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Life as an undergrad - ADVICE

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by koercive, Feb 28, 2007.

  1. koercive

    koercive Industry HE&OR, Large Cap Pharma Partner Organization 10+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2005
    New Jersey
    SDN Partner
    Did you guys enjoy your time as an undergrad?

    I'm finishing up my 3rd year, and I must say that I enjoyed my time here. I've been able to keep my grades up (3.69 gpa), full-time work (~ 30-35 hrs a week), be in a fraternity (leadership position), and party. ( I could graduate this year, but I am going to stay 4 years to space out my classes as I have a lot of responsibilities )

    here's some advice for the younger crowd from my personal experience :

    - you don't ALWAYS have to be studying, but ATTEND LECTURE. take some time to relax. make use of your school's tutoring programs for classes like bio, ochem, etc. to keep on top of your work

    - you DON'T HAVE TO BE A BIO MAJOR, CHOOSE A MAJOR YOU ENJOY. I'm a psychology major, and I must say I am so glad I changed my major out of bio as soon as I started undergrad. I only have to take the pre-med requirements rather than taking a whole bunch of bio classes.

    - if you're in a quarter system, take classes OUT OF SEQUENCE. I found this out accidentally my freshman year when I didn't take chemistry in the fall. I ended up starting chemistry in the winter (and finishing up the sequence in the summer). why? the professors are usually way more chill. the curve is awesome :thumbup: as you're competing against the people who are behind or have failed before

    - BALANCE your work and play. If you told yourself you would study for 3 hours today and didn't, punish yourself by not going to that party. DON'T BURN yourself out.

    - make use of < I used this site before enrolling in any class (when I could)\

    - make a STUDY PLAN and STICK to it. for me, I used a "4 day plan" for organic chemistry (after guaging the difficulty of the class/how much I've learned so far), where I did pretty much all my studying 4 days before the exam. I followed my plan religiously and did well in the class.

    - sometimes you will need to DROP THAT CLASS you're doing poorly in (make sure it won't show on your transcript - there are deadlines). I've dropped numerous classes throughout undergrad when I did poorly on the first exam / quizzes.

    - MOTIVATE YOURSELF. Imagine yourself a few years down the line when all this studying will payoff.

    I could see how people my think my lifestyle as a pre-med undergrad is pretty "liberal." But honestly, the way I see it, you're in college only ONCE, make the most of it WHILE handling your work.

    Some of these are obvious, but I put them up anyways.
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  3. RollWave11

    RollWave11 10+ Year Member

    Oct 19, 2006
    Good list. I may have partied too hard and not taken classes serious enough but after 1/2 a SMP program and a MCAT retake I'm in the class of 2011! WOOHOO!
  4. EBI831

    EBI831 legend in the making 7+ Year Member

    Apr 18, 2006
    Chi-town royalty
    So you are not even done and you've made a list? or are you graduating in 3 years? if you are my advice to younguns would be to stay 4 years even if you are done in 3 if you can afford to, push 12 hour schedules in classes that you always wanted to take(not premedical) and i kinda wished i'd have learned something new about other cultures like it said in the college brochure when i applied. so maybe branch out is my advice.
  5. LeafNinja

    LeafNinja 2+ Year Member

    Nov 12, 2006
    take classes w/ people who've failed once?

    Wouldn't they be ahead of you then because they would at least know a bit more about the subject? And wouldn't they be more determined not to fail AGAIN!??

    If you take the normal class, everyone starts off the same. I dunno, maybe it's just me but it seems....:confused:
  6. evade

    evade Our Lady of DNA 10+ Year Member

    Jun 9, 2005
    Yes, yes, yes. If you do what you love, you'll be happier, and you'll be more likely to excel. My first love is genetics :love:, and that's what led me to medicine. I didn't set out on the med school path from the get-go; I just did what I felt was right at every step.

    That said, I had a blast in undergrad. Wouldn't have done it any other way!
  7. DocYuki

    DocYuki The Gamer Student 5+ Year Member

    Jan 28, 2007
    Anyone with reasonable study skills can manage undergrad course-loads while still having weekends to do whatever they want. Though it may not be the case once I start school this fall, I was able to reserve Friday night through Sunday afternoon for the all-mighty "my-time" block. Within that time-frame, play hard!

    Outside of it, do your work hard so you can keep that balance =D
  8. koercive

    koercive Industry HE&OR, Large Cap Pharma Partner Organization 10+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2005
    New Jersey
    SDN Partner
    exactly my viewpoint.

    balance your work and play; don't burn yourself out
  9. koercive

    koercive Industry HE&OR, Large Cap Pharma Partner Organization 10+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2005
    New Jersey
    SDN Partner
    Well also, the professors that teach "off - sequence" are better at my school a majority of the time. I understand the material, and at the same time , the averages are much lower than when taking the class "on track."

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