I remember the Draft Lottery well. I was a senior at Duke University and awaiting acceptance to Medical School. Clearly, the Vietnam War was not supported philosophically by many college students then eligible for the Draft and hence the unhappiness and angst that defined that era.
At the time of the announcement of the Draft Numbers, I was living in the Fraternity House where many of us were gathered in anticipation of the random fate we were being asked to accept. In my case, I was also very anxious about my medical school application, as the process was very vigorous and competitive and acceptance was by no means guaranteed. So, I faced two "hurdles" that were going to profoundly affect my life and both were seemingly not in my control. So, the only approach was to drink more beer and pray!!
As it turned out, my lottery number was greater than 300 and two months later I was accepted to Medical School. And the rest is history, as they say. I have been practicing Pediatric Critical Care in Southern California for 25 years and believe that I have made a difference in the lives of a lot of children and their families. And I have been an active teacher and mentor to medical students and residents and have tried to be very sympathetic and supportive of their goals, knowing how mine were challenged….