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Help with my diversity essay!! PLEASE IM DESPERATE AND OUT OF IDEAS

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curtis10

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Hello! I am new to posting on sdn but have been browsing forums throughout this whole application process. I am almost done all of my secondaries but have been struggling with the basic diversity essay. I completed undergrad in the US but I am not a US resident/citizen and are planning to do med school in the US aswell. I am a white female who grew up in the suburbs of Canada and have really been struggling with how I can add to the diversity of the campus. These are some of the ideas I had:

1. I come from Canada, a country with free healthcare. My family experienced a plethora of medical problems (sister had cancer, father had cancer twice, mother had a stroke) but not once did we ever have to worry about figuring out how to pay for it. Then going to school in the U.S. I realized this was not the reality for most people - this sparked my interest in public health (decided to double major). The more I learned, the more I became passionate about addressing barriers to healthcare through education and providing resources. I was going to tie in all of my volunteer work with promoting childhood health literacy, providing BP screenings to homeless, doing research to create targeted tobacco cessation practices for marginalized patient populations, etc. and then tie in how I wanted to continue that work at said school, etc.

2. I am a twin and as the shy one of the two I often found myself in her shadows/struggled to find my own voice. Talk about how I overcame this and now I work to make sure other people learn to find their own voice, etc. (idk this ones kind of a reach :blackeye:)

3. I love to travel. Have traveled to Australia, bunch of European countries, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Thailand, Turkey etc.) Was going to talk about everything I learned along the way, how it taught me to be very open to trying new things/meeting new people, how I am now more conscious of other peoples customs etc and how these could be valuable when interacting with so many different people on campus and working as a physician.

4. I played a ton of competitive sports growing up (soccer, hockey, basketball, track). It taught me discipline, how to be focused, sense of camaraderie, how to work in a team, etc.

As you can probably tell, I've thought about the first one the most just because I found it the easiest to tie into all of my experiences. Honestly, Im just looking for advice on whether these are trash or not and if I need to go back to the drawing board and think a little deeper.
Thanks in advance for your insight!
 

FutureSurgical

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Tbh, in your shoes, I'd do #2 at mission-heavy schools. If #2 is still a big reach for you, then #4.
 
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premed20172017

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4. I played a ton of competitive sports growing up (soccer, hockey, basketball, track). It taught me discipline, how to be focused, sense of camaraderie, how to work in a team, etc.

Did you play any of these in uni?
 

LizzyM

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Being from Canada does mean that you are different from most applicants and you have a different world view and bring a different culture (and bilingual skills) to the table.

Being a twin... it used to be 1 in 80 births which means that it is likely that every med school class everywhere has at least one twin... maybe more given that the prevalence is far more now with IVF than it was years ago.
 
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Lucillus

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Being from Canada does mean that you are different from most applicants and you have a different world view and bring a different culture (and bilingual skills) to the table.

Being a twin... it used to be 1 in 80 births which means that it is likely that every med school class everywhere has at least one twin... maybe more given that the prevalence is far more now with IVF than it was years ago.

I'm a Canadian too (lived there since I was born till "half-way" through high-school), however, while there definitely are differences between us and Americans I think it's overblown at times.
Funny that you mentioned the bilingual aspect. Truth be told, a quick google search shows that a greater percentage of Americans are bilingual than Canadians. Sure we have that French aspect, however, unless you are a francophone from Alberta, an Acadian from Nova Scotia/New Brunswick, or from Quebec, you most likely don't speak french or have anything to do with French culture. Not to mention that the US has its own unique french communities, especially in Louisianna where the Acadian community (termed as Cajuns) continues to thrive ever since the great deportation from Acadia. Even remnants of Acadians can be found in other nearby states as well!

