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Overcoming Disability and Biases

Session 194a

Session 194

In this episode, Ryan talks with Jeff who has overcome a lot on his path to medical school and is now into residency including biases and personal struggles as he forges his own path to medical school and beyond. Jeff was diagnosed with a certain type of visual impairment at a young age and didn’t realize its impact on his life until college and when he finally applied to medical school.

Should you or should you not write about your disability in your personal statement? This and more will be discussed by Ryan and Jeff in this session.

Here are the highlights of the conversation with Jeff:

Transitioning from classroom to the clinics:

  • The hardest thing about medical school for Jeff
  • Getting into the clinics is a different way of learning
  • Takes time to know what is expected of you to be a doctor

Taking a gap year:

  • Doing research for a year
  • Not getting into medical school with being visually impaired as a factor even with great stats

The thought process of writing about his disability on his personal statement:

  • Trying to spin visual impairment in a positive way
  • Other people advising him not to mention it to not give any reason for doubt

Getting three interviews during his first application:

  • An interviewer who is an ophthalmologist tested his vision during the interview
  • The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) states that no one has any right to ask you about your disability before you’re employed, what you need, or the extent of it.

About Jeff’s visual impairment:

  • Diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa at 12 years old
  • Taking its toll on him when he got to college
  • Affecting his peripheral and night vision

His second time applying to medical school:

  • Not mentioning his disability in his personal statement
  • Being “normal” and not using his cane at his interviews

Should you write about your disability in your personal statement?

  • Some disabilities and disadvantages might be less worrisome.
  • Try to leave it out (maybe try to talk about some characteristics but don’t necessarily say your disability)

His life as a resident physician:

  • Running into the most difficulty with physicians (as opposed to patients) because of the way he does things
  • Overcoming his disability: Taking ownership and making the nurse as his eyes

Sorting out his accommodation during medical school and residency:

  • Written in the contract was a checkbox stating, “I am willing to perform my duties with reasonable accommodations.”
  • Getting binders in the mail about accommodations and disabilities

Ryan’s take on this:

Do not give the admissions committee any reasons not to accept you unless you have to tell them.

Some pieces of advice for premed students:

Be confident in yourself. Don’t go doing things that you could harm somebody or would have trouble with. Don’t let other people have doubts in you. Know that you can do this. Understand the accommodations and things you need to be successful and you will go a long way. Prove to other people that you are on everybody else’s level.

Links and Other Resources:

www.themcatpodcast.com

www.medschoolinterviewbook.com

Transcript

Introduction

Dr. Ryan Gray: Have you checked out The MCAT Podcast yet over at www.TheMCATPodcast.com? I highly recommend you do.

This is The Premed Years, session number 194.

Hello and welcome to two-time Academy Award nominated podcast, The Premed Years, where we believe that collaboration, not competition, is key to your premed success. I am your host Dr. Ryan Gray, and in this podcast we share with you stories, encouragement, and information that you need to know to help guide you on your path to becoming a physician.

Now this week I’m very excited to have an amazing guest who has overcome a lot on his path to medical school, and now into residency. This week I’m talking to a student who has had to overcome biases, who has had to overcome his own struggles, and forge his own path to medical school and beyond. I was introduced to Jeff online through Twitter I believe, where I saw some tweets about what he had done and some news articles that were written about him, and I knew that I had to reach out and get him on the show. And I just want to jump right into this show and talk about Jeff, and learn from his experiences. I often get questions from students like you, who are struggling with your own disabilities whether they’re physical disabilities, mental health disabilities, whatever they may be- learning disabilities obviously a big one. And the questions that I always get are, ‘Should I talk about this? Should I talk about it in my personal statement? Should I bring it up somewhere?’ And Jeff actually has an interesting thought on that from what he went through through not only the medical school application, but also beyond. So let’s jump right in and say hi to Jeff.

Jeff thanks for joining me here at The Premed Years.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah, absolutely. Thank you for having me.

