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preparing to enter this fall

Discussion in 'Medical Students - DO' started by Doc2004, Apr 11, 2000.

  1. Doc2004

    Doc2004 Junior Member

    Mar 28, 2000
    Salt Lake City, UT, USA
    Do any of the more experienced medical students have any advice regarding what we, the new kids, can do to have a "leg up" for the upcoming year? Is there any advice you could give in the "what you wish you had known" department? Any specific advice for students who did not major in science, non-traditional students in age, or other people who may be in for an adjustment? This is open to anyone who may have some thoughts on this topic. Thanks!
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  3. chas2003

    chas2003 New Member

    Apr 11, 2000
    West Des Moines, IA
    Beginning medical school can be an overwhelming experience; it was for me. I would suggest taking about 24 credit hours your next semester just to see firsthand how your attitude about school and life in general will change. After completing your pschologic breakdown and, hopefully, rebuilding you will then be ready for medical school. I think the main problem with medical school is the volume of material that a student is subjected to during a relatively short amount of time. Good Luck!
  4. IndyMike

    IndyMike Member 10+ Year Member

    Oct 28, 1999
    Indianapolis, IN USA
    Hey Chas, I will be starting at DMU in August and I was wondering if you could answer a few questions for me. I particularly would like to know what a typical day/week is like. For instance how many hours a day in class, how many in lab, how are the tests scheduled, is the scribe service good enough to skip out on lecture from time to time, and finally, is the first year lecture hall as bad as I have heard? Sorry for all the questions, just anxious I guess! Thanks.

    DMU-COMS 2004
  5. medstudent2b

    medstudent2b Junior Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 29, 2000
    Mpls,MN USA
    I would also be extremely interested in the response to 1st year questions. Also, where in West Des Moines did you find a place to live? Any suggestions for areas to check out? Also.....what are your thoughts about needing a computer in med school? Thanks for any help in advance!
  6. lumbrical

    lumbrical Member 10+ Year Member

    Feb 15, 2000
    Doc2004 & other future colleagues:

    1) It's ok to be a little nervous about starting, but remember that you're entering a wonderful field, and many, many others before you have entered and completed med school successfully. You will too.

    2) DO NOT try to pre-study. Almost every current and former med student will tell you it's a COMPLETE WASTE OF THE LAST REAL FREE TIME you'll have for a while, so just have fun. It would take you a month on your own to cover what you'll cover in a few days once you start, and you won't learn it as well. It sounds crazy, but after a while it actually gets to be normal, sort of.

    3) In my opinion, you need a computer in med school, but you don't have to have a laptop. It may depend on the school, but you don't even have to have your own computer really; it's whatever saves you the most time. Either way, you still have to cover the same material, and that $2000 or so will be real nice to keep in your pocket once your income goes to nil and your expenses go WAY up @ school.

    4)What I wish I would have known: DO NOT BUY: a) most textbooks. You need a Netter and a dissector for Gross, Robbins for Pathology, and board review books for most of the rest. It's easy to spend a couple grand a year on textbooks that you don't have time to read. b) you may not need to buy the $600 or so in medical equipment they try to sell you the first month; you're not setting up your own clinic. *** NOTE: Your best bet here is to wait until you are at school and ask the 2d & 3d year students; also, you can usually find discounts once you're in school that aren't available to you before, so don't pre-buy.

    5) If you wanted to do something, pick up the phone or drop a polite note to a doctor near you who practices a kind of medicine you're interested in. Tell them you start med school in the fall, you're interested in what they do, and you'd like to observe their practice at their convenience. You might get turned down, but if you do this a few times you'll also get to see some cool stuff. They don't expect you to know anything, so you can just go in there with big eyes and learn whatever you can. I was surprised at the opportunities this got me once I was in that it was IMPOSSIBLE to get as a pre-med. They know you're not an idiot if you got in, I think, and you are maybe less desperate! :)

    6) Be excited! Don't believe pre-meds about ANYTHING relating to med school. They haven't a clue, just as I didn't. It's hard work, but it's also challenging, FUN, fascinating...You'll work hard, but you have time for the things that are important to you as well. You can have a family life, you can have hobbies, you just have to pick what's really important to you and focus on just that. You'll learn how much time you really wasted before...and believe me, it's a lot, I don't care how old you are! You're entering a pretty supportive profession; there's a great sense of professional concern for your progress and well-being, even from the docs and professors that smack you around sometimes. You are in the BEST place...all the joy that comes with knowing you've gotten through the cut, you've made the team, but without any of the work or responsibility yet. ENJOY IT; tell everyone you meet that you're going to be a doctor, because you are.

    Congratulations, and best wishes for next year.

  7. Lumbrical, that was a fantastic post. I commend your effort.
  8. reed99

    reed99 Member 10+ Year Member

    Feb 2, 2000
    San Antonio, TX USA

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