THE UNOFFICIAL GUIDE TO MEDICINE ESSAY COMPETITION

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An international competition for secondary school and medical students

The Unofficial Guide to Medicine Essay Competition 2019 is now open for entries.

Entries close 1st January 2020

 

Essay competition theme: Artifical Intelligence in Medicine

Key Details:

The competition is open to all students who are in Year 11, 12, or 13 of secondary education, and medical students.

All entries should be word processed. The maximum word count for entries is 1,500 words, excluding references. Only one entry per person is permitted. Entries to the competition must be unique. The deadline for applications is 1st January 2020.

Highly commended entries will receive a certificate for their participation. Two runners-up will be selected and will each receive a certificate and a copy of one UGTM book. One winner will be selected and will receive a winner’s certificate and a copy of all the books in our current UGTM series worth over £250.

Please make clear your full name, role (secondary school pupil or medical student), essay number and essay title at the top of your essay.

Marking Scheme

You can download a copy of our marking scheme to help you with your essay from the links below:

Marking scheme (pdf)
Marking scheme (docx)

Essay Topics

Medical student titles:

  1. Discuss the role of AI in medicine. Is it possible to replace human doctors or any aspect of medical care with robots?
  2. How can AI be used to minimise medical errors?

Secondary school pupil titles:

  1. What will hospitals look like 100 years in the future?
  2. How can the current problems in healthcare be minimised using AI and technology?

Competition Winners – 2018

There were numerous high-quality entries for the essay competition, and we would like to congratulate everyone for their efforts.

Medical Students

First Prize

Claire Read

Claire Read

Second year medical student at Nottingham University

I’m a keen runner and compete as part of the University distance running team but aside from my sport, I enjoy keeping myself busy; for example taking part in this essay competition. I also volunteer with primary school children, teaching them what to expect in a hospital which is really fun as I’m potentially interested in paediatrics or General practice as a career. Shadowing GP’s has been my favourite part of the course so far; I love chatting to patients which is a good change up from lectures!

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Runners-up

Tobi Rotimi

Tobi Rotimi

Final year medical student at University College London

I am passionate about medicine because it brings together so many areas that I enjoy including research, patient centred care, life-long learning and teaching. I am heavily interested in Neurology, Paediatrics and Ear, Nose and Throat surgery. Hopefully I will have a career that combines medical education, research and clinical practice in one of these specialties in the future.

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Ciara Doyle

Ciara Doyle

Third year medical student at Warwick University

My previous degree was in Biomedical Science which encouraged me to build my portfolio by working in an NHS based lab for a year before applying to medicine. Recent experience in research projects has seen me undertake several studies both independently and as a team. This is something I look forward to building on in the future, specifically within women’s health, which is an area of medicine I am particularly passionate about.

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Highly Commended

  • Ellie Phelps
  • Chon Meng Lam
  • Harriet Conley
  • Maia Webb
  • Anna Kober

School Pupils

Winners

Keunyoung Bae

Keunyoung Bae

Year 12 at Cheongshim International Academy, South Korea

I am interested in studying liberal arts and sciences together. I hope to study abroad in the United States or United Kingdom for university. My school follows the AP curriculum, and I am currently taking AP Biology, Chemistry, Literature, Calculus BC, Computer Science, and Comparative Politics. I wish to become a pathologist one day and research cancer with people around the world. I love to play the flute and listen to music in my free time.

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Keza Nganga

Keza Nganga

Year 12 at Rugby School, UK

I have always been passionate about the sciences and am looking forward to applying to medical school in a couple of years. I really enjoy reading anything from novels to the national geographic and I’m always ready to read beyond the textbook. Away from the classroom I enjoy working in the design blocks designing something from scratch as well taking part in photography.

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Runners-up

Kutloogh Qureshi

Kutloogh Qureshi

Year 12 at The Tiffin Girls’ School, UK

I am currently studying Biology, Chemistry, Maths and English Literature and hope to study medicine at university. What draws me to medicine is the ability to help those in need whilst contributing to a wider scientific community. I currently volunteer in an elderly care ward at my local hospital and in my spare time I like to do rowing, write poetry and read as much as I can.

