punkedoutriffs

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This is my first post on this site, and it's a long one, but if anyone of you has the time, I'd appreciate it if you'd read it and lend me your thoughts.



I heard something very interesting today while listening to a psychology lecture on my iPod. The lecturer, Professor Daniel Robinson, spoke of Skinnerian behaviorism and sought to divulge its concepts through a rather engaging anecdote. Professor Robinson, an esteemed psychology professor and adjunct philosophy professor at Georgetown University, related how he had often enjoyed the activity of advising young freshmen undergraduates on what courses they were to take that semester. He said that this activity, in hindsight, quite effectively illustrated Skinnerian conditioning, better known as “classical conditioning.”

The anecdote (the general flow of events often repeated in the Robinson’s career) went something like this:

The student would come in with a tentative plan of his academic semester. Robinson would remark, “My, you’re taking many biology and chemistry courses. Why is that?”

The student then would respond, “Oh, I’m pre-med.”

Robinson would then inquire, “So you want to be a doctor. When did you decide that?”

“Oh, I’ve always wanted to be a doctor.”

“Really? Always? Even when you were 2 years old?”

“Well no, of course not, but certainly as far back as I can remember.”

“Let me guess, one of your parents was a doctor.”

“No.”

“One of your other relatives then, an uncle perhaps.”

“No, I have no doctors in the family. This decision rests totally of my own volition.”


The anecdote ends here, but Robinson goes on to point out that despite the impression that every one of these students has in regards to the purity of his own autonomy in making this decision, it was much more likely that the decision was in a sense, “made for him.”

The decision to be a doctor is not an obviously easy one to make. Granted that one believes in one’s physical, intellectual, and emotional ability to carry out the tasks associated, one must still consider the time, energy, and sacrifices that medicine’s extended educational process requires. Given this set of conditions, Robinson believes that the forces that go toward an affirmative decision in this instance can only derive from powerful external influences.

He suggests the following set of hypothetical events:

Suppose a six year old child Billy had just come home after spending the day with his friend Johnny, whose father, a fireman, had agreed to let them hang out down by the fire station where Billy and Johnny had seen the men in action: responding to an alarm, suiting up quickly, jumping in the truck, blazing the horn, and thrusting down the street. Billy thought that this was the coolest thing he’d ever seen and so when he gets back to his house, he comes in the front door, and loudly declares to his parents,

“Mom, Dad, I’m going to be a fireman.”

The parents brush this off, “That’s nice dear. Now make sure you wash your hands before supper.”

After a few weeks of fireman craze, Billy’s interest eventually wanes. Billy grows up a little. Now he’s 10 years old. He goes to a baseball game one day. The pitcher pitches a no-hitter during a crucial game and the fans, coaches, and players all go wild over him. Billy comes home and excitedly exclaims,

“Mom, Dad, I’m going to pitch for the New York Yankees.”

The parents again brush this off, “That’s nice dear. So does everyone else. Now make sure you wash your hands before supper.”

After a few months more of watching the Yankees and dreaming about pitching for them, Billy shifts the thought to the back of his mind and files it under, “impossibilities.” Billy grows up a little more. He hits 12. One day, he comes home after having just dissected his first rat in biology class. He sits down to eat supper, but doesn’t say much. While everyone else around the dinner table exchanges exclamations, anecdotes, and reports, Billy remains taciturn. He’s still in somewhat of a visceral haze after having cut open the thorax of the animal and held its nerve and connective tissues in hand. After a while, Billy’s parents notice his condition and remark,

“You’re quiet today.”

Billy looks at his parents, then looks forward again in a rather philosophically disposed expression and dryly states, “I think I want to be a surgeon.”

At this declaration, Billy’s parents look at each other glitteringly. Then while beaming at Billy, they exclaim, “That’s great Billy! We always knew you’d be a great and important someday! Let’s go over your class schedule at school after supper and make sure you’re in the right classes.”

Now, the point of this set of anecdotes is not to say of course that parents are the sole determinants of a child’s life-trajectory. But it does indicate that the decisions we make are not solely our own, that they are in fact influenced heavily by external forces. Moreover, perhaps the most important point here is that there’s no easy and reliable way to determine whether such decisions are in fact solely due to the rational and willful powers we bestow upon ourselves or whether they are instead remnants of a set of long-standing Skinnerian carrots and sticks.

