Pursuit of medicine rewarding, but arduous

By Maja Ostojic

Contributing Writer

This past Saturday, I attended one of the best information sessions for my future plans of pursuing a career as a doctor. Lately, I have been feeling overwhelmed with the task and the long road that I have chosen for myself, but the session reawakened my motivation and opened my eyes to the actuality of it all.

The session was led by David H. Janda ’80 and his daughter Allison Janda ’10 currently in her first year at the University of Michigan Medical School.

Allison and her father discussed the step-by-step process for applying to a medical school in a very clear and concise manner. They also provided tips for the MCAT preparation process, approximate timeline of meeting application deadlines and suggestions for interview etiquette. I learned that a score of 29 on the MCAT and a grade point average of 3.6 here at theUniversity will pretty much guarantee acceptance into a medical school.

Janda spoke in a very encouraging manner. He shared with us a past experience from one of his first pre-health information sessions.

He had been told to look to his left and then to his right, and that only one of the three people would make it to a medical school. He told us to do the same but he said that all three of us would make it to medical school and succeed, if we simply worked hard.

And I see that he’s right. If we want it enough, and if we are willing to put in the time and effort, doors will open before us.

Those of us who have chosen the path of medicine receive much support, but we also hear many negative comments about whether we are “smart enough” for the medical school and the hospital environment.

Our dreams seem to be questioned quite often, and even though we still push forth and proclaim that this is it, that we’ve wanted to be doctors since we were little, we can’t help but begin questioning ourselves.

Janda remained positive about this topic and told us to never let anyone tell us that we aren’t capable of doing something. We could all see the love and passion he had for being a doctor.

He also applauded all of us in the room for wanting to follow in his footsteps, even in the current economic status of our country. He admitted that the salary just two decades ago was not the same as it is now, but that that isn’t what being a doctor is all about.

So many find out too late that the job means more than the money people receive from it. Choosing to become a doctor means choosing to dedicate ourselves to prolonging and saving lives, to putting others needs ahead of our own, to trusting in medicine and health care and being the ones that so many people put their trust in.

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