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Medicine at Imperial or Biomedical Sciences at Southampton? Watch

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    Hi guys, (could be a long post but the tl dr is at the bottom).

    So I am a home student who got offers from Imperial (MBBS/Bsc Medicine A100) and Southampton (Bsc Biomedical Science B940). I took a gap year for personal circumstances I DID NOT APPLY BEFORE HAND (probably should have though).

    First of all I would like to say is that I am very proud of getting an offer for medicine (I hear it is pretty competitive to get an offer from UK). Some people would naturally think that there is no difficult decision to make between medicine and biomedical science (especially as I applied to medicine in the first place).

    However, I am slightly concerned about whether my personality is suited to medicine. I think (and many others at my school) believe I am not a people person and (to my self-detriment) I think I am a bit of an academic at heart. In fact my UCAS advisors indirectly discouraged me and my parents of myself applying for medicine saying that "I would have to perhaps polish up my social skills". And I sort of did for a bit in the summer part of the gap year before I applied and worked a couple of weeks at this nursing home. However, I got told off!!!!! For not socialising that much with the residents. I didn't even include this work experience on my personal statement fearing that the med schools would phone them up and ask for a reference. That kind of put me off a bit.

    But I thought if I passed the interviews, I don't see why I shouldn't become a doctor? So applied in the end applied to Imperial, St Georges, Barts and the London and Plymouth and got interviewed by all. My first interview at plymouth was horrible and I knew I had messed it up (I couldn't even make eye contact with one of the more aggressive interviewers. I hated the St Georges interview, the MMIs were so awkward as anything and again I knew by the 2nd station that I had already messed the sh*t up. My Imperial interview was alright for some reason (maybe because I was expecting to be rejected by a pretty competitive uni) and for a lucky reason they asked me an academic question surrounding the things I mentioned on my ps. My barts interview sucked like hell

    I only got offered from Imperial (my actual dream first choice ironically) and waitlisted at St Georges which I found out that I didn't make it in the end. Got rejected from Barts and Plymouth. I naturally applied like most medics do for a 5th choice Biomedical Sciences at Southampton which I got an offer for a few weeks back; I felt they took a long time due to my ps being too academic perhaps? - kinda weird.

    So, Medicine vs. Biomed. My teachers and parents were unsurprisingly negative and essentially thought that just because I got an offer doesn't mean I am suited to medicine. I thought that some of the teachers may be jealous? One also directly implied that I should reject Imperial and accept biomed???

    Another thing I am scared of is if they send an amended reference to Imperial? Saying that 'you made a mistake in choosing X?' They can't though can they?

    I have been trawling the net a bit and have even talked to a few doctors themselves, and the gist is that medicine is not solely academics. I just don't feel confident as a person to have social skills needed in medicine (e.g. my awkward autistic experiences at the nursing home).

    So I was thinking should I reject Imperial and accept southampton to do biomedical sciences and then do GEM? It seems a pretty viable option as I can hopefully improve my social ability (I hope) in the 3yrs? There is another option of me taking another gap year to polish these skills up somehow (suggested by my friend) but that seems pretty ridiculous as I want to go to uni (med or biomed) as soon as possible.

    Is medicine all about academics? Should I accept my offer from Imperial KNOWING that I may not be able to handle people? Or what?

    Tldr: I am pretty academic and managed to get an offer in the interview somehow from Imperial. I also got an offer from my 5th option from Southampton to do Biomed. I don't feel I have the social skills necessary to become a doctor as it seems that medicine is not all about academics? What should I do?

    Thanks for reading...I have got to accept my thing sooner or later before the end of the month realistically...
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    (Original post by lupita1)
    Hi guys, (could be a long post but the tl dr is at the bottom).

    So I am a home student who got offers from Imperial (MBBS/Bsc Medicine A100) and Southampton (Bsc Biomedical Science B940). I took a gap year for personal circumstances I DID NOT APPLY BEFORE HAND (probably should have though).