Dr. Ryan Gray: I want to start by talking to you and first of all congratulating you on your successful completion of medical school and now starting residency tomorrow as we’re recording this.

Jeff Gazzara: Thank you very much. Yeah it’s been a long road.

Biggest Challenge in Medical School

Dr. Ryan Gray: Yes medical school is fun. What was the hardest thing about medical school for you?

Jeff Gazzara: So a lot of people go into medical school and it’s such a drastic difference from undergraduate, the amount of material that you have to memorize. I actually didn’t feel like that because I went to University of Pennsylvania for undergraduate, and I felt overwhelmed there. I would say for me the hardest thing is transitioning from classroom to the clinics. It’s just a different way of learning. You can memorize and memorize when you’re in your first two years of school and do well on tests, then when you get into the clinics it’s just a different way of learning and a different way of impressing other people. So I think that was the most difficult part for me, the transition.

Dr. Ryan Gray: What did you prefer?

Jeff Gazzara: Well I mean I guess you’ve been in school for so long by the time you get to medical school, I just had it down pat. I could memorize and study for a test and do well. I did extremely well my first two years when you’re in the classroom. It’s more fun to be in the hospital because now you are acting as a doctor. You’re doing what you went to school for. So without a doubt the third and fourth year when you’re in the hospitals, I would prefer that. Like I said it takes time to know what is expected of you and how to impress people, and again be a doctor, but it’s more fun. It’s a lot more fun.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Yeah, definitely. I dreaded and hated the first two years of medical school and then once third year hit I was having a blast.

Jeff Gazzara: Oh yeah, yeah definitely.

Dr. Ryan Gray: So you talked about how you kind of had this studying game down pat. Did you go straight from Penn to medical school?

Jeff Gazzara: I didn’t, I took a year off. I did research at Penn for one year.

Dr. Ryan Gray: And was that on purpose, or did you not get in your first time around?

First Time Applying

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah so I actually- and this is sort of related to my story which we didn’t really talk about yet. When I first applied to medical school- again, graduated from the University of Penn, my grades were very good, I did a ton of research, did a ton of volunteering. For my personal statement I was very open about the fact that I am visually impaired. I tried to spin it that this is something that I bring to the table that a lot of other physicians can’t. I can really empathize with my patients, I have a unique perspective on what it’s like to be a patient. I tried to spin it in a positive way and I didn’t get many interviews, and I didn’t get into medical school. I took the year off and the second time I applied I didn’t talk about it. I didn’t mention it- yeah, and when I went on interviews I tried my absolute best to not really show it, and I got in. So people will say- some people will say, ‘That wasn’t it, that wasn’t it,’ but I don’t know, that’s how it happened.

Dr. Ryan Gray: That’s incredible. I want to dig apart- or peel apart some of what you were just talking about. So you apply your first time, you said you did well, do you mind sharing your stats?

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah so I had a 3.5 at Penn, so I graduated cum laude, I was a biochemistry major.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Okay.

Jeff Gazzara: I had honors in biochemistry with that, so a 3.5. My MCAT score was a 31 so I knew that that wasn’t going to get me into the elite like Ivy League schools, but 31 is-

Dr. Ryan Gray: It’s good.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah it’s fine, that was about what I grew up- sorry I went to school in Philadelphia, University of Penn, so that was- for Jefferson, and for Temple, and for Drexel, that was right there for them. And like I said I was published on three papers, I did research all throughout medical school, I did the volunteering at hospitals and stuff like that. I thought I had a very complete application and when I asked about it, I called a lot of different program directors and medical school admissions committees, and all of them said, “Yeah your application’s great, your application’s great, but we’re looking for this.” Or, “but this,” or “but that.” There was always something. Like I said, no one’s ever going to say, “Well it’s because of what you have,” but I find it very hard to believe that that didn’t come into play.

Dr. Ryan Gray: I want to dig into your visual impairment in a little bit, but I first want to talk about you writing about it. What was your thought process behind writing about it in your personal statement, and did anybody try to tell you not to?

