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Personal statement.... Please critique/bash/edit, I appreciate anything :)

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I am a first time applicant by the way :)


My passion for the medical field has developed from the respect and admiration for the women in my family. My mother, a pediatric pathologist, showed me the mysterious aspect of medicine only seen behind the lens of a microscope. My Aunt Cecilia, who was once a registered nurse in pediatric oncology, provided hope for children and their families, while she, herself suffered from similar symptoms of a low immune system.



My decision to aspire the career of a physician assistant was not a single, life-changing event, but, instead, being influenced by two women who dedicated their life to medicine and losing one along the way. As a nurse, my Aunt Cecilia made sure to bring along a smile anywhere she went. Over the years, I watched her smile gradually began to fade as she became too weak to deliver care to her patients. Her puzzling symptoms were nearly impossible to diagnose by dozens of physicians. When she was finally diagnosed with Systemic Lupus Erythematous, the severity of her disease had already begun to affect her central nervous system.



When faced with a loss, although we are aware that medicine may no longer be able to offer a cure, the ability to heal still exists. In the medical field there are many paths one can take. Being raised by a doctor and a nurse, I was always well aware of the distinction between these professions. My most effective coping mechanism has been built upon finding a balance between the two, a career where I could work as a team with both of the images of the women in my family and continue to admire each for every aspect of the medical field they provided.



I became familiar with the profession of a physician assistant from shadowing in dermatology and cosmetic surgery. If I learned anything about my shadowing experience, it's that the role of a physician assistant is not only to treat a patient's symptoms, but to improve the type of health care they receive. Of course it is fascinating to see someone integrate their knowledge of anatomy, physiology, pathology and pharmacology while multitasking between examinations, diagnosis, and treatment planning. However, what stood out to me is the amount of time spent counseling patients, highlighting the importance of education and prevention. In addition to the holistic influence a physician assistant has, it is inspiring to see a PA complement his or her supervising physician. For example, in the operating room, one specific thing that caught my eye was the close relationship between the surgeon and physician assistant. The two worked as a team, both communicating effectively as the surgeon trusted his PA to close the wound and finish the procedure. For two years I have worked as an undergraduate researcher for a professor at my university. My research experience allowed me to establish a similar relationship with my mentor, who trusted me to work independently, but was also someone I could come to for guidance.



One of my greatest strengths is humility. As a certified nurse assistant, I provide care to patients suffering from physical disabilities or mental illnesses such as Alzheimer's disease and dementia. My assistance to a nurse provides me with a great feeling of reward. This feeling of "reward" is felt not only in my role as an aide to another, but every time I am able to improve a patient's day. Whether I am providing personal hygiene care, taking vital signs, or assisting with day to day activities, my assigned tasks require not only patience, but also the ability to understand the condition of another. Everyday I am faced with a challenge, perhaps I am comforting a crying elder who misses their spouse that passed away, or seeing the frail skin of someone in their last days without family and holding their hand so they know someone is there, or even being the voice of encouragement to a young veteran who has lost all limbs. Finding the words to say during these moments remind me that things such as a high or low GPA are insignificant compared to the compassion I have to help another, and this is why I wear the title as a nurse "assistant" with pride.



The most cherished memories of my Aunt Cecilia were when we would drive to an orphanage in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico and provide immunizations and donations to children. I have continued to give back to my community and realize how many people are at a disadvantage due to lack of health information and language barriers. The fundamental mission of a physician assistant is to improve health care in under-served communities. I plan to achieve this mission by continuing to provide as a nurse assistant and developing Spanish as a second language to overcome these barriers.



I am a valuable addition to your physician assistant program because I enjoy the studiousness to always learn, embrace the humility to assist, and the creativity to interact with patients from diverse backgrounds, which are, at times, the key pieces to the puzzle in this mysterious field of medicine.

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