Without the Foulkes Foundation, I wouldn’t be doing (and loving) my job now. In a wider sense, it’s allowed me to be part of something much bigger and special. Having come from such a different field of astrophysics into medicine, it’s been a real delight to meet other people who have come into medicine later and yet still had tremendously successful careers.
Firstly, receiving a Foulkes Foundation Fellowship at a crucial time in my medical training made all the difference in helping me complete medical school as a graduate student – something for which I will always be very grateful. Post qualification, I would say that being a Foulkes Fellow and having regular contact with the other Fellows through the newsletter and annual dinner has been a continual inspiration and encouragement in my career and has always reminded me that my true goal of practising medicine, undertaking research and teaching, although very difficult and not always possible at any one point, remains both worthwhile and attainable in the longer term.
The initial financial help was invaluable, but since then the chance to meet and mingle with fellow Fellows, and to hear of their remarkable achievements has been a great experience. Seeing the huge variety of career paths has been inspiring to think of the opportunities open to us all.
As a mature medical student it gave me the confidence that my choice of studying medicine at a relatively advanced age had been acknowledged and that what I was doing was worthwhile. It also gave me some financial stability as I had to fund myself throughout medical school. It gave me access to a fraternity of fellows with similar interests.
When I first became a Foulkes Fellow I met inspiring Foulkes Fellows at the dinners, who gave me sound career advice. Later it was picked up on at a job interview!
Provided me with support at a crucial part of training, allowing me to pursue research projects, and generally take a more rounded approach to my medical education. The opportunities that I was able to pursue as a result of the Foulkes Foundation’s support have opened many subsequent doors in my career.
It enabled me to complete the combined MBBS/PhD programme that has shaped my career in ways that I could never have imagined as a 21 year old. The consequences of being a scientifically qualified surgeon (usually an oxymoron) have been exciting research opportunities, international travel, editorships and the knowledge that post CCT I have a competitive CV when applying for a consultant job.
I would not have been able to pursue my dreams without a Foulkes Fellowship. For that I will always be grateful and delighted to be a member of this exclusive club!
It has made a lot of difference to me. Firstly, I’m not sure if I would have been able to complete my medical degree without the Fellowship’s help. It has been a privilege to belong to such a prestigious and enthusiastic collection of doctors. I have made quite a few friends, especially Maureen and John who have been wonderfully supportive all the way. I had also had the privilege of meeting Ernest Foulkes in the first two or three years of my fellowship. He was a real inspiration to me.
I have been able to maintain contact with a whole range of doctors who are at the cutting edge of their professional area, which enables me to maintain a broad spectrum of interest across advances in medicine. This has made me more balanced professionally. Another advantage is the fun of keeping in touch with Fellows who have become friends, with all the benefits of long term friendships.
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