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Kiran Kuri

Kiran Kuri

Year 12 at North London Collegiate School, UK

I have a passion for Science, and am currently working through the Chemistry, Biology, Maths and Physics A Level syllabus’. I particularly enjoy doing practicals in school. I am committed to a wide range of extra-curricular activities including lacrosse, swimming and playing the violin and piano. Being a member of the school science blog has encouraged me to research into science outside of my examination specifications. I read for pleasure and to follow advances in Medicine. I find listening to music and spending time with my friends and pet rabbits relaxing.

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Fan Ka Hay

Fan Ka Hay

Year 13 at Caterham School, UK

I am thoroughly interested in medicine due to the depth and complexity the career provides. The choices available in this career are near endless yet medical ethics will have a role in any speciality. It is essential we give some attention to the morals and principles of medicine which is why I chose this essay. In my free time, I enjoy playing badminton, watching movies and charity.

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Highly Commended

  • Anna Armstrong
  • Radek Antczak
  • Emma Waite
  • Sasha Westcott
  • Ahmad Khan
  • Sebastian Rensburg
  • Misaki Okuyama
  • Matilda Rose
  • Marie Barberon
  • Jessica Seddon
  • Daniel Collier
  • Avi Miller
  • Millie Thomas
  • Lisa George
  • Katy Salvesen
  • Meghana Vipin
  • Nazifa Syed
  • Deniz Tanritanir
  • Rhea Burman
  • Katherine King
  • Nancy Braithwaite
  • Ashitha Abdul
  • Afzaa Altaf
  • Jodie Ferris
  • Bavisan Jeyakanthan
  • Mathew John

Competition Winners – 2017

There were numerous high-quality entries for the essay competition, and we would like to congratulate everyone for their efforts.

Medical Students

First Prize

Loukas Kouzaris

Loukas Kouzaris

Third year graduate entry medical student at Swansea University

I am passionate about the sciences, in particular medicine, and enjoy the challenges of working within the modern-day NHS. My time spent studying medicine has fuelled my enthusiasm for teaching and has shown me the benefits of teamwork in a pressured system. I consider continued learning one of the factors that make medicine so rewarding. This ongoing development only encourages opportunities to teach your successors whilst providing a mutually beneficial facet to develop communication & interpersonal skills that can be taken into future practice.

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Runners-up

Abhiyan Bhandari

Abhiyan Bhandari

Second year medical student at University College London

During my first year I have been involved in the role of an Advanced Student Academic Representative, liaising closely with the Medical School department heads to improve the delivery, structure and content of the first year modules. Also, as President of UCL Nepalese Society, I am able to demonstrate my leadership and management skills and work with committee members to organise and manage events and the society. As a member of the BMA, I am keen on updating my knowledge on the current affairs of the medical sector. In my spare time, I enjoy playing badminton and cooking as a way of keeping active and de-stressing. Having contributed as a student reviewer in the upcoming Orthopaedic X-Ray book, I am keen to contribute my skills in medical education. I am also currently actively involved in a research project involving T1 mapping of inflammation in cardiac MRI.

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Omair Sadiq

Omair Sadiq

Third year graduate entry medical student at Swansea University

Before starting medical school, I always had an interest in research and it was something I wanted to carry on doing whilst studying medicine. Due to time and workload pressures at medical school, carrying out lab research wasn’t very feasible so I decided to carry out research on paper rather than in labs. This is where I came across essay competitions and it is something I find very stimulating, challenging and very manageable. It provides me with an opportunity to express myself and carry out research which may be beneficial to someone somewhere.

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School Pupils

First Prize

Megha Nair

Megha Nair

11th grade student at L’Ecole Chempaka, Trivandrum, India

I’m fascinated by how the human body works and I plan to pursue a career in biomedical research in the future. Microbiology, Infectious Disease and Epidemiology are a few areas that have recently piqued my interest, which is why I decided to write my essay on antibiotic resistance. Apart from my academic interests, I love playing the flute and I’m also an avid debater and quizzer.

