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  • Writer's pictureResidency Roadshow

Per aspera ad astra

Updated: May 3, 2023

They say the journey to success is “through Hardships to the stars”. While there can be many roads that lead to your ultimate goal, only one can lead to success at a faster pace, but what it involves is utmost dedication and persistent hard work. A journey is defined by the people, the path, and the bumps. Today, we will talk more about the people in this blog.

I am somebody who decided very early in medical school that I wanted to pursue my Internal Medicine Residency in the US. Though I had a firm decision in my mind and had laid down a path for myself, I had to face my fair share of bumps in this journey. Beginning from square one, I always believed everything is available on the web, and that I can figure out things for myself. It was just a few months later when I realized that there are so many doubts and questions in my mind for which I need to reach out to my seniors. Though I was fortunate to have a few seniors from my medical school who were really responsive, but their work schedule and availability always posed a challenge. But this journey taught me that it is always better to ask questions from multiple people and then decide the best for you than stick to one. Though it worked for me, this was a double-edged sword where there were so many expert opinions put in front of me. I decided to gather the best from everybody’s plate and move forward. I understand there are so many aspirants from medical schools who have never been represented in the US residency programs. It is where formal mentorship can play a huge role in helping one achieve his or her best potential. An ideal mentor is one who has been through this long and arduous journey and believes in sharing his earned wisdom more like a friend than a boss. A person who can not only put the flowery picture of success in front of you but also show you the thorns that can prick. A mentor can help you avoid those mistakes which you might make as a fresh applicant or have been making chronically as a repeat applicant.

I found my mentor in one of the preceptors of my externships. My mentor took time out of her busy schedule to read through my ERAS Application and personal statement and suggested changes diligently. Later in the cycle, I practiced interviews with so many co-applicants, residents, and physicians. Each one of them gave me amazing feedback, so several people mentored me in perfecting my interview skills.

Mentors can be one or many! A mentor will not hold your finger and walk you through the whole journey but can always show you the right path, which leads to success!

So, always be humble, ask questions, and be ready to listen and learn!

Thanks for taking out to time to read through this blog! Wish you the best in this journey and hope to see you on the other side of the table!

-Hitesh Bhatia

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