|10 Dec 2019|
|Written by Alison Cox - AGS Alumni|
Aylesbury Grammar School Medical Society
The Medical Society is principally for boys in Years 12 and 13 who have expressed an interest in studying medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, physiotherapy or who are curious about a career in the health sciences. We have a dedicated cohort of boys, for many years, who will give up a lunch break each week to attend the Medical Society meetings. They participate in various activities including researching health topics, giving presentations to the group, discussing specific clinical conditions, taking part in role play, discussing various topics related to studying medicine including the application process, careers following graduation, postgraduate exams and much more. A lot of what is covered in the meetings is driven by the boys themselves as they take on ownership of their learning and academic enrichment.
In addition, we are fortunate to have both OA’s who are at various stages in their medical career and established clinicians, generally parents of current or former pupils, who come back to the school to talk to the boys. For example, we recently had a couple of our 2018 leavers, Amith and Dylan (above) who returned to give the boys an insight into both applying to Medical School and how to survive their first year. A packed room of students, eager to listen and blessed with the opportunity to ask questions.
We have so much interest from the younger years that we ran a Junior Medical Society for a term, those in Years 10 and 11. This academic year we continue with the current format of a weekly meeting for the Year 12 and 13 boys but open up all the guest speaker meetings to those from Year 9, 10 and 11. Many of these boys express an interest in a medical career and benefit from the exposure to our activities earlier in their academic studies.
We are pleased to be able to secure a plethora of guest speakers and organise our yearly mock interview evening which helps prepare the Year 13 boys with upcoming medical school interviews.
The multiple mini-interview (MMI) is a common method employed by medical, dental and veterinary schools to select students for their undergraduate courses. We usually have 10 stations with a doctor at each one, interviewing the boys on a range of topics from data interpretation, work experience, clinical ethics, breaking bad news, hot NHS topics and consent. Each of our Year 13 ‘candidates’ then rotate round the stations, being grilled over and over again. Rather a stressful evening but one that gives them a real insight into the realities of an MMI format interview. The feedback that we have had has been very positive with the boys feeling that they were well prepared for their real interview.
In the last 2 years we have had and amazing total of 27 boys secure places to study medicine, with a couple of those places for veterinary medicine and one for dentistry. There are so many more boys, both attending our meetings now and those in younger years, who are really interested in various health sciences careers, that the involvement in our Medical Society is expected to remain healthy.
Our Medical Society is an organised, engaging and a well-supported enrichment opportunity for the boys but we must also recognise the vital input of the whole science department. We have a large group of specialist science teachers providing robust and high quality teaching in all three sciences. Our current Year 12 A’ level cohort has 66 boys taking Biology, 99 taking chemistry and 69 taking Physics. Without the excellent subject teaching, our boys would not be securing the A and A* grades required to study Medicine, Dentistry and Veterinary Medicine at university.
If you are able to spare the time to support our Society on a Thursday lunchtime (from 1.35 pm) then please do get in touch. firstname.lastname@example.org
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