A Med-school Minute

A second-year friend likened medical school to a train that doesn’t stop: the information keeps coming, steadily moving on, with or without you.  If you fall behind, you may never catch up.  Before my study skills and habits have been honed, time is one of my most valued, needed, and desired resources.  And yet, it seems to be lost so easily and so quickly.  Time seems to evaporate.  The hours rapidly waft by as I bury my face into the posterior triangle of the neck of our cadaver, lectures end as quickly as Dr. Payne talks (whose rate of speech contradicts the term “slow southern drawl”), and an hour for lunch barely suffices.  I don’t know where all this time goes, but I hope I find it. Soon.

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About Zach

Hey! I'm Zach and am in my first year of medical school. I'm from Montana, where I was instilled with an appreciation of and enjoyment for the outdoors. I spent last year in Kenya volunteering and the previous four at Walla Walla University in Washington studying biology. While there, I was lucky enough to research for two summers at Rosario Beach Marine Laboratory, where I learned that the glaucous-winged gull is the most elegant of all living organisms, and that if I wasn't doing medicine, I'd be dissecting sea cucumbers as a marine biologist.

2 thoughts on “A Med-school Minute

  1. Zach, you’re experiencing what we have all felt when we sat where you are sitting…except my class (2009) and all those previous, who weren’t in the new building for our first two years =) . The tide of things to learn seems tsunami-like, and in a way it is, but in my experience the ultimate goal is not to learn every detail. Rather, the key goal may be to discover how your brain compartmentalizes information, and adopt a study schedule accordingly.

    For me, as an example, this meant very rarely attending formal didactics, because I realized my brain process information well in that manner. Instead, I would still wake up @ the same time everyone else did, but I’d work out with a friend @ Drayson, take some quiet moments afterwards to eat a small breakfast, then spend a 3-4 hours studying before lunch. I’d join folks getting out of the formal didactics where they would eat, socialize with them, and then when they returned to the lecture halls to study, I’d return home to do the same. Another 3-4 hours would pass, dinner would be consumed, and another 1-2 hours of study would polish off the day. Ending time on average: 8:00 P.M. The rest of the night would entail socialization with classmates who were doing similar things. We broke a buddy’s XBox on accident in over-exuberance.

    What I found was that my grades improved, even though I wasn’t warming a lecture hall seat. The key was learning about myself, how I processed information, then taking a chance to try out something different. You’re experience is not new, and we all survive. Hang in there Zach, keep the goal in mind (satisfied and well-cared for patients), and remember that the best time spent is that time spent on remembering to breathe.

  2. My name is munene studying in Bugema Adventist secondary school in Uganda. am very much in joining lomalinda university in 2013 God willing to study medicine am a kenyan by nationality,my prayer is that God prepares you for His work here on earth ,i know that its challenging but with Jesus in the vessel we can smile at the storm. thanx

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