Mentioning Disability in a Personal Statement

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah that was actually a big struggle, and actually just applying to residency programs- I just graduated from med school, again it came up again. Yeah it was a big struggle and it was actually 50/50. A lot of people said, “No go ahead, I think that’s who you are, your personal statement is supposed to be who you are.” I didn’t write it like woe is me, I tried to spin it positive and tried to make it an attribute to myself. And then there was a lot of people that said, “I wouldn’t mention it, they don’t need to know it, you don’t want to give yourself any reason for doubt.” So yeah it was a big struggle for me. I tend to be very open, I tend to have a big mouth, so I didn’t mind talking about it. Again I tried to spin it in a positive way, so yeah it definitely did come up. It was tough, it was tough to make the decision.

Dr. Ryan Gray: What percentage of your personal statement was about your condition?

Jeff Gazzara: I honestly forget now, I honestly forget. Yeah I don’t think- it wasn’t the whole thing, it wasn’t 100%. I think it was just a part of who I am. I honestly am blanking on it now.

Jeff’s Visual Impairment

Dr. Ryan Gray: Okay so let’s go ahead and talk about your visual impairment. Why are you visually impaired?

Jeff Gazzara: So I have what is called retinitis pigmentosa. I was diagnosed at twelve years old. I tell this story all the time; I was playing baseball- I was playing baseball, I was twelve years old, and I just realized that I was having a little bit more trouble when it was starting to get like dusk, like 7:00, seeing the ball. And that’s how- I went to the doctor and that’s how they diagnosed me. Now growing up from twelve years old and on, I actually didn’t have too much difficulty. I always sat near the front of the classroom in school, but other than that people from my high school had no idea. It wasn’t like you knew I have a visual impairment. When I got to college is when it really started to take a toll on me. Retinitis pigmentosa- sorry, I should have said this before, what it does is it affects your peripheral vision and it affects your night vision. For me I am legally blind because of my peripheral vision, but I always say the hardest thing for me is my night vision, things are a lot darker for me. I don’t pick stuff up unless it’s in a really well- like if I’m outside on a sunny day I actually do really well. I walk around and I’m okay. But if I’m in a bar or a restaurant, or even a patient’s room in the hospital, they have the lights off, it’s really tough for me.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Interesting.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah, yeah.

Dr. Ryan Gray: So in those situations, you had mentioned about going on your interviews this second time applying, and you didn’t mention it in your personal statements, and you tried to kind of ‘be normal’ at your interviews. What does that look like for you? Do you normally use a walking stick in certain situations and you kind of tried to avoid it at all costs?

Jeff Gazzara: So when I first tried to look ‘normal,’ for medical school interviews it was a little easier for me because at that time I did not have a stick. I was a little bit more- I don’t know how you would say it. I didn’t- yeah I wasn’t using my stick, I tried to just walk in the door, shake hands, sit down, not do too much else. Now, because now you’re walking around the hospitals, and you’re in big groups, and there’s a lot more mobility involved I guess you would say, I knew it was going to come up, I knew there wasn’t much I could do. So yeah, what I normally do- to answer your question when I went on my most recent interviews, I might use my cane walking in alone to find the place, and once I am with people I like to link arms. So I put my cane away and as we’re walking around the hospital I link arms just to kind of keep up with everyone, and be social, and that sort of thing.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Okay. Looking back at the first time you applied, you talked about your visual impairment in your personal statement, you get at least one interview, right?

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah I got I think three.

Dr. Ryan Gray: That’s great, you got three interviews.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah.

Dr. Ryan Gray: During those interviews were those discussions around your visual impairment?