The college freshman in the first anecdote fully believes that his desire to become a doctor came totally of his own volition. Yet, it’s not difficult to imagine that he is, in fact, Billy at the age of 18, whose “career trajectory” has gone down the same path for 6 years, long enough for him to forget why he originally got on the path in the first place, or perhaps more importantly, that there was at one time the existence of alternatives that were simply not reinforced the same way.

This train of thought reminds me of the epilogue of Leo Tolstoy’s War & Peace, in which Tolstoy espouses the validity of historical determinism, or in a more common (but overly connotation-heavy) sense of the concept, the existence of fate. He argues that leaders like Napoleon or Tsar Alexander are attributed a disproportionate amount of the responsibility for such historical trends and events.

In other words, Napoleon did not lose to Kutuzov in Russia. Napoleon did not cause the annihilation of his army on their frozen retreat. Tolstoy reasons in short as such, that these grand leaders are only presented with a certain finite amount of circumstances with which they have to decide on a course of action given a certain amount of resources and a certain amount of aptitude. These decisions are decidedly limited in their capacity to produce change without the support and consent of enormous ranks of wills. That being said, there are undoubtedly a large number of orders and commands issued or willed by Napoleon that were never carried out either because of resource constraints or the fact that such commands found no support or consent in the aggregate wills of his soldiers. This explains the undisciplined rank-breaks and lootings that happened after such “victories” as Moscow.

What impact does this have on career choices then? What does it say about one’s choice to become a physician? Some would say that it taints it. This is especially the impression that higher education admissions committees emanate. Such a sentiment cannot possibly be discounted for in Professor Robinson’s anecdotal recitation. This seems to be a decidedly American cultural phenomenon, which says that one should, within reason, choose one’s career based on the passion one has for that career, and that considerations such as money, status, prestige, or side benefits should have minimal influence.

However, as Professor Robinson has suggested, passion does not develop out of a vacuum. Rather, it is shaped by external forces which are then reinforced through further external forces. Yet, at the time of application, the medical school candidate cannot or is unwilling to face or disclose the fact that they are not in fact the school’s ideal poster-student of passion, commitment, compassion, understanding, and zeal, that they haven’t lived a life conducive to shaping them in that way, and that there’s no readily available remedy for such a “deficiency” in their qualifications.
So what ends up happening a lot of the time is that the candidate searches his/her memory for some story like how they found an injured rabbit on the side of the road one day, rehabilitated it back to health, and somehow convinces him/herself that this experience somehow “made them realize” he/she had always wanted to be a doctor. Either that or you get the freshman in the first anecdote who had “always known they had wanted to be a doctor.” Of course, there’s no doubt that admissions committee members are very cognizant of this dynamic, having been exposed to it countless times. Even still, schools almost encourage applicants to loftily euphemize rather than truthfully introspect, resulting in a cooperative effort to uphold the illusion of the ideal.

What I want to ask is not the effect that the breaking of such an unspoken contract may mean for either the ideal image or the resulting number of physicians, but I suspect that one or the other will have to diminish as a result. Instead, I want to ask what effect this produces on the individual medical candidate, who, if he/she is anyone like Billy the average medical school candidate, must traverse a notably long and rough path as a result of social-conditioning that he/she may or may not be aware of.

If he/she is not aware of the influence of social conditioning, or is somehow in denial of it, then I believe that he/she one day will come to realize or face the fact. For those who still like medicine, this may not faze them. For those who hate it, this is truly a tragedy, considering all the financial and social investments that have gone into their education, not to mention the opportunity cost of time, friends, family, other passions, etc.

If he/she is aware of such influence, then it produces a conundrum. It’s not the case that they can easily discount medicine upon this knowledge, for to do so is to pretend that such external social influences and conditioning does not matter. The truth is that we are conditioned from birth, and it is a fool who believes that one can escape or discount it. To discount medicine upon this knowledge is simply to trade one set of influences for another. If one determines that the latter set is more conducive for one’s individual happiness, then the answer is obvious (if one is willing to bite the bullet to disappoint family): quit medicine and walk the other path.

If one determines that there is no other career choice that will be conducive to one’s happiness, then the solution is less obvious. One could hold off the decision and in the meantime search for other opportunities and paths that may spark that passion. One could also take a leap of faith and hope that one comes to be passionate about it eventually. Still, in the meantime, one must essentially lie to an admissions committee, albeit it would be a case of lying through one’s teeth. To me, this set of circumstances produces a conflict of interests in the individual candidate. I’m in this boat, and right now, I’m not sure what to make of it.
 

