Below is an excerpt of a conversation with Junnoske [lightly edited for clarity and brevity] on his motivations for pursuing Medicine and how he’s managing his academics while still making progress in putting his application together.
Why be a brand ambassador?
I think what interested me was just the resources that Gateway+ provides. On the website, there are a lot of courses you can access. So I just wanted to have that kind of extra edge going into my university application.
Why the interest in medicine?
Initially, my interest was quite superficial, just because when you’re good at Bio or Chem, then you’re just pulled into STEM. But as time went on and I got to talk to different people that were in the profession—like my aunts who are both doctors—and spending time shadowing in the clinic has helped me to nurture this curiosity a bit more. As of recent times, I’ve also become more sure that I want to pursue it because I want to be able to channel my abilities and my own privilege towards helping people.
How did shadowing help solidify your interest in Medicine?
I think what surprised me about the shadowing was how social the job really was. Before, I was under the impression that it was a bit more clinical. But I realized that it’s also really important to connect with the patient, you’re not just someone that’s telling them they’re sick and that’s it. You’re also someone that’s able to care for them.
Intentions of how you might manage and spend your time during NS?
I’m actually quite happy having that extra two years, actually. Because then I feel like I have more time to reflect on why I want to pursue Medicine. And also because I’m intending to apply to schools like NTU later in the next application cycle, because it requires the BMAT. So I’m hoping to study for the BMAT when I’m in NS. And then additionally, another thing I’m also looking into just for personal interests would be learning how to code because I think in a world that’s becoming gradually more and more digitized, it would make me more of a versatile student.
What has been your timeline? How are you balancing school and preparing for your application?
One thing that’s helped me is having a checklist, because as you go down and check things off, that process motivates me to finish off the list. But at the moment, the biggest priority is definitely my exams, my grades, because at the end of the day, it’s one of the most important aspects. If I do badly on that, then it’s pretty much game over. So in terms of how I section my time, at the moment, the most time is spent towards studying. But I’m hoping to push more time towards doing other things once exams are over.