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah, so there was. At that time- I’ve come a very, very long way in terms of who I am and learning about what is appropriate and what is not. Actually this is another story and it kind of talks to what people with visual impairments go through, and how inappropriate things can be. My very first interview- I don’t know if I should drop names.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Yeah we’ll leave names out of it.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah okay it was an institution- it was at an institution that we won’t name, and the lady was an ophthalmologist. And she said it, she’s like, “I don’t know if this was by accident,” and she sort of chuckled. She literally tested my vision in the room with me. She’s like, “I want to get an idea of what you can and can’t see,” and she did like a visual field test on me. Like I said, at that time you’re nervous, you’re applying for medical school, you don’t want to offend anybody or tell somebody no, so of course I let her do it. Now I am at the point when I interviewed at my residencies, the ADA- the Americans with Disabilities Act, no one has any right- no matter what it is, a visual impairment or anything, they cannot ask you about your disability before you’re employed. They can’t ask you what you would need, they can’t ask you the extent of it. Once they employ you then they could say, “Okay what accommodations would you need,” and they can ask about it. So I mean it was brought up on my residency interviews. Once I walked in, and some people had known me already because I had been in those hospital, and I’ve grown to the point to say, “Listen I know that this is something you’re thinking about, but I’m here. I’m a fourth year medical student, I’ve gotten this far, I do it every single month when I’m in a hospital. Nothing’s going to change, I have to make accommodations, nothing’s going to change.” And I leave it at that. I don’t go into it because it’s none of their business.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Interesting. I know there are a lot of people listening to this who may have their own disabilities; whether it’s physical, whether it’s mental, whatever it may be, and I know the discussion always comes up and the question always comes up, ‘Should I write about this in my personal statement?’ Having gone through it twice, would you recommend students avoid writing about any sort of disability that they may have on their personal statement?

Using Characteristics in a Personal Statement

Jeff Gazzara: I was thinking about that before we started this conversation. I guess- see like with my visual impairment, automatically people think it’s going to be very difficult to be a physician with a visual impairment. That’s a hard question for me to answer because I think- first of all I should say that with any disability, where there’s a will, there’s a way. If you can figure out your accommodations you can absolutely get through med school. What I want to say is I guess some disabilities and some disadvantages might be less worrisome- I’m trying to say this in the best way possible, might be less worrisome to somebody reading that application. So maybe you would be more willing to talk about it. After what I’ve gone through I would say no, I wouldn’t talk about it if you really think that it would be worrisome to them, I would say try to leave it out. Maybe try to talk about some characteristics. Like don’t necessarily say, ‘This is my disability,’ but maybe say- in some sort of way talk about characteristics that you have and strengths that you have, and play it up that way. And then unfortunately when you go on the interview, if they see or if they notice, then you can bring it up and talk about it.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Yeah. I like how you spun it there in talking about characteristics, and I often suggest that to students about just putting some little sliver of a hint of something in your personal statement, and if an interviewer wants to bring it up, they’ll bring it up. If they can read into what you’re saying and they don’t want to bring it up, they’ll leave it alone.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah.

Dr. Ryan Gray: I like that.

Jeff Gazzara: Well and because that’s why I wanted to talk about it originally, and I’m sure people listening. Your disability is who you are, and I’m sure if you’re at this point and you’re applying to medical school, you are very strong, you’ve come a long way. And of course you want to talk about it and be open, and talk about some of the things that it has given you. You have a very different perspective on life and different- again, characteristics that other people don’t have. So that’s why I would say you should be able to talk about that. Unfortunately I’ve gone through it twice now where I don’t know that it’s necessarily the best route, but if you can figure out a way to talk about the things that are good, that would be fun.

