Meet Athlete & Artist - Jazmine Kwong, PA-S


Training Tibia PA

Meet someone we think you should know, Jazmine Kwong. Jazmine is training to be a Physician Assistant in & out of the classroom. For our readers who are not familiar, the Physician Assistant school application process is extremely competitive & once accepted, requires intense personal discipline & skill in order to reach the finish line. With little time outside of the classroom, how does one maintain one's physical & mental health? Jazmine explained how she trains outside of the classroom, "Before PA school, I made it a priority to attend a dance class at least twice a week. It was a little tough for the first few weeks, but it all worked out."

When she isn't busy in Physician Assistant school or in the dance studio, she is using what little free time she has to inspire others. With multiple platforms & a growing following, Jazmine is on a mission to create an impact. Her Instagram account & website aim to help Pre-PAs navigate their way through the application process. From our observations, she utilizes her platform to do more than that. Her followers include prospective medical students in multiple disciplines & her page is supportive, informative, & motivational.

Jazmine's story transcends the medical disciplines. A three-time applicant, her tenacity is admirable. She shared with us how "Some people & programs (yes, programs) suggested I pursue a different healthcare profession. I said NO." The journey Jazmine took to get to where she is now demonstrates a perseverance that can inspire all Athletes & Artists.

 

Want to know more? 

Read our full interview below... 

Q: One of our favorite mantras is "grow through what you go through" & you have recently lived that. Being a successful three-time applicant for PA school demonstrates your ability to hustle & persevere. How have you grown through your journey?

A: Rejection hurts. I was broken hearted after my first year of applications & even more so my second year. I applied to 4 schools my first year & I received 4 rejections. I applied to 8 my second year, 8 rejections after 1 interview. My last year, I applied to 12 & received 7 rejections. It stung every time. I cried & I questioned my worth. Some people & programs (yes, programs) suggested I pursue a different healthcare profession. I said NO. I WILL become a Physician Assistant. No matter how long it takes. I sulked for a day or so & moved forward.

Each year, I learned more & more about myself, my weaknesses & my strengths. I came to realize that it wasn’t another year of waiting, it’s another year of improvement & another year of personal growth. I’ve learned to be proud & to embrace my journey.

Q: It is such an inspiring story that all athletes & artists can relate to - if there is one thing our readers could learn from your journey what would it be?

A: Whether your goal is to make the team, become a captain or some type of leader on the team, get into PA school or to land the lead role - It’s not a matter of IF, it’s a matter of WHEN.

Q: Who is the first person you told when you found out you were accepted?

A: I texted my family group chat first because I was in the operating room (OR). I remember hyperventilating into my face mask as a Neuromonitor Tech in the OR. My eyes welled with tears but I had to fight back my emotions because I was troubleshooting my equipment during spine surgery. I couldn’t cry or else I’d freak out everyone in the OR! This the best & weirdest feeling ever.

Q: What drew you to dance & medicine in the first place?

A: My mom was on the dance drill team in high school & I followed her footsteps. I fell in love with dance in high school & decided to continue dance in college. I joined a hip-hop dance team called Common Ground & competed all over California. Initially, I was a dance major but soon realized that I was competing against prima ballerinas in the dance program. I’ve always wanted to become something medically related - but I wasn’t sure & thought Neuroscience sounded really cool. So I went for it!

As a junior in college, I was Pre-Med & also Pre-PA - I wasn’t completely sure of which path to take. After shadowing PAs & doctors, I realized that the PA profession was the right fit for me.

Q: I love that you are so passionate about both dance & medicine. Do you find there is a connection between the two disciplines?

A: Yes! I actually wrote about how these two disciplines are practically analogous in my life in my personal statement for PA school! Here’s a little excerpt:

"BOOM. BOOM KAK. BOOM. BOOM KAK. The bass drum boomed and snare drum cracked. The audience roared with glee as we walked onto the stage. We, the dancers, responded with energetic movements that radiated great control and passion. A new beat resonated through the arena and the audience erupted in admiration. I had never felt so alive.

I felt this same electricity when I shadowed a PA and was able to contribute to a diagnosis! I paralleled my teammates on the dance team with the healthcare team in medicine. Collaboration and communication are key to both disciplines! When something goes wrong on stage, I have to adapt quickly and keep the show going. Same goes for medicine - adapt, use your resources and make it work!"

Q: They say the first year of PA school is like trying to drink water through a firehose. How do you find time to take care of your body while in such a demanding program? What are some of your favorite ways to stay healthy both physically & mentally?

A: This saying is absolutely true! My mental health is just as important as my physical health! Before PA school, I made it a priority to attend a dance class at least twice a week. It was a little tough for the first few weeks, but it all worked out! I am so thankful to have dance as an outlet! I realized that my brain reaches its capacity after 5 hours of studying - so why not dance?! I love taking aerial arts classes like pole, lyra, & silks. Every now & then, I put on my gloves & box! When I’m not being active, Netflix & Hulu are my go-to’s for mental breaks.

Q: What is your go-to healthy snack & drink?

A: I love KIX cereal - I’m always snacking in class! My favorite drink is Matcha latte with almond milk!

Q: We are big believers that medical professionals are athletes & artists seeing as practicing medicine requires discipline & creativity. Is there a moment in your training that you can relate this similarity to?

A: As a dancer in the medical field, I always find commonalities within these two disciplines! Number 1) Teamwork makes the dream work! 2) Adaptability & being resourceful are key traits in both 3) Creativity is encouraged & lastly, 4) You’re a provider. Provider of care, provider of intention, provider of empathy, & provider of artistry.

That is so insightful! Now for our last two questions. 

Q:What does being an Athlete & Artist mean to you?

A: An Athlete & Artist is multi-faceted and inspiring!

Q: What does "Training Tibia PA" mean to you?

A: The best pun ever! I’m thrilled to be a PA student & I’m exhilarated to make my mark & to advocate for this profession!

Thank you for sharing your story with our readers, Jazmine. Cannot wait to see that "PA-C" appear after your name, soon! 

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Get to know Jazmine Kwong, PA-S

My life motto is... there’s always room for dessert!

I'm inspired by… my momma!

I feel like the best version of me when… I wake up early on the weekends and I’m productive! lol

My go-to stress reliever is… hanging out with my family.

Favorite healthy habit… is going to dance class!   

My go-to workout is… aerial arts like pole, lyra, and silks!

When I'm not working you can find me... shaking my booty to live music at concerts!

Something that always makes me smile is... seeing our rescue dog, Carter.

My mornings are not complete without... matcha lattes!

I feel most confident when… I’m performing a dance routine.

My spirit animal is… a giraffe.

 

Be sure to follow Jazmine's journey on Instagram @jazminek_pa & visit her website!






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