    First of all I would like to say is that I am very proud of getting an offer for medicine (I hear it is pretty competitive to get an offer from UK). Some people would naturally think that there is no difficult decision to make between medicine and biomedical science (especially as I applied to medicine in the first place).

    However, I am slightly concerned about whether my personality is suited to medicine. I think (and many others at my school) believe I am not a people person and (to my self-detriment) I think I am a bit of an academic at heart. In fact my UCAS advisors indirectly discouraged me and my parents of myself applying for medicine saying that "I would have to perhaps polish up my social skills". And I sort of did for a bit in the summer part of the gap year before I applied and worked a couple of weeks at this nursing home. However, I got told off!!!!! For not socialising that much with the residents. I didn't even include this work experience on my personal statement fearing that the med schools would phone them up and ask for a reference. That kind of put me off a bit.

    But I thought if I passed the interviews, I don't see why I shouldn't become a doctor? So applied in the end applied to Imperial, St Georges, Barts and the London and Plymouth and got interviewed by all. My first interview at plymouth was horrible and I knew I had messed it up (I couldn't even make eye contact with one of the more aggressive interviewers. I hated the St Georges interview, the MMIs were so awkward as anything and again I knew by the 2nd station that I had already messed the sh*t up. My Imperial interview was alright for some reason (maybe because I was expecting to be rejected by a pretty competitive uni) and for a lucky reason they asked me an academic question surrounding the things I mentioned on my ps. My barts interview sucked like hell

    I only got offered from Imperial (my actual dream first choice ironically) and waitlisted at St Georges which I found out that I didn't make it in the end. Got rejected from Barts and Plymouth. I naturally applied like most medics do for a 5th choice Biomedical Sciences at Southampton which I got an offer for a few weeks back; I felt they took a long time due to my ps being too academic perhaps? - kinda weird.

    So, Medicine vs. Biomed. My teachers and parents were unsurprisingly negative and essentially thought that just because I got an offer doesn't mean I am suited to medicine. I thought that some of the teachers may be jealous? One also directly implied that I should reject Imperial and accept biomed???

    Another thing I am scared of is if they send an amended reference to Imperial? Saying that 'you made a mistake in choosing X?' They can't though can they?

    I have been trawling the net a bit and have even talked to a few doctors themselves, and the gist is that medicine is not solely academics. I just don't feel confident as a person to have social skills needed in medicine (e.g. my awkward autistic experiences at the nursing home).

    So I was thinking should I reject Imperial and accept southampton to do biomedical sciences and then do GEM? It seems a pretty viable option as I can hopefully improve my social ability (I hope) in the 3yrs? There is another option of me taking another gap year to polish these skills up somehow (suggested by my friend) but that seems pretty ridiculous as I want to go to uni (med or biomed) as soon as possible.

    Is medicine all about academics? Should I accept my offer from Imperial KNOWING that I may not be able to handle people? Or what?

    Tldr: I am pretty academic and managed to get an offer in the interview somehow from Imperial. I also got an offer from my 5th option from Southampton to do Biomed. I don't feel I have the social skills necessary to become a doctor as it seems that medicine is not all about academics? What should I do?

    Thanks for reading...I have got to accept my thing sooner or later before the end of the month realistically...
    Accept the medicine offer with Imperial.

    Studying 3 years of Biomed won't improve your social skills in a way which studying Medicine cannot.

    No point wasting 3 years if you know what your end goal is now.

    The medicine degree should help you develop your social and interaction skills as you go along - and you should make the effort to embrace opportunities both inside and outside of the lecture theatre which will help you do so.

    If you want to improve for the better, don't let anyone else tell you that it is not possible - congratulations with the offers.
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    Firm imperial....i got offered from barts and kcl not because of my personality LOL

    Loads of people said to me that medicine is not all about academics and I also got rejected from Plymouth and was pretty pissed off because of this. But I think that at the end of the day, the medical school exams are done academically and they are what allow you to become a doctor.

