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First draft of personal statement----please critique harshly!!!

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Hello, this is my first draft of my personal statement! I would really appreciate any tips you have for me or any criticism. Please be hard on it and be honest! It is over 5000 characters but I have much editing to do and I'm sure I will be taking out quite a bit. Let me know how you think my flow is, I'm a little concerned that it doesn't flow well. Thank you so much for reading it and giving me your feedback! THANKS!!:=D:


I loudly called his name over and over, but there was no response. I could see the shallow rise and fall of his chest, which generated a sensation of relief in me. I applied a painful stimulus, hoping that it would wake him, but there was still no response. I thought this was just a normal call, taking Henry, one of our usual patients to dialysis. But this was anything from normal behavior from Henry. I took his blood pressure once and then again to make sure I had heard it accurately. His blood pressure was 68/28, which for him or any other healthy individual, is far from normal. I continued taking vitals and performed a physical exam while my partner quickly ran to inform his nurse of his deteriorated state. She informed us that Hospice was on their way to ensure that he was comfortable for his passing. At this point there was nothing for us as EMTs to do. I stood there silently for a moment looking down at his frail and lifeless body, feeling completely helpless. I held his hand as I said goodbye and thanked him for the impact he had unknowingly made on me. Through Henry, I was able to see the direct effect that caring for patients with sincere compassion has on them. As an EMT transporting Henry weekly, I quickly learned that I had the ability to make his day a little better. During the ambulance ride I would hold his hand, listen to his stories, and as we laughed together I could see his spirit getting brighter. I realized how much he appreciated having someone treat him more as a person and as a friend, than as the patient in room 102B. My experiences with patients such as Henry have formed my belief that the knowledge and skills that I have acquired are useless unless I am able to use it to give back to others. I desire to pour my abilities into the service of people through being a physician assistant.

For me, it was not one experience that catalyzed my decision to become a PA but numerous experiences each of which further solidified my belief that I am meant to be a PA. During my extensive time as a volunteer in two hospitals, I was fortunate enough to work in five different departments and converse with many employees of various professions. I casually questioned different medical professionals about his or her career, but one thing repeatedly stood out to me about the answers from the PAs. While it was reassuring to hear that the PAs loved their jobs, what truly captured my attention was the undeniable passion behind each one of their answers. Their excitement about the profession was virtually tangible and this excitement carried over to me. I witnessed the relationship they had with their patients, the time they took to diagnose and educate them, and the devotion they had to providing compassionate care. Each time I talked to a PA, I realized that the passion that I observed in them was the same passion I found in myself. They had a love of medicine and a devotion to learning, two qualities I discovered in myself when I started college. But what was most inspiring to me was the evident heart of service they had toward their patients.

Through my academic and volunteer experiences I have learned that I want to have a career of serving people with my proficiencies. While there are many professions that could fill that void, I am confident that being a PA will be most wholly satisfying to me. I admire that PAs do much of the same work as physicians yet have more life balance. I also enjoy that the PA profession is flexible and that a PA can switch to any specialty at any time. I am eager to experience as much in my life as possible and this option for flexibility will help satisfy my yearning for new knowledge. Lastly I appreciate the fact that I will be able to provide cost effective care that results in a high level of patient satisfaction. Physician assistants have improved access to healthcare for populations in rural, inner city and other medically underserved areas and this is an aspect of the profession I greatly respect.

During my time shadowing PAs, I began to recognize the personality traits that each PA had in common. They all had excellent problem solving skills, a desire to help others, the ability to communicate effectively and were independent yet worked well in a team. I saw how a PA fits into the health care team as a whole and I admired the mutual trust and respect that the PA and supervising MD had for each other.

During the past few years, there have been many changes in my life, but the one thing that has not wavered is my dream of becoming a physician assistant. I remained self-motivated throughout my college experience keeping my goal in mind in everything that I did. I made certain I was taking all the required classes and getting good grades while also volunteering, working part time and enjoying my time as a college student. All that I have experienced, both in and out of school, has formed me into the caring, hardworking, responsible and motivated person that I am today.

Healthcare is about providing care and comfort to patients when they feel the most vulnerable. As a physician assistant I want to diagnose and treat patients in a compassionate manner, and in a way that I am able to brighten their day as I did for Henry. It was the day after I saw Henry that we received news that he had passed. For me, he is a reminder of the direct result that providing compassionate care can have on patients, and the importance of displaying this level of care on each and every patient. I feel capable and ready to face the challenges and joys that being a PA student will bring and I am confident that being a physician assistant is the career that will best suit me.

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Overall this is pretty good. There are a couple of quotations that I have concerns about, though.


"I admire that PAs do much of the same work as physicians yet have more life balance."

The part about having more life balance is not really accurate in my opinion. I know a surgical PA that gets called in as often as the attending surgeon. I know what you are trying to say, but if you leave this statement as is they might think you don't really understand the role of a PA, or that you think you get to do all the same work but have a shorter day. Do you get where I am coming from? Maybe find a way to reword it or take it out.


"They all had excellent problem solving skills, a desire to help others, the ability to communicate effectively..."

If I just read this by itself, you could be talking about any health care provider. Shouldn't doctors or nurses have these traits also? Might lead them to question why not any other medical profession?


Just something to look at from a fresh perspective, hope it helps!



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