“I am a dreamer.” There were a lot of distinguished men in our past who have contributed to our society. I want to be one of those men. I want to set goals; then go beyond the call of duty in order to achieve them. There is an endless list in regards to what I would like my contributions towards the betterment of our society to be. One important contribution is my willingness and relentless desire to assist others.
My desire to help others was instilled in me as a child. Growing up in Sri Lanka, I would accompany my parents, who would prepare warm meals for the kids in the orphanage near our home. My most vivid memory of one of those Sunday trips to the orphanage, is of a boy crying in agony due to an infection brought on by a poorly amputated leg. I can never seem to forget the pain and suffering I witnessed that day. From that day forth, I was determined to ease the suffering of others and I knew that I wanted a career that would allow me to help and heal those in need.
During my time in academia, I wanted to choose an area of study that would allow me to achieve this goal, and science became the answer. While studying, my love for science and research developed and molded into a passion, leading me to pursue my master’s in Biotechnology. During my masters, I had the opportunity to work in a neurobiology laboratory conducting research for my thesis: “Investigating the Effects of Trans-Spinal Direct Current Stimulation on The Expression of NKCC1 In Mice.” From the findings presented in my thesis, I hope to further facilitate future research in therapeutics for spinal cord injury.
My thesis research heightened my interest in pursuing a career in medicine. While looking at the many health care professions, physician assistant seemed to be the most appealing to me. The ability to work as a team to diagnose and provide care to individuals, the flexibility to work in any medical specialty, and the level of autonomy offered are a few reasons why a career as a PA is the one for me.
My desire to pursue a career as a PA has been further solidified this past summer when I had the chance to shadow a PA at Richmond University Hospital. I was amazed at how comfortable and at ease Daniele, the PA, made the patients feel. When consulting patients, Daniele was extremely knowledgeable and unrushed. She took time to explain each medication she was prescribing and their side effects and ensured that the prescribed medication would not interact with the current medications the patient were already taking. I hope to practice the same patient care demonstrated by Daniele one day.
As a boy, I dreamed that I would one day be able to make a difference in the lives of others. As I grew older, this desire has only become stronger. I believe becoming a physician assistant can help me accomplish this task. Given my background in my graduate studies, research and shadowing, I’m confident that I will excel in your program, and I’m determined to overcome any challenges that are in my way. As I start the next journey of my life, I’m reminded of the boy crying in agony at the orphanage, as he symbolizes my commitment to accomplishing my goal. I now look forward to the day I encounter a sick child in need of medical care, as a PA, I would confidently be able to say, “I can make you feel better.”