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Runners-up

Kelly Ka Lee Li

Kelly Ka Lee Li

Year 11 student at Wycombe Abbey School, UK

As an aspiring medical doctor, I strive towards opportunities in order to supplement my knowledge beyond the standard syllabuses. I also enjoy researching a variety of fields within medicine and the sciences in general, as well as playing the piano and the violin in my spare time.

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Harry Geddes

Harry Geddes

Year 12 student at Kings College Taunton, UK

I am currently studying Biology, Chemistry and Maths at A-level. I am currently volunteering in a care home and this has helped me to understand some of the reoccurring issues in modern medicine that I have talked about in my essay. In my spare time I like to play football, hockey and cricket as well as playing the piano and the clarinet.

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Juliet Makkison

Juliet Makkison

Year 12 student at Brookfield Community School, UK

I’m studying Biology, Chemistry, Maths and Further Maths currently and I would like to study medicine at University. In my free time I’m a young leader at a Brownie Group and help out at local care home.

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Highly Commended

  • Simar Bajaj
  • Eden Simkins
  • Seb Baynes
  • Ima Silva
  • Zain Girach
  • Erica Ogbomo
  • Evie Singer
  • Shivani Raja
  • Ria Nair
  • Ashitha Abdul
  • Vindhya Maripuri
  • Rahul Panniker
  • Shivani Pedda Venkatagari
  • Kirthika Janaarthanan
  • Lucy Norman
  • Lauren Davies
  • Aydah Sarah Ashraf
  • Neha Telikapalli
  • Anthony Kemp
  • Nancy Braithwaite
  • Amy Turnbull
  • Eliza Gibb
  • Reika Yamamoto

Competition Winners – 2016

There were numerous high-quality entries for the essay competition, and we would like to congratulate everyone for their efforts.  The first prize winners will receive a complete set of books from the Unofficial Guide Series, and the opportunity to become an author with us.

Medical Students

First Prize

Richard Odle

Richard Odle

5th year MB/PhD student at the University of Cambridge

I am in my research phase at the Babraham Institute whilst continuing medical education. My current ambition is to become a clinician-scientist, taking the best of both worlds! I have a particular interest in the development of novel cancer therapeutics.

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Highly Commended

Yusuf Karmali

Yusuf Karmali

Intercalating in Experimental Pathology at Barts and The London

Having completed three years of medicine. I have interests in both medical education and health policy, hence why this essay was something that intrigued me!

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Michael Smith

Michael Smith

First year medical student at the University of Warwick

In July 2016 I graduated with a B.Sc in Mathematics from Southampton, and I enjoyed education so much, that within 2 months I was back in full time lectures. Although there is quite a notable change from Mathematics to Medicine, and I can’t wait to see what the next 4 years have in store! (Although I feel that hoping there is some time off in there too, might be setting my hopes too high)

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Corey Magee

Corey Magee

Fourth year medical student at Queen’s University, Belfast

I am currently taking time away from medicine to complete an intercalated masters program. While this is certainly proving to be a challenging endeavour, I am enjoying the research exposure that is on offer. In terms of my future career, I have yet to decide on one particular speciality. In fact, I tend to enjoy all parts of the medical course…well, nearly all of them! Alongside medicine, my other thriving passions include music and drama!

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Lucy Faulkner

Lucy Faulkner

Final year medical student at the University of Sheffield

I have completed a Bmedsci in the department of Infection and Immunity and in the future I hope to complete paediatrics training and then specialise in clinical genetics, after really enjoying my elective in the clinical genetics department of Sheffield Children’s’ Hospital as well as paediatrics on the Isle of Man. I’m looking forward to starting the Academic Foundation Programme in Yorkshire in August this year. In my spare time I am a member of the University of Sheffield Triathalon club.

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Chai Chung Sien

Chai Chung Sien

Second year medical student in the University of Dundee

I enjoy participating in activities both inside and outside the medical school and have helped out in a few events organised by the Dundee Malaysian Society (DUMAS). I  have a special interest in Human Factors and Surgery and look forward to doing a project integrating the two. Apart from academics, I especially enjoy listening to the oldies, reading fantasy novels and playing sports.