    If you passed the interviews, I don't see why not you should become a doctor? There are academic fields of medicine at the end of the day: research and teaching etc...

    gratz
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    you'll be fine. if you still find socializing in 6 years a struggle, pathology and radiology are always interesting.
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    Medicine is never about academics or money. It's completely different. You NEED inter-personal skills, no two ways about it, if you don't have those skills you're never going to make it. The teachers were completely absolutely 100% right. If it was a choice between being a complete, outgoing socialite who got DDD and a student who got A*A*A* but couldn't talk to anyone, most universities would pick the socialite with DDD any day. Even if they go out to parties more and get hammered more that still shows great social skills to universities, which are essential for medicine, and that's something the other guy with A*A*A* is clearly lacking. Extroverts or get out of medicine, in my view.

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    You have 6 years to figure out social skills.

    Or not, according to some of the Imperial medics I've worked with (only joking)
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    The other option is to go into research if medicine really doesn't work out for you in a clinical sense. Imperial have a fantastic MB/PhD programme.
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    Go to Imperial, you can work on social skills and theres always a career in research at the end of a MBBS degree you can do.
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    (Original post by lupita1)
    Hi guys, (could be a long post but the tl dr is at the bottom).

    So I am a home student who got offers from Imperial (MBBS/Bsc Medicine A100) and Southampton (Bsc Biomedical Science B940). I took a gap year for personal circumstances I DID NOT APPLY BEFORE HAND (probably should have though).

    First of all I would like to say is that I am very proud of getting an offer for medicine (I hear it is pretty competitive to get an offer from UK). Some people would naturally think that there is no difficult decision to make between medicine and biomedical science (especially as I applied to medicine in the first place).

    However, I am slightly concerned about whether my personality is suited to medicine. I think (and many others at my school) believe I am not a people person and (to my self-detriment) I think I am a bit of an academic at heart. In fact my UCAS advisors indirectly discouraged me and my parents of myself applying for medicine saying that "I would have to perhaps polish up my social skills". And I sort of did for a bit in the summer part of the gap year before I applied and worked a couple of weeks at this nursing home. However, I got told off!!!!! For not socialising that much with the residents. I didn't even include this work experience on my personal statement fearing that the med schools would phone them up and ask for a reference. That kind of put me off a bit.

    But I thought if I passed the interviews, I don't see why I shouldn't become a doctor? So applied in the end applied to Imperial, St Georges, Barts and the London and Plymouth and got interviewed by all. My first interview at plymouth was horrible and I knew I had messed it up (I couldn't even make eye contact with one of the more aggressive interviewers. I hated the St Georges interview, the MMIs were so awkward as anything and again I knew by the 2nd station that I had already messed the sh*t up. My Imperial interview was alright for some reason (maybe because I was expecting to be rejected by a pretty competitive uni) and for a lucky reason they asked me an academic question surrounding the things I mentioned on my ps. My barts interview sucked like hell

    I only got offered from Imperial (my actual dream first choice ironically) and waitlisted at St Georges which I found out that I didn't make it in the end. Got rejected from Barts and Plymouth. I naturally applied like most medics do for a 5th choice Biomedical Sciences at Southampton which I got an offer for a few weeks back; I felt they took a long time due to my ps being too academic perhaps? - kinda weird.

    So, Medicine vs. Biomed. My teachers and parents were unsurprisingly negative and essentially thought that just because I got an offer doesn't mean I am suited to medicine. I thought that some of the teachers may be jealous? One also directly implied that I should reject Imperial and accept biomed???

    Another thing I am scared of is if they send an amended reference to Imperial? Saying that 'you made a mistake in choosing X?' They can't though can they?

    I have been trawling the net a bit and have even talked to a few doctors themselves, and the gist is that medicine is not solely academics. I just don't feel confident as a person to have social skills needed in medicine (e.g. my awkward autistic experiences at the nursing home).

    So I was thinking should I reject Imperial and accept southampton to do biomedical sciences and then do GEM? It seems a pretty viable option as I can hopefully improve my social ability (I hope) in the 3yrs? There is another option of me taking another gap year to polish these skills up somehow (suggested by my friend) but that seems pretty ridiculous as I want to go to uni (med or biomed) as soon as possible.

