Upon submitting my final EE draft, I feel a huge weight has been removed off my shoulders. I believe I succeeded in my EE because I feel like I learnt about myself, my research skills and have managed to increase my awareness of the world around me. I am grateful for the opportunity to have conducted a study so prominent in today’s world at the tender age of 17. If I had another EE to do, I would chose the same topic as I believe there are many unanswered aspects that still persist. Despite the challenges such as patient confidentiality issues, statistical analysis errors and lack of data, I believe I was able to analyse my research question sufficiently. To anyone doing a similar EE: Try to get data from everywhere you can, even one extra sample can help immensely!
Yearbook is one of the activities I have continued throughout my entire high school experience but this year I decided to take it on in a different way from previous years. Previously, I had always been in yearbook photography so this year I decided to be a part of the senior pages committee as this year I am a senior! I’ve always felt very passionate about the grade through my involvement in prom and through being the admin of the class of ’19 facebook page. This with my previous leadership role as head of photography helped me run and successfully receive the role of being head of senior pages. This is something that I’ve very happy and proud about.
So far, I have used my commitment from the activity from last year as a driving force for my leadership. I am able to manage my group better as I am aware of the roles/responsibilities of a head. I’ve been trying my best to stick to the guideline timetable to get everything done in time. This is quite a challenge for me currently but I will work towards being more organised in the future to ensure we do not fall further behind schedule. I remain motivated by thinking of the end goal which I know will be amazing. I am using inspiration from previous yearbooks and learning from their mistakes/successes to ensure this year’s senior pages section will be the best one yet. I am also working on ensuring that everyone has an equal say in what goes on the pages to ensure everyone is happy with the final product.
Learning Objective 4- COMMITMENT (Showing perseverance, resilience and commitment in activities)
Upon completing all my research, I feel throughly relieved. I have realised I have changed my research style. I have begun to value deeper research rather than wider research making me use my sources to the max. Although there are many changes that need to be made, I’ve got majority of the hard work complete. The only new thing I am set to add is an ‘evaluation’ of the methods used in my study which I had previously not included in my essay. I was well over the world limit so one of the challenges I can see in the forceable future is cutting down to make sure I meet the word count limits. We have realised that I need to work on connecting every part of my essay back to my research question in order to meet the criteria and ensure everything I mention in the essay is pertinent. I need to ensure my geography aspects are just as strong as my biology parts as well. One thing I have done very well is my data presentation through various types of graphs, charts and tables that are easy for a reader to follow with.
I shadowed a doctor at Yishun Hospital for about a week in July. I was able to shadow her to her various daily activities such as her journal club, ward rounds, ICU visits and even sat in on her consulting of patients in the clinic. Due to patient confidentiality and other privacy issues at the hospital I was unable to take a lot of photos during the internship itself. I believe I learnt a lot about what it’s like to be a doctor as well as what is usually not portrayed in the glamorised concept of being a doctor. I understood the amount of stress a doctor takes on a daily basis as well the the different varieties of things they do in a normal day (contrary to popular belief).
What were your expectations? How different was it from your actual experience?
– I expected to not be able to help out the doctor I was shadowing at all and that I would have to constantly just observe whereas in the actual internship I was able to help the doctor by helping her with notes or giving my input on different situations we faced
– I expected to not be able to go into an ICU or experience something as intense as that where as I was allowed to follow the doctor into that intense setting and experience what it’s really like to work with critically ill/emergency patients.
– I expected to only take part in ward rounds but I was able to see that doctors also do other stuff such as Journal Club (which was a completely new concept for me) and understand how doctors collaborate with each other in ways other than the typical.
How much of your intended goals were met?
– I believe I achieved all of my intended goals which were as follows:
To gain more insight into the medical field and how exactly a hospital operates on a day to day basis –> Through the internship I was able to understand how logistically everything works and the roles of registrars and medical “hierarchy”
To find out and clarify my interests within the medical sector and possible specialisations —> After the internship I believe I have become even more passionate about wanting to join the medical field and I have also begun to have more of an interest in the clinical part of being a doctor rather than the surgical
To better understand the importance of a doctor and their day to day roles -> As mentioned above, I got to know about different things doctors did that I didn’t realise they did
To get more comfortable in a hospital setting –> This was the biggest goal for me and I believe I genuinely achieved it through the internship as I saw various aspects of it
What might have been some strategies that helped you achieve those goals?
I believe I maintained a positive attitude throughout and I was able to learn from what I saw
– I ensured that I asked as many questions as possible to clear any doubts or curiosities I had in my head to make the most of my time as well as to learn the most I possibly can
What mistakes did you make along the way? (A challenge I faced) How have these mistakes/challenges shaped your learning?
A major challenge was hearing that a man we had seen the night before had passed away the following morning. This was the first time I had experienced a hospital death and the way the doctor deals with it. It was hard emotionally to understand how and what happened as well as how to react. This was difficult for me because I had never had to experience something like that before. I believe it was the most heartbreaking experience but I was also able to learn about the challenges a doctor feels daily.
My Advice to the Next Set of Interns:
Ask as many questions as possible, they really help you understand everything and also help you make the most of your time on the job
Offer to help whenever you can, this sounds obvious but by trying to help out in any way you possibly can –> you might be able to help in a way the doctor may not have thought of anyway and you might be able to gain something valuable out of it
I am very grateful for the internship and believe I have learnt a lot more about the medical profession than I believe to have known.
I learnt that I am able to succeed in anything if I try– I learnt this through skateboarding for the first time. With the blue dragon kids, I failed multiple times through falls from the skateboard but eventually at the end of the day I was feeling very confident and proud of myself.
Everything won’t go to plan.- We have to be able to react positively to even the most negative of situations.
We can make long lasting impacts on other people’s lives as long as we are willing to take up the challenge and willing to adapt.
Learning Objective- 2 CHALLENGE (Undertaken new challenges)/NEW SKILLS (Developing new skills)
Learning Objective- 6GLOBAL VALUE (Engaging with issues of global importance)
Learning Objective – 7 ETHICS (Considering the ethical implications of actions)
What are some of your goals for this summer internship?
To gain more insight into the medical field and how exactly a hospital operates on a day to day basis
To find out and clarify my interests within the medical sector and possible specialisations
To better understand the importance of a doctor and their day to day roles
To get more comfortable in a hospital setting
What might be some evidence you can collect to assess how successful the summer has been for you?
Photos and reflections on my daily encounters
Confidence in the medical profession
Keeping a diary or journal during my internship time to ensure I am understanding what I am observing What challenges might you face and what might be some of the strategies you can employ in a similar situation?
Lack of first hand work and interaction
Patient confidentiality might not allow me to do many things
Lack of knowledge and understanding of issues
Unable to speak about certain experiences
Might not be able to anything hands on, might just be able to observe quietly
If you could refine it to one goal, what would be the most important one to pay attention to this summer?
My most important goal for me is to become more aware of a doctor’s daily life and what the holds. I want to understand what it’s like to be a legit doctor in it’s un-glorified form
I’m looking forward to my internship and am very grateful for the opportunity I have been given.