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IM Residency, Preventive Medicine, Nigerian

November 2, 2015

Born and raised in Lagos, Nigeria, I have now come to think of myself as African-American, since I am now a naturalized citizen who has been in the USA for 15 years. At 38, I consider myself to be in my prime in every way and always take great care of my own physical strength and resources and that of my family. I give my all as a medical doctor, and I thrive on working long hours. I attribute the level of success that I have achieved so far in life to a lot of hard work, having always placed my education as a top priority. A firm believer in life-long education, I continue to study hard when I am not making my rounds, especially in the area of HIV and infectious disease.

In search of a new residency position in Internal Medicine, I have the full support of my wife—also a medical professional—with respect to relocating our family wherever my career might call me. My short and long term goals are essentially the same, to continue my passion for working as an attending physician in the area of Internal Medicine. I do hope someday to help open clinics back in Nigeria so as to provide healthcare to the people in the area in which I grew up. It is my dream to someday have the profound privilege of practicing medicine in Igbo and Yoruba—my other native languages, in addition to English. Putting my heart into my study of medicine has always been central to my professional philosophy and, early on, this included a great deal of volunteer work, especially as an undergraduate student working with the Abatete Igbo Catholic Community, and then serving as President of the Washington, D.C. Chapter. I have also actively participated in the hosting of community/Catholic health fairs and seminars over the past two years. I have learned a great deal through my professional and volunteer experiences—especially working as a medical lab technologist in a hospital for six years and completing preliminary residency training in Surgery for 2 years—during which time I have assisted with and performed a wide array of surgical procedures as assigned.

Another aspect of my strength and success in life is my profound sense of good fortune at being the only one of 8 children to be blessed with the opportunity to go to college, let alone complete Medical School. This is one reason why the long hours of an attending physician have come most natural to me, since, from the age of 7 onward, I helped my parents feed my family—usually by hawking peanuts that I carried around on my head Even while attending seminary school, I would do this every evening, thus missing out on much of the carefree innocence of leisure time and play. But I never despaired. Frankly, I have been lucky, especially insofar as I won the lottery to live and work in the USA.

I lost my mother the year before last to cancer, and this has further strengthened my resolve as a physician. My professional and life experiences thus far, combined with my volunteer experience, have all shaped me into who I am today. Having come from such a profoundly difficult environment—conditions back in Nigeria are worse than ever, lack of clean water, drastically inadequate diet, electricity only for the wealthy, and what troubles me most little to no access to healthcare for poor people—has made me strong. Thus, in addition to doing what I can for my family and community back home, I am especially empathetic to those who suffer from poverty and social marginalization here in America. My empathy and my resolve are my greatest strengths. I always stay calm and keep my nose to grindstone as is said here.

Currently a 2nd year preliminary surgery resident at XXXX University Hospital, I feel strongly that I have gained the requisite experience for embarking on the new trajectory of a residency position in Internal Medicine as a result of my extensive experience in vascular, transplant, urological, cardiothoracic, orthopedic, neurological, and general surgery as well as trauma. It is perhaps ironic, as a surgeon, that I long to have a share in helping people to avoid surgery through preventative medicine and health education.

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