What Traits Make a Great Medical School Student?


If biomedical sciences intrigue you, maybe medicine is the right career choice for you. It may be difficult to figure out if this demanding field of work suits you. The dream  of becoming a doctor does not end with gaining acceptance into a medical school. It is a profession that requires a lifetime of dedication and learning. 


Read ahead to learn about the values and attributes that need to be cultivated to become an excellent medical student and ultimately a great doctor. 

1. Empathy: The first traits that come to mind when we speak of a doctor are empathy and compassion for others. A good physician always puts themselves in the shoes of another to look at a situation. It is empathy that motivates them to offer relief to someone in distress, which is the principal attribute of caregiving.

2. Discipline: Discipline is one of the main qualities of a good student. As a medical school student, you will have to be prepared to be a lifelong learner. It is a challenging profession and is often stressful to meet all the needs on an everyday basis.

3. Persistence: Persistence is one of the greatest virtues that a medical student should inculcate. It is going to get very difficult and the journey is not short. There will be hurdles along the way, but you have to be persistent and not give up. A doctor’s life is a big investment of time spent caring for other people. 

4. Humility: Humility is essential to becoming a good doctor and is also important when studying in medical school. One of the many characteristics of good students is being humble, as it is the only way to be a good team player. No one can become a good doctor on their own. A doctor needs a team to perform at their best. It is good to challenge yourself to become the best but it is also essential to acknowledge that others’ skills and knowledge are equally important and you must be prepared to learn from them.

If you are looking for a prestigious and accredited medical school to begin your journey in medicine, check out St. Matthew’s University School of Medicine (SMUSOM), a medical school in Grand Cayman that offers an excellent MD program. The program can help you develop all the relevant skills and qualities desirable in a medical professional. The SMUSOM MD program is divided into Basic Sciences and Clinical Rotations. 


SMUSOM is committed to providing a quality education, and in recent years SMUSOM students have enjoyed an excellent first-time pass rate of 95% on the USMLE Step I Examination. This Caribbean medical school has a small 7:1 student-faculty ratio that is the foundation of SMUSOM’s comprehensive and interactive education. Graduates from the university have landed residences,  and/or gained permanent licensure to practice in almost every state in the U.S. and Canada. SMUSOM is also one of the very few Caribbean medical schools to be approved for the U.S Federal Student Loan Program. 


Click here to check out other advantages of joining the MD program at SMUSOM. 


5. Intelligence: Intelligence does not mean you necessarily have to be the smartest in the class, nor the valedictorian. While it is important that a medical student obtain good grades there are other qualities that factor into the student’s success. Resiliency, determination, and compassion are just a few of the very important traits for a medical student.

6. Adaptability: Medical students have to go through years of training, including multiple clinical rotations. You will need to be very flexible and open-minded to be able to succeed in these varied workplaces. In medical school rotations, students are exposed to a variety of teams and people. 

In your clinical rotations you will work with several different attending physicians who will all have their own style and approach to teaching. It is important that you learn from them and remain flexible throughout your clinical rotations. Therefore, adaptability is key to growth for a great medical student.



As an aspiring physician, you must cultivate emotional maturity along with other skills. With maturity, you will be able to handle stressful situations with an open mind and ultimately achieve success in your medical career.


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Written by Sudipta