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What are some things you wish you knew before getting to college?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by HopefulSlav, Jul 22, 2011.

  1. HopefulSlav

    7+ Year Member

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    What are some things that you would've liked to know before starting your undergrad? Like in chemistry, biology, or the like.
     
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  3. torshi

    torshi Squirrel
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    hmm, nothing really.
     
  4. aSagacious

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  5. TexasPhysician

    Moderator Physician 10+ Year Member

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    Mentally prepare myself to study lots
     
  6. HurricaneKatt

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    I wish that I had taken more time for myself. I admit I was warned, but I'm a "learn the hard way" kind of girl. lol By the end of it all I was completely burnt out. Result? I decided to take a year off to recover and do some fun non-school related things before jumping into the real thing. Once Med school starts, that's it! Now granted I worked almost full time the whole way through, took classes every summer, and had several serious personal/family crises come up (the near loss of a few family members, 9 months of a bad case of mono, the loss of a dear friend, etc). I never gave myself breaks - I was determined to power through it. And finally I just burnt out. It's REALLY important to still take time out for yourself every now and then. Work out, read a book, hang out with your friends. Don't slack, but don't do nothing-but-school-and-work-24/7 either.Do you want and need to push yourself? Certainly! But have a little fun in between! :)
     
  7. sapalee

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    How to study, and that I was capable.
     
  8. ponyo

    ponyo 人魚姫
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    That some people are CRAZY. Seriously, I'd never met anybody with multiple restraining orders until I got to college. Or anybody who pooped in inappropriate parts of public buildings. Or just how explosive vomit can be.

    Also I really wish I had learned diff eq. before starting intro phys...

    Oh and learning to study as efficiently as possible is indispensable.
     
  9. Eric01

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    I wish I knew not to major in physics expecting to get an engineering job. Should have just gone engineering from the start.

    Also I wish I knew about various treatments for various disorders I had.

    Oh ya, I also wish I knew that you shouldn't ever mix beer and liquor, that was one horrible horrible night.
     
  10. Tapepsi

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    One mistake I repeatedly make all the time. :laugh:

    I really have no regrets. I made the most of my undergrad experience while making sure my grades were good.

    Now if you were asking "What are some things you wish you knew before going to med school?" that's an entirely different question that I won't be able to answer until at least next year. ha ha.
     
  11. MSU2009

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    Liquor before beer and you're in the clear bro.
     
  12. pkwraith

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    I would've partied more and studied less freshman year.
     
  13. Shark7500

    Shark7500 Clairvoyant
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    I wish I had known that "settling" with a state university wasn't the end of my life. I wish I had been more excited and less worried about how life would have been if I had decided to incur a $100 k debt and go to Cornell, Rice, or Duke.

    Sigh. If I had known this, last summer would have been sooo much better.
     
  14. SexyDoctor

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    Not to be cocky with my grades...

    Not to have entered college in a relationship
     
  15. Jwalker

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    I wish I partied less my freshman year and more my sophmore and junior year :p. Senior year is up and coming :cool:.
     
  16. Etorphine

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    major in the easiest major you can, and get straight A's. Take it from someone that chose the hardest major, no one cares and it is not worth it.
     
  17. patel2

    patel2 Membership Revoked
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    how to roll a mean blunt
     
  18. kexy

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    :thumbup:

    Yes.
     
  19. luli

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    Avoid getting a boyfriend or girlfriend if you can. Sex is wonderful; relationships are time suckers. (I was not able to take my own advice :D)

    As far as science knowledge, no. Intro classes don't assume much knowledge of their respective subjects. Knowing how to manage your time is the most important thing. Cramming is useless because you'll need to retain the stuff you learn to do well on the MCAT (I'm guessing, haven't made it that far).
     
  20. kautionwirez

    kautionwirez Hadoken!
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    Knowing that I wanted to be a doctor (decided after my freshman year starting with bad grades...)
     
  21. NightGod

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    ftfy
     
  22. how to study for finals.
     
  23. b05010445

    b05010445 Atlantic Seamonster
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    There is no good reason to get crappy grades in intro chem. If only I studied a little and didn't act like it was high school chem. Everytime I look at my transcript I feel shamed by that really stupid behavior.
     
  24. 235788

    235788 God Complex
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    Time Management!! If i only knew freshman year what i know now :D
     
  25. Nymphicus

    Nymphicus kane o ke kai
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    Put off hard, required yet useless classes (differential equations, calc II, advanced ochem) until after app season if you feel it they will lower your GPA.
     
  26. two thirty

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    Study hard, party harder.
     
  27. two thirty

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    Yeah that too. Freshman classes really aren't that tough and you'll be kicking yourself later if you blow it off now. You can still have a blast freshman year and get good grades if you put in the work too.

    Also, be social and make friends in your classes. I study way more efficiently in a group and its nice having backup in case you are sick(*cough* hungover) and get to class one day.

    People will tell you never to skip class, but if you go to a big public school with large lectures, there are classes you can get away with it. At my school, there are some classes that don't take attendance and that post all of the notes online.

    Heck, I only went to ochem(1 and 2) probably about 10 times total. The professor had a terrible accent and I didn't learn a thing being in the room. After a few weeks, I discovered it was a much better use of my time to skip that class and go to the library for an hour and a half instead. I still had a set time to learn the material, but I was doing it in a way where I got the most usefulness out of that time block.

    However, gen chem was the same way where they didn't take attendance. That teacher was actually great though so it was a smarter use of my time to go to that one. Just play it by ear with classes and soon you'll figure out which ones are necessary.

    Also, make it a point to overstudy for the first test. Few reasons...first, you won't be worn out(hopefully) by this point. It's a lot harder for me to go hours on end studying when the semester drags on. Second, until you take the professors test, you really have no idea on what it will be like. You may have old tests, but in most cases they'll be changed around a good bit. Overstudy for the first, and then on the next test lighten up if you know you overdid it. Third, every test in most classes weighs heavily on your final grade. Most classes here are 3 tests(or projects) and a final. Therefore, each test is usually at least 20% of your final grade. It's so nice to give yourself breathing room early so you don't have to make a 97% on your chem final to get the grade you desire.

    Don't rule out other career options, keep an open mind. There are a lot of people who come to college wanting to enter the medial field and change their mind. There are others, like me, who had no interest and a few years in have decided to take this path(although, it's dental school for me.) Take elective that interest you and you might find that there is another calling in your life.

    Major in something you enjoy. If it's biology, go for it, but don't be one of the typical applicants who thinks that is the only way to to go. I know a ton of pre-meds who are doing bio because they think they