Hello everyone, I am Manas Agrawal. I am 16 years old and I go to George Heriots School in Edinburgh. I am extremely passionate about pursuing a career in Medicine. My first involvement with Medic Mentor was when I attended the National Healthcare weekend in Stirling back in November 2019. This event really opened my eyes and gave me a wealth of information on how to get involved and pursue my journey towards medicine. I enrolled on to medic mentor summer school and am now an ambassador for the leadership programme. In March 2020 I took the opportunity to present myself at a conference where I got the platform to talk about my experiences amongst prospective students. I gave a presentation for a crowd of over 100 people. This was an excellent opportunity and has enhanced my confidence greatly.  I am currently writing a publication for the MM magazine and involved in doing a blog for our newly formed Virtual Medical Society. My publication is on use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and is in keeping with the theme of our current crisis. I have also done a fundraiser to help raise money for the Covid-19 pandemic. This was initiated by Medic mentor and I went on to raise over £300 for the Royal Medical Benevolent Fund. This was a brilliant opportunity for me to provide some support during these unprecedented times. This experience has allowed me to push furthermore and I feel happy with some of my accomplishments and the opportunities that I was given. I am working towards the Gold Medic mentor awards.  I have read medic mentor books that are very concise with lots of information.  These have allowed me to expand my knowledge on the application process, as well learnt about current affairs, history taking skills and diagnosis which are all vital parts of medicine. I have recently been chosen as Vice President for our virtual medic society and this has been a fantastic experience so far. We now have over 700 members of the virtual medical society and I have had the opportunity to chair a Problem based learning (PBL) session and take an interview of an admissions officer. This has been an amazing experience expanding my understanding and knowledge about ethics as well as the desirable and essential characteristics of an aspiring student. 

The Covid-19 Innovation Project was a phenomenal opportunity for me to build on my researching abilities. I have developed important skills about team working effectively as well as how to manage your time during a fast paced project. Initially we found it difficult to collate information as a group, but we slowly improved on our communication and then brought all our findings together and made a poster presentation. We worked very well together as a team and I had a very good time researching such a major current affair.

The medical leadership programme I attended in January 2020 inspired me to go and set up a medical society in my school. This required me to speak to the relevant staff and bring the correct group of people together to focus on attracting others to join the society. I soon learnt that when a group was formed, tasks and duties could be split amongst everyone and the work load reduced making the experience more enjoyable and less daunting. I now feel much more comfortable educating younger aspiring medics, dentists and vets with my new leadership skills.

I learnt the importance of good leadership skills and have had a chance to develop this through coaching younger children between the ages of 5 and 8 on the tennis courts. I am often told by the head coach to lead group activities and drills. I realised that to be a good leader you need effective communication skills, confidence and being able to speak with kids of a different ages is very important. It allows you to build a bond as well as trust between a leader and a member.  I have helped set up a wide range of exercises and my experiences with medic mentor have been great as coaching has made me more responsible and confident in my teaching abilities. I have learned how to interact with young kids and convey them exercises in a calm and concise manner while trying to maintain their interests and active participation. Leading effectively ensures the kids will follow you and understand better how to play tennis.

In Essence the medical leadership programme along with the rest of my extracurricular activities has really formed me as an individual. I have built upon my transferable skills mentioned above as well as learning new ones. I am really looking forward to next year’s comprehensive medical leadership programme as I believe it will be as great of an experience as this year was for me.

Thank you.