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Fellowship Endocrinology, Ukrainian

I am writing this on behalf of my application to your distinguished and competitive fellowship program in Endocrinology. As a doctor from Ukraine, I have many years of experience in this and closely related areas, which I feel strongly would enable me to make significant contributions to your program.

We never forget where we come from, our beginnings, however humble, and the precious few years of our childhood that define who we are – indeed are – at heart.  As a child growing up in Kyiv, I remember myself sitting at my grandmother’s knee, watching as she injected herself with insulin, promising her that someday I would find a cure for her Diabetes.

In school, I excelled in the sciences, and was consistently fascinated with how our bodies operated.  With every day, more questions came to me.  As I learned of one system, I wanted to know how it affected or relied upon another, and if this were true, what of the tot ensemble; I was insatiable!  Even before entering medical school, I worked as a laboratory assistant, dissecting animals after experiments.  In medical school, my zeal earned me a top-ten percent position, an excellent rating with honors in my Pathology class, and found me actively participating in the student scientific society.

While life took me into a torrent of events, immersed in the collapse of the former Soviet Union, and the subsequent veritable disintegration of the medical service industry, I did what I could to survive.  Indeed, I was very successful, albeit only financially, and rode the wave of entrepreneurs, developing my business, and even educating myself as a lawyer as well to augment my endeavors.

But it was not me; it could never be what defined who I was. It became clear to me after one episode of my life back in 1998 when I helped one little child in my country to survive.  My friends called me, their daughter three y.o. Anya Deripapa was diagnosed with AML. This diagnosis meant a death sentence in Ukraine at the time.  Her parents asked me to help her daughter, knowing that I had a medical background and had learned English. After a few days of negotiations, I organized treatment in Ireland for this little girl. I can still remember the feeling of absolute happiness and satisfaction when her parents told me that Anya was in stable remission.  But this feeling had a bitter tinge to it since, at the time, I distinctly realized that I am deprived of what I like doing most and that nothing in this world could make me really happy but helping others. This and a few similar episodes later in my life helped me make some uneasy and “strange” (from the point of view of many people) life decisions.  Today, I am returning to my roots, building on my foundation in medicine, and a promise I made to myself to at last make valuable contributions to the only field I have ever actually loved.

To bring my plans to fruition, I require a challenging residency program, giving me ample exposure to a greater diversity of cases than in lighter programs.  It is understood that what one takes away from a residency assignment is key to the type of practice you are aiming for.  I will need an excellent grounding, and this being said, I am looking to pursue exposure to as many advanced cases as possible.

Proof of my abilities is evident in my USMLE scores.  But more than this, I bring with me, aside from being trilingual, many skills and abilities that will translate effectively to my medical career being mature, having worked in a deadline and detail-oriented environment, and within multidisciplinary teams of professionals.  I try to live in harmony with myself, listening to classical music, traveling, and watching good movies, so people around me usually feel comfortable.

During my medical education, I was very active in my medical pursuits, contributing to institute students’ scientific research society projects, serving as a doctor assistant during my military service in Kazakhstan, and worked as well as volunteering in clinics including the Kyiv Emergency Hospital, Kyiv Institute of Neurosurgery and Kyiv Institute of Endocrinology.

In terms of my future in medicine, I anticipate serving as a specialist in a community hospital, possibly returning to Kyiv to spearhead medical mission work, bringing my new training to help bolster the woefully inadequate medical system, worse in places than when under Soviet tutelage, and fraught with corruption at all levels.  There are many areas to address, realities that only underscore a male life expectancy of only 63 years in the Ukraine and the apparent deficit of qualified Pathologists.  Indeed, I would like to explore the hemo/oncopathology connected mainly with the accident at Chornobyl, and the increased incidence of oncohematologic disorders.  As a board-certified Pathologist, I will be able to open a Pathology practice in my country, helping to combat the incidence of leukoses in children that right now are all too prevalent.  Wherever I go, it must be where I can do the most significant amount of good works, increasing the amelioration of lives. 

I heard a quote from Joseph Addison that has never made more sense than today: “Three grand essentials to happiness in this life are something to do, something to love, and something to hope for.”  I never forgot what it means to dream of what I always yearned to be and am certain that I am at last exactly where I need to be.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

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