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Would writing that I've been a dishwasher after uni be detrimental to my application?


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I graduated 3 years ago from UBC biology. I'm currently running 2 jobs, one of which is a dishwasher for a restaurant.

I'm not going to try to embellish the position in the description from what it really is. I'm doing it to make ends meet and save more money for additional schooling. Would the adcoms think negatively of this position thinking that I'm just not trying to find a job? I've just gotten used to the looks on people's faces when I tell them what I do for a living after graduating from UBC over the years, but it is one of my longer commitments.

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Although many doctors come from upper and middle class families and didn’t have to work everyday jobs before Med school, many doctors have slung lattes, washed dishes, waited tables, painted houses, roofed, etc. to make money before/during/after university. You’re not alone there.

Definitely include it. You don’t need to embellish, but it does help I think to spin these sorts of gigs (and any entry) in a positive way by mentioning the aspects of the job you actually enjoy, if any - e.g. maybe you enjoy the fast-paced environment and collegiality in the kitchen (I know I did, at least some of the time)

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4 hours ago, marine said:

I graduated 3 years ago from UBC biology. I'm currently running 2 jobs, one of which is a dishwasher for a restaurant.

I'm not going to try to embellish the position in the description from what it really is. I'm doing it to make ends meet and save more money for additional schooling. Would the adcoms think negatively of this position thinking that I'm just not trying to find a job? I've just gotten used to the looks on people's faces when I tell them what I do for a living after graduating from UBC over the years, but it is one of my longer commitments.

Dishwashing is a tough job. Definitely include it and be proud of it :) I used to dishwash, deliver newspapers, and clean toilets. I’m glad I did it. Taught me discipline, respect, and resilience at a young age. 

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15 hours ago, marine said:

I graduated 3 years ago from UBC biology. I'm currently running 2 jobs, one of which is a dishwasher for a restaurant.

I'm not going to try to embellish the position in the description from what it really is. I'm doing it to make ends meet and save more money for additional schooling. Would the adcoms think negatively of this position thinking that I'm just not trying to find a job? I've just gotten used to the looks on people's faces when I tell them what I do for a living after graduating from UBC over the years, but it is one of my longer commitments.

Include it, but you do you need to embellish it, just like any other entry. In medical school applications, generally the description of personal development as it relates to the CanMEDS roles from a certain activity is significantly more important than the description of the activity itself.

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I put several factory jobs which is maybe along the same lines. That being said, if you can find a position that may be better for your app or more enjoyable, go for it! In my last few years of uni I did TAing, marking and summer research instead.

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You don't have to embellish and I wouldn't sacrifice this experience for a generic TAing or tutoring experience. This experience can really show your work ethic and diligence. I am certain reviewers can understand the necessity of doing what you have to do to make ends meet. 

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On 6/12/2021 at 6:22 PM, anbessa21 said:

This question makes me so sad. Really speaks to the classism that exists in the medical field, and more broadly in higher-education. Include it proudly, OP.

I agree.  There's almost a sense of personal shame in having to make ends meet or make difficult decisions based on practical considerations.  

Kudos to everyone posting - helps break the stigma.   I wish I had put my busboy jobs down - it was a little further back for me.    

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There are many meaningful ways to talk about this job, no need to hide it from admissions.

I still help with my family business when I visit my parents. Customers probably never guess the cashier is royal college certified. Coincidentally my family knows 2 other families whereby the parents run small business and their royal college certified children show up once a while to help out. 

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