    Is medicine all about academics? Should I accept my offer from Imperial KNOWING that I may not be able to handle people? Or what?

    Tldr: I am pretty academic and managed to get an offer in the interview somehow from Imperial. I also got an offer from my 5th option from Southampton to do Biomed. I don't feel I have the social skills necessary to become a doctor as it seems that medicine is not all about academics? What should I do?

    Thanks for reading...I have got to accept my thing sooner or later before the end of the month realistically...
    Medicine, easily.

    Your third year at Imperial is almost full time within hospitals; you'll be able to see if you like it or not (merely passing isn't too difficult, and the first two years are almost completely academically tested). If you get to your fourth year, where you study for a BSc of your choice full time, and decide that you really didn't like third year (which is more than enough to really get a feel of a career in medicine, whether you believe you have the social skills or not) then you can opt to take your BSc and leave the course, apply for graduate jobs/do whatever the **** you want.

    Imperial give you no-pressure trips to GP surgeries and patients homes in the first two years. It's a completely ideal opportunity to improve your patient skills. There's probably 5-10 scheduled trips across the year. On top of this, there's some videoed semi-formal patient interviews, where you can access your videos on the intranet afterwards, and you get given pretty detailed feedback. There's always more help available, if you just ask.

    In reality, it's not so difficult. They give everyone long booklets where they write out a scripts, give pages and pages of conversational tips and pointers to help you structure out your patient contact, and generally there's a massive emphasis on all aspects of clinical communication, verbal, non verbal, especially on how to build up a rapport with your patient. I can tell you that it's good training and designed to ensure that the whole of the year group, even the least 'socially' inclined, has the necessary communication fundamentals. There's always more help if you need it.

    The thing for you to recognise is that 3 of your first four years at Imperial are all assessed academically, and the third year is very, very passable in terms of non-academic testing (especially with all the help you get given in third year, and the two previous years, and it's more about clinical skills, taking readings and stuff rather than seeing if you can have a laugh with your patients). I think that if you realised this, you could conceivably a) improve your social skills to the necessary level whilst on the course (for what it's worth, I honestly doubt your social abilities are awful right now, you just seem to have a negative environment around you, your teachers are ***** - I've had a similar experience), and b) if you feel that you're not cut out for the career, then leave after 4 years and go into the big world with a BSc from one of the best unis in the world. I would stress to you though, that you must at least be interested in the human biology that comprises the first two years of the course. If you're not, then those two years (and the other years, and medicine as a career) will be a boring hell.

    PM me for more advice if you like, and whilst I'm usually wary of telling someone else what to do with their life, those are the facts ^, and I would suggest that going to Imperial now ties in with your aims better.
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    Medical school isn't just about learning biology. You develop people skills. This is part of the training and is something that comes with practice and experience.

    Don't listen to people who tell you that you're not suited to medicine. People like tearing down others when they see them trying to climb out of the pot.

    Turning down an offer for medical school with the view to apply for GEM is madness.
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    (Original post by GeorgeBradford)
    Medicine is never about academics or money. It's completely different. You NEED inter-personal skills, no two ways about it, if you don't have those skills you're never going to make it. The teachers were completely absolutely 100% right. If it was a choice between being a complete, outgoing socialite who got DDD and a student who got A*A*A* but couldn't talk to anyone, most universities would pick the socialite with DDD any day. Even if they go out to parties more and get hammered more that still shows great social skills to universities, which are essential for medicine, and that's something the other guy with A*A*A* is clearly lacking. Extroverts or get out of medicine, in my view.

    that's bull****, I can't think of any university that would pick a student with DDD over a student with A*A*A*. At the end of the day she's got the offer so imperial obviously saw something good about her.

    I think that you should go for medicine, medicine is your end goal and the social skills will come with medical training and going through university itself. Don't let the teachers bring you down, what do they know about being a doctor anyway?
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    (Original post by lupita1)
    Tldr: I am pretty academic and managed to get an offer in the interview somehow from Imperial. I also got an offer from my 5th option from Southampton to do Biomed. I don't feel I have the social skills necessary to become a doctor as it seems that medicine is not all about academics? What should I do?

