Hello everyone! My name is Shreeja Tripathi and I am the Vice President of the National Virtual Medical Society (VMS). I am an S6 student at Cults Academy and an aspiring Medic. I’ll be sharing my experience with regards to the Medical Leadership Programme (MLP) and my overall involvement with Medic Mentor. 

At the start of my senior year at school, I commenced my Medic Mentor Gold Award and I am currently involved in various leadership, team working, volunteering and wider reading activities. I took my first step towards my dream of pursuing a career in medicine by visiting the National Healthcare Weekend, which was a valuable experience as well as a very informative one. Further, to quench my everlasting thirst of benevolence, compassion towards essential care workers, I signed up to become a Student Volunteer Campaigner for the Medic Mentor COVID-19 vision, in partnership with the Royal Medical Benevolent Fund. 

The journey of fundraising during the pandemic has been promising as I got an opportunity to do something for our NHS staff – the very staff that genuinely save lives! I kick-started my campaign by creating a YouTube video outlining our COVID-19 vision which was posted on various social media platforms and was a huge success – grabbing the attention of a wide range of audience. I know that I did something valuable for society even during the pandemic… 

Through a highly competitive national application process, I was chosen as one of the VPs of our recently formed Virtual Medical Society. As the Vice President of VMS, I am working in close association with the Medic Mentor Committee to help students throughout their application journeys, provide them with networking opportunities and work together to give back something to society. I am meeting new professionally focussed students and networking to build relationships. These skills will provide me with a solid foundation for my future career. Under my leadership, I have hosted several events with alumni and have had panel discussions with medical professionals. The most rewarding aspect of being involved in the student committee is the great privilege of working as a leader – giving myself and my team a chance to give back to society. 

As a Student Ambassador, I am also leading the Medical Society at my School. The School Society aims to support aspiring Medics, Dentists and Vets, with their insight into medicine. Since I am working cohesively with Medic Mentor, I will have the priceless opportunity to invite guest speakers such as the Education Directorate and Regional Mentors, thanks to my networks with the Medic Mentor family! 

Recently, I took part in the Covid-19 Innovation Project, as part of the MLP. During this programme, my group researched the availability of ventilators in the UK and how it is an issue during this pandemic. It is important to have sufficient ventilators in the healthcare system as lack of this resource can give rise to ethical dilemmas which can become difficult to justify using the lens of the 4 pillars of medical ethics, namely: Autonomy, Beneficence, Non-maleficence and Justice. We used these pillars to effectively engage in a debate to decide who deserves a ventilator, considering different scenarios. During our research, we considered the impact COVID-19 has on the respiratory system and delved deeper to understand why exactly there is an issue surrounding ventilator supply as well as critically appraising our government’s response during this pandemic. This provided me with an invaluable experience to research, expand my knowledge and lead group sessions, thus enhancing my interpersonal skills.  

I must emphasise that the MLP provides us, as Student Ambassadors, with a great support system… We have mentors who work endlessly to invest in our future, and I can’t express how much I admire their work!

Outwith my Medic Mentor association, I have started a project called ‘InspireSTEM’ to get more girls into the boundless field of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) and bridge the UK gender STEM Gap. I was chosen as one of Scotland’s 100 Disruptors and won a grant of £1000 for my vision to change the face of Scotland. I have been running free STEM classes to younger girls and delivering talks across Aberdeen along with my team consisting of role models. Through this, I have learnt resilience and enhanced my leadership skills.

I would like to finish by saying that, my involvement so far with Medic Mentor has been very exciting and hopefully an everlasting one… it is a great privilege for me to say that I am part of the Medic Mentor family!