing inspires me and sparked the still-blazing desire to become a physician assistant. Sophomore and junior year were incredibly trying for me in my personal life but I came to the conclusion that the events that took place, along with key shadowing experiences, drove me toward my passion to become a physician assistant. While shadowing in the ER as an EMT-B, a plane crash survivor was rushed in with broken ribs, legs, and severe lacerations to his head. In a small town like Bloomington, IN cases such as these are rare and the frenzy in his room was palpable. I was instructed to sit with the patient while professionals tended to his injuries. For hours, I sat, watched procedures, and talked to the patient while healthcare providers rushed in and out, paying attention to only the medical problem and not the distressed man that lied before them. When his family finally arrived they were hysterical and often brushed aside by the nurses and doctors in order for them to better focus on the patient. I understand the urgency of treating a patient in such critical conditions yet I couldn’t rationalize why the emotional state of the patient and his family were compromised. As a PA, I would be there for my patients in a medical and emotional stance. Although my amount of clinical experience is not as extensive as I would like it to be, I believe it is my personal experiences that have equipped me with the spirit, drive, and passion needed to be successful as a physician assistant. It may be argued that intellect is the most important qualification of a PA, but I believe intellect can be learned. The most important thing, to me, is a heart of service toward your patients. Being able to relate to your patients and be in stride with their journey is something I believe to be crucial in this profession. My experiences and ability to overcome trials I have faced has given me a strength and passion that is married with my love for medicine and I believe it is the perfect combination to become a successful physician assistant.
  11. My decision to take an emergency medical technician (EMT) course has been one of the most rewarding and life altering decisions of my life. It gave me patient contact experience that I needed in order to confirm my belief that I am capable of pursuing a career in the medical field. There are many notable characteristics of being an EMT, but my most favorite aspect of the profession is that no two emergency calls aboard an ambulance are the same. One call I may be performing chest compressions and providing artificial respirations to a cardiac arrest patient. Then the next call I may be giving oral glucose to a diabetic patient that is suffering from hypoglycemia and is nearing the point of becoming unresponsive. Having this diversity has shaped me into a well rounded and knowledgeable EMT. It has given me a calm demeanor to care for patients in stressful medical situations. In addition, being an EMT has sharpened my communication and assessment skills because it is also true that no two patients are alike. One of my greatest moments of compassion for others was during an EMS call that involved a patient experiencing a motor vehicle accident. I was directed to hold the patient's cervical spine in place and keep him awake. The patient sat in the driver's seat semi-conscious with the dashboard on his chest and unaware of his situation. As I sat in the back seat of the vehicle, I communicated with the patient for 30 minutes keeping him conscious and giving him a sense of security. As the fire department extricated him out of the vehicle, I was the only other person in the vehicle with him, and I reassured him that he was in great hands. The patient wasn't just physically in my hands as the dashboard was being lifted off of him, but also in the emotionally supporting hands of the paramedic, fire department, and police. We worked as a team, clearly communicating and assisting one another in order to reach a common goal, to save this individual’s life by removing him safely and promptly from his wrecked vehicle. The experiences I have encountered as an EMT have compelled me to pursue a career as a Physician Assistant. It is motivating to know that as a Physician Assistant you continuously work as team with Doctors, Nurses, and other Physician Assistants to provide a common goal, which is exceptional care to every patient. I had the opportunity to witness this teamwork during my observational hours of Physician Assistants at St. Mary’s Hospital Urgent Care. I have thoroughly observed the Physician Assistants collaborate with Doctors and Nurses. They discussed patient history, medications, patient assessments, and assisted each other when necessary. The Physician Assistants played a very pivotal role in the quality of healthcare offered at St. Mary’s Hospitals. They assessed and treated their own individual patients in a timely manner with exceptional professionalism. I was very influenced by the Physician Assistants at St. Mary’s Hospital and have been imprinted by their true admirable characteristics. Therefore, I will strive to my fullest to become an extraordinary Physician Assistant because one of the most gratifying expressions in life one can offer is a helping hand. Thanks alot for reading and commenting!
