TotalEclipse

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So I've decided where I'll be spending the next four years of my life. It's a huge relief to have that settled. So now what?

What advice would current medical students give to incoming M1s? Is there anything we should bone up on in advance?

Thanks for your help!
 

beanbean

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Relax, enjoy yourself, and have some fun!

Don't try to read up on anything! There will be plenty to study once you start, for now just enjoy time not studying.
 

merlin

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spend the next 5 months doing whatever you have really wanted to do but have been putting off because you had to do stuff to put on your med school application. seriously, you're not going to have time like this for a long, long time. take full advantage of it and i urge you not to try to prepare for the MS1 year. cheers.
 
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Laura JC

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I think it depends on what kind of a person you are. I was the type who couldn't really take my mind off of it for that summer, and I found myself talking to whoever I could for scraps of seemingly trivial information. I wanted to know everything, from what cadaver dissection is really like, to student clinical experiences, you name it, I was hungry for information. When I found myself waiting anxiously for school to begin, I did start some reading for anatomy, because I knew that was coming first. I don't know how much it helped me, but I just needed to do it to calm my nerves somewhat, and feel like I was doing something to move forward. If you have relaxation type things that you would like to do, I agree, take your opportunity while you have it. But if you are the type who needs to feel plugged in to medical school now, get yourself a Netter's Anatomy or Physiology Atlas and start reading.

I do have a bit of advice for you about the upcoming year. Buy First Aid For the USMLE Step 1 BEFORE you begin your classes, and use it as a review as you take each course during years one and two. The Board Review Series books (with the checkerboard style covers) are excellent too, and I use those as an extra resource as I take each class. I have step one coming up, and I'm not planning on buying any more books than the ones I mentioned, and I think it's good to review with books you are already comfortable with.

Congratulations on your acceptance and your decision.
 

nutmegs

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enjoy yourself, go out with your friends from college (solidify all future road-trip possibilities), and- and I mean this one- get a job and save up some money. you will have a LOT of expenses in august (security deposit, august rent, utility setup fees) and you might not get your loan check until a week or two into the semester.... plus having extra cash during the fall or even at christmas is SO key
 

Galaxian

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TRAVEL! Go climb the Tien Shan mountains, waddle with a penguin in patagonia, visit beethoven's house in vienna, have a beer in belgium, just get the hell out there, and don't even think about medical school until registration day. You're never gonna have this much free time, and you're gonna be up to your eyeballs in debt by the time you grad, so make the best use of this time, you've earned it!
 

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I would suggest you spend a little time shadowing some doctors, preferably in the school you'll be going to or near-by so you can use those connections while in school. I've shadowed occasionally (some required for class, some not) so far this year (MS1) and I find it really enjoyable. It helps you figure out why you need to know all the stuff they throw at you in school. Plus, it's probably not a bad idea to start getting a feel for the kind of medicine you are interested in.
 

twinklz

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Quick question...

Everyone is always suggesting that you travel. How exactly do you afford to do that?!

I was planning on going to Costa Rica for a couple weeks, but I don't think I can part with the $1000. That would be like spending a quarter of my total monetary worth! Right now my big plans are to go to Hershey PA. (Which don't get me wrong, should be rather fun for a day)
 

Mike59

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Originally posted by TotalEclipse
What advice would current medical students give to incoming M1s? Is there anything we should bone up on in advance?

Honestly.....Live dammit!! LIVE!!!

Don't read ahead, don't buy books before you're supposed to, just go with the flow.

Just have faith that your school has put out generations of doctors and that the program works. The first 2 years should be as stress free and enjoyable as possible.

If you're gonna "learn" anything before starting school- learn to trust yourself and forget about what everyone else is doing and stressing about (you'll soon see the madness and anxiety that can spread through a med school class like wildfire). Staying cool is the ultimate skill and will take you places in life....
 

::Seabass::

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Originally posted by twinklz
Quick question...

Everyone is always suggesting that you travel. How exactly do you afford to do that?!

I was planning on going to Costa Rica for a couple weeks, but I don't think I can part with the $1000. That would be like spending a quarter of my total monetary worth! Right now my big plans are to go to Hershey PA. (Which don't get me wrong, should be rather fun for a day)
later on when you have more money, you won't be able to buy time OR youth. an extra 1K is nothing added on to the loans you are about to take out.
 

Galaxian

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If you're gonna "learn" anything before starting school- learn to trust yourself and forget about what everyone else is doing and stressing about (you'll soon see the madness and anxiety that can spread through a med school class like wildfire). Staying cool is the ultimate skill and will take you places in life....

Mike, I couldn't have said it better. This is perhaps the most important lesson I learned in medical school...:clap:
 

merlin

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as one who has done a fair bit of travelling both before med school (5 months thru C.America) and while in med school (both spring break and all of summer of MS-1) my advice is don't at all worry about the money. all of my money for travel has been obtained as school loans and i cannot be happier to have had the experience before i don't have large chunks of time to travel. the way to look at it is, what is a couple extra thousand dollars when you are looking at 150K in loans. not much really. and then you can ask yourself if you would rather travel now when your hips and knees are still good and your sense of adventure extends beyond sitting by the pool at club med, or if you really would rather wait till your near 40 and the though of backpacking through a third world country is as appealing as a cold coffee. NOT that that happens to all, but i would say it does for the vast majority of people. so have fun now and experience the most you can. hope all this advice isn't just ramblings...cheers.
 
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Originally posted by merlin
as one who has done a fair bit of travelling both before med school (5 months thru C.America) and while in med school (both spring break and all of summer of MS-1) my advice is don't at all worry about the money. all of my money for travel has been obtained as school loans and i cannot be happier to have had the experience before i don't have large chunks of time to travel. the way to look at it is, what is a couple extra thousand dollars when you are looking at 150K in loans. not much really. and then you can ask yourself if you would rather travel now when your hips and knees are still good and your sense of adventure extends beyond sitting by the pool at club med, or if you really would rather wait till your near 40 and the though of backpacking through a third world country is as appealing as a cold coffee. NOT that that happens to all, but i would say it does for the vast majority of people. so have fun now and experience the most you can. hope all this advice isn't just ramblings...cheers.


Ahem...clears forty-year-old throat...adjusts adult diaper...

Amen. I'm glad I travelled when I was young. There is nothing like having a month off with no repsonsibilities, no pressures, and the ability to "rough it." If I was going to medical school as a 22-year-old I'd charge up my credit card the summer before and maybe take a mountain-bike trek across europe before the boom falls. You have it exactly right. What's another couple of thousand dollars compared to the minimum 200K most of us will owe when we finish residency?

You forgot to mention that when you have kids travelling is even more difficult and expensive.

And no, I no longer have the urge to backback through Europe. The next time my wife and I visit Italy we're going first class, baby.
 
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