Dr. Deepal Shah
Dr. Deepal Shah
The University of Texas at Austin
Baylor College of Medicine
The courses we took during the summer programs showed me what to expect in medical school and even gave me a slight advantage in certain classes once I became a medical student. These summer programs so closely imitated what daily life as a medical student was like that it took me some time to realize that I was in medical school now for four years, not just for a month in the summer.
How has JAMP helped you as you strive to achieve your goal of becoming a doctor?
I applied to JAMP not for its financial benefits, but primarily for the experiences it provided. As an undergraduate student, I assumed these experiences would truly help me become a strong candidate for my top medical school choices as well as succeed as a medical student once accepted. Fortunately, my assumptions were correct. I remember starting my first semester of medical school. It felt surreal to finally start learning what I had always wanted to learn so that I could be one step closer to achieving my dream of becoming a doctor. The first few weeks into medical school, I kept having to remind myself that I was not just at a JAMP summer program, but actually a medical student. The summer program experiences JAMP provided definitely helped me learn to build the stamina I needed to make it through each day of medical school. The courses we took during the summer programs showed me what to expect in medical school and even gave me a slight advantage in certain classes once I became a medical student. These summer programs so closely imitated what daily life as a medical student was like that it took me some time to realize that I was in medical school now for four years, not just for a month in the summer.
What advice would you like to offer current or future JAMP students?
My only advice to current and future JAMP students is to truly take your summer experiences seriously. One, make great friends from all over the state, not just your hometown or from your own college. This provides great networking and you also learn how to deal with people of different backgrounds. It was very interesting to hear stories from my friend who grew up in a small town that had one doctor and very limited medical facilities since all I had ever known was Houston, a city that seems to have a hospital or clinic on every corner. Secondly, do take the courses you take during the summer internship seriously and keep in mind even the smallest things you learn during your shadowing experiences. I have realized how well rounded of an applicant JAMP helped me become since I was able to meet and learn from a variety of medical specialists ranging from a psychiatrist to an orthopedic surgeon. Also learning biochemistry multiple times during these summer programs and in college allowed me to focus my study time on other subjects instead once I started medical school. So enjoy your summer experiences, learn work-life balance, and become excited about the career path you’ve chosen!
What aspect of JAMP has been most beneficial to you?
Now as I look back on my entire JAMP experience thus far, considering its purpose and the students and physicians it has produced, I have realized that JAMP turns “under privileged” young adults who have experienced a variety of personal and/or financial hardships into incredibly educationally privileged and fortunate adults who become hardworking and dedicated medical students and physicians. Being accepted to JAMP has definitely been a blessing to me, one that I will always be grateful for and never forget.