  12. Hey everyone. I'm just looking for some feedback about my personal narrative. Application deadlines are quickly approaching! I'll take any and all criticism and I appreciate any and all help. Thanks! Like many children, I was brought up believing that I had the choice of becoming anything I wanted to be, that the sky was the limit, and, like many, the more I grew, the more I had confidence in the truth of that statement. Unfortunately, the question finally arose as to what I should become. Medicine always interested in me and was my passion but becoming a physician just did not seem like the right fit for me. After four challenging years of college in which I explored as many opportunities as I possibly could, the answer to that question still remained as elusive as ever. Unfortunately, the endeavor to discover what I wanted to do came at the price of not being able to focus on any one particular subject and falling far from reaching my academic potential. It was not until after graduation that I had a long conversation with a physician assistant in which a deep light was shed on that particular path. It was after more research, and more conversations with physician assistants, that I decided to abandon my current path at Merrill Lynch as a soon-to-be financial advisor to fully pursue a career that, not six months earlier, I never would have realized was my dream profession. I packed my bags, left my old life behind, and devoted myself wholly physically, mentally, financially, and academically to this pursuit. Since that decision, I turned academics to my priority, even while working two full time jobs, excelling at all three. I took a job working as a rehab tech. My time with those patients was the final assertion that being a physician assistant was my calling. A new patient was admitted to the facility my first month there that was deeply depressed at his loss of mobility (due to complications with diabetes resulting in an amputated leg). He had honestly lost his will to live and to recover. In talking with him daily and working with him down in physical therapy, his old vigor began to come back. Hope returned to his eyes. I clearly remember the first day I walked with him. He asked me if I planned on becoming a physical therapist. I told him I was pursuing physician assistant. He looked at me squarely in the eyes and told me that my compassion, patience, understanding, and persistence were the biggest factors in his early recovery; that, with all of the medical professionals he has seen I would make an incredible physician assistant and to pursue this with every thing I had. Three months later, after working with him nearly every day, I was able to see him walk out of the facility under his own power with the aid of his prosthesis. The feelings of accomplishment, pride, and joy solidified the fact that becoming a physician assistant is not only the right path for me, but the only path there has been. My desire to be that medical professional that people go to because they know I am knowledgeable, compassionate, and able to truly listen to them has become a driving factor for me. Physician assistant is the best way I can help people and the only perfect fit I have found for myself.
  13. Hello! I was waitlisted for the fall and was wondering if anyone else out there was in my same boat. It is my understanding that Emory does not rank the waitlisted applicants but rather reconsiders each person individually if/when someone accepted declines admission. Does anyone have any more info about being waitlisted? How frequently does someone from the waitlist get accepted (ie what are my chances?)? When is the latest that Emory can admit a waitlisted applicant? I REALLY would LOVE to attend Emory, so any tips are appreciated! :) Thanks, Cindy
  14. Hello everyone! Well this is my first time on a forum... my bf is always using them so when I was having trouble with my personal statement, he suggested I look for a PA forum and so here I am. lol Below I have pasted a rough draft of my personal narrative as it is so far. If u could please take time to read it and let me know what you think of it (in regards to proofreading, my direction, etc), I would VERY MUCH appreciate it. :D Please keep in mind that it is unfinished, especially the last paragraph which I know is incomplete. I would really love some help on how I should sum it all up if possible. I am open to any suggestions! :) :) Anyways, THANK YOU!! Growing up, it seemed that being interested in the medical field meant that one would be forced to become either a doctor or a nurse, and not much else. However, I never really felt like either of those positions was a right fit for me. It was not until my sophomore year in college that I learned there was an abundance of paths I could take in my career, which was when I discovered the "physician assistant". Working as a phlebotomist at University of Miami Hospital has proven to me that opportunities in the healthcare industry are infinite. I have learned about numerous health careers and specialties, some of which I was previously not familiar with. It was also through phlebotomy that I had the opportunity to befriend a PA at my hospital, and when I realized that my character and personality match perfectly with the PA career. One morning, I was drawing blood from a patient when a physician assistant walked into the room. She proceeded to introduce herself and to ask the patient questions in regards to her medical history as well as her current symptoms. As I observed the PA then moving on to examine the patient's abdomen, visualizing myself in her position seemed effortless for me to do. Shortly after, I took the opportunity to speak to her in regards to her decision to become a PA and how it has affected her. She mentioned to me that she absolutely loved being a PA, and encouraged me to continue to pursue the career if I felt it was right for me. After our conversation, she rejoined her team of physicians and other PAs to report on the progress of their patients. Having observed her interacting independently with the patient as well as with her team has convinced me that if ever there is a career that fit my personality, this is it. I enjoy the idea of being part of a physician-PA team. I can easily envision myself being the liaison between patient and doctor. Though I am able to work very well independently, I understand the value and importance of working together as a team to provide the best possible care for the patient. I am a critical thinker and dynamic in how I approach situations; I am humble, personable, and a team player. I am my greatest critic, and whenever I begin something I like to see it through. Through my experiences as a phlebotomist, I have seen the significance of how every profession relies on their team members and supporting departments.
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