A trait I’ve noticed in medical students is that they’re strongly opinionated. Compared to undergrad students, medical students have something to say about everything. Not convinced, ask your average college student about health care, politics, economics, social issues or poverty. A good majority will not know about the topics, be undecided or have mild answers.
Ask a medical student and expect to listen to an earful.
Part of this phenomenon is due to a self-selection bias. The type of students who are admitted into medical school tend to be curious, vocal, and passionate. They get involved with student politics, world issues and have given most of these things much though. I’m not saying that you can’t be an outspoken student as an undergraduate, the incidence just happens to be much higher in med school.
Sometimes the intensity does get to me. It can create a divisive environment where neither party is willing to back down. Students will impose their views on others and make their voices heard.
On the flip side, being passionate and strongly opinionated, holding to one’s opinions unreasonably or stubbornly can be admirable. It’s what makes physicians such good advocates. It’s what drives student to strive to do what’s best for the patient. It’s strong-minded people that push for improvements in the status quo, and ultimately those who persist, through criticism and self-doubt, are those who get the job done.