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PA PS Statement

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Any tips on things to add or change would be greatly appreciated! As you guys know, these can be tough to get out. My conclussion is week but I'm blanking on ways to wrap this up.

 

“Welcome to Kyrgyzstan!” my taxi driver greeted me in Russian after I had loaded my luggage into the trunk of his decades-old Lada. Arriving well past midnight on Turkish Airlines flight 346, I caught a fleeting glimpse of the mountainous Central Asian country that was to become my home as an English teacher for the next year as we sped past shuttered bazaars and Soviet-era highrises. Although I had focused on how environmental toxicants affect human health while conducting laboratory research as an undergraduate Environmental Protection Agency Fellow, actually getting on the ground in developing countries--from the desolate mountain villages of Kyrgyzstan to the war torn streets of Tajikistan-- led me to begin reflecting on the health disparities underserved populations face not only overseas but also in our own country. While my grandmother’s positive experiences with an orthopedic physician assistant (PA) who had stopped by her house to check on her after her knee replacement surgery and whom she still claims is “better than a doctor” had initially made me consider pursuing my passion for the study of medicine in the service of others as a PA, it was not until I was lying in an understaffed medical clinic in India midway through my year teaching in Kyrgyzstan that my dedication to pursuing this calling was truly cemented. Suffering a Grade Three concussion after a car I had been riding in had spun out of control and crashed into a building, I had been taken to a free clinic in Delhi to get my head stitched back together. Medical waste spilled out of overflowing trash cans and seemingly hundreds of coughing, bleeding, and sick Indians lined the hallways as the understaffed team sought to treat everyone. Due to the shortage of doctors and nurses, I was in the hospital nearly 14 hours before a medical attendant could provide the needed stitches. My experience with a hospital in a country with high rates of poverty and infectious diseases solidified my commitment to serving others through a hands-on medical career as a PA. I arrived home to Texas and began fervently pursuing this goal. Working in the Providence Hospital Emergency Room (ER) has provided me with an up-close look at the healthcare challenges the disadvantaged in Central Texas face, complementing my firsthand knowledge of global medical issues. These challenges include everything from lack of insurance to substance abuse problems that cause permanent physical and mental damage. I have sat for several hours with an elderly Alzheimer’s patient who almost brought tears to my eyes while we waited for her test results and witnessed the emotional pain on a woman’s face when she was told an ectopic pregnancy would have to be surgically removed. In such cases I am struck by the indomitable spirit and inherent decency of people even in situations that are truly heartbreaking. The people I have met while volunteering in the ER inspire and challenge me to continue pursuing a calling to serve others through medicine. While frequently all I can offer is a much-too-small helping hand or comforting words, these are usually more greatly appreciated than I initially thought they would be. It is because of a burning desire to be able to do more for people such as these, a wish to practice medicine while also leading a fulfilling life dedicated jointly to my patients and my family, and many positive experiences shadowing PAs that I desire to become a one myself. The Kyrgyz taxi driver pulled up to the curve of the apartment building of the Russian family I would be living with for the next few months and I hopped out of the cab into the frigid night air. I was nervous, but excited. New adventures were on the horizon. While I did not know the sometimes seemingly indomitable challenges that awaited my life and work in Kyrgyzstan, I was ready to begin tackling them. Looking back at the year I spent in Central Asia, I now know we often grow the most in times of hardship. When I take my first step onto a medical college on my journey to become a PA, I will bring with me a commitment to service above self, academic excellence, and continued personal growth. Conclusion here...?

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I found your narrative to be a very interesting read. Here are a few of my thoughts:

 

1.) Is your narrative broken up into different paragraphs but it just didn't transfer that way on the forum? If not, definitely separate the narrative into different paragraphs for a better organized writing piece.

2.) Omit the part about your grandma talking about a PA being "better than a doctor". While you are simply quoting your grandmother, you don't want to step on any profession, be it RN, NP, or MD/DO. It comes off as unprofessional, and poses questions as to whether or not you'll be a team player oriented individual when you're a member of a healthcare team.

3.) The first time I came across your use of the word indomitable, I wondered if you use this word naturally in your daily speech or if you looked it up in a thesaurus. It comes up again near the end of your narrative, so if very well may be a word you use naturally. I would definitely omit it the second time around for a more natural word, however.

4.) I think the use of medical college is a bit ambiguous. Almost sounded to me like a narrative for Med school as opposed to PA school. I would reword this to read PA Program, Physician Assistant program, etc.

5.) You already alluded to the idea that you need a strong conclusion. I think you need to tie in the main thesis of your personal statement at the end of your narrative, otherwise it reads like you're transitioning into another paragraph and your writing is not yet complete.

 

You have an interesting story to tell, and your thoughts are well laid out. Im my honest opinion, I would advise you to shorten the amount of space you use to talk about your experiences in Kyrgyzstan to elaborate more on the central question of "Why do you want to be a Physician Assistant?". When I say shorten, I certainly do not mean omit because your experiences in Kyrgyzstan set you apart from the crowd and made for a unique statement. I just mean you have limited valuable space in your narrative due to character count, and you should really drive home your motivations to join the ever selective PA profession. Hope that helps!

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