‘My advice to aspiring medical students: Prepare for anything, study hard, never give up’

Odekhiran Ehimen was declared as the best graduating medical student of the Bowen University, Iwo, Osun State, for the 2019 academic session during the induction ceremony by the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria held on the campus of the institution recently. She spoke with Laolu Harolds.

Congratulations, Doctor Odekhiran. I know this question might sound trite somehow, but when and why did you decide to be a doctor?

The choice to study Medicine was made when filling out my UTME (Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination) form. I decided to study medicine to help lives and I thought I would be more useful being a medical doctor


One is tempted also to ask why you chose Bowen University to study Medicine, despite the cost and all.

It was a family member who suggested Bowen University and my parents agreed as they did not want me to waste time at home.


Obtaining distinction in Medicine can’t be a walk in the park; we would like to know what study pattern worked for you?

I did not have a stable study pattern as it changed with time. I ensured I attended all the classes, read my notes, attended tutorials and tried to be very active during the tutorials. I also discussed with my classmates and seniors about topics I found challenging. I ensured I read during the day and tried not to pile my notes up.


What was your experience the first time you had to work with a cadaver, and how did you get used to it subsequently?

The first experience was interesting; my hands were shaking, but after making an incision on the cadaver, the shaking ended and from there, it was just dissection class.


Which aspect or part of the medical programme did you find most challenging?

Towards the end of my medical education, I got tired and it was a struggle as it was difficult studying but thanks to God, I was able to pull through.


Tell us some of your experiences in the course of your study through the university as a medical student, and the lesson(s) you learnt through them.

Lessons learnt: God first, no matter what. Family and friends are people that one can lean on during difficult times. Be ready to learn from anyone and anytime and pride takes one nowhere, just makes one a joke.


Before this interview, the last time you were seen on WhatsApp was March. Is this happenstance or a reflection of how little time you have for the social media and socialisation generally?

My phone had a fault so I needed to get a new phone and that’s why I have not been on WhatsApp. I try as much as possible to socialise though I am not a very social person.


If you were to advise some candidates aspiring to study Medicine, what would you tell them to prepare for?

Prepare for everything, have a resilient spirit and never give up no matter what happens. At the end, you will be a medical doctor.