Doctors are extraordinary people. However, it is rarely just the profession that makes them unique or remarkable. Diving into their world means to dive into the mind of someone who is deeply committed, inspired by transformative life experiences, and has a higher calling.
Ethan Smallwood’s journey has been captivating, or rather extraordinary. It started in his early years when he won two academic scholarships to study at Solihull School, one of the highly selective private institutions in the United Kingdom. His hard work and determination were rewarded with a place at Nottingham University Medical School in 2016, having achieved 15 A*’s across GCSE and A-Level.
Furthermore, during his time at the University, Ethan began to show an insight into his life at the medical school through Instagram which connected with other students and aspiring doctors. As of August 2019, he has amassed over 100k followers on the platform. He has also had the opportunity to travel around the world while studying, from New York to Dubai to Thailand. And he’s graduating medical school in a couple of years — all before he turns 25.
Now, the 21-year-old med student aspires to tell his story to an even broader audience. His soon-to-be-live YouTube channel ‘The Student Doctor’ will be where he shares his own experiences through the medical school. It will also help guide prospective med students through the processes of application and attending classes.
It was during the increase in the popularity of his Instagram handle that many people contacted him as they became interested in his experiences at the medical school. The popularity of his posts gave him the idea to respond to the rising interest in a broader fashion, and in a way that filled a gap in general awareness.
“Med school can be daunting,” he says adding, “But also it’s a remarkable experience. I’m fortunate enough to have navigated it and learned so much along the way. How the human body works is just fascinating. Providing people with care is hands-down the most rewarding thing you can do. If you can figure out how to do all the preliminary paperwork and meet the school’s requirements easily, the more time you will have for the really wonderful and inspiring parts of this adventure.”
Of course, the advice and insight that ‘Doctor Ethan’ provides will also be genuine and derived from his own experiences, challenges, trials and errors, and the moments in his life that shaped it. This means he will inevitably be sharing many of these experiences. Ethan hopes that even though his own journey has been a charmed one he will still be able to impart information universal enough for anyone to learn from it.
“I’ve been really lucky, no doubt,” he says. “But I’ve also worked hard, I’ve learned a lot, and I’ve had a lot of inspiration along the way. I think that, for as unique as my experience has been, it’s got lessons in it that can teach and inspire others,” concludes the student doctor.