I'd like to tell you all of one girl I met a week ago at an organization I volunteer for. I was just ending my shift, she was just starting, and since I love to meet other people I introduced myself. She asked me if I was a student, I said I just graduated with biochemistry, and she squinted a bit and said "Oh, I am so sorry you had to do that."
I told her I am applying to medical school and her face lit up in an omg I want to be a doctor one day too kind of way. So, I asked her what program she was in and she told me nursing. I asked her what specialization she was doing, and after seeing her facial expressions earlier and suspecting she wanted to be a physician, I asked her if nursing was her eventual goal.
She told me that it was always a dream of hers to go to medical school but everyone around her told her that it was impossible. So, she was settling on nursing. This made me so sad.
I asked her, "How are your extracurriculars?"
She told me, "I work during the semester and I volunteer in the summers."
I asked her, "How are your marks?"
She replied, "They're okay."
I said, "A- or above?"
She replied, "Definitely! Even higher than that!"
I said, "Do you have clinical experience? How do you like being around others?"
She said, "I just love it. I want to do more than just nursing, but everyone told me I won't make it into med."
It was clear to me that this girl was given horrible advice the whole time. Her marks, her personality, her extracurricular, everything was a fit for medical school! I had fallen victim to horrible advice in my past several times and understood that this girl was settling on something her heart was not in.
I told her, "Look. Whoever told you that you cannot become a doctor either wanted to be one and failed or is jealous of you. You are a great applicant from what I see, and you're only in your second year of nursing! Write the MCAT, apply to _____, ______, _____ etc. and you might not be accepted the first time but you keep trying. If it's your family holding you back, don't tell them. It's not their passion. It's yours. Here is my email, you send me a message if you ever need advice."
I can't even tell you how happy I was that I was able to connect with her that day. And, I will be working with her on studying for the MCAT/applying to med.
If you've ever been told by others that you cannot do something, and you know in your heart that you can, don't listen to the negativity. Unfortunately, it's very true that some others will try to limit you and prevent your from following your dreams.
These people should have no say in your life. It's your future, your goals, and your mental state. You all need to find your personal strengths, like the girl I mentioned in this post, and after you have found what your passion is do it to the best of your ability. Do whatever you find is your passion, whether it be medicine, law school, teaching, art, speech pathology, physiotherapy, baking, the list goes on! Don't ever give yourself the opportunity to grow old and look back saying, "I could have been a(n) _____ but I settled, and I don't even know why."
Some of the people in my life who have encouraged me the most are those who have said, "No" to me. I thoroughly enjoy proving others wrong. And the best part of it is that I am chasing my dreams at the same time.
Good luck, everyone.