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Alternative ('Other') Category Chat/Enquiries

drum99

Member
Yep! Was on my evision account, under the programmes and papers bit and an alert too.
Very dissappointing! Do you know if we can request feedback on our application?
Oh I see - yeah the whole process is completely vague isn't it! I have no idea whether can provide feedback - worth asking the admissions office maybe??
 

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Just logged into Evision. Very surprised and stoked to see I have an interview in a months time. As above, all of them looking like they're on Zoom which I'm not sure how I feel about (I feel like I interview better in person). But still stoked!! Any tips from previous applicants??
 

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drum99

Member
This is my token post of asking any other members - what was the interview stage like? I think I've read through some earlier posts but if anyone felt so inclined that would be really awesome to chat or something.....cheers!
 

drum99

Member
Just logged into Evision. Very surprised and stoked to see I have an interview in a months time. As above, all of them looking like they're on Zoom which I'm not sure how I feel about (I feel like I interview better in person). But still stoked!! Any tips from previous applicants??
Congrats!!!
 

Pri777

Member
Looked on eVision - Declined. Feel very gutted disappointed. Looks like I'll continue my passion in Optometry and pursue myself more clinically in my profession. All the best to those who got interviews. Peace out
 

Pri777

Member
For my own personal learning, may I ask you both Drumm99 and Sideshowconnor how you both went about your application? Ie, what sort of approach you took in answering the questions of "reasons for wanting to enter medicine".
 

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drum99

Member
Looked on eVision - Declined. Feel very gutted disappointed. Looks like I'll continue my passion in Optometry and pursue myself more clinically in my profession. All the best to those who got interviews. Peace out
Sorry to hear that Pri777! For what it's worth - the whole process is super vague and no-one has really any idea why some people get selected and others don't. Also just putting this out there - I applied as an 'Other' as I come from an arts background, and from where I sit I reckon optometry looks like an awesome, stable career path that seems really interesting :)
 

drum99

Member
For my own personal learning, may I ask you both Drumm99 and Sideshowconnor how you both went about your application? Ie, what sort of approach you took in answering the questions of "reasons for wanting to enter medicine".
In terms of my approach, I spent a huge amount of time honestly reflecting about my career so far. And researching the connection between the career I have had and how it connects with medicine - found some cool literature and journal articles and stuff. This really helped inform my personal statement. I went for a creative approach - like including quotes, personal stories, and had this sort of extended metaphor thing going about how qualities I have learnt so far would really inform my pursuit of medicine. I mean it's hardly a groundbreaking statement, but I spent quite a bit of time on it and felt it would be kind of different enough to catch their attention. Had several people read over it, offer some critique and proof read etc.

I also spent alot of time on the CV. I made sure to include all the categories they wanted and thoroughly thought about how my experiences would match those categories, and even more than that, what I have actually learnt from my experiences. That was actually really challenging. But I must say, a really rewarding thing! To kind of "take stock" as it were and reflect on what has been ha. The good thing about being in my early 30s is it seems I have had heaps of different experiences to draw from over the years! I feel old now haha......

Being from an arts background, pragmatically a big thing that helped me was volunteering at Auckland City Hospital as a companion volunteer. This really opened my whole eyes to the medical world and got me out of my comfort zone in a massive way. I was able to draw on that a bit for my personal statement and CV as well.

Also - I have to give a huge shoutout to this amazing fifth year Otago med student who was successful in gaining a place through Alternative. She has been amazing and we have had many chats on the phone and emails about the whole process. This really helped me get my head around the whole thing. The admissions office were pretty great too - I called them up earlier in the year and just picked their brains a bit and they offered some pretty good advice.

I hope this helps in some way shape or form! I still have absolutely no idea if I will actually be offered a place. I do hope so!!
 
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Hi folks, long-time stalker on your forum here (10 years....please don't judge!). First time posting on your board. I'm also an alternative entry applicant for Otago med this year, and wanted to thank the collective stronghold here for the invaluable information you've provided about admission to med school. It has been immensely helpful in drafting my application, and learning about your experiences in med school. You guys (especially the moderators) do amazing work here, truly.
 

drum99

Member
Hi folks, long-time stalker on your forum here (10 years....please don't judge!). First time posting on your board. I'm also an alternative entry applicant for Otago med this year, and wanted to thank the collective stronghold here for the invaluable information you've provided about admission to med school. It has been immensely helpful in drafting my application, and learning about your experiences in med school. You guys (especially the moderators) do amazing work here, truly.
Yeah I agree, this is a really choice community and its been an amazing resource to read through this thread which spans so many years with such a wide variety of experiences! So did you apply this cycle? I'm guessing you got an interview?!
 

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Yeah I agree, this is a really choice community and its been an amazing resource to read through this thread which spans so many years with such a wide variety of experiences! So did you apply this cycle? I'm guessing you got an interview?!
Hey drum,

Yeah, I just wanted to shout out to the longtime members on here :). I did apply this cycle, and fortunately I got offered an interview this time. My commiserations to those who didn't get an interview. I know the heartache having been through it before.
 

Pri777

Member
S
In terms of my approach, I spent a huge amount of time honestly reflecting about my career so far. And researching the connection between the career I have had and how it connects with medicine - found some cool literature and journal articles and stuff. This really helped inform my personal statement. I went for a creative approach - like including quotes, personal stories, and had this sort of extended metaphor thing going about how qualities I have learnt so far would really inform my pursuit of medicine. I mean it's hardly a groundbreaking statement, but I spent quite a bit of time on it and felt it would be kind of different enough to catch their attention. Had several people read over it, offer some critique and proof read etc.

