Some Career Advice (A Brief Overview Of Life)

Some Career Advice (A Brief Overview Of Life)

Let me first point out that what I have to say is my opinion and you should do your research before abiding by it. Secondly, this is majorly for doctors and other healthcare practitioners with interest and experience in Public Health.

If you are thinking of relocating to the USA, please do your due diligence. I know Doctors, MDs who are uber drivers in the States or doing security jobs – even though they earn more than their counterparts in Nigeria. But that’s not the reason they studied medicine. I’m not disparaging these jobs; I’m just saying someone did not spend millions and years in medical school to become a security man in the US.

If you have an MD and wish to practice (be a clinician) in USA, you must write USMLE, pass it competitively and wait to be matched. This is the dream of most MDs who move to America, but note that regardless of how smart you are, you must spend at least two years writing these exams. And if you don’t have an affluent family to provide comfort and shelter while preparing for the exams, you may fail. And these exams are expensive.

However, people like me, who love research, especially HIV therapeutics, can also make a decent career by going into Public Health. It is also competitive, because even US-trained doctors will compete with you. I interviewed for the same job with a PhD. holder in Molecular Biology from John Hopkins University. And my background set skill and experience working in a developing country helped me secure the job. In Public Health, you will come across people from different professional backgrounds. One of my very senior colleagues is an MD from LASUTH and Harvard; she is a mentor and recently got recognized as among leading women in this state. Another colleague, who I adore, is among the founders of viral load testing technique; he left his private practice to work in Public Health, because it was something he was passionate about.

Before embarking on this journey, please educate yourself and develop some serious skills in Public Health. Do some volunteer works or apply to work with some NGOs. Get some certifications. (Check HERE for example).

You will also be vetted. Your background, academics and experience will be verified. So, make sure you don’t exaggerate or embellish anything. Simply be honest. But note, if you have the patience, the money and a supportive family to sponsor you to write the USMLE, and you wish to treat patients and prescribe medications, go for it. You will earn more. Maybe.

I have always loved research, and even though I come from a humble background (I borrowed the suit I wore for my convocation in 2011), my smartness has enabled me meet people who’ve changed my life. Being a good person brings good energy around you and will attract the right people. People always believe I’m well-off simply because I don’t like to share my stories or ask for this and that. But I am comfortable in my skin now and damn proud of how far I have come, proud of the little changes I am making, proud of the people in my life. My life is not perfect, but I am doing well for myself.

There is no competition in life. It is large enough to accommodate us all. And it is evident in the much we are able to accomplish starting here on Kito Diaries. I am grateful for this space, because it has created a medium for me to meet some of the most amazing people, both online and offline. Online acquaintances like Higwe, and offline friendships like Okey, who is currently forging a second career path for himself.

Life is beautiful when we go through it with the right energy.

Written by Sim

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10 Comments

  1. Sim
    June 30, 06:49 Reply

    Thanks Pinky,

    Hopefully this will help someone in making a career choice.
    Hopefully, this also clears the confusion about my Career Path and Choice.

    • Rx
      July 01, 18:29 Reply

      Hi Sim. Pls what career options are available for Pharmacists in public health?

  2. leo
    June 30, 07:21 Reply

    Thanks for this, I’m definitely sharing my friends. Pink panther, what about career advice for lawyers or law students seeking an inroad career wise, home and abroad?

    • Pink Panther
      June 30, 07:22 Reply

      Hopefully, an experienced KDian who practices law and has wisdom to impart will see this and send information for us to pass on.

  3. Someone
    June 30, 12:43 Reply

    Thanks, as a 4th year medical student already planning on leaving this shit hole country. This was really helpful

  4. Chetam
    June 30, 13:51 Reply

    Sim thank you so much for this piece. I just finished 5th year medical school and will be in my final year in September to graduate next year. I plan to write step 2 ck in December and step 1 next year but I plan to take one year after graduation for research and after that try to match. What are my chances of getting a place just to research? Do you think it’s a good reason to have a gap year in the C.V? I have a lot of questions. Would you mind answering them?

    • Sim
      June 30, 14:09 Reply

      Hi Chetam.

      It’s really cool, ur taking those exams still in school. Taking a year off for research related activities is cool, once you can defend it and show your activities within the gap ( publications or data).
      Bet of luck dear.

      • Chetam
        June 30, 22:48 Reply

        Thank you Sim. I will really appreciate if you have ideas on places you think I can be accepted for a one year research fellowship without me having to pay for it.

    • Persimmon
      July 04, 17:38 Reply

      You are on the right path bro and what you have done so far is commendable… For step 2CS you will have to take it in the US as it is only written at 5 centers within the states.

      Like Sim said, get involved in research & publications, as it strengthens your application. Also, look up residencies that have a tendency to accept IMGs who are not US citizens, because trust me it is really tough considering the visa application process they have to file for you, as opposed to just picking a “ready made” US resident.. but certainly doable.

      I will also recommend you do some rotations at a US hospital as US clinical experience is usually a requirement.

  5. Griffin
    July 01, 19:47 Reply

    Great writeup. Though am not a medical doc, working on pursuing a PhD in clinical nutrition abroad. I am at the verge of giving up but reading this encourages me to carry on. Thanks SIM

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