My journey to medicine: why I know Bradford will make me a better Doctor

I’m Lloyd Finlay and I moved from Lincolnshire to study the Foundation in Clinical Sciences/Medicine at Bradford. I applied to the course through route 3 and I’m transferring to Leeds School of Medicine in September.

Like many of my peers, I have had a passion for medicine for some time. But unfortunately, my A-Level results meant that I was unable to apply through the traditional route.

At first I wasn’t sure what to do and began to question my career choice. So, I decided to have some time out of education to re-evaluate myself and my options. I got a job in a high street bank for a couple of years; this helped to fund a fantastic trip of a lifetime to South-East Asia and realise that medicine really was for me.

I spent seven months travelling around Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia and Hong Kong. When I got back home I knew that now was the time to get back into education and fulfill my dream of becoming a Doctor.

I started to research my route into medicine, and began to realise I may be limited to postgraduate entry. Luckily, I came across the Foundation in Clinical Sciences/Medicine course at Bradford that would provide me with a potential route into medicine and prepare me well for higher education – having been out of academia for a few years.

There’s no question that Bradford has developed my skill set enormously and has prepared me for a career in medicine.

The course is designed for both people that have studied science at A-Level and those who haven’t, so it was a great way to refresh my memory and build on my existing knowledge.

Another one of the positives for me was the size of the university campus. It is ‘just right’ and means that you can get to know many people through various clubs and societies that will really make your time at Bradford memorable.

I was a member of the Swimming Club and actually became Treasurer for the Club in the New Year. My time in Thailand helped develop my language skills so much that I was able to hold voluntary Thai language classes once a week, which was good fun.

My biggest achievement so far is finally getting into medical school! The transfer route that Bradford offers for widening participation students and the help they’ve given me made it possible.

All the workshops, mock interviews, studying for the BMAT exam and hard work on the course has paid off. I also volunteer as a Community First Responder, attending 999 emergencies before the ambulance arrives.

It still hasn’t sunk in that I’m one of the few people selected to make the transfer. I’m looking forward to embracing every opportunity that comes with a career in medicine. In particular, I am interested in emergency medicine, fueled from my time working as a First Responder.

However, as I have learnt at Bradford, self-reflection is key, so my interests may change as I learn more of the various specialisms available to me. I’m excited to see what the future holds!

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