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Hello,

 

Just wondering for the description and impact statement, do they want you to write an "essay" in the sense that it sounds good and reads well, or concise, direct and brief

 

I would certainly think so. I scored 90+% on the pre mmi last year and i believe my presentation played a key.

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As well for top 10 I am writing about 2 researches. Is it in description that I write what the research was about, or in the impact, or not at all?

 

You may want to give a 1-liner of the research details but I would focus on the impact rather than details of the research. Unless, the details play a key role on the impact. For instance, you are trying to display critical thinking for your approach to the problem by stating details of the research and how you've come to the solution.

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For those of you who are parents AND were admitted to U of C, did you use 'being a parent' as one of your top 10's? I know Ian Walker frowned on this in his podcast saying it is akin to saying 'being a sibling' but I disagree. I think being a parent requires you to exercise all the attributes they are looking for.

 

Just wondering for those of you that did put your parenting role as one of your top 10's, how you framed it?

 

Thanks

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For those of you who are parents AND were admitted to U of C, did you use 'being a parent' as one of your top 10's? I know Ian Walker frowned on this in his podcast saying it is akin to saying 'being a sibling' but I disagree. I think being a parent requires you to exercise all the attributes they are looking for.

 

Just wondering for those of you that did put your parenting role as one of your top 10's, how you framed it?

 

Thanks

 

I would definitely do so. I wrote something similar. I'm not a parent but I did write a piece about my mentor and how he inspired me by example and taught me to live life for the moment. I mentioned how I witnessed a successful physician who was able to be a good parent, athlete, mentor, teacher, advocate, businessman, and a computer programmer. He was able to incorporate all of this into his practice.

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I think some people make the mistake of talking about what their research is about and how well known/regarded their supervisor is instead of discussing what research has taught THEM personally, and how they will apply those principals to medicine.

 

I applied this year (got in, still don't know my scores on anything though as they haven't been released) and in my app I talked a lot about research but barely mentioned exactly what my research focuses on. I suspect those are not the details they are looking for....

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I think some people make the mistake of talking about what their research is about and how well known/regarded their supervisor is instead of discussing what research has taught THEM personally, and how they will apply those principals to medicine.

 

I applied this year (got in, still don't know my scores on anything though as they haven't been released) and in my app I talked a lot about research but barely mentioned exactly what my research focuses on. I suspect those are not the details they are looking for....

 

I think you're spot on here. The year before last I didn't get in and didn't score anywhere near as high as I did last year. I didn't change any of my experiences, I just changed how I described them. I realized I wasn't getting across how they impacted me until I had a friend read them and say "I'm just not hearing how they personally affected/impacted you". The re-write certainly made a huge difference.

 

I think being a parent is a perfectly reasonable. For example if I decided to adopt a child or foster a child, I would certainly think it would have a tremendous impact on me personally. So why couldn't your own biological children have a strong impact as well? It does worry me that Dr. Walker discourages it though. Not sure how to interpret that.

 

Edit: Forgot to mention, make sure it falls into one of the six traits though. If you can't relate it to one of those sufficiently, it may not work.

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The thing with listing being a parent is that's not all that remarkable in the grand scheme of things. Many, if not most people, have kids by a certain age. And so the main reason you got to list being a parent is that you're old enough to have had kids. But what about you having kids makes you different from all the other applicants who have kids?

 

What's stopping someone from saying they're a daughter, a sister, a mother, a wife, etc., etc. Now they've got 4 items they could list as Top 10 and say hey, I have all the attributes of a physician! And yes, you could argue that, but...

 

At the end of the day you're competing against hundreds of other applicants and to score above-average points you need Top 10s that are above average. So either have interesting activities to list, or be really, really good at writing them up, and ideally both.

 

If you're filling your top 10s all with things that are incidental to living life as a human being, well, what's special about you? Why you, and not the hundreds and thousands of other parents, siblings, spouses, etc. out there?

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I think that's a great point Shematoma. Although arguably it could also extend out to other things. One of my top 10 was "completing research" or something like that, and I doubt I was alone there. It feels like half my current class completed research on some level (summer lab work, honours thesis, grad studies, etc). Like you mentioned I think it comes down to differentiating HOW these experiences are unique and has impacted you in one of the CanMeds traits. Otherwise, you're going to get lost in the crowd.

 

Just writing that having a child has changed you as a person may not be very helpful to the file reviewer, but if you have a specific aspect of parenting (e.g. raising a child with a disorder, volunteering on school boards, helping your child through a learning disability, being a single parent, etc) may all be great experiences to draw on as you are strategic about it.

 

I'm not sure if this will work for others, but I literally mapped out all my top 10, references and extracurriculars and tried to match them to the various Canmeds traits. As a result I chose to leave some experiences out because I came to realize that I was beating some traits to death and virtually ignoring others. This also appealed to my obsessive compulsive personality type lol. :D

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Just writing that having a child has changed you as a person may not be very helpful to the file reviewer, but if you have a specific aspect of parenting (e.g. raising a child with a disorder, volunteering on school boards, helping your child through a learning disability, being a single parent, etc) may all be great experiences to draw on as you are strategic about it.

 

Obviously you have a knack for communication and presentation :) Any one of those is more interesting and special as an experience than simply being a parent.

 

I think, though, as Dr. Walker mentioned in a podcast, you don't want to use too many such experiences as Top 10s which could be regarded as the normal course of life. And if the whole question is whether 1 of the Top 10 can be parenting, probably not an issue, since there are 9 others that hopefully cover a diverse range besides parenting.

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If Dr. Walker said don't put it, I would no put it; however, raising kids and maintaining a successful marriage while trying to establish a career definitely requires CanMed roles: manger, collaborator, communicator (communicating with spouse, with children is difficult), even scholar (teaching your child to read and do life tasks), so on and so forth. It's just that a substantial portion of applicants will not have kids yet. Having kids and doing undergrad full time is definitely a difficult situation if you do not use day care.

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