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PA draft #2

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So i did some adding/deleting but this essay is a bit too long! Any advice on what I should eliminate would be very helpful! thanks in advance.



It seems like yesterday, we were at the endocrinologist’s office, waiting anxiously with numerous troubling thoughts running through our heads. My brother was gaining weight uncontrollably. We were told his bone age was significantly delayed and an autoimmune disease was suspected. The only autoimmune problems we knew of were devastating diseases and this put my mother beside herself with worry. In walked the woman who would be our “go-to” person for the next several years: a physician assistant. Though I did not realize it then, this experience served as the catalyst for my interest in medicine and my current aspirations.


During my first two years at Loyola, I also worked to pay for my expenses. Though having a job caused my grades to be lower than desired, the experience was invaluable. I have always considered myself a team player and this job helped me hone that skill. Being a sporting goods store, employees were put into teams and team members would constantly change. This helped me become a dynamic and flexible person. I realized that everyone has their strengths and weaknesses and the most effective way to get things done is to work together. The saying “two minds are better than one” took on meaning for me. This job helped me develop my people skills as well because I dealt with customers from all kinds of backgrounds and we had to make the most out of a few minutes of interaction. Although I learned a lot, it made me realize I did not want a future in the corporate world. There was no room for personal growth or the chance to make a difference in someone’s life.


As I contemplated more on a career choice, the best advice I received was from my dad. He said I should think of who I am, my strengths and weaknesses, and what kind of meaning or relevance I want my career to have. I needed to realize who I was first and then look for the job that fit, not look for the “perfect job” and then force myself to conform. I have always felt that compassion and helping one another is essential to our humanity and this directed me towards the medical field. Being a biology major, I noticed I always found the “relation to health care” parts of our textbooks absolutely fascinating. I remember the excitement I felt when I learned why the tetanus vaccine is given every ten years.


I decided to go out and observe what the medical field was about so I began volunteering at ZA Medical Center. At first, I only aided the staff in office duties but I would get continuous glimpses into the doctor-patient interaction and my curiosity was piqued. I began to shadow the doctor and witnessing the doctor’s passion and what she meant to her patients made me realize that I needed to be in the medical field. Once, a patient came in with a possible ACL tear but due to financial hardship, he could not afford any imaging tests or medications. The doctor called every hospital and imaging center in the nearby until she secured the best care for the patient. To call this selfless effort my job would be truly gratifying.


I then began to research medical careers; doctor and pharmacist were a few but none of them completely “clicked.” Some had scarce patient contact and others left little time for family or personal growth. But when I came across PA, my mind instantly went back to sitting in that endocrine clinic with my brother. What had impressed me most about the PA was how sincerely she cared for our family. We called her for every health problem my brother had, whether it was related to his hypothyroidism or not, and the support and expertise she provided cannot be understated. She gave us medical support as well as emotional support and being treated like real people instead of just patients made the experience manageable. That is what I want for my future; giving everything I have to make someone else’s life a little bit better.


To learn more about the profession, I started shadowing two PAs at Rush University Hospital. Talking with them about the profession and witnessing their work first-hand thoroughly convinced me this was the profession for me. The way that the PAs and the physician complemented each other was interesting to watch; what the physician would forget the PA would cover and vice versa. Also, the PAs did not seem like an “assistants” as they performed a number of tasks, like ordering labs and conducting physical exams by themselves. I saw the frustrations that come up, like non-compliant patients, so I realize that the job is tough as well. The PAs also had time to spend with their families and stay connected socially and this balanced life led to great satisfaction.


I believe there is more to life than just working; there is so much to discover about ourselves and our world that limiting ourselves to only our careers seems unreasonable. This is one of the main attractions of the PA profession; the job has so much importance and meaning but I will not be inundated by it. The time I have spent shadowing PAs has strengthened my conviction that I fit this career path. It encourages teamwork and cooperation, which are things this world could use a lot more of. Few people can make the entire world a better place for everyone but everyone can try to make the ‘little world’ around them a better place. I feel that being a Physician Assistant will allow me to pursue my own interests and give me the opportunity to care for and give back to my little world.

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