Pushback from Other Physicians

Dr. Ryan Gray: You know it’s funny, on this side- you’re a physician now, and I’m a physician, on this side thinking about it, you’re applying to- or you did apply to medical school to treat patients, to heal patients, to see patients with your same diagnosis. And to have physicians judge you and think that maybe you aren’t cut out to be a physician solely based on your diagnosis seems a little strange.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah it’s amazing. It’s actually the complete opposite of what people would think. When I was going through med school my fears were, ‘Oh my goodness, how am I going to talk to patients, and do my physical exam,’ and that sort of stuff. My experience has actually been very different to where I’ve done very well with my patients because my disability is something I live with and I’ve accommodated for it, I know exactly what I need to do to get things done. It’s actually other physicians and other people in the healthcare industry that give me so much trouble because I do things a little differently, whereas I might touch something and they just look at it. Or whereas I might- again want to do a procedure in a different way, to that physician who’s been doing it for thirty years, it’s wrong and ‘oh he can’t possibly do this,’ and ‘oh the patient would never let him do something like that.’ That- I’ve honestly run into the most difficulty with physicians as opposed to my patients or talking and examining my patients.

Dr. Ryan Gray: So talk about how you navigate that. How do you navigate your peers, and your co-workers, and the ancillary staff?

Jeff Gazzara: Like just when I first meet them or when I’m-?

Dr. Ryan Gray: Yeah when you first meet them, or even when you meet some resistance from them.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah so again this is sort of back to what I said. I’ve come a very long way. I used to kind of be unsure of myself, and I didn’t have a ton of confidence, and I think I opened myself up to criticism and doubt. Now what I’m do- I’m so proud, my last rotation in medical school was the emergency room. So now I’ll give you an example. I walk in, you know I introduce myself, “Hi, how are you.” I don’t talk about my vision unless it’s asked. If I need something I’ll just tap somebody on the shoulder, “Hey do you mind showing where something is? I have a little trouble seeing.” I leave it at that, I don’t talk about it much unless they start asking. When I go see a patient, instead of- in the emergency room, somebody would come in after a motor vehicle accident. Instead of doing what I can and then going to get the attending physician and saying, “Well I didn’t do that, I want you to come do it with me.” What I’m doing now is I’m taking ownership, I’m saying, “Nurse come in here with me. Is there any ecchymosis,” which is bruising. “Is there any edema,” swelling. “Is there any-” bang, bang, bang; I’m the physician, “Is there any of this?” She’s just my eyes to tell me, “Yes, no, this is what I see.” So I’m still taking that ownership, I’m still showing them, ‘Hey I can do this I just need you to be my eyes,’ and I think that’s changed so much. Now people have a little bit more confidence in me.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Interesting, I like that.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah I mean I’ve come- I didn’t use to do that and I think I’ve really opened myself up to some pushback. But now, I mean so what? So what if somebody else is looking at it? Nurses are trained as well, nurses are very good, there’s nothing wrong with asking them to do it and I’m showing that I have the knowledge there, so that’s what I’m doing now.

Dr. Ryan Gray: So instead of tucking your tail between your legs and going to the attending and saying, “Here are my limitations, I’m sorry,” you’re overcoming that and figuring a way around it.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah, exactly. That’s exactly it, yup.

Dr. Ryan Gray: I love it, that’s awesome. When you- what residency program did you apply to, by the way? What’s your specialty that you’re going into?

Jeff Gazzara: So it’s the- I’m an osteopathic physician so I have a DO, and it’s the osteopathic residency is neuromusculoskeletal medicine. The reason I chose that is my dream was always to do sports, and when I found out that I could still do neuromuscular medicine which is three years, and then I could still do sports with that, that’s what I chose. So it’s a lot of hand on manipulative medicine.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Interesting, okay. And obviously manipulative medicine for you is perfect because it’s a lot of feeling muscle tension, feeling bones, feeling joints.

Jeff Gazzara: Yup, absolutely. I mean that definitely played into it, that wasn’t the only reason, I had a ton of other interests and things like that. But yeah, I mean it really does. It plays in very well, it’s something that I can absolutely do. Like I said, it still allows me to do sports. Yeah so it definitely did play into it with my situation but it wasn’t the only reason.

Diagnosis Playing a Role in Career Path

Dr. Ryan Gray: That’s awesome. How much did your diagnosis play into you wanting to be a physician?

