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first draft - please critique

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I didnt know where to really start considering it was such a broad question, so I decided to basically just type what I came to mind! lol Consequently I'm over the character limit and needing to condense. I greatly appreciate anyone taking the time to read this and for providing feedback, and please, if anything sounds bad or doesnt sound right, please let me know.


I initially found it difficult to put into words what exactly motivated me to become a Physician Assistant (PA). I could not seem to wrap my head around a specific traumatic event, anecdote, or patient. However, as the saying goes, sometimes the answer is right in front of you and found myself staring at my wallpaper picture of my son. However my ambitions and goals were fueled by my experiences as well as my family.

Both my parents came into this country illegally by risking all they had in exchange for a brighter future for themselves, but more importantly for their children, myself and younger brother. At a very young age, my parents taught me the importance of experience and work ethic. My father and mother began their lives in the US by attaining citizenship, going to school for bilingual classes, and moving up the socio class system. Now, both are a few years away from retirement with two houses and vehicles to their names both here in the states as well as back in Mexico. It is no surprise that as soon as I was legally allowed, my mother admitted me as a volunteer at an onsite geriatric clinic at Trinity Medical Center. I was a freshman in high school and my first lesson was to work hard and gain as much experience as possible in an unpredictable world. Although I was unable to partake in any serious consults, I was able to value the structure as well as the administration game of health care. It was in that office where I was given my first taste of patient care and the importance of patient advocacy. Even though I was not born into a family of medical professionals or given a medical kit play set, I knew I wanted to make a difference at a young age and becoming a diagnostician was going to grant me that fulfillment. Since that experience, my curiosity and love for the medical field only grew. A part of me regrets the dismal involvement I had in high school, but I remind myself that I continued with my true passion of medicine by taking part in many field related opportunities. Examples include being accepted into my schools Technical Internship Program (TIP). It was during my TIP program where I found my initial love, Emergency Medicine. I was fortunate enough to intern in various specialties at Trinity Medical Center during my TIP program such as Day Surgery and the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, but being involved in Emergency Medicine felt the most comfortable. Ironically, my introduction to the Physician Assistant profession did not begin here. Rather, it occurred on a car ride towards the Veteran’s Affairs Hospital where my mentor, a close family friend who became a doctor and had a research team at the hospital, mentioned the career to me. I initially paid little attention to the concept and kept my eyes set on becoming an er physician. However it was through my mentor that gave me the opportunity to partake as a student researcher and learn about the cancerous Barrett’s Esophagus. At this point in my life, I knew my niche was the medical field however being a first generation Mexican American definitely came with stressors. As high school came to an end, it was time to begin another chapter of my life, college. No one else in my family had completed a bachelors, much less knew how to register for financial aid or classes. As if the interaction had occurred yesterday, I came across my first major hurtle in my medical and academic career. What I thought would be a routine meeting between my advisor and myself quickly turned into a roast without the jokes. I was told to choose a different career path from MD and to rather direct my focus to something “simpler” such as a medical assistant or a licensed vocational nurse. It was a sinking feeling that I had never felt before and with no one else in my family having had such an experience I expressed myself the only way I felt appropriate. I ended the meeting as quickly as possible, power walked to my vehicle and rolled the windows up. I would not be able to tell you the last time tears ran down my face, but on that day, they did. After a few minutes I gathered myself together and went to the closest computer I could find. At which point I made the decision to email a professor that I had that semester through dire desperation. During the semester we had many talks and I felt comfortable seeking her guidance. She pulled through and mentioned to me the PA profession and sent me contact information of a friend that was going through PA school. I knew I had heard of PA before and once again it was being introduced to me. I took the bone and loved the treat I received. The PA student had told me all about having a family, being out of school in a shorter period of time compared to MD and I was sold. As a Latino family, we are all very close and being a part of a profession that allows me to be family oriented was a major attraction. When he described to me the time he spent with his children and wife I could not help but be in awe. I felt as though I had not only seen the light at the end of the tunnel, but climbed through it. I decided to leave my current university and gain a deeper medical experience by becoming an Emergency Medical Technician.

Outside of the medical field I knew I wanted to have a family. What occurred shortly thereafter however was a hurdle that I did not expect to take so soon. I became a father and a husband. Even though the situation sounded tough, becoming a husband, father, student, and provider, becoming a physician assistant was very uplifting. The balance the career brings is enough for me to continue. From a medical career standpoint however, working for a level one county hospital was my greatest stepping stone and I took full advantage of the position I was given. I was overwhelmed with all the patients wither they were rich or poor or insured and non insured. The population was extremely under served, and to be a part of their care was monumental to my aspirations in becoming a physician assistant. It was in this setting that I felt I could use my resources to their maximum. Skills such as EMT, being bilingual, and my schooling were part of my arsenal when it came to educating patients about their diseases and conditions. Being young with a family allowed me to mature quickly and in turn, understand my patients better. I understood the single mother with two jobs, and I was compassionate over the young man who could not afford his medications because he was working to pay the bills for himself and mother who was too ill to work. I had learned the tragedies and misfortunes of those outside the hospital while riding on the ambulance. However I knew becoming an EMT or Paramedic would only be a stepping stone. Seeing a patient for only 15 minutes was just not enough for me and although working in an ER setting will not grant me much more time with a patient, at least as a PA I will be able to give patients concrete answers, give them proper guidance, and be a true patient advocate. I did not want my experiences to stop there so I continued by shadowing a PA at a busy primary health clinic. Even in a different setting, we were all a team and I further learned about the endless opportunities one has in the pa career. I learned I did not have to tunnel vision my specialty and that in fact I could use my skills and provide my assistance to various other sources.

The PA career was one that I could not escape. My son will tug on my shirt when he wants my attention. In similar fashion, PA tugged at my life. When I finally decided to direct my concentration towards it, it proved to be one of my most fulfilling decisions of my life.

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You have some great strengths and your story is compelling but it can be strengthened by simplifying and being direct. Your story line is all of the place. Make sure it flows well. Remember 1stparagraph and closing paragraph needs to be strong. Good luck, I hope this helps

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