    Thanks for reading...I have got to accept my thing sooner or later before the end of the month realistically...
    What is it that makes you want to do medicine? You've talked a lot about being worried that your social skills are not up to the course, but not really mentioned what made you want to do the course in the first place. Have you thought about why medicine and not a more lab-based/pure science degree, or did you just go for medicine because it looked "more competitive?"

    If you want to be a doctor, and have a realistic idea of what it might be like, then by all means go for it. You will have to learn to improve your social/people skills, both in communication skills training on the course and from general experience of life at university and in hospitals, but if being a doctor is what you really want, then you'll find a way to manage it. However, if you just find the science side of medicine interesting and aren't that bothered about the people involved, a rethink might be in order.
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    Congrats on a medicine offer from a top school.

    OP, firm medicine.

    1. You'll have plenty of time to polish social skills while you are at medical school. You don't have to have outstanding social skills, you just have to be normal.

    2.There is no guarantee you'll get in through GEM if you apply through that route. I've also heard from other people on this website that GEM entry is becoming harder.

    Your real objective is to study medicine. Don't miss out on this opportunity and start regretting later on in life
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    (Original post by GeorgeBradford)
    Medicine is never about academics or money. It's completely different. You NEED inter-personal skills, no two ways about it, if you don't have those skills you're never going to make it. The teachers were completely absolutely 100% right. If it was a choice between being a complete, outgoing socialite who got DDD and a student who got A*A*A* but couldn't talk to anyone, most universities would pick the socialite with DDD any day. Even if they go out to parties more and get hammered more that still shows great social skills to universities, which are essential for medicine, and that's something the other guy with A*A*A* is clearly lacking. Extroverts or get out of medicine, in my view.

    Interpersonal skills are a must, definitely, but it's something that you develop over time and in uni. That being said, academics is a HUGE part of medicine from what I can see. It'll be useless to have amazing social skills but zero academic competence. Also, the socialite with DDD seems to lack discipline and/or academic competence, wouldn't you say?

    Just wanted to point out that you need to tick all the boxes for a career in Medicine. Cheers
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    Don't be afraid of what you think you may not be.
    Don't be afraid of what you think
    Don't be afraid.
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    It sounds like the discouragement is the only thing that is stopping you as you want to study it. Don't let other people discourage you from following your dream. You will regret it!!
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    (Original post by solarplexus)
    Firm imperial....i got offered from barts not because of my personality LOL

    Loads of people said to me that medicine is not all about academics and I also got rejected from Plymouth and was pretty pissed off because of this. But I think that at the end of the day, the medical school exams are done academically and they are what allow you to become a doctor.

    If you passed the interviews, I don't see why not you should become a doctor? There are academic fields of medicine at the end of the day: research and teaching etc...

    gratz
    You get both strictly academic exams and OSCEs with OSCEs (at least in my med school) being far more important than academics, you can't progress into next year without passing OSCE and you can fail academic exam and still pass.

    OP, go for medicine. If you don't like it after first 2 yeas just intercalate and then quit medicine.
    You will always regret rejecting medicine IMO
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    (Original post by lupita1)
    Hi guys, (could be a long post but the tl dr is at the bottom).

    So I am a home student who got offers from Imperial (MBBS/Bsc Medicine A100) and Southampton (Bsc Biomedical Science B940). I took a gap year for personal circumstances I DID NOT APPLY BEFORE HAND (probably should have though).

    First of all I would like to say is that I am very proud of getting an offer for medicine (I hear it is pretty competitive to get an offer from UK). Some people would naturally think that there is no difficult decision to make between medicine and biomedical science (especially as I applied to medicine in the first place).

    However, I am slightly concerned about whether my personality is suited to medicine. I think (and many others at my school) believe I am not a people person and (to my self-detriment) I think I am a bit of an academic at heart. In fact my UCAS advisors indirectly discouraged me and my parents of myself applying for medicine saying that "I would have to perhaps polish up my social skills". And I sort of did for a bit in the summer part of the gap year before I applied and worked a couple of weeks at this nursing home. However, I got told off!!!!! For not socialising that much with the residents. I didn't even include this work experience on my personal statement fearing that the med schools would phone them up and ask for a reference. That kind of put me off a bit.

