Hello, my name is Alyssa Banks and I am a senior at Mauldin High School in Greenville, South Carolina. I will be attending Clemson University in the fall of 2016 for Pre-Professional Health Studies with a concentration in Pre-Medicine. I have a strong commitment to help others and can relate to those in need of medical assistance.
Due to an injury in the 9th grade, I suffer from a tilted atlas at the base of my skull which causes chronic daily headaches. For years doctors weren’t aware of what caused my pain which left me helpless. It was May 23, 2013, when my life changed as I had become to know it. While in gym class, I was hit in the head with a basketball which in turn caused my head to hit the concrete wall behind me, then swing forward in a whiplash motion. Upon waking and being seen by a physician, I was advised I received a concussion. Doctors assumed it was a typical concussion and that my headaches would go away within a couple of weeks. To this day, the headaches have not gone away.
It is because of these headaches I believe my SAT score is lower, as well as only reaching the top 11% of my class. The concentration required to sit for a four hour exam can be excruciating as well as the necessary hours of additional studying to reach the top 6% of my class. Had I not experienced this injury, I truly believe I would have excelled higher in these areas and insured I receive the highest scholarship available from my state by reaching the 6% requirement.
Nevertheless, I have remained diligent during this time and maintained a high grade point average because I refuse to give up on my dreams. This injury has only made me stronger and given me an opportunity to share my story. What I initially believed was a burden has turned into a testimony to others. It has made me more compassionate toward others in need, a stronger individual as a whole and driven to work harder. Thus in turn will eventually allow me the opportunity to help others in need. If you believe in yourself, you can push through anything that life throws at you with a smile and your head held high.
In closing, I would like to share that it was during this time I decided I want to help others and pursue a career as an Orthopedic Surgeon. I realize it will take a strong commitment, but during this time I have persevered and am confident I will reach my goal.
In the future, I would like to have a private practice and partner with grant organizations to allow patients to receive free examinations once a week. My desire is to have a mobile clinic and reach out to those that are unable to afford medical care in an effort to give back to the community and make a difference in the lives of others.