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Dermatology Personal Statement #1

It has been said that someone who does nothing for his fellow man leads only a half life. No other profession embodies this ideal more than the practice of medicine, which aims to protect and restore health, the one requisite for life. As such, I have directed my life to the practice of medicine, hoping to lead a full life by helping others do the same.

Ambition alone does not equate with meaningful action. Accordingly I have sought the training and credentials to substantiate my desire. I believe my background exhibits the ability, commitment and work ethic necessary to realize this goal. I was graduated from high school as a National Merit Scholar, receiving numerous other awards in spite of being graduated one year ahead of my class. At the University of San Francisco, I was graduated summa cum laude (GPA 3.86) while completing my bachelor's degree in less than three years. My growing interest in the organic causes of disease led me to pursue graduate work at the Department of Physiology at the Medical College of Georgia where my research focused on the effects of aging on antioxidant enzyme induction during inflammation. My work was well received generating several awards, publications and presentations. I completed my doctorate in four years in a department where the average was over six years. From there I accepted an NIH training fellowship at Emory University School of Medicine. My interest in inflammation evolved into investigation of novel antiinflammatory agents and signal transduction helping to establish the utility of retinoids as inhibitors of protein kinase C and thus potential antineoplastic agents. Although this was a productive period including procuring NIH and industry funding, I felt that my contributions were not sufficiently linked to helping people.

Working in a medical center exposes one to the many ways physicians utilize their training toward the direct betterment of mankind. This growing awareness led to the realization that I could best apply my efforts clinically. I commenced my studies at Saint Louis University School of Medicine in August of 1993. My experience here has been both fruitful and fortunate. Beyond completion of the rigorous curriculum without difficulty and excelling in the USMLE, I am most proud of setting even high standards, optimizing my learning opportunities by attending several CME courses and workshops at other institutions, completing a two month radiation oncology fellowship at Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology at Washington University School of Medicine (Summer 1994) and performing an optional six month rotation in Mohs surgery. Additionally, I have been active in extracurricular activities serving as AMA chapter president and Missouri State Medical Association vice councilor and even served as a Spanish and French translator for non-English speaking families at Cardinal Glennon Children's and Deaconess hospitals.

This year I have applied my background as researcher and physiologist in the conceptualization and start of three research projects: the tumor suppressor gene p53 as a marker in basal cell carcinoma, hormonal intervention in the treatment of hirsutism, and the effects of medroxyprogesterone in melasma. Dedicating oneself to the field of medicine involves a commitment to lifelong learning. I have approached my medical education with according zeal.

As graduation approaches, I stand at the threshold of substantiating my desire to help others with the training and credentials necessary to do so. Paradoxically, it is really but a beginning. It is appropriate that graduation ceremonies are termed "commencements" for they mark the start of further training in a lifelong process. Thus, I seek residency training in dermatology. Having just completed my general dermatology elective, I feel that my first three years of medical school were but a prelude. Dermatology integrates my desire to treat neoplasms, examine the interplay between environment and neoplastic transformation and work as a partner with patients in promotion of their own health, while working in an intellectually competitive atmosphere at the forefront of scientific knowledge and its application.

The skin is truly miraculous. No other organ exhibits such diversity of form and function both in health and disease. Besides delineating self from environment, the skin both manifests internal (systemic) disorders and provides a barrier against a limitless number of external toxic and infectious agents. As such, dermatologists are entrusted with the most challenging of tasks. I feel that my ability, background and character warrant the undertaking of this challenge.

Dermatology Personal Statement #1


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The United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) is a three-step examination for medical licensure in the United States. The Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) and the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) sponsors USMLE.
The Three Steps of the USMLE
Step 1 tests the important concepts of basic sciences basic to the practice of medicine. It also places special emphasis on principles and mechanisms underlying health, disease, and modes of therapy. Step 1 ensures mastery of the sciences that provide a foundation for the safe and competent practice of medicine. It also tests the scientific principles required for maintenance of competence through lifelong learning.
Step 2 CK tests the medical knowledge, skills, and understanding of clinical science essential for the provision of patient care under supervision. It also includes emphasis on health promotion and disease prevention. Step 2 CK ensures that due attention is devoted to principles of clinical sciences and basic patient-centered skills.
Step 2 CS tests your capacity to practice and provide good medical service in real-life situations. It also tests your communication skills.
Step 3 tests your medical knowledge and understanding of biomedical and clinical science essential for the unsupervised practice of medicine. Step 3 provides a final assessment of physicians assuming independent responsibility for delivering general medical care.


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