    But I thought if I passed the interviews, I don't see why I shouldn't become a doctor? So applied in the end applied to Imperial, St Georges, Barts and the London and Plymouth and got interviewed by all. My first interview at plymouth was horrible and I knew I had messed it up (I couldn't even make eye contact with one of the more aggressive interviewers. I hated the St Georges interview, the MMIs were so awkward as anything and again I knew by the 2nd station that I had already messed the sh*t up. My Imperial interview was alright for some reason (maybe because I was expecting to be rejected by a pretty competitive uni) and for a lucky reason they asked me an academic question surrounding the things I mentioned on my ps. My barts interview sucked like hell

    I only got offered from Imperial (my actual dream first choice ironically) and waitlisted at St Georges which I found out that I didn't make it in the end. Got rejected from Barts and Plymouth. I naturally applied like most medics do for a 5th choice Biomedical Sciences at Southampton which I got an offer for a few weeks back; I felt they took a long time due to my ps being too academic perhaps? - kinda weird.

    So, Medicine vs. Biomed. My teachers and parents were unsurprisingly negative and essentially thought that just because I got an offer doesn't mean I am suited to medicine. I thought that some of the teachers may be jealous? One also directly implied that I should reject Imperial and accept biomed???

    Another thing I am scared of is if they send an amended reference to Imperial? Saying that 'you made a mistake in choosing X?' They can't though can they?

    I have been trawling the net a bit and have even talked to a few doctors themselves, and the gist is that medicine is not solely academics. I just don't feel confident as a person to have social skills needed in medicine (e.g. my awkward autistic experiences at the nursing home).

    So I was thinking should I reject Imperial and accept southampton to do biomedical sciences and then do GEM? It seems a pretty viable option as I can hopefully improve my social ability (I hope) in the 3yrs? There is another option of me taking another gap year to polish these skills up somehow (suggested by my friend) but that seems pretty ridiculous as I want to go to uni (med or biomed) as soon as possible.

    Is medicine all about academics? Should I accept my offer from Imperial KNOWING that I may not be able to handle people? Or what?

    Tldr: I am pretty academic and managed to get an offer in the interview somehow from Imperial. I also got an offer from my 5th option from Southampton to do Biomed. I don't feel I have the social skills necessary to become a doctor as it seems that medicine is not all about academics? What should I do?

    Thanks for reading...I have got to accept my thing sooner or later before the end of the month realistically...

    Hi, I understand your dilemma. First of all, I'd like to congratulate you on gaining a place at Imperial to study Medicine.

    I have a degree in Biomedical Science from Aston University and applied to study medicine at graduate level, however failed to even get an interview. I had experience and a upper second class degree, however it is so competitive at graduate level since everyone that does biomed wants to bounce into medicine or dentistry.

    With regards to your social issues, I would say jump into medicine while you can. Imperial is a beautiful university that will challenge you and keep you talking, you will get use to it and meet a lot fun people. Sometimes, it is important to come out of our comfort zone and strength ourselves so that we acquire new skills and adapt to the situation we are in. Medicine at Imperial will allow you to do that!

    To conclude, I'd say pick medicine at Imperial!

    Best of luck
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    (Original post by lupita1)
    Tldr: I am pretty academic and managed to get an offer in the interview somehow from Imperial. I also got an offer from my 5th option from Southampton to do Biomed. I don't feel I have the social skills necessary to become a doctor as it seems that medicine is not all about academics? What should I do?

    Thanks for reading...I have got to accept my thing sooner or later before the end of the month realistically...
    You don't really have to be the most extroverted person to be suited to medicine. There's different career paths available that suit the not-as-outgoing personality. I met a guy who chose pathology after med school because (I quote) "I prefer when people don't talk".

    At the same time, if you're really determined to do something about it, why not work on your approach to others while at uni? Who knows what experiences you will have?
 
 
 
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