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should I put my immigrant experience on an application?


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hi all, I am applying to med schools this cycle and have been reflecting on my experiences as a way to procrastinate studying for my last final. I moved to canada when I was 12 years old and I am wondering whether talking about being an immigrant in personal experiences is over done or not ideal? i was under the impression that as long as you can describe it in terms of the impact the experience had on you then the exact experience itself doesn't matter, but someone I know advised me to not put this on my app...

let me know what you guys think !

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24 minutes ago, justchilling said:

hi all, I am applying to med schools this cycle and have been reflecting on my experiences as a way to procrastinate studying for my last final. I moved to canada when I was 12 years old and I am wondering whether talking about being an immigrant in personal experiences is over done or not ideal? i was under the impression that as long as you can describe it in terms of the impact the experience had on you then the exact experience itself doesn't matter, but someone I know advised me to not put this on my app...

let me know what you guys think !

Hey, this might've been done accidentally but I noticed you posted the exact same thing twice... try to only make one thread next time :))

 

As for your question, I would say it kind of depends where you're applying. But ultimately, I think that like you said, the experience itself doesn't matter and its the way you describe its impact on you and on your progress as an individual that matters most. But then again, i'm not 100% certain :(( hopefully others can give their thoughts/opinions on this particular question

 

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4 minutes ago, Medweeb said:

Hey, this might've been done accidentally but I noticed you posted the exact same thing twice... try to only make one thread next time :))

 

As for your question, I would say it kind of depends where you're applying. But ultimately, I think that like you said, the experience itself doesn't matter and its the way you describe its impact on you and on your progress as an individual that matters most. But then again, i'm not 100% certain :(( hopefully others can give their thoughts/opinions on this particular question

 

oops my bad! I didn't see my post so I tried again 

also I should probably mention that I'm not a mature applicant so this immigration experience was fairly recent. I'm 20 right now

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I would put it in. It shows that you are able to adapt to, and excel in different situations and learning environments. You are able to make your own connections, problem solve, and find opportunities because immigrant parents often do not have as much connections/knowledge of the systems in Canada (education). It is a huge learning curve to move countries when you are older so I really think that if you can write about your experiences in a positive light that it would really set you apart and showcase who you are to the committees!

 

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52 minutes ago, justchilling said:

hi all, I am applying to med schools this cycle and have been reflecting on my experiences as a way to procrastinate studying for my last final. I moved to canada when I was 12 years old and I am wondering whether talking about being an immigrant in personal experiences is over done or not ideal? i was under the impression that as long as you can describe it in terms of the impact the experience had on you then the exact experience itself doesn't matter, but someone I know advised me to not put this on my app...

let me know what you guys think !

I think any experience that is meaning and impactful to you deserves to be written about. Regarding your experience, write about the challenges you encountered, how you managed these challenges, and how you learned/grew/changed from them. 

Focus on the positives and what you gained.

You know yourself the best and every one’s story is unique. Telling your own personal story is the most important.
 

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2 minutes ago, Butterfly_ said:

I think any experience that is meaning and impactful to you deserves to be written about. Regarding your experience, write about the challenges you encountered, how you managed these challenges, and how you learned/grew/changed from them. 

Focus on the positives and what you gained.

You know yourself the best and every one’s story is unique. Telling your own personal story is the most important.
 

thank you for your input! do you think its okay that the immigration itself is more than 5 years removed from the present? I know some medical schools tell you not to use "activities" that are so old, but I am wondering if there is a limit like so for personal experience sections.

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I don't think it would count as an "extracurricular activity" unless you were involved in the process beyond just immigrating, IE if you were a member of a newcomer association or supported others. If you feel like it contributed towards your desire to pursue medicine, it would be fine to include in any essays, with the focus on how it relates to your desire to be a doctor specifically. Alternatively if there is a prompt for diversity it could apply, or, depending on your experience with immigrating, if there was a prompt for hardship or a time you struggled etc.

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22 minutes ago, bearded frog said:

I don't think it would count as an "extracurricular activity" unless you were involved in the process beyond just immigrating, IE if you were a member of a newcomer association or supported others. If you feel like it contributed towards your desire to pursue medicine, it would be fine to include in any essays, with the focus on how it relates to your desire to be a doctor specifically. Alternatively if there is a prompt for diversity it could apply, or, depending on your experience with immigrating, if there was a prompt for hardship or a time you struggled etc.

right right that makes sense! in terms of EC I suppose I was just thinking about the top 10 UofC section which can include life experiences. but you're definitely right about maybe essays being the better place for it 

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30 minutes ago, bearded frog said:

I don't think it would count as an "extracurricular activity" unless you were involved in the process beyond just immigrating, IE if you were a member of a newcomer association or supported others. If you feel like it contributed towards your desire to pursue medicine, it would be fine to include in any essays, with the focus on how it relates to your desire to be a doctor specifically. Alternatively if there is a prompt for diversity it could apply, or, depending on your experience with immigrating, if there was a prompt for hardship or a time you struggled etc.

This is also probably the angle I would take. Not really suitable for an ABS entry, but a good topic for essays where it might be relevant, of which there could be many 

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On 4/27/2021 at 7:39 AM, justchilling said:

hi all, I am applying to med schools this cycle and have been reflecting on my experiences as a way to procrastinate studying for my last final. I moved to canada when I was 12 years old and I am wondering whether talking about being an immigrant in personal experiences is over done or not ideal? i was under the impression that as long as you can describe it in terms of the impact the experience had on you then the exact experience itself doesn't matter, but someone I know advised me to not put this on my app...

let me know what you guys think !

I am traditional applicant in my late 20s and I immigrated to Canada about 3 years ago from a poor country and poor family. For me it is impossible to not touch in it because it is basically how I lived my whole life and how I developed empathy for underserved communities cause I grew up as underserved as it could get.

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