Below is the winning essay written by biology major Hans Munzing for the second of two $1,000 Graduation Month scholarships. The essay responds to the question: What is your dream career, and why?
If I were asked “What is your dream career?” several years ago, I wouldn’t have had a clue what to respond. That has changed through a compilation of recent experiences. The direction I’m taking is to graduate from Gonzaga University with a bachelor’s degree in biology, then attend medical school to begin my career in medicine.
Growing up, I was a good student excelling in each subject; however, I lacked a strong interest in any particular class. Never in my childhood did I have dreams of entering a particular career. This uncertainty of a dream career continued into high school. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my future.
In 2012, I made the largest decision of my life. I joined an international student program in Costa Rica, lived with a local family, and attended a public high school from July of 2012 to June of 2013.
“Surely this experience will give me direction, right?” I thought to myself.
Throughout the year, I developed Spanish as a second language and, equally as important, a passion for the international community. Although I did not know where this passion would lead, it was the start that I needed.
Upon my return to the States, I knew that I needed to use my skills and opportunities to benefit not just those around me, but also those on an international scale. I volunteered my services and was recruited as a Spanish-English translator to a medical team serving in Guatemala. This past January marks my third service trip to provide free medical clinics in the most impoverished areas of the country.
Serving as a medical assistant and a translator has allowed me to see, firsthand, the good that can be done when these selfless doctors volunteer their time and skills to care for the thousands of patients that we were able to treat. I have great respect for individuals who spend so much of their life learning and honing the skills that they can use to become a positive force in society.
It was during the first of these medical trips that I found my path; there was no doubt in my mind that I would go into the medical field.
Entering this career field is ideal as it allows me to make a difference in the community and it engages my interests. Since then, I have put in the hard work and long hours to reach my goals. In several days, I begin the next step on this path—a summer internship at the large regional hospital in my area. This experience will allow me to observe many of the medical specialties which I may enter.
My dream of becoming a doctor is certain; the specialty I enter is not. But so long as I am able to use my education to care for those in need, both here at home and around the world, then I know I cannot make the wrong choice.
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