RogueUnicorn

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also, i challenge you to show why this (as in, the entire topic of your post) doesn't apply to any other field.
 
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punkedoutriffs

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I'm not saying it doesn't. But does that make the point any less valid?
 
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punkedoutriffs

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Haha, I know it's long and it's got a lotta obtuse phrasing, but I'm pretty confident it has a provocative point behind it if you stick it out.
 
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punkedoutriffs

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This is what my research mentor (assistant professor of at University of Illinois, Chicago) thought of the essay:

"Very interesting and insightful.

We may all be in the same situation - even for "established" individuals.

To contemplate what you are suggesting may be frightening for most. It may
be the reason, in part, for the mid-life crisis.

One may have no "true" calling. We may have to decide at some point and

decide that this is what they will do for the rest of their lives. If one
has a family to feed, finding a "true" calling is luxury that one cannot
afford. You have time to decide on what you want. You do not have
pressure from your parents, i think. But know this, indecision is worse
than a bad decision. This is always true."
 

surftheiop

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To original poster, this is probably one of the most intelligent and well written posts I've ever read on SDN (your a philo major aren't you?).

Don't pay any attention to the haters.


I think it is an interesting question to delve into, as I myself have occasionally written a sentence in a PS and then realized "WTF that's not even close to true, that's just what I think they want to hear" and then had to go back and delete it and figure out what I actually think about the situation instead of what the pre-med world has taught me I ought to think.

And this is coming from someone with not a single MD relative, who decided to pursue medicine halfway through engineering undergrad. I can't even imagine how someone who has wanted to be a doc their whole life or has doc parents is able to distance himself from what he "ought to say/think and do".

But all this being said, in the end a physician's mind is probably a "black box" of sorts. So long as he outputs compassionate and effective care, the patient is not truly concerned with his inner thoughts/motivations/passions. But at the same time I could see how understanding a persons motivations would be very valuable in trying to estimate future success as a physician.
 

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RogueUnicorn

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I'm not saying it doesn't. But does that make the point any less valid?
it maybe valid, but it certainly isn't useful. i also find it artificial to try to divorce social/formative influences and 'personal desire' (my phrase, not yours)

edit: the main reason i don't particularly like this robinson as presented is that his examination is heavily biased towards creating a 'gotcha' moment where he can say 'see you don't actually have any innate passion for this at all!' i would also say that the purpose of a well-crafted personal statement is indeed introspection contrary to his opinion.
 
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The point that we never reached in the article is whether or not Admissions committees appreciate the truly honest introspection of a completely logical, pragmatic person, or if the Spock-like of us must continue nursing road-side, half-dead, suffering animals back to health in order to manufacture the "clarifying moment."

Of course, I don't think to that extreme, but I thought it would be fun to write similar to the rest of the thread.
 

surftheiop

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his examination is heavily biased towards creating a 'gotcha' moment where he can say 'see you don't actually have any innate passion for this at all!'

Well in the same vein of the OP, I don't think its really his personal intent to sound that way, more of what incidentally happens when someone is formally trained in philosophy ;)
 

FirefighterDoc

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What gave you that impression?
To original poster, this is probably one of the most intelligent and well written posts I've ever read on SDN (your a philo major aren't you?).

Don't pay any attention to the haters.


I think it is an interesting question to delve into, as I myself have occasionally written a sentence in a PS and then realized "WTF that's not even close to true, that's just what I think they want to hear" and then had to go back and delete it and figure out what I actually think about the situation instead of what the pre-med world has taught me I ought to think.

And this is coming from someone with not a single MD relative, who decided to pursue medicine halfway through engineering undergrad. I can't even imagine how someone who has wanted to be a doc their whole life or has doc parents is able to distance himself from what he "ought to say/think and do".

But all this being said, in the end a physician's mind is probably a "black box" of sorts. So long as he outputs compassionate and effective care, the patient is not truly concerned with his inner thoughts/motivations/passions. But at the same time I could see how understanding a persons motivations would be very valuable in trying to estimate future success as a physician.
 

