by Filip Derke
There are a lot of bad reasons to take up medicine, but there are a lot of good ones too...
Medicine is one of those colleges it is never too late to start studying. Whether you are already studying medicine or just planning to do so, you must have wondered what are the true reasons to enroll in this field, which is according to many the most responsible one there is.
Before you determine what field you are interested in, you will have most certainly pondered all the pros and cons of your potential choice. On the other hand, a part of you will not have contemplated a few steps - or sometimes decades - in advance, but will have made the decision in the twinkling of an eye. In the end, there are no rules that would say one way is right, and the other one is not. Scientists have said that children as early as in the fifth grade already know what they would like to become, and that by the beginning of their college education they are only developing a vision of their future.
Once you have considered medicine as a possibility, things might complicate - the first issue being whether to listen to your heart or your mind. Our minds often impose subjective points of view of the society and our immediate surroundings, which will undoubtedly encourage us to choose medicine up to that point when we forget what our heart's and our own desires are. In this article, we bring ten (objective) reasons why to study medicine.
1. Plenty of opportunities upon graduating
This reason is rarely stressed properly, but it truly is so. After gradutation, there is a broad range of opportunities for a future job. In case you find none of the possibilities appealing, you can combine them or invent your own path of further specialization. Upon finishing medical college you can choose to work in hospitals, science institutes, public health care or be part of the medical segment of some other science. There are doctors who are managing health care costs in economical sciences, or cooperate as a part of judicial sciences in proving medical errors and patients' rights.
Be that as it may, do not worry in case you do not see yourself as a future pediatrist or surgeon; you have six years to decide what exactly you are interested in.
2. Working with people
A lot of students name working with people as their primary reason to study medicine. If you are a people person, medicine is the right choice for you. It is of vital importance to stress that to work with people you absolutely must have a great deal of tolerance towards endangered social groups, e.g. the old and disabled.
In the course of your studies, you will be able to improve this skill even if you do not have a particularly developed affinity towards working with people. During your studies, but also later in hospitals, you will meet a lot of people besides patients - patients' families, medical staff, technicians, administrators etc. As a part of you medical training, you will also learn not to form bonds towards patients and their diagnoses or faiths, which is an extremely delicate problem especially when it comes to children.
3. The ability to help people directly and make them happier
This was my main reason for enrolling into medical college. The progress of the human kind and civilization is the purpose of almost all of the college programmes. Medicine participates in this process in the most direct way. The most doctors would say that there is no greater joy than the one you feel when you manage to help a very sick patient or when a group of scientists discovers a new medicine for a certain disease.
The ability to directly help the curing process is also a challenge and sometimes it is not easy to cope with it. For this reason, your medical education will prepare you so you can land on your feet in 99% of the cases.
4. Team work
Medicine nowadays is based on team work. You will be divided into smaller groups already while at college and this will give you a chance to perfect your people skills. These skills will also come in handy later when you start practicing medicine; not only does a doctor cooperate with nurses and other doctors on daily bases, but he is also a mentor figure and a role model for his students.
Without team work, you cannot succeed in the field of medicine, so if you are a lone wolf, you might want to reconsider whether medicine is the right choice for you.
5. Respect in society
Whether we want to admit it or not, doctors are always on the top of the social scale. Whether you go to the theater or to the cinema you should know that you will be noticed. Not downright like Dr. Oz, but a certain part of people will pay attention to you too. This also represents a great responsibility because it is not seldom that a doctor is also a moral authority, especially in smaller places.
On the one hand, this could be a problem because some cannot bear this responsibility and cannot come to terms with the fact that they have lost a part of anonymity that majority of people has. On the other hand, this respect in society is a major factor while choosing the field of medicine for some people. The fact that a lot of doctors end up in politics and continue their careers as politicians supports this theory.
6. A great need for doctors
The world needs more doctors. The situation in Europe is really good compared to some other continents like Asia or Africa. There are also differences in numbers and need for doctors in different European countries. A lot of EU countries that have forbidden or restricted employment of foreign citizens do not apply this decision to doctors. In most cases medicine students get a job sometimes even the very day they graduate.
7. Safe job, career, and lifestyle
Another not quite irrelevant reason to study medicine is a certain stability upon graduation. This reason is becoming even more prominent in countries still coping with recession and in a situation where it is becoming harder and harder for young people to find a job. In case this is your decisive reason for studying medicine, be aware that this is not an easy or a simple job, but a job with a lot of sacrifices and personal investment. Nevertheless, a job is waiting for you.
8. Constant ameliorating
The end of medical studies does not mean the end of learning. Quite the opposite - your college is providing you with basics for further knowledge and skill development. Summits and seminars are often organized in exotic locations in order to attract as many doctors as possible. A lot of students see this reason as the significant difference in comparison to other studies and for this, they point medicine out as a unique example of constant professional perfecting.
9. White coat
This reason might seem funny to you, this may not even seem like a reason to study medicine to you, but as something irrelevant. Nevertheless, some students look forward to putting on their white coats during practicing in class. White coat, other than being a clothing item and a part of doctor's uniform, is also a representative of the order of the medical system, cleanliness of the job, and high hygiene standards. A tidy and clean coat is emitting a clear doctor's attitude towards patient. Precisely these reasons make the white coat one of the reasons to start studying medicine.
10. Science universal to the whole world
And the last, but not the least reason is a great uniformity of medical science. Upon graduating from a medical college in Europe you can find a job and work in any hospital in South America or anywhere else in the world (unlike some humanistic sciences). Furthermore, the major part of medical literature is in English, the most of the medical terms are in Latin. You will get acquainted with English and Latin in the course of your studies so that words like vertebra or clavicula will be nothing new neither to you nor to a doctor on the other side of the world.
By naming these top ten reasons, I tried to encompass the most of the points that students of medicine name as their motivation for studying medicine and which are the main cause for choosing precisely this vocation. One should also not forget giving up free time which is essential for successful ending of this college. Just as there are these ten reasons for, there are also reasons against, but the final decision is for you to make. Sometimes all it takes is just one reason to make the right choice.
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