Friday, April 07, 2006

Cooke - Professional degree & concentration

List the graduate or professional degree and area of concentration you will pur Jessica if awarded a JKC Foundation Graduate Scholarship. Please explain the reason for your study and career choice. (2500 characters or 500 words).

Jessica and I were neighbors almost all of her life. Jessica had MS, and I never understood why it happened to her. I still do not know the reason but have always nurtured the thought that someday I am going to make a difference so there will not be anymore people like Jessica. When I started elementary school my mother purchased a memory book I was to fill out at the end of each school year. One of the questions in the book was the age old "What do you want to be when you grow up?" Doctor, an option I never selected, was one of the many available occupational choices. I did not start thinking of a career in medicine until much later, during a visit to my pediatrician’s office. As I grew older I began to truly see the service my doctor provided. Her knowledge and skill empowered her and gave her the unique ability to ease minds, while providing compassionate care. I grew to respect her for the knowledge and skill she evinced while doing the job she loved. Medicine and the rewards of helping people has been a driving force throughout my educational experience. I learned the basics in elementary school, tightened my focus in high school, and in college found my niche in biomedical studies. Suddenly all my dreams have become possible. The ability to explore unknown frontiers with unlimited possibilities and make a real contribution to medical protocols has provided the impetus for seeking Bachelor of Science in biology as the foundation for building a career in medicine as a primary care physician. I elected to be a primary care physician, a field with an ever-growing shortage of candidates, because they are the gatekeepers of the health care field. They are more involved in community health, management and policy making, and making changes that will benefit many people instead of just individual patients seen by specialist.

A wish for a world where every Jessica is healthy, one where no other child will suffer the pangs of loss of a "best" friend as I did, remains my ardent goal. A thirst for knowledge, intelligence, patience, compassion, strong work ethic and a desire to improve the lives of others will make me into a great doctor able to take pride in using my abilities to serve my community and the state of Mississippi.

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