My personal experiences of health care have inspired me to become a doctor. In particular, having an older sister with autism has given me a valuable insight into long term disability. Always intrigued by science and health care, I have thoroughly enjoyed both my work experience and A Level subjects. My caring personality and genuine interest in human biology have given me the motivation and enthusiasm to succeed.

I arranged a week of shadowing experience in the casualty department of West Wales General Hospital. This enabled me to enquire about all aspects of medicine whilst observing doctors from junior through to consultant level. I have a realistic understanding of hospital life having seen minor injuries, medical emergencies and a variety of diagnostic procedures as well as the documentation involved. A week at a busy nursing home with attached Elderly Mentally Infirm unit showed me a different, yet equally fascinating side of health care. This encouraged me to do some personal research into Alzheimer’s disease, which I have found particularly interesting in view of Britain’s ageing population. My most emotional, yet rewarding experience was as a carer on a ‘Pilgrimage of the Sick’ to Lourdes. I spent a busy but enjoyable week, based in a French hospital, helping pilgrims to wash, dress and eat. The most valuable element I learnt from this experience was how vital communication skills are. I learnt the importance of body language and voice tone especially when conversing with the severely disabled who find verbal communication challenging.

For fifteen months I have been a volunteer at a Leonard Cheshire home for acquired brain injury. I visit weekly to spend time with residents suffering from debilitating illnesses such as multiple sclerosis. I enjoy chatting to residents as it can have a positive impact and brighten up their day. Also, for over a year, I have been a member of St John ambulance which has taught me a great deal about first aid, for example, how to recognise and react to medical emergencies such as a myocardial infarction. Participating in the ‘Going for Gold’ scheme under the aegis of Trinity Saint David’s University has convinced me of my suitability to university life. Having been exposed to a variety of teaching styles during this course, I am certain that a modern medical degree incorporating early clinical exposure would enhance my learning ability.

My interests help me to relax and cope effectively with stress. Playing hockey for Carmarthenshire gave me the opportunity to work as part of a team. In contrast, playing the drums and piano over the past three years has been an individual challenge. As a prefect and peer mentor, I am always keen to become an involved member of my school community and hold a position of responsibility. I participated in a Macmillan Cancer Care walking marathon helping to raise money and awareness for the charity. This inspired me to organise a more ambitious walk. As part of a team of three young adults, I walked almost two hundred miles from Llanelli to the peak of Mount Snowdon. After much preparation, this took us eight days during which we worked together to overcome exhaustion and avoid dehydration whilst raising support for Leukaemia Cancer Research. I also have a weekend job in catering which is helping to fund a forthcoming backpacking adventure to south-east Asia.

I am committed, enthusiastic and eager to develop my knowledge and skills. I am keen to work as part of a multi-disciplinary team and want the opportunity to make a crucial difference to the quality of life of others. I understand the demands of medicine and thoroughly believe that I have the potential to be a successful and caring doctor.