Hometown: Tallahassee, FL by way of London, England
Name of Undergraduate Institution(s): Univ. of Pittsburgh and Florida State University
Major(s)/Minor(s) in College: Exercise Science Major
Name of Medical School: Florida State University College of Medicine
Favorite Quote: “For though a righteous man falls seven times, they rise again…” – Proverbs 24:16
Contact Information: Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Where are you currently at in your career path and why did you decide to pursue this career path?
I’m currently a second year medical student. I decided to pursue this career path because I enjoyed every moment of my various exposures to the field of medicine during undergrad. I also understood the high responsibility required of a physician, as well as the vast knowledge needed to become a physician. The challenge of learning all of these things that qualify someone to become a physician only intrigued me further. Most of all, the bond and trust a physician is able to make with their patients is a reward I felt no other profession could match.
If you could go back and have a chat with your naïve college freshman self, what would you tell her?
I would tell myself to be confident in who you are and don’t let others dim your light. I think when you get to college and you’re in a brand new place just trying to make new friends, it’s really easy to lose sight of who you are as a person because you just want to fit in. I think it’s important to know that what makes you an individual is important and that you’re actually made to stand out. I was the black girl who got excited to dissect cats in high school despite the awful formaldehyde smell. I was never made to fit in.
What advice would you give to someone looking to pursue a similar path as yours?
My advice would be don’t compare the path you’re taking to anyone else’s. If you’re pursuing medical school, don’t get discouraged because you’re doing a master’s program first (for example), and your classmate’s got accepted straight into medical school from undergrad. Everyone’s journey is different, and everyone encounters different things along the way that only makes them stronger and more equipped to handle what’s coming next. Stick to your plan, work hard, and remain confident that you will reach your goal!
What is a major challenge you have had to overcome and how did you do so?
During my sophomore year of college, my 16 year old cousin suddenly passed away. This was incredibly tough for me because who expects their younger cousin to just no longer be here. It affected me to the point where my grades dropped tremendously, and I felt it in my best interest to transfer back to a school closer to home. Being that I still wanted to go to medical school, I knew I had some hurdles to overcome. Apart from raising my GPA, I had get to a point where I could laugh and smile again. It took some time, but after enrolling in a medical assistant (MA) course where I learned more about medicine, my drive and motivation was restored. I enjoyed working as a MA so much that I refocused, picked myself back up, and decided to try again. From that point on, I worked hard with the thought that anything I achieve will be in honor of my cousin. That is how I’ve been able to deal with the fact that a beautiful soul with a future brighter than mine was lost from this world. And when I walk across that stage in two years to receive my MD, it won’t be just me getting a degree, so will Tobi.
Did you take some time off before medical school? If so, what did you do during that time?
I did take some time off between undergrad and medical school. As stated before, I had to do some extra work to raise my GPA to medical school standards, so I did a year of Post-Bac. What that means is that I took 3-4 challenging core science courses for two semesters to prove to medical schools that I could excel at their institutions. The key is you have to do well! It’s a good way to make up for any slip ups you may have had during undergrad.
What do you feel is the most challenging part of medical school? The easiest part?
I would say that the most challenging part of medical school is living in the moment and maintaining a healthy mindset. The key to being successful in medical school is remaining disciplined, organized, and focused. Sometimes it takes a lot out of you, and you can start to feel robotic or like you’re not being present. It’s difficult, but you have to make time to decompress from the stress of always thinking about what you have to do next. Your mindset is extremely important, so making time to smell the roses so to speak is necessary. The easiest part of medical school is knowing that despite all the challenges I will face, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I know that God has a purpose for my life, and I know that He’s positioned me right where I need to be. Despite the daunting test that is Step 1 or any other obstacles that will come my way, I take comfort in knowing that I was made to excel in the field of medicine.
Wow! This is really inspiring Remi! We very much so appreciate you for taking the time to share some of your story with us!
Posted on November 3rd, 2016