Medical Students Get Trained Using Origami, Sushi and Insects

Ad agency TBWA conjured up an ad that identifies medical students who have the dexterity to make brilliant surgeons.  The clever ad is helping to train medical students – using origami, sushi and insects..

Medical Students - Surgeon Tryouts

Countdowns, Bright Lights and Unexpected Challenges

Keep all the multicolored production lights, countdown buzzers and come-from-behind dramatic finishes from Ninja Warrior, but replace those agility and upper body strength obstacles with challenges that aim to identify steady hands, scalpel precision and staying calm under pressure.

Kurashiki Central Hospital in Okayama, Japan partnered with advertising agency TBWA/Hakuhodo to develop a practical examination striving to identify elite ninja surgeons.

Medical students applying for surgical rotations at Kurashiki Hospital were required to perform three, 15 minute challenges in game show-esque fashion to showcase their coronary artery tweezing, scalpel slicing, combo move potential.

Using Tradition To BREAK Tradition

To protect unsuspecting patients from a rag-tag gaggle of newbie medical doctors, Kurashiki Hospital’s actual Surgeon Tryouts were designed around popular Japanese art forms including origami paper folding, reconstructing dead-dismantled beetles, and preparing immaculate plates of various sushi dishes.

Watch Kurashiki Central Hospital’s new recruitmentment video below to see why these modified tests of Japanese tradition were so unique for evaluating surgeon slashing potential:

Now I know there’s a certain kind of pleasure one gets from watching over-achieving med students sweat bullets from the pressure cooker that is folding microscopic origami paper and rolling ant-sized sushi rolls, but the most striking point about this recruitment ad is how Japanese tradition is being used to break Japanese tradition.

In The Land Of The Rising Sun, Test Scores Rule Supreme

Doctors, technical specialists and even graduating high school seniors in Japan are hired, selected and accepted to university based almost entirely on their entrance exam test scores.

As you can imagine, this creates a national culture that values book knowledge and rote memorization over practical skill potential.

Kurashiki Central Hospital’s Surgery Tryouts go completely against the Japanese, sticky-rice cultured grain here because they’re filtering applicants based on actual ability to perform precision skills every future surgeon should show a propensity for.

Seriously, leave it to an ad agency like TBWA to help institutionalized traditionalists like Japanese medical doctors think outside their delicious bento boxes! Maybe modern ad agency creative departments have finally reinvented themselves in this emerging, modern day niche of developing practical skill tests for industries that usually exhibit unquestioned obedience to authority and legacy hiring practices.

Consider Surgeon Tryouts For Your Next Regularly Scheduled Dissection

Although most surgical procedures won’t require your doctor to fold 5 millimeter squares of colored paper into teeny-tiny origami cranes…