Jeff Gazzara: It came into play later on, because like I said when I was first diagnosed I wasn’t completely affected. I sort of always knew that I wanted to go to medical school. I grew up with a single mom which is- I don’t know, she always sort of just looked up to physicians, and lawyers, and sort of people in that higher position, higher status. And of course I loved science, and I liked working with people. Later on when my vision really started to affect me, it just made sense. It was something that I knew would be a huge attribute to me, and it definitely started to play into it more if that makes sense.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Okay. As you look forward on your career path, and knowing where your vision may go, what are you worried about for the future working as a physician with your disability?

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah I mean it is something I’ve thought of, it is scary. Again, luckily I picked something that I feel very comfortable with. At this point I try to tell myself my vision has changed over the past several years and I’ve always adapted, I’ve always done well with it. I think actually when I become an attending and I can kind of call more- you know as a resident or a student you’re working- you’re always working for people but you’re a lot lower on the totem pole. I think as an attending I will have a little bit more leeway to say these are the things I’m comfortable with, these are the things I’m not. I can set up my office how I want it. I might not have to go into different hospitals that I’m not comfortable with. So I think it will get a little bit better in that aspect, but it is a scary thought. I’m hoping to just keep making accommodations, and I’m hoping for the best at this point.

Needing Accommodations

Dr. Ryan Gray: Okay. One of the things we didn’t really talk about, once you kind of jumped out of the box and said, “Surprise,” to the medical school, “I need accommodations.” How did they take that?

Jeff Gazzara: So yeah it was actually really funny because like we already talked about this, I didn’t tell them. And actually they sort of- I got a package in the mail, and this was actually the same thing that happened for medical school happened for residency. They send you a whole contract, and you have to say, ‘I am willing to perform my duties or I’m willing to perform my duties with reasonable accommodations.’ There was literally two checkboxes and I was like- that sort of made me feel good. I’m like, ‘Oh wow, okay. So this is-‘ and that all started I believe with the Americans with Disabilities Act that they have to start saying that, or putting that in the contract. So I checked that box, sent it back to them, and they contacted me and we got the ball rolling. So they were really good about it actually, it wasn’t a bad thing at all.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Interesting so it was the contract where they first got wind of something.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah that’s exactly how it happened. I thought I was going to have to open it up to them, but actually I’m reading through my paperwork and there was literally a checkbox that said, ‘Yes I can do it with reasonable accommodations.’ So and then I got a couple binders in the mail about accommodations and disabilities, and that’s what got the ball rolling.

Dr. Ryan Gray: Awesome.

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah.

Advice Regarding Disabilities & Medical School

Dr. Ryan Gray: As somebody listening to this is thinking about their path, and their disability that they may be suffering with, or struggling with, or succeeding with; now that you’re on the other side of medical school, having dealt with the attendings that were kind of giving you pushback, and maybe other medical students, whatever it may be, what advice do you have for someone listening maybe following in your footsteps to give them the motivation to keep going?

Jeff Gazzara: Yeah I think it’s the story that I told. The hardest part for me was the other people in the healthcare industry, and not being confident in myself. When I was told, “No you can’t do this,” I started to have a lot of doubts. I’m not a very assertive and aggressive person, so like I said, when I was in the hospitals- I did, I kind of had my tail between my legs, I kind of took the high road. Like if there were procedures that somebody was offering me to do, “Oh I don’t really feel comfortable.” I think my advice would be be confident in yourself. Don’t go doing things that you could really harm somebody and that you really would have trouble with. I never offered to go do a surgery or something. But be confident in yourself. Don’t let other people have doubts in you. Know that you can do this, and also understand the accommodations and the things that you need to be successful. I think with all of that, you’ll go a long way. I really do think that you have to prove to other people that you are on everybody else’s level. And it’s very difficult, it takes a lot of looking in the mirror, a lot of tears, a lot of talking to family and friends for encouragement, but you really just have to- you really have to become very strong. But it’s possible, it’s absolutely possible.

