Before second-year ended, we had to turn in a rough draft of our CV and personal statement to our school for one of our classes. Some of us already had a CV ready, filling up pages with research experience, volunteer experience, and leadership experience. Some of us barely even know what a CV was. Most of us were in my boat, realizing that our CV really isn’t all that impressive. And thus the medical school comparisons began. You feel like you need to be doing a lot more to have an ‘impressive’ CV. But if having an impressive CV is your motivation for doing things to add to it, is it really that impressive? Every part of the journey to becoming a doctor is competitive. From the MCAT, to getting an interview, to class rank, to getting residency, and even getting a job afterward. However, there definitely is a right and a wrong way to build your CV, in my opinion.
First of all, I really think that the specialty that you want to get into matters. If you want to do something really competitive that requires a lot of research experience, you have to enjoy doing research. Otherwise, you are going to spend your life doing things you don’t really enjoy, for what? I personally think that it IS important to have leadership experience, research experience, volunteer experience, etc., but only if you are doing something that you enjoy doing. That being said, being a doctor requires a lot of dedication to the profession and the heart to serve others, so if you want to be a doctor I would think you would enjoy leading and volunteering. At the end of the day, I think that having an ‘impressive’ CV is a lot more impressive if it is filled with things that you did because they are meaningful to you and your future patients.