Ben Carson Essay Gifted Hands

Gifted Hands

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ifted Hands is an inspiring story about a frustrated inner-city black kid who lives inDetroit, Michigan with his mother and older brother. His faith in God helps himbecome the director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins UniversityHospital.

When Ben Carson was young, he lacked motivation and hadterrible grades. He grew up without a father, and as he got older, developed adreadful temper that could have landed him in jail. Ben's mother, though,convinced him he could make something of his life. Pure determination pulled Benfrom the bottom of his class to the top. He continued to soar through high schooland was awarded a scholarship to Yale University. He then attended the Universityof Michigan Medical School and at age 33, became the director of pediatricneurosurgery.

Today, Dr. Ben Carson holds 20 honorary doctorates. Heshares his experiences with racism and his attempts to fight prejudice, as wellas breathtaking stories in the operating room and surgeries that made headlinesaround the world. One amazing case was when he separated Siamese twins joined atthe head in 22 hours of surgery. He has worked medical miracles and saved manylives.

This book is an exciting, motivating autobiography about a man wholives to help others. Today, he's one of the world's most renowned neurosurgeons.Gifted Hands is filled with fascinating case histories and delivers a powerfulmessage about never giving up on goals and to "think big."


This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






1. Describe the author's relationship with his father, prior to his leaving the family.

The author's relationship with his father, prior to his leaving the family, is a close one. Bennie enjoys sitting on his dad's lap, playing with the veins in his hands or other games together. He waits anxiously for his dad to come home for work, running to meet him many afternoons.

2. How did the author respond to the news that his father was leaving the family?

When the author found out his dad was leaving the family, he began arguing with his mother. He tried to find a way to convince his mother to let his father return home. He knew his father did some "bad things" but did not see his father as bad. Since his parents did not share the details of their separation, the author had trouble understanding why his father could no longer live at home.

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