Most of the things we have, Americans have as well. Only really noticeable differences are between the HC systems, governance in general (only notice the difference during election time really), how the education systems are set-up (moved before grade 10; Canadian HS's start at grade 10, so going into HS as a "sophomore" in the US felt kinda weird), and how Canada is generally "quieter," as in not as much stuff really happens here that grabs the world's attention or is controversial in nature (other than recently legalizing weed nationally). Most subtle differences can be found in our slang, how we have Tim Horton's everywhere instead of Starbucks, and how we have all-dressed and ketchup chips. xD Even more subjective differences are in the differences in QOL (Canada's higher on this list), quality of education standards (Canada wins again), and even life expectancy (Canadians on average live longer than Americans). Even more trivial is that we have Hockey/Lacrosse to what you guys have in Football/Baseball.

As for similarities, Canada and the USA are multicultural nations. As such, you don't need to go very far or anywhere at all to find someone from a different part of the world. My friends in my HS in the States consisted of a German, Austrian, Puerto Rican, Vietnamese, and another Canadian. Many areas in the states are pretty much a melting pot. Entertainment and pop culture pretty much stems from the US. In other words, your experience is going to be nearly the same (as was the case for me), albeit a few differences. The hard part is just trying to transition to a new home. That could be discussed in a challenge type essay.

People immigrating from different countries is very commonplace and unless you're moving from a 3rd world country to a modernized nation, you're experiences are a dime a dozen. Sure a European coming to NA might have a more significant perspective and experience, but it's becoming commonplace in today's society where meeting people from different regions of the world is a regularity, especially in first-world nations.

Regardless, the way OP phrased #1 is still interesting to look into since her EXPERIENCES (which are unique) can lead to incorporating how the differences in HC policy moving countries influenced OP's passion for Public Health.

Now the twin thing, you're forgetting that not all sets of twins are gonna be applying to medical school. Gotta factor in the "and" as in the person is a twin "and" is applying to medical school. As such, I'd assume that the chances of that happening would become significantly lower. 1/80 might be twins, but maybe only 5 babies out of that data set become a doctor. 1/80 * 5/80 (*100%) = 0.08% chance that you're a twin AND a doctor. Now that's unique. Even then, methinks you need to incorporate an experience(s) highlighting your differences. Show, don't tell.

Btw OP, Canadian HC isn't free. ;) There are reasons why Canadians have higher taxes. Nonetheless, it does make Canadians lives less miserable since there isn't a need to worry about the US's insane insurance premiums. :)
 
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LizzyM

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Now the twin thing, you're forgetting that not all sets of twins are gonna be applying to medical school. <snip>

You need to review probability and statistics. Arguing that the proportion of twins in a medical school class of between 80 and 200 individuals would be less than 1 in 80 is to suggest that twins are less likely than singletons to matriculate to medical school either due to their own deficits or disinterest, or discrimination on the part of adcoms.

Where a characteristic is neither a requirement nor an impediment to admission, the characteristic should be randomly distributed within the class which is a sample of the larger population.

Notre Dame Stadium seats ~80,000. If twin births occur in 1 out of 80 births and the stadium is filled to capacity with football fans, how many individuals who have a twin might be expected to be present?
 
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Lucillus

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You need to review probability and statistics. Arguing that the proportion of twins in a medical school class of between 80 and 200 individuals would be less than 1 in 80 is to suggest that twins are less likely than singletons to matriculate to medical school either due to their own deficits or disinterest, or discrimination on the part of adcoms.

Where a characteristic is neither a requirement nor an impediment to admission, the characteristic should be randomly distributed within the class which is a sample of the larger population.

Notre Dame Stadium seats ~80,000. If twin births occur in 1 out of 80 births and the stadium is filled to capacity with football fans, how many individuals who have a twin might be expected to be present?

The way I'm looking at it is if 1/80 are twins and out of that data set only 5 become doctors, hence the 1/80 * 5/80. It doesn't have to be a requirement nor an impediment, but I'm factoring in intersection of both occurring.

But what you're saying also kind of makes sense in that you're taking a sample from the larger population, hence assuming 1/80 still stands in the sample. Then again, are you really taking a random sample in the first place? I think that's where I'm probably stuck on from your perspective.

Notre dame would hypothetically seat 1,000 twins if we're going by a sample of the larger population then. But doesn' that still seem like a lot?

