As a introverted person who has never been to Australia before medical school, I didn’t have high expectations of being here. However, my perspective quickly changed, as my experience living in Australia has been incredibly life-changing - I was able to make a lot of friends, got involved in various university initiatives, and even became part of my local medical society. It wouldn’t be possible if it wasn’t for the incredible people and culture here. I felt that I’ve grown so much just by being here, and I want to give back to the community that welcomed me with open arms.
Unfortunately, my aspirations of being a doctor working in Australia may not come true, as I am affected by the internship crisis as an international student. I may potentially face unemployment and have to go back to my home country. Despite being able to become a doctor in Indonesia, it is not within my best interests as I am not accustomed to the tropical diseases, the technical language, and the vastly different healthcare system, without being able to contribute the skills that I have attained through my experience in an Australian medical school.
It's hard not to feel disappointed, discouraged, and even afraid.
I have senior friends who were in the same boat as I am now - I’ve seen them become more and more anxious for every internship offer rounds that they miss, having a heart filled with endless uncertainty. With the way that the internship crisis is progressing, even local students will become affected with the internship crisis in the next few years. It’s not a matter of being local or international.
I don’t think anyone who has spent a colossal amount of time and effort in studying medicine should be subjected to such an unfair treatment.
But things don’t have to be this way! I am not asking for much, however if the government is able to stop new medical schools from being built, regulate the amount of international students entering an Australian medical student, and increase the allocation priority rank for every NSW-trained students, we will be able to tackle this issue, step by step. Furthermore, a good regulation system will be able to improve the quality of student and JMO placements, making us better, more capable doctors in the future.
Richard is a 5th year medical student from the University of New South Wales
#HelpMeHelpYou is a collection of stories from current NSW students who are genuinely interested in working in NSW after graduation & are worried that they may not be able to make good use of their hard-earned medical degree. Read all students' stories here.
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