“For any prospective Health Legacy Scholar, please do not give up on yourself or the dream that only you may be able to see at times.”
My journey in medicine has been a long, difficult and trying process. However, looking back I am so thankful for the life, education and experiences of struggle that challenged me. As a native Clevelander, I am excited as a third-year osteopathic medical student to see the fruits of my labor finally take off. I want to be part of the solution in bringing affordable preventative healthcare to Cleveland’s underserved communities.
For any underrepresented minority, black or brown pre-medical student that is reading this, I say to you-You are so desperately needed in a profession where underrepresented physicians are difficult to come by. Where an entire hospital can be filled with physicians who don’t look or sound like you. Please take advantage of any post baccalaureate, pre-matriculation and or master’s degree opportunity prior to medical school. The knowledge you attain in these programs must be looked at as a stepping stone and not a hindrance. I say this as a medical student who was eager to jump at any opportunity to strengthen my science knowledge, study skills and academic rigor.
After attaining a master’s degree in medical science and medical technology/microbiology, attending a post baccalaureate program and board review program, I am starting the process to apply to residency. For any prospective Health Legacy Scholar, please do not give up on yourself, or the dream that only you may be able to see at times. There were times when I had to walk alone and watch my original class proceed toward graduation without me. I took extra time to study for National Board Exams-which I successfully passed to the surprised shock of my medical school. Please keep your eye on the prize and do not relent. Your journey is your own, and it can end with success. The opportunity to write this essay causes me to reflect on my goals as a physician in Cleveland, Ohio.