Even if we go by 1/80, that means that OP is most likely the only individual who has a twin in her class (if we go by a class of 80 students), which still sounds pretty unique to me.
 

LizzyM

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The way I'm looking at it is if 1/80 are twins and out of that data set only 5 become doctors, hence the 1/80 * 5/80. It doesn't have to be a requirement nor an impediment, but I'm factoring in intersection of both occurring.

But what you're saying also kind of makes sense in that you're taking a sample from the larger population, hence assuming 1/80 still stands in the sample. Then again, are you really taking a random sample in the first place? I think that's where I'm probably stuck on from your perspective.

Notre dame would hypothetically seat 1,000 twins if we're going by a sample of the larger population then. But doesn' that still seem like a lot?

Even if we go by 1/80, that means that OP is most likely the only individual who has a twin in her class (if we go by a class of 80 students), which still sounds pretty unique to me.

Well, now we are getting somewhere. Yes, in a sample of 100 people, it is likely that at least one has a twin. But it is also likely that no more than one has a twin which does mean that it could add a bit of diversity to the class. Probability often depends on a "random sample" but even non-random samples can have attributes similar to random samples. Where we'd get messed up would be if we treated a sample of people at the state fair as a random sample when, in fact, it was "identical twins get in free" day at the fair and the sample we'd draw was from a heavily skewed population.
 
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Goro

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You need to review probability and statistics. Arguing that the proportion of twins in a medical school class of between 80 and 200 individuals would be less than 1 in 80 is to suggest that twins are less likely than singletons to matriculate to medical school either due to their own deficits or disinterest, or discrimination on the part of adcoms.

Where a characteristic is neither a requirement nor an impediment to admission, the characteristic should be randomly distributed within the class which is a sample of the larger population.

Notre Dame Stadium seats ~80,000. If twin births occur in 1 out of 80 births and the stadium is filled to capacity with football fans, how many individuals who have a twin might be expected to be present?
One year we had two sets of twins in a single class.

I'd say that we matriculate twins every 3-5 years.
 

Engrailed

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Hello! I am new to posting on sdn but have been browsing forums throughout this whole application process. I am almost done all of my secondaries but have been struggling with the basic diversity essay. I completed undergrad in the US but I am not a US resident/citizen and are planning to do med school in the US aswell. I am a white female who grew up in the suburbs of Canada and have really been struggling with how I can add to the diversity of the campus. These are some of the ideas I had:

1. I come from Canada, a country with free healthcare. My family experienced a plethora of medical problems (sister had cancer, father had cancer twice, mother had a stroke) but not once did we ever have to worry about figuring out how to pay for it. Then going to school in the U.S. I realized this was not the reality for most people - this sparked my interest in public health (decided to double major). The more I learned, the more I became passionate about addressing barriers to healthcare through education and providing resources. I was going to tie in all of my volunteer work with promoting childhood health literacy, providing BP screenings to homeless, doing research to create targeted tobacco cessation practices for marginalized patient populations, etc. and then tie in how I wanted to continue that work at said school, etc.

2. I am a twin and as the shy one of the two I often found myself in her shadows/struggled to find my own voice. Talk about how I overcame this and now I work to make sure other people learn to find their own voice, etc. (idk this ones kind of a reach :blackeye:)

3. I love to travel. Have traveled to Australia, bunch of European countries, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Thailand, Turkey etc.) Was going to talk about everything I learned along the way, how it taught me to be very open to trying new things/meeting new people, how I am now more conscious of other peoples customs etc and how these could be valuable when interacting with so many different people on campus and working as a physician.

4. I played a ton of competitive sports growing up (soccer, hockey, basketball, track). It taught me discipline, how to be focused, sense of camaraderie, how to work in a team, etc.

As you can probably tell, I've thought about the first one the most just because I found it the easiest to tie into all of my experiences. Honestly, Im just looking for advice on whether these are trash or not and if I need to go back to the drawing board and think a little deeper.
Thanks in advance for your insight!

I think 4 is a safe choice
 
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