I also spent alot of time on the CV. I made sure to include all the categories they wanted and thoroughly thought about how my experiences would match those categories, and even more than that, what I have actually learnt from my experiences. That was actually really challenging. But I must say, a really rewarding thing! To kind of "take stock" as it were and reflect on what has been ha. The good thing about being in my early 30s is it seems I have had heaps of different experiences to draw from over the years! I feel old now haha......

Being from an arts background, pragmatically a big thing that helped me was volunteering at Auckland City Hospital as a companion volunteer. This really opened my whole eyes to the medical world and got me out of my comfort zone in a massive way. I was able to draw on that a bit for my personal statement and CV as well.

Also - I have to give a huge shoutout to this amazing fifth year Otago med student who was successful in gaining a place through Alternative. She has been amazing and we have had many chats on the phone and emails about the whole process. This really helped me get my head around the whole thing. The admissions office were pretty great too - I called them up earlier in the year and just picked their brains a bit and they offered some pretty good advice.

I hope this helps in some way shape or form! I still have absolutely no idea if I will actually be offered a place. I do hope so!!
Sounds like it must have been an amazing statement you obviously must have spent a lot of time on it! I truly wish you all the best for the interview :)

Whilst I took an initial creative approach to my statement talking about my role in growing my dance school business and being a clinician (I dance and optom haha), I had several colleagues read it and say it was 'too fluffy' and I was losing grip of the question - my reasons for wanting to enter medicine. For this reason, I refined it and focused more on my career working around NZ and some personal anecdotes about a family medical event which forced me to take a break mid-career and re-evaluate what I was doing. Its been a challenging and also stressful time writing the perfect statement, especially as its only 1 page. I guess I will always wonder if I could have written it differently but I with time I am sure I will get closure on this. Thanks for the support :)
 

drum99

Member
S


Sounds like it must have been an amazing statement you obviously must have spent a lot of time on it! I truly wish you all the best for the interview :)

Whilst I took an initial creative approach to my statement talking about my role in growing my dance school business and being a clinician (I dance and optom haha), I had several colleagues read it and say it was 'too fluffy' and I was losing grip of the question - my reasons for wanting to enter medicine. For this reason, I refined it and focused more on my career working around NZ and some personal anecdotes about a family medical event which forced me to take a break mid-career and re-evaluate what I was doing. Its been a challenging and also stressful time writing the perfect statement, especially as its only 1 page. I guess I will always wonder if I could have written it differently but I with time I am sure I will get closure on this. Thanks for the support :)
Yes I TOTALLY understand the stress and pressure involved with trying to get a succinct yet poignant personal statement all on one A4 page! Crikey - what an absolute mission. I think I got up to about six drafts in the end! And that was exactly my issue too - initially I just wrote about all the things I had learnt from my career so far, however upon reflection I realised I needed to actually provide some really concrete reasons for wanting to enter medicine. Upon revising it within those parameters, I think it ended up to be a well rounded document. Well that was my hope anyway! All the very best with everything - have you considered Australian medical schools? They do postgrad MD programmes over there which are only 4 years which sound pretty epic. Just need to do the dreaded GAMSAT exam....sheesh....
 

LMG!

Moderator
Staff Member of the Year 2019
Hi folks, long-time stalker on your forum here (10 years....please don't judge!). First time posting on your board. I'm also an alternative entry applicant for Otago med this year, and wanted to thank the collective stronghold here for the invaluable information you've provided about admission to med school. It has been immensely helpful in drafting my application, and learning about your experiences in med school. You guys (especially the moderators) do amazing work here, truly.
Belated welcome to MSO (sorry it's 10 years late!) and congratulations on your interview! Best of luck!
 

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For my own personal learning, may I ask you both Drumm99 and Sideshowconnor how you both went about your application? Ie, what sort of approach you took in answering the questions of "reasons for wanting to enter medicine".

Hey Pri777, sorry to hear that you didn't progress through to an interview.

Agree with the comments regarding how vague the information on the letter is. I suspect they purposefully do this to allow applicants to use a bit of initiative and allow their personalities to come through a bit?

For my letter I focused it around the 2 main reasons I want to become a doctor. I also added in some personal experiences which I believe put me on my path to wanting to study medicine. I got quite a few people to read it, one of these people got in the alternative category last year and was very helpful. I ended up going through about 7 or 8 drafts and changed it multiple times. Struggled to fit it all on the page. Thank god for modifiable margins and font size😉
 

drum99

Member
Hey Pri777, sorry to hear that you didn't progress through to an interview.

Agree with the comments regarding how vague the information on the letter is. I suspect they purposefully do this to allow applicants to use a bit of initiative and allow their personalities to come through a bit?

For my letter I focused it around the 2 main reasons I want to become a doctor. I also added in some personal experiences which I believe put me on my path to wanting to study medicine. I got quite a few people to read it, one of these people got in the alternative category last year and was very helpful. I ended up going through about 7 or 8 drafts and changed it multiple times. Struggled to fit it all on the page. Thank god for modifiable margins and font size😉
Just out of interest did you put your text on to the template they provide in the application ?? I did this but it was a struggle for sure fitting it all on !!
 
Belated welcome to MSO (sorry it's 10 years late!) and congratulations on your interview! Best of luck!
Thank you, and it's my fault for hiding for this long! Do you happen to know where I could locate some tips for the Otago med interviews in the alternative category? I went through the much earlier posts but could not find anything.
 

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