Final Thoughts

Dr. Ryan Gray: Alright that was Jeff. Thank you Jeff for taking the time to come on and share your story. I know from everything that you learned, you will help students following in your footsteps. The thoughts that you had about applying to medical school and disclosing your disability, I thought- I’m on board with. I don’t think that you should need to disclose your disability until obviously the very last minute when you show up and if you’re in a wheelchair obviously they’re going to see that you’re in a wheelchair. If it’s something that you need to talk about in your personal statement, obviously you need to do what is best for you as you are writing your personal statement, and do what you need to do, what you feel comfortable doing. But I know recently there were some questions in our Facebook group which you can get at www.MedicalSchoolHQ.net/group. But in our Facebook group somebody was asking about a learning disability I believe, and when should they bring that up? In the personal statement or during the interview process. And I said, “Why would you want to bring that up during the interview or during the personal statement?” The school needs to conform to the ADA and that once you are admitted, then you can disclose any sort of accommodations- reasonable accommodations that need to be made on your behalf. And that’s exactly what happened to Jeffrey, right? He got his packet after his acceptance and they said, ‘Okay check this box if you need accommodations.’ And he’s like, ‘Alright I guess I’ll tell you now.’ So I’m always- and we talked about it a couple weeks ago too, with some other discussions, some other topics. I would not give the admissions committee any reasons not to accept you unless you have to tell them if there’s some legal thing. Obviously if they’re asking you if you’ve ever been arrested, ever been convicted of anything, whatever, obviously you need to disclose that sort of thing. And in a couple weeks we’ll have a lawyer on to actually talk about that side of things which is interesting. But I would just leave it. Don’t talk about it unless you really need to, or have to, or you want to; you think there’s some reason that you need to.

So Jeff, again thank you for talking about your story and I wish you the best of luck on your journey.

Alright I encourage you to go check out www.MedSchoolInterviewBook.com where you can sign up to be notified when the Guide to the Medical School Interview book launches. As I’m recording this we are so close to getting into the Amazon ecosystem and into the Kindle. It’s taken a lot longer than I expected, I wanted it out a month ago, but it’s getting there. I even have submitted the manuscript to the publisher who’s publishing the book for release next year in bookstores, but it will come out in Kindle as soon as possible. So right now is obviously the perfect time as we’re recording this as the beginning of August when interviews are starting. I am starting to do mock interviews with students. If that’s something you think you’re interested in, you can go check out how you can do mock interviews with me, just got to the www.MedicalSchoolHQ.net website and click on our services, and you’ll see everything there. So a couple places for you to get information on mock interviews.

I want to take a second to thank two students that have left amazing reviews for us. We have one from isNYisNY, I’m assuming that is what that means, who says, ‘Excellent, thank you very much. Very much needed, can’t do it without your podcast.’ Well you could it just might be a little bit harder.

We have another one that is from the veganpremed, which is awesome because I’m vegan now, that says, ‘Love it. Listening to this podcast has given me confidence in the application process. I hope to hear from more doctors talking about their actual practices in different areas of medicine in the future.’ The veganpremed, you must be reading my mind because hopefully in the near future we are planning on having a completely separate podcast dedicated to different specialties. So hopefully we’ll bring that to you soon.

And one more here from- I have no idea what that is. It says airrick213, ‘Excellent, trustworthy resource. I absolutely love this podcast. Didn’t write a review until I figured out what the website that must not be named is though. Thankfully you said its name in one of your podcasts, so here is a well-deserved five star rating.’ Obviously the website that must not be named will remain nameless.

Alright thank you for those reviews. If you want to leave us a rating and review you can do that at www.MedicalSchoolHQ.net/iTunes. We greatly appreciate all the support that you give us. I wouldn’t be here every week if it wasn’t for you giving us that positive feedback. On that note I’ll wrap up here and always I let you know that I hope you join us next week here at the Medical School Headquarters and The Premed Years Podcast.

Did I mention go check out www.TheMCATPodcast.com?

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