Balancing Our Identities as Medical Students and Global Citizens in the Wake of COVID-19


  • Ramesha Ali University College Cork



COVID-19, Coronavirus, Medical school, postgraduate training, pandemic, global citizen, health and well-being, SARS-CoV-2, International Medical Student


As medical students, we felt the burden of COVID-19 in two distinct waves. The first wave brought with it a loss of opportunity and the immense sadness that came with the understanding that we would move forth without ever compensating for such experiences. As clerkships and licensing exams were slowly canceled, we struggled to find ways to fill our days and continue to remain strong postgraduate candidates. It was not long before our personal losses became insignificant in the face of the global trajectory COVID-19 took and the burden of the pandemic impinged on our vulnerabilities. Suddenly, we were facing a significant loss of life and the fear of ill-health was ever-present. This challenged our identity as medical students and forced us to identify as global citizens who were also susceptible to the threat of the pandemic. It also forced us to uphold our health and well-being just as we had pledged to hold the health and well-being of others and to include ourselves in our commitment to a lifetime of service.



Metrics Loading ...


Government of Ireland. Statement from the National Public Health Emergency Team. Available from: Updated 15 March 2020; cited 2020 May 5.

Liu BD. Being an American 2nd Year Medical Student in the COVID-19 Pandemic. Int J Med Students. 2020 Jan-Apr;8(1):77-78.

Samuthpongtorn C, Pongpirul K. Medical Students in Low- and Middle-Income Countries and COVID-19 Pandemic. Int J Med Students. 2020 Jan-Apr;8(1):79- 81.

Pagano G, Luglio G. Medical Education in Naples, Italy, at the Time of SARS-CoV-2. Int J Med Students. 2020 Jan-Apr;8(1):51-53.

Biavardi NG. Being an Italian Medical Student During the COVID-19 Outbreak. Int J Med Students. 2020;8(1): 49 – 50.

Chatterjee S. The COVID-19 Pandemic Through the Lens of a Medical Student in India. Int J Med Students. 2020 Jan-Apr;8(1):82-83.

Kalra T, Kalra N. COVID-19: Where Do We Go from Here? An Experience from Medical Students in India. Int J Med Students. 2020 Jan-Apr;8(1):66-67.

Nulkar A. Lessons from COVID-19: The Perspective of an International Medical Student Back in the United States. Int J Med Students. 2020 Jan-Apr;8(1):75- 76.

Komer L. COVID-19 amongst the Pandemic of Medical Student Mental Health. Int J Med Students. 2020 Jan-Apr;8(1):56-57.

Bonilla-Escobar FJ. Leadership and Health: The Scientific Journal’s Mission of Spreading Science in Times of Pandemic. Int J Med Students. 2020 Jan-Apr;8(1):9-10.

World Health Organization. Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) Situation Report – 98. Available from: Updated 2020 April 27; cited 2020 May 5.

Sohrabi C, Alsafi Z, O’Neill N, Khan M, Kerwan A, Al-Jabir A, et al. World Health Organization declares global emergency: A review of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Int J Surg. 2020 Apr;76:71-76.



How to Cite

Ali, R. (2020). Balancing Our Identities as Medical Students and Global Citizens in the Wake of COVID-19. International Journal of Medical Students, 8(2), 167–168.