Tuesday, April 23, 2013

One Year Ago Today

It's crazy to think that one year ago today, I was still working in Human Resources. I knew I was going to med school, but it still felt a long way off. I had just gotten a present in the mail, and all I could think about was starting med school. Time has absolutely flown since then, and at the same time it is very easy to concentrate on exactly how exacting the last two semesters have been.

Right now, we're in the final push of the spring semester. We have a few more classes and a couple exams this week, and then next week just two exams before a week-long break leading up to the six-week summer semester. Today is pretty packed. I've been studying at the med school since 6:00am, though our first lecture is a two-hour required Integrated Clinical Correlation lecture at 10:00am. At 1:00pm I have my hour-long Core Physical Exam assessment, two-hour mentor meeting at 4:00pm, then my final written and practical exams for Medical Spanish Interviewing from 6:00pm - 8:30pm. And then I'll start the evening's studying for the upcoming Neuroscience (Friday), Virology (next Tuesday), and Pathology (next Thursday) final exams.

The nice thing is, these last few exams aren't going to be so bad because we aren't getting new classes throughout this whole time. In med school, and especially this semester, it can feel like one constant exam week that lasts the whole semester, except you're consistently getting new lectures and material that you won't be tested on until the next exam. That's probably the toughest part of first year - the seemingly impossible mountain of exams and lectures that you see on your schedule at the beginning of each semester. I remember looking at February and thinking, "Is this really possible? If so, HOW?" But we got through it, and though it was every bit as difficult as I thought it would be, it was possible.

And now, my first year is almost over. Yes, we still have summer semester, and it won't be like picking dandelions, but we'll get through it. And then comes second year - just one test for each ~1-month-long unit. Talk about "do or die..." We'll see which form of academic assessment I find more/less enjoyable. Something tells me I will enjoy next year a bit more. While I like the finite aspect of first year ("This is exactly what you need to know, and while it's a LOT of information, you know that is EVERYTHING you need to know for this test.") I think I will like the self-guided nature of next year, as well as how everything we learn is based in a clinical case scenario. The concept that we will be responsible for everything in the assigned textbook chapters is a little daunting. First year has been all about learning the information in printed coursepacks, which are basically just condensed textbooks.

All right, enough of distraction in blog form. I'd love to write more, but the thalamic nuclei (and the incessant practice of my core exam) are calling to me...

1 comment:

Susan said...

Always good to look back, remembering how "impossible" things seemed and then, in the same glance, see how you made it through! Nice, nice job!

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