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Secondary School Students

First Prize

Ashvin Kuri

Ashvin Kuri

Studying Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics at A-Level

I hope to study Medicine at University. I particularly enjoy Human Biology and learning about diseases and their cures. Outside of lessons, I enjoy competing in Athletics, playing the violin, piano and singing, and volunteering in my local area at a Care Home and with disabled children.

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Highly Commended

Nabihah Rahman

Nabihah Rahman

Studying Biology, Chemistry, Maths and Latin at A-level

I intend to pursue a career in medicine in the future and specialise in Paediatrics. I am employed as a pharmacy sales assistant and I also enjoy volunteering at my local hospital and care home.

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Aleksandra Skroban

Well done to Aleksandra on being a runner-up in the secondary school category of our ‘Unofficial Guide to Medicine Essay Competition’ for her essay on “Doctor accountability and ‘no-blame’ culture as instruments to reduce ‘never events’ “

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Poppy Pierce

Poppy Pierce

Studying Chemistry, Biology, Physics and Psychology at Haggerston Sixth form

I want to study medicine so that I can care for those who are at their most vulnerable. I love the satisfaction of helping people and I know medical school will give me the skills to do so. I believe there is so much more research still to be done. In medicine you see the rewards of your labour unfold before your eyes and the field of expertise continually expands.

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Molly Teather

Molly Teather

Studying Biology, Chemistry, Maths and French A levels

I am hoping to study Medicine at university and become a doctor. I chose this title after having shadowed an anaesthetist which has given me a particular interest in anaesthetics and surgery.

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Ben Lim

Ben Lim

Studying Chemistry, Biology, Physics and Mathematics at AS Level

I would like to study Medicine at university and specialise in Infectious Diseases. Outside of school I enjoy playing the piano and volunteering at my local hospital and church.

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Competition Winners – 2015

There were numerous high-quality entries for the essay competition, and we would like to congratulate everyone for their efforts. In fact, we had such a hard time choosing the winners, that we decided to award prizes to essays which were highly commended as well! The first prize winners will receive a complete set of books from the Unofficial Guide Series, and the opportunity to become an author with us.

Secondary School Students

First Prize

Michaela Gaston

Reigate Grammar School

Highly Commended

Akua Crankson

Akua Crankson

James Allen’s Girls’ School

My name is Akua Crankson and I am 17 years old. I live in London and am currently studying Biology, Maths, Chemistry and Latin at A2 level. I hope to study medicine at university and specialise in Geriatrics. In my spare time I enjoy playing the clarinet and volunteering at my local hospital.

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Mehnaz Khan

Mehnaz Khan

Ibstock Place School

My name is Mehnaz Khan. I am 17 years old and am currently studying mathematics, chemistry and biology at a level. I absolutely love biology, learning about the human body and about all the complex yet fascinating wonders of medical science. One day, I hope to become a doctor and work to make people’s lives better.

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Vinay Mandagere

Vinay Mandagere

Stockport Grammar School

Hello, I’m Vinay. I’m a Gap Year student who is entering the University of Bristol this year to study medicine. I enjoy reading, playing the violin and trying different types of tea (especially Earl Grey). I’m also very interested in writing.

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Medical Students

First Prize

Andrea McCarthy

Andrea McCarthy

University College Dublin

My name is Andrea Mc Carthy and I am a final year student in University College Dublin. I enjoy working with my hands so after first training as a physiotherapist, I returned to school to study medicine and am hoping to specialise in surgery. Which kind? Well, that’s a work in progress but I do like general surgery and orthopaedics best. When I am not freaking out about becoming an intern or trying to get into yet another surgery, I enjoy shooting and catching up with friends. Thanks for reading and enjoy!

Read Essay

Highly Commended

Eloise Shaw

Eloise Shaw

Third year medical student, University of Nottingham

Having just completed the BMedSci part of her degree Ellie is looking forward to beginning the clinical phase, starting working on the wards and hopefully finding the field of medicine she wants to specialise in.

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