Medicine is a challenging, exciting and dynamic profession to be in. The environment can be fast-paced, demanding and stressful, but also tremendously rewarding.
It is no surprise then, that there has been a 28% increase in UCAS applications for Medicine in the UK this year, compared to 2021. This record number of applicants shows how Medicine continues to be a hugely popular degree choice for students across the country and overseas.
So, why study Medicine? In a nutshell, it is a greatly respected profession where you will have the chance to make a real difference in people’s lives.
Below, we will outline exactly why you should consider studying Medicine.
Why study medicine and the benefits pursuing a career in Medicine
Fast track to becoming a doctor
Studying Medicine is the quickest way to train as a doctor. The five-year degree programme equips you with the knowledge and training needed for the first step of the journey.
Of course, you could study a science subject at the undergraduate level and then complete a Graduate Entry Medicine course, but that could add more years to your studying and take you much longer to qualify as a doctor.
Medicine is a career filled with rewarding moments and heartfelt experiences. As a doctor, you will be treating patients and helping them to manage their pain, reduce their discomfort and thus prolong their lives.
It is also very rewarding for doctors to find the answers to medical problems, as this will help improve health outcomes in populations.
Develop your understanding of the human body
Medicine teaches you fascinating things about the human body. This equips medical students with extensive knowledge and empowers them to potentially make scientific discoveries and breakthroughs.
As a society, we need this expertise to help us treat diseases, solve problems and make a better future. For instance, when the Covid-19 pandemic hit, medical professionals had to adapt to the outbreak of a deadly virus, keep everyone safe, and develop vaccines and medications to treat the virus.
So, studying Medicine means you can potentially go on to contribute new findings to health problems and develop new medicines and treatments to help patients.
Build valuable skills
Medical students get to build so many useful skills while training and on the job. These include problem-solving, leadership, empathy, flexibility, conscientiousness, and communication, to name a few.
Become a medical specialist
During your training, you will specialise in a specific field of Medicine.
Medicine is such a diverse field, so there are countless specialisms to choose from: in fact, there is a whole alphabet full of them!
From anesthesiology and dermatology to oncology and surgery, there are many different training programmes available.
For instance, if you want to work with children, opt for paediatrics.
Or, if you are more interested in helping patients in life-threatening situations, you can go down the emergency medicine route.
Or perhaps you are more interested in a specific organ, like the heart, liver, brain, or stomach? Then choose the speciality based on that organ.
You can also specialise in areas including psychiatry, sports and exercise medicine, or plastic surgery.
With so many specialisms to choose from, you will definitely find an area that will align with your interests and career ambitions.
Contribution to medical research
Studying Medicine offers you the potential to share your knowledge with other healthcare professionals and researchers to use.
You could find yourself publishing journal articles, research papers and books, and your data and findings will help others around the globe.
Medical research is extremely valuable, as it has led to significant discoveries, the development of new therapies and a remarkable improvement in public health.
Having published research will also be beneficial for your career progression if you intend to become a medical lecturer.
Excellent job opportunities
If you have a Medicine degree under your belt, then chances are, you can access job opportunities anywhere on the globe. Doctors are highly in demand, so the world needs more trained medical professionals to fill these shortages.
After studying Medicine, students can go on to undertake PhDs and become academic researchers, university lecturers and medical educators.
Good pay and benefits
Doctors work really long hours and their shifts can be challenging and gruelling. They also have to work weekends and bank holidays or have to be available on call.
With all the hard work they undertake, doctors are generally paid well.
- NHS basic pay starts at £29,000 for a newly qualified doctor.
- In the UK, if you work as a speciality doctor, you will earn a basic salary of £ £50,373 to £78,759.
- If you are a specialist grade doctor, you will earn a basic salary of £80,693 to £91,584.
- On average, in the UK, a surgeon earns around £105,000 per year, while an experienced consultant can earn up to £114,000.
Working for NHS England can also get you great discounts on things like food and drink, health and fitness, leisure, beauty and childcare.
Influence and prestige
Medical professionals are highly influential individuals. They are trusted to give advice because they have specialist medical knowledge that the general public doesn’t have. For this reason, doctors are constantly sought out by the Government, think tanks, journalists, charities, and many more organisations.
Physicians can also inform and shape government healthcare policies. They can advocate for changes or make recommendations to promote positive health and well-being in their communities.
What impact can I make if I study Medicine?
If you need another reason as to why study Medicine, just know that the opportunities facing you are endless. A whole host of industries will eagerly welcome Medicine graduates because they will value your extensive subject knowledge and transferable skills.
A Medicine degree qualifies you for a role in healthcare, sciences, public health or research, but it also opens the door for alternative careers.
With a Medicine degree, you can:
- Work as a doctor in the Armed Forces
- Open your own private medical practice
- Become a medical manager
- Work in medical communications
- Become a higher education lecturer
- Join a public health team to keep the general population healthy and safe
- Become a research scientist
- Work in pharmaceutical sales
- Work as a forensic medical examiner
- Work as a medical writer or health journalist
- Work for a medical charity
- Work in sports and exercise medicine
- Work in medical relief work, to help people in emergencies and after natural disasters
- Become a medical advisor on television or for media outlets
- Become a medical-legal advisor
- Become a politician
How do you answer the question “why do you want to study Medicine”?
If you have been invited to an interview to study Medicine at university, congratulations!
This is your chance to stand out from the thousands of other applicants and convince the university admissions team that you belong to that degree programme.
Read more articles on our blog for more advice on how to prepare for your Medicine interview.
Follow these tips below to find out how to successfully answer the question ‘why study Medicine?’
- Talk about your career aspirations and what you want to achieve with a Medicine degree.
- Explain your motivation for wanting to become a doctor. Who or what inspires you? Was there an experience that confirmed that Medicine is right for you?
- Establish that you are confident that Medicine is the right choice for you, as opposed to dentistry, veterinary science, pharmacy, nursing or midwifery.
- Discuss which areas of Medicine interest you and why you find them fascinating.
- Explain why you are excited at the prospect of treating patients and helping people.
- Show you have excellent communication skills and that you are comfortable to work in patient-facing areas.
- Pick out aspects of the Medicine degree curriculum that excite you and explain why you want to do them.
- Reflect on any relevant work experience and explain how this motivates you to study Medicine.
- Illustrate your competency and willingness to overcome the challenges of being a doctor.
Avoid making these common mistakes
- Remember to research your chosen Medicine degree course. You may find it helpful to Google the university’s medical lecturers and look up their work.
- Re-read your personal statement, as your interviewers will be asking you questions based on what you have written.
- Don’t forget to bring copies of your CV with you to the interview.
- Do not just state that it was your childhood dream to become a doctor.
- Do not just say that it is the money that attracts you to the profession; you need to think bigger than this!
- Do not just ramble on about the Covid-19 pandemic or the state of the NHS if it is not relevant.
- Always be respectful of other medical professionals; don’t look down on any healthcare workers who also work really hard to care for patients and keep the public safe.
We hope we have answered the question ‘why study Medicine?’
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