I'll just reiterate my point, as you sound quite serious:
As a male, name changes are very unusual. If you really have been accepted as a medical student, you are entering a very conservative, hyper-vigilant profession. We are heavily scrutinized to protect the public from dangerous practitioners.
- for each step of the licensing process, for all of the examinations, you will have to disclose your name change and provide documentaion
- every time you apply for privileges at a hospital, you will provide evidence of your name change and document the reasons
- when you become board-certified in a specialty, you will provide evidence of your name change and document the reasons
- every time you re-cert your boards, complete Continuing Medical Education, etc [annually in the US for the rest of your professional life; board re-certification is q10 years here, not sure for Aus], you will provide evidence of your name change and document the reasons.
Your current name and the reason for the change will follow you for the rest of your life.
Also, socially- if you're interested in something like surgery and you show up on my service introducing yourself as Medical Student Gunner Vandal I can't even begin to describe the amount of shite we would give you. Pediatrics, psychiatry, etc would be much more accepting, but we would bust your balls from dawn till dusk. Once you graduated and started residency, your seniors, chiefs, fellows and attendings would do the same.
And that's us... I can't even imagine what the military guys would have to say.
So choose carefully.
Just to add to this, if you do become an army doctor, you will still end up leaving the military at some point and may choose to open your own practice. In this case your name is your "brand", the first thing a potential patient sees. People want their doctor to give them a sense of being professional, competent, and safe. I would wager that given the choice, a lot of people would be hesitant to choose Dr. Diesel Blaze over Dr. BoringName when looking for a physician. Having a name that's catchy is fine, but you don't need to sound like an action hero.
Why do you want to change your surname? Why not just the first name?
What other surnames go well with Alexander?
ETA: After reading more of the posts, I'm talking about the actual employment application (as it would apply to jobs in general), not the licenses, etc. (where they will want documentation if not everything matches).
ETA2: Source for the first paragraph (link broken so as to not flag the post as spam): admin (dot) mtu (dot) edu/hro/forms/whatyoucanandcantasklongversionmay05.pdf
ETA3: In terms of what's legal/illegal to ask, any questions as to WHY a person changed their name would be verboten (they are allowed to know prior or other names only for record-checking purposes, and asking the prospective employee any details of the name change would also be a red flag in a discrimination lawsuit).
I think Alexander is a great choice for you, btw.
@namefan none of what you said applies to doctors, as I hope I outlined above.
Lieutenant, gently, I hear a bit of self-hatred in your posts. I don't know where in the world your family originally came from, but I sure there are ways to make your surname work in Australia without blindly picking a random English one. How would your family feel about a son called Alex Johnson?
I am completely sympathetic to wanting to divest yourself of a 12-letter unpronounceable monstrosity with an equally difficult first name. As someone married into an Arab family-- and I think the Arabs are currently about the most reviled and feared people group on earth-- I am also sympathetic to ugly ethnic prejudice and the desire to 'pass.' but remember that tough high school years won't follow you forever, and at uni-- esp on a medical course-- people will come from all different backgrounds and be interested in world cultures.
All that to say, change your surname to something congruent with an identity that I promise you will later come to cherish.