girlofgrace7

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Although many applicants may be heavily influenced by parents or other external sources, this is certainly not true for the entire group of pre-meds who "just know" early in life. Many people who enter medicine enter it for the wrong reasons (money, prestige, family pressure, etc.), and each applicant (not just those who "have known their whole lives") needs to truly evaluate why they wish to enter the field.
I remember coming in to talk to my parents one day when I was six years old and announcing to them that I wanted to be a pediatrician. They just smiled and said "that's nice, honey" (much like the first two responses to the child's statements in the article). They were sure that I'd change my mind a million more times before I actually decided on a career choice. Neither of them attended college and have told me that, even though they hoped I would attend college, they would support me completely in any career choice that would make me happy. They didn't actually take my career choice seriously until I was entering college. However, in order to make sure I knew what I was getting myself into, I made sure to volunteer, shadow, talk to doctors, etc. Everything just confirmed my passion for the medical field, and I could not truly see myself entering any other career. I know this is purely anecdotal, but I think one should question a person's motives for wishing to become a doctor regardless of how early or late in life they decided on this path.
 

MegaSpectacular

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Although many applicants may be heavily influenced by parents or other external sources, this is certainly not true for the entire group of pre-meds who "just know" early in life. Many people who enter medicine enter it for the wrong reasons (money, prestige, family pressure, etc.), and each applicant (not just those who "have known their whole lives") needs to truly evaluate why they wish to enter the field.
I remember coming in to talk to my parents one day when I was six years old and announcing to them that I wanted to be a pediatrician. They just smiled and said "that's nice, honey" (much like the first two responses to the child's statements in the article). They were sure that I'd change my mind a million more times before I actually decided on a career choice. Neither of them attended college and have told me that, even though they hoped I would attend college, they would support me completely in any career choice that would make me happy. They didn't actually take my career choice seriously until I was entering college. However, in order to make sure I knew what I was getting myself into, I made sure to volunteer, shadow, talk to doctors, etc. Everything just confirmed my passion for the medical field, and I could not truly see myself entering any other career. I know this is purely anecdotal, but I think one should question a person's motives for wishing to become a doctor regardless of how early or late in life they decided on this path.
exactly.

I remember when I was 4 years old and I told my mom, "I would like to go into Radiation Oncology, sub-specializing in vascular and interventional radiology." She slapped my ass and said it was cute, after putting on my Pull-Ups.
 
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punkedoutriffs

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Not Philo, English Lit. Close enough.

Maybe we could look at it from another perspective. Perhaps we who are aware of these dynamics can use the "euphemistic ideal" to our own advantage. Think about this possibility:

While we know (the cynicism preached by the attendings on SDN prove this) that the reality of medicine will always fall short of its romantic depiction (one we either truly believe or just fake believe for the adcoms), perhaps it's not a bad idea to strive after it, day after day.

Like an asymptote that climbs toward infinity but never quite reaches its asymptotic value, maybe we should, as pre-meds, med students, residents, attendings, chiefs of medicine, strive everyday, at every conscious moment, to climb higher on that steep asymptotic slope, to try to close that gap between reality and perfection.

To my thinking, this can be accomplished two ways: manipulation of one's own cognition, and manipulation of the external world.

If we manipulate the contents of our thoughts (mind your thoughts Anakin, for they betray you!) so as to in a way paint a selective portrait of medicine as something that befits the ideal. In other words, focus your thoughts exclusively on the parts that make the job the great and noble calling that it's often built up to be.

If we manipulate the external world, then we're talking about smoothing things out to make our time spent with medicine as "ideal" and "romantic" as possible. Perhaps that means hiring new people, reconstructing the clinic, changing relationships with colleagues and coworkers, etc.

To the extent that we utilize the first technique, we are essentially playing Don Quixote. Trading sensibility and awareness for happiness. This ideal may not appeal to some at first, especially for truth junkies like me. But the bottom line is, if the whole box of chocolates that is medicine sucks on the aggregate, there's nothing wrong with learning how to pick out the good ones.

The second option appeals to me more, but is not always possible. So it may be a good policy to do the latter as much as possible, and then further strive for the ideal via the former. Of course, undoubtedly, both are very difficult to accomplish on a day to day basis. Lord knows it's difficult to self-select your thoughts, but from experience I can tell you that it gets easier the more you practice.

But the point is, maybe we should change the way we approach this profession. If we are aware of the dissonance between the ideal and reality, maybe our job is not to lament it, but rather, to proactively fix it. The thing about that is, your job is never done. Your hardships never cease. You will always be making that steep climb. At the same time however, doing so may not be so difficult. I can tell from my own experience, and perhaps some of you can corroborate, that when I have a goal, when I'm trying to achieve an ideal state of being in one way or another, the work doesn't feel like work, no matter how "hard" it looks like from the outside. In fact, those times have been the happiest I've ever been in my life.

So perhaps our job is not to be passive in our acceptance of the reality of things, but to always strive to alter it, to mold it towards the ideal we cast on the outset of our journey, and do it until we're old and we retire. That way, not only are we being the best doctors we can be, but we are perpetually happy in the course of it. I can't conceive of a life more worth living than that.
 
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I was in a similar situation once. My folks were both physicians though (even though they took pains to never directly influence me towards medicine and tried to convince me to explore other paths).

I took two years off after college, got a MPH degree and did some soul searching while I volunteered at a hospital and did some clinical research.

I think I'm much happier for it and enjoying medical school a lot more. Sometimes you need to call a time-out on your life plan.
 

LizzyM

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1. I hope you are not planning on submitting that post #1 as your personal statement. It is too long and not enough about **you**. Most adcom members are patient people but they are not going to have the patience for that essay.

2. I would hope an English major could write an essay without using he/she twenty times.
 

RogueUnicorn

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1. I hope you are not planning on submitting that post #1 as your personal statement. It is too long and not enough about **you**. Most adcom members are patient people but they are not going to have the patience for that essay.

2. I would hope an English major could write an essay without using he/she twenty times.
 

BBender716

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1. I hope you are not planning on submitting that post #1 as your personal statement. It is too long and not enough about **you**. Most adcom members are patient people but they are not going to have the patience for that essay.

2. I would hope an English major could write an essay without using he/she twenty times.
 
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punkedoutriffs

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it maybe valid, but it certainly isn't useful. i also find it artificial to try to divorce social/formative influences and 'personal desire' (my phrase, not yours)
I see where you are coming from, and I concede to you on the point that these forces apply across most if not all fields. But then it comes down to the question of, "What is it useful for?"

If your notion of utility is whether the point applies to one's capacity to choose a field or career, then I agree with you. I think this point has little use in this regard.

But what if you were to look at it this way:

Wouldn't you want to know why you are doing the things you do, and I mean the true reasons? If you don't do that, then you are essentially taking a leap of faith that the motivations that compel you to work hard and achieve now will be sustainable throughout your career. However, if you do take the time like I feel like I'm doing, then you find out one of two things:

1. Your motivations are true/pure/sustainable, and you're good to go.
2. Your motivations are not true/not pure/unsustainable.

If you then find yourself in the first category, then all is well, and you can proceed with clarity and confidence. On the other hand, if you find yourself in the latter category, then you have two options: try to find something else, or try to mold yourself and recompose your motivations so as to make them true/pure/sustainable. This might take a few years, and it might end up in you lagging behind some of your peers in the rat race, but to me, I think it's a better way to ensure happiness throughout your career rather than taking the chance that you'll be unhappy, steeped in debt, and gritting your teeth through school/residency, praying that the ephemeral promises for 'better days ahead' prove to be true.
 

Trexate

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This sounds more like an opinionated view on the illusion of free-will than a tirade against personal statements.

I'm declaring shenanigans on this thread.
 

loveoforganic

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This sounds more like an opinionated view on the illusion of free-will than a tirade against personal statements.

I'm declaring shenanigans on this thread.
This is basically what I see. The fact that your passions have been shaped by those around you doesn't make them any less genuine. It's a presupposition in your argument that passions should strictly be derived internally.
 

Trexate

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Seems to me like a lot of the immature responses are bitter reactions to the legitimate point being made here about the flimsy nature of the "I've always wanted to do medicine/my grandiose motives are completely selfless, I promise" sentiment often injected into personal statements (and forum posts).
Responses that don't agree with the OP are automatically immature and bitter? I <3 teh internets.

If I'm not mistaken, I believe most people on here shy away from the "I've always wanted to do medicine/my grandiose motives are completely selfless, I promise" sentiment in their personal statements because it is so hackneyed and disingenuous. The SDN community knows the ins and outs of personal statements, and we know not to come off as blatantly self-righteous. Thanks for the affirmation though.
 
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thefritz

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OP, thank you for a very insightful and philosophical post.
 
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RogueUnicorn

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I see where you are coming from, and I concede to you on the point that these forces apply across most if not all fields. But then it comes down to the question of, "What is it useful for?"

If your notion of utility is whether the point applies to one's capacity to choose a field or career, then I agree with you. I think this point has little use in this regard.

But what if you were to look at it this way:

Wouldn't you want to know why you are doing the things you do, and I mean the true reasons? If you don't do that, then you are essentially taking a leap of faith that the motivations that compel you to work hard and achieve now will be sustainable throughout your career. However, if you do take the time like I feel like I'm doing, then you find out one of two things:

1. Your motivations are true/pure/sustainable, and you're good to go.
2. Your motivations are not true/not pure/unsustainable.

If you then find yourself in the first category, then all is well, and you can proceed with clarity and confidence. On the other hand, if you find yourself in the latter category, then you have two options: try to find something else, or try to mold yourself and recompose your motivations so as to make them true/pure/sustainable. This might take a few years, and it might end up in you lagging behind some of your peers in the rat race, but to me, I think it's a better way to ensure happiness throughout your career rather than taking the chance that you'll be unhappy, steeped in debt, and gritting your teeth through school/residency, praying that the ephemeral promises for 'better days ahead' prove to be true.
then what of the external influences you will surely encounter as you move forward in the career? you also seem to be enamored with the idea of a rationalism (i.e. a priori judgement) applied to the process, but human existence is by its nature messy

i also have to reject the unstated assumption of yours that most of us moving blindly forward with little thought given to the motivations. maybe this is the case, but i don't think so.

OP, thank you for a very insightful and philosophical post. I hope your story encourages others to think more about this important topic as well. Ignore the hater criticizing you for your English and for being pedantic. He/she is absolutely correct. Your writing is so skillful, that most likely that kind of response was formed out of intellectual exclusivity (given that it's not elicited by most of the vulgar garbage that gets posted here).
you must have a high opinion of yourself
 
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Insightful essay. I enjoyed the original and the follow-up. I think you have some good thoughts and valid insights.

Ignore the haters. They're just jealous that their own philosophical depth is not sufficient to float a rubber duck.
 

skiddoc

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LizzyM said:
1. I hope you are not planning on submitting that post #1 as your personal statement. It is too long and not enough about **you**. Most adcom members are patient people but they are not going to have the patience for that essay.

2. I would hope an English major could write an essay without using he/she twenty times.
Does the prompt say we're not allowed to use he/she? Got dammit, I have to start over :(
 

loveoforganic

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Insightful essay. I enjoyed the original and the follow-up. I think you have some good thoughts and valid insights.

Ignore the haters. They're just jealous that their own philosophical depth is not sufficient to float a rubber duck.
Luckily, my philosophical pool is filled with mercury, and thus requires no more than half a centimer or so of depth to float that rubber ducky.

Shallow and dense thoughts for the win.
 

BBender716

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What a jerk. I don't care if she's president of the US.

Not everything is a med school admission essay.
I'm aware that everything is not a med school admissions essay. I'm just pointing it out because that's why the majority of people visited this thread regarding the "personal statement". Just wanted to provide it with a little perspective by reminding visitors that, while perhaps a valid point, it isn't useful in terms of med admissions (similar to what Bleargh said).

No need for name calling. Calm down.
 

surftheiop

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I don't think that was meant to be a personal statement.......

If it is a PS then the snarky comments to the OP are warranted

Contrary to popular SDN belief, it is possible to engage in conversation that does not directly pertain to enhancing your chances of getting into medical school!
 

loveoforganic

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I don't think that was meant to be a personal statement.......

If it is a PS then the snarky comments to the OP are warranted

Contrary to popular SDN belief, it is possible to engage in conversation that does not directly pertain to enhancing your chances of getting into medical school!
Shut up! You just shut up! URGHGHGH.

/shakes fist
 

Trexate

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You should <3 yourself some reading comprehension. My post wasn't directed towards responses that disagreed with the OP, my post was directed towards the immature responses. "TL;DR" "pendantic pile of ****" "attemptatfunny.jpg". Hence why I said "the immature responses" and not "everyone that disagrees with the OP".
Immaturity is in the eye of the beholder. The post was too long, and pedantic. Adding to those facts just spices it up a bit.

Clearly, you are mistaken.
I doubt it. However, if you are an ADCOM and have proof you would like to offer, I may reconsider my statement.

Perhaps you don't come here often, I've seen plenty of blatantly self-righteous.
Perhaps you misread what I wrote. I was suggesting that we know better than to come off as self-righteous in our personal statements.
 

surftheiop

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seems like a pointless exercise much like this thread
yeah your right, my fingers are pretty tired after those 25 seconds of vigorous typing and clicking :(

I should have saved my energy for that Creationism thread that has been boiling over for the last couple days :eek: