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Does anyone find the "fakeness" of people at interviews highly annoying?

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Alexander99

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I don't know if I'm the only one to have noticed this (I'm guessing I'm not) but does anyone else find the extremely fake veil of niceness that many interviewees put on during an interview day to be highly annoying?

Case in point: On many occassions during downtime, people were making some really lame jokes (if they can be called that) because they seemed to have nothing better to say. Instead of saying, "What are you talking about" or just remaining silent, everyone starts laughing like the person's a regular Chris Rock. It's almost like people are afraid to not be nice in fear that there's an adcom sitting over their shoulder observing their behavior.

I sure hope the people I've run into were just nervous or something because I may just go crazy in med school if all my classmates act the way these people were acting.

Alex

As a side note, I've met a few people on the interviews that seemed to be acting regular and weren't trying to act overly nice.
 

CalBeE

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I don't think everyone neccessarily have what you mentioned in mind. It's just that people are trying to be polite or diplomatic, whichever way you wanna say it.

Now you may be able to be perfectly honest with your friend and tell him/her "Your joke is lame", "You're insane", but you can't really do that with people you don't know too well. That's just how things work.
 

mlw03

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i agree with the original poster - people act like total tools a lot of the time when on interviews. not all, but a lot. what's scary is when you can't tell whether they're putting on a show or they actually are a tool. don't wanna spend 4 years with either one i suppose.
 

felipe5

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I also agree with the OP.........when I was interviewing at a school in NY, I was amazed at the fakeness and suck-up-edness of many of the people that interviewed with me. They were even super fake with the student tour-guides that had NOTHING to do with the admissions policy. I mean COME ON PEOPLE

Luckily, I found a few other people who obviosly felt the same way, and we thus hung out the whole day.

Here's to fakeness :mad:
 

W222

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Has anyone encountered this type of interviewee? You immediately see this person and make eye contact and then they hone in. They walk over and immediately ask where you are from, where you did your undergrad, what you are doing now, what you have done for ECs, what you got for an MCAT score, and finally HOW MANY/ WHERE ELSE HAVE YOU INTERVIEWED. Then after you have given them a sufficient answer they leave and hit up someone else in the interview pool. Luckily I have only met two of these people on interviews, I wanted to punch the last one because he really didnt wait for my answers to any of his questions and basically just bragged about his accomplishments. I wanted to buy him a machine that would pat him on the back constantly for the rest of his life.
 

Paws

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I think this is why sometimes interviewers really grill you, to see if you'll drop the fake-y nice mask and become the real you. They know when your're nervous and bs'ing and so that can be why (sometimes) they just want to give you a real scare - to see what you're really made of.

In that respect, I think it's a good tactic.
 

gschl1234

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Originally posted by Alexander99
I don't know if I'm the only one to have noticed this (I'm guessing I'm not) but does anyone else find the extremely fake veil of niceness that many interviewees put on during an interview day to be highly annoying?

Case in point: On many occassions during downtime, people were making some really lame jokes (if they can be called that) because they seemed to have nothing better to say. Instead of saying, "What are you talking about" or just remaining silent, everyone starts laughing like the person's a regular Chris Rock. It's almost like people are afraid to not be nice in fear that there's an adcom sitting over their shoulder observing their behavior.

I sure hope the people I've run into were just nervous or something because I may just go crazy in med school if all my classmates act the way these people were acting.

Alex

As a side note, I've met a few people on the interviews that seemed to be acting regular and weren't trying to act overly nice.

That's an interesting observation but that has not been my expereince, although I have only been to two interviews. There were only 2 other interviewees at my first interview and we spent most of the time talking about our experiences in applying (what schools, when we were complete, whether we'd heard back, what we talked about at the interview after we got done) and general stuff about our backgrounds (where we're from, what our parents do, why we want to be doctors, why we applied to that school). In my second interview there were a lot more students but the room they put us in was so big that I spent most of the time talking to 3-5 other people and we talked about the same things. I had a great time and thoroughly enjoyed spending time with the interviewees at both places. I would probably enjoy going to school with those people.
 

solousy

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My jokes aren't that lame are they?
Listen I'm not trying to show off, I'm just having some fun. To quote Stubbs from "Happy Gilmore": "Just easin' the tension baby, just easin the tension." Seriously, after two years of applying I've had a grand total of 2 interviews. When med schools recognize the fact that i exist, that makes me happy, and my happiness comes out at the interview. I did the same thing at the MCAT. People must have thought that I was crazy to be joking around and ordering fries on the microphone. But that's what I do to feel comfortable, and everyone else told me that it made them feel comfortable as well. I plan on doing the same thing when I am a highly stressed physician (IF some school decides to train me that is). I'd much rather work with a lighthearted and cooperative physician than a gunner who treates everyone like a rival. RELAX, HAVE A BREW (after your done with your rounds).
 

uclacrewdude

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solution: be the opposite of what you hate. in other words, be genuinely nice to people. dont chuckle heartily at someones stupid jokes; smile, then tell a better one. keep longitude with other interviewers and talk to them about stuff beyond med school crap, b/c that sh!t is boring -- hearing about how other people go camping every other weekend, threw a really crazy kind of party ... thats the fun stuff you wanna hear. be interesting and be genuinely nice, and eventually some interviewers will reflect it back at you, and the rest will just fade away and not even bother you. trust me :)
 

meanderson

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-I think it's ok to share experiences with other schools as long as it is informative. Not every applicant reads interview feedbacks, and they may be interested about the interview day at a particular school. But if it just becomes a laundry list of interviews, then that's tacky.

-Sometimes you go to a school, and you just know it's not a great fit. UAB was that school for me. The out of state students there appeared to be gunner types. The alabama residents interviewing there didn't appear to be all that qualified. I met a few people with 3.5/26's and they seemed pretty confident they would get in. Of all the state schools that accept 10-15% or more of their class from the out of state pool, UAB must have the largest gap between residents and non-residents. Fortunately I mostly talked to a couple of out of state non-gunners who were pretty down to earth.

-If you interview at enough schools, it's almost a guarantee that you will meet some real tools and some really nice people.
 

MeowMix

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People are nervous as hell, and I understand that. It is a very high-stress situation with significant consequences for screwing up.

Most of us do similar things under stress, whether it is an interview, a first date, a Class V whitewater run, or a double-black-diamond ski run. I just talk to people and try to help them relax so we can all have more fun. Aren't we, after all, supposed to be entering a helping profession?
 

jlee9531

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Originally posted by W222
Has anyone encountered this type of interviewee? You immediately see this person and make eye contact and then they hone in. They walk over and immediately ask where you are from, where you did your undergrad, what you are doing now, what you have done for ECs, what you got for an MCAT score, and finally HOW MANY/ WHERE ELSE HAVE YOU INTERVIEWED. Then after you have given them a sufficient answer they leave and hit up someone else in the interview pool. Luckily I have only met two of these people on interviews, I wanted to punch the last one because he really didnt wait for my answers to any of his questions and basically just bragged about his accomplishments. I wanted to buy him a machine that would pat him on the back constantly for the rest of his life.

haha i met someone like this on the interview trail, and he did this to everyone, it was quite hilarious for all us to just watch him make the rounds...asking the same thing to each person. but sad thing is that he didnt realize himself that he was annoying. luckily we eventually split up into separate groups and i didnt have to deal with him the entire day.

but to the OP...outside of the guy i mentioned above, everyone i have met has been pretty genuine and cool. i was glad to see that the people i have met were down to earth and would possibly be the people i would spending the next 4 years of my life with. sorry to hear your experiences havent been the best.
 

G_Eagle

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At interviews I went around asking people where they were from (not asking about MCAT scores or grades) and perhaps their major because that was an opening, similar to Freshman year in college where the first thing you ask someone is name, major, and dorm. Perhaps some people thought me annoying, but I wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to meet people. If I had kept to myself all day, I might have spent the whole time working myself up about the interviews. Instead, I was busy meeting some very interesting people. I found that, at least in Texas, I saw quite a few of the people with whom I interviewed at other schools, making the interview day more comfortable.

Conclusion: If you aren't asking questions as a lead in to turn the conversation on yourself (for bragging), then I don't think there is anything wrong with trying to meet with everyone in the interview group.
 

Doctor&Geek

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Originally posted by meanderson
-I think it's ok to share experiences with other schools as long as it is informative. Not every applicant reads interview feedbacks, and they may be interested about the interview day at a particular school. But if it just becomes a laundry list of interviews, then that's tacky.

-Sometimes you go to a school, and you just know it's not a great fit. UAB was that school for me. The out of state students there appeared to be gunner types. The alabama residents interviewing there didn't appear to be all that qualified. I met a few people with 3.5/26's and they seemed pretty confident they would get in. Of all the state schools that accept 10-15% or more of their class from the out of state pool, UAB must have the largest gap between residents and non-residents. Fortunately I mostly talked to a couple of out of state non-gunners who were pretty down to earth.

-If you interview at enough schools, it's almost a guarantee that you will meet some real tools and some really nice people.

Sorry to hear that. I think you ought to congratulate yourself at getting an interview from out-of-state to begin with. Just remember that 6 out of every 7 people that you meet on interview will not be accepted, and the same thing is the case at other institutions.

Best of luck at MCG, or wherever you end up!
 

meanderson

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thanks JPaikman. What I wrote above probably contained a little hyperbole. I'm sure that there are plenty of alabama residents at UAB who are top students also. I guess since I interviewed later in the cycle I just didn't run into the higher end bama residents. The earlier in-state interviews probably go to these applicants at a higher rate.

I'm surprised I haven't been rejected by UAB yet. I know of one other student I interviewed with(out of state) who got his rejection a few weeks after the interview. Could this mean I'm on the UAB waitlist? Since I would have to pay out of state tuition for at least the first year, I couldn't see myself going there over emory or maybe mcg, but I thought I did poorly on 2/3 of the interviews so it would be a surprise if I am waitlisted. Oh well....just curious. If I were an alabama resident and/or birmingham was closer to my home, UAB would easily be my first choice as know it is a very quality school.
 

BklynWill

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Equally annoying as the phony conversations is the common first half-hour dreadful silence, where you sit with tired eyes in an uncomfortable suit. High-energy people at 7:30am can make this situation even worse. Ironically, some of the best conversations eventually emerge from laid-back people who just need a little time to warm up.
 

clowne

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Most of the people I've met at interviews have been genuine and friendly. However, this guy at one interview was unbelievably insincere. He and I and several other applicants were having lunch with an admissions committee member, and the guy spent the whole time sucking up to the adcom member. As soon as the adcom left, the guy started openly making fun of him behind his back! What an insincere a--hole!
 

matthew45

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The people I have interviewed with have been unfailingly cool. At the end of the day at Pritzker I felt like they were all my friends.

The one funny experience I had was at SLU, 14 interviewees, 1 girl. The girl showed up last, so you had 13 guys, sitting around a table bullsh**ing. Let's just say there was some testosterone in the air. Everyone was one-upping and stuff, but it was all in pretty good fun. Then this girl walks in, and immediately we all started behaving ourselves and acting like gentleman.

Can I just say as well, speaking as a public school kid, several times at interviews I have wanted to say to one of the Harvard/Standford/MIT crowd, "uh, I realize that you had internships at NIH/NSF, and worked at some world famous hospital, but did you ever go to a bar in college and have fun?"
 

DannGee

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i've had mostly good experiences with fellow interviewees, with a few notable exceptions. the most irritating thing to me is people that, to appear to be attentive and discerning, ask questions that either a) he/she obviously already knows the answer to, or b) he/she has no real interest in knowing the answer to. at one interview, a guy extended the interview day by at least an hour with inane questions.

i don't really mind when people talk about other schools they've applied to, but what's irritating to me is when they start asking about "when were you complete?" etc etc. and then do it for 6 more schools. it's also irritating when people gripe about how difficult/terrible their interview was. this does nobody any good.

i don't really think a school should be judged by the people in invites to interview, however. most of the jerks and idiots will be weeded out by the interview.

what's been more important to me is the tone of the interviewers. do you really want to go to a school where, upon first contact, faculty are more interested in how a college kid would decide which of two babies should be allowed to live than who you are as a person?
 

dsblaha

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Originally posted by Alexander99
I don't know if I'm the only one to have noticed this (I'm guessing I'm not) but does anyone else find the extremely fake veil of niceness that many interviewees put on during an interview day to be highly annoying?

Case in point: On many occassions during downtime, people were making some really lame jokes (if they can be called that) because they seemed to have nothing better to say. Instead of saying, "What are you talking about" or just remaining silent, everyone starts laughing like the person's a regular Chris Rock. It's almost like people are afraid to not be nice in fear that there's an adcom sitting over their shoulder observing their behavior.

I sure hope the people I've run into were just nervous or something because I may just go crazy in med school if all my classmates act the way these people were acting.

Alex

As a side note, I've met a few people on the interviews that seemed to be acting regular and weren't trying to act overly nice.

I can't believe you are complaining about people actually being cordial with complete strangers. It seems like a good thing to me.
 

Heal&Teach

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I've had several interviews, and I have had a great time meeting people and networking. For starters, I wouldn't want to be in a room full of people and not be acknowledged at all, especially if there's a group who's been there earlier than me. As someone mentioned the golden rule, treat others as you would like to be treated, I definitely make an effort to be cordial to people, esp. with the understanding that folks will be nervous sometimes. I haven't encountered any "lame jokes" thus far (and I'm pretty sure that I haven't been making them ;)), just really nice people that I wouldn't mind being in contact with in the future or having as classmates. I value people who are outgoing and like to interact with other folks, and maybe I've had an easier time meeting folks b/c 1) I've been out of school for a few years and haven't been in the competitive pre-med environment and 2) many other interviewees that I've met are similar have been out of school for at least a year or so and have shed the pre-med armor as well.
 

gujuDoc

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Hey mlw03,

How are you? I saw your signature down below and saw that you were accepted to USF and UF. So I was just curious as to where you go to Undergrad and of those two if you had to choose today which do you foresee as a better school or the one you'll most likely go to???? I'm asking because I attend USF as an undergrad right now, but work at the medical school and was wondering what you thought of either USF or UF.
 

gschl1234

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Originally posted by DannGee
i don't really mind when people talk about other schools they've applied to, but what's irritating to me is when they start asking about "when were you complete?" etc etc. and then do it for 6 more schools. it's also irritating when people gripe about how difficult/terrible their interview was. this does nobody any good.

I don't understand why anyone would mind being asked when he/she was complete. I certainly do not and I never considered that anyone would mind. I hope that I didn't offend anyone at my interviews. I ask people these questions not because I'm nosey but because I've also applied to the school and it would be nice to have an idea of when they'll get back to me! sheesh. We're all in the process together so we all know how tough and draining it can be. It only makes sense to be supportive and share information since most schools just give you the minimal whenever you call.
 

DrBodacious

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I say if it bothers you when people talk about the application process, it is your problem. I don't really initiate any of this but it has happened at all of my interviews. If you don't like it, get over with that part of the conversation and then change the subject to something that interests you. I don't think it is fair to judge people as being "fake" after hearing them speak for several minutes about applying.
 

g3pro

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i don't think it's a coincidence that the people who have extensive ECs are also phony. i also don't think it's a coincidence that the phonies and extensive EC people are the same people who think that Ivy Leagues should 'count more', public schools are inferior, and apply to as many 'top ten' schools as possible.
 

gujuDoc

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Originally posted by g3pro
i don't think it's a coincidence that the people who have extensive ECs are also phony. i also don't think it's a coincidence that the phonies and extensive EC people are the same people who think that Ivy Leagues should 'count more', public schools are inferior, and apply to as many 'top ten' schools as possible.




No kidding, to the poster that said this I applaud to you. One harsh lesson I learned this year is barely any of the extracurricular means anything, and too many people do it just for their resume.

For instance, I was an officer of PAMSA at my school, and it has been the biggest waste of my time and such a joke. The president thinks because he is president and brought in 364 members and got good contracts with the princeton review/kaplan courses, and put on some forum that he is a hot shot. Furthermore, he has a high GPA and has done supposedly nearly 800 hrs of research.

So he goes on to brag about this and looks down on anyone and everyone else. On top of which he doesn't seem to have any caring towards others other than his few friends.


So I know the feeling.


One harsh lesson I began to learn this year is that I wish I could toss out some of the EC's that I have done like the leadership positions cuz I found that leadership is better served through the work place or a place that shows true maturity, not waste of time student organizations.
 

DrBodacious

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Originally posted by g3pro
i don't think it's a coincidence that the people who have extensive ECs are also phony. i also don't think it's a coincidence that the phonies and extensive EC people are the same people who think that Ivy Leagues should 'count more', public schools are inferior, and apply to as many 'top ten' schools as possible.


I disagree that there is any sort of correlation strong enough to judge people. I've met some nice people from top name schools that have done HIV prevention work in Africa etc etc... amazingly qualified. But they didn't seem to have a chip on their shoulder.

On the other hand, I can attest that there are those people with stuck up noses because they went to an elite school. Once I reveal that I go to a third tier state school, some people won't give me anything but a scoff or a confused look on their faces when I say something normal. Once again, this is their problem not mine, and if I had more time to get to know them they might come around.

Also, as far as pre-med club people... Most of the officers at my school do annoy me, after I've gotten to know them. They are the type that want to be just like the people on the show Scrubs, they think they are smart but act ignorant to look cool, and are hard core bio-med, pretty cliquey, and competitive.

I have diverse intellecutal interests, in so much as I've done both bio med and ecology research to significant degrees. My dad was a biology dept head for some time and I've heard about the clashes between the plant/ecology scientists and the cell/human scientists at his institution for quite some time. Sure enough, the tension exists in my school's bios dept as well. One of my profs I did neurobiology research with described me as "bridging the gap" becuase I do work with ecology people as well--a rarity.

So anyway, what I'm trying to say is that you shouldn't judge people based on specific interests. I admit to judging people after I've gotten to know them and find out the they are close minded or have a chip on their shoulder. Qualities which a few of you seem to be expressing when judging people because they ask a specific question at interviews. In case you didn't realize it, they could be doing this because they are nervous, because they just want to break the ice, because they are sincerely curious about a school admissions processes or for whatever reason.

BTW, I'm not addressing this to you g3pro, or anyone else in particular.
 

rgporter

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I noticed it but I wasn't really very annoyed. Most of them are just kids and they were nervous. It's difficult when you think you're always being observed, and you're trying to put on a good show.
 

DrWuStar

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Originally posted by matthew45
Can I just say as well, speaking as a public school kid, several times at interviews I have wanted to say to one of the Harvard/Standford/MIT crowd, "uh, I realize that you had internships at NIH/NSF, and worked at some world famous hospital, but did you ever go to a bar in college and have fun?"

YES!!

the politeness and friendliness of other interviewees, even when it does seem a little fake or forced, does not bother me. the bad jokes don't really bug me either.

what kills me is how wholesome, studious, and angelic many of the interviewees seem. not that those are bad qualities, but i think i am a fine person, and these interviewees make me feel like a degenerate. can these people actually exist? did they really study as hard as they could for every test? do they really do research for fun? did they really spend all their non-study time leading girl scout troups? i thought girl scouts ended in 6th grade!

i find these people shocking. especially when i encounter many of them at one time. why would an 18-22 year old act like that all the time? did they never get drunk and act stupid? did they never skip class for a road trip or just a day in the sunshine? did they never forget to finish a lab report because they were out stalking their latest crush? if these people are in fact being real, and not just fronting as goody-2-shoes, i feel so sorry for them. i think they missed the point of college.
 

g3pro

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Originally posted by Alexander99
I don't know if I'm the only one to have noticed this (I'm guessing I'm not) but does anyone else find the extremely fake veil of niceness that many interviewees put on during an interview day to be highly annoying?

Case in point: On many occassions during downtime, people were making some really lame jokes (if they can be called that) because they seemed to have nothing better to say. Instead of saying, "What are you talking about" or just remaining silent, everyone starts laughing like the person's a regular Chris Rock. It's almost like people are afraid to not be nice in fear that there's an adcom sitting over their shoulder observing their behavior.

I went to an undergraduate open-house for the University of Chicago. Part of the open-house was dedicated to getting introduced to various advising panels. I went to the pre-med advisory committee introduction.

The leader of the pre-med advising committee gave the talk. Of the things he said, these three things stuck out:

1) You need to get as much volunteering, clinical experience, and research as possible as an undergraduate.

2) Adcoms look to make sure you have as diversified education as possible as an undergraduate. Make sure that you take as many liberal arts courses as possible so that you look like you have a well-rounded application.

3) When you are with other people before the interview, make sure that you are absolutely as friendly as possible and that you fit nicely into the group, because the adcoms are looking at you to make sure that you will work well with your colleagues, because the doctor community is not supposed to be very competitive, and that there is no rivalry.


what was of utmost importance to the pre-med advisor? act as phony as possible. that essentially is what he told us. we were being advised on how to look best in the eyes of adcoms so that we can get acceptances. your character really doesn't matter. as long as you look great on paper (extensive ECs, volunteer everywhere (AIDS drives, working at a muscular dystrophy camp over the summer :rolleyes: ), you will get accepted.

and this is what the pre-med advisors told prospective undergraduates. i can only imagine what they advise their actual students. :eek:

and people wonder where others get the notions that admissions is a check-list affair: volunteering in uganda? check. part-time job as an orthopaedic surgeon? check. graduate of an ivy-league school? check.


this is getting really pathetic.


is anyone familiar with the AMSA listserves? they are actually encouraging volunteering in uganda (to pad the application probably):

Hey AMSA global-folk,

I'd like to invite you all to join the Uganda Village Project, a volunteer initiative started by medical and pre-med students in March 2003.

We created this initiative under the International Federation of Medical Students Associations-USA, as a sustainable, community-led health and development partnership. We spent two months living in a remote village in Eastern Uganda while developing these projects with local non-governmental organizations:

1) GRASSROOTS COMMUNITY EDUCATION: We provided a village-by-village approach to teaching HIV/AIDS Transmission/Prevention and Sanitation/Nutrition to over 2,000 people! With each four-hour session, we encountered many questions that indicated a pervasive lack of understanding about how HIV is transmitted and how the spread of infectious disease can be prevented.................

i really am not sure how many of you are truly compassionate towards the Ugandan people and how much you want to help those people out, but going to uganda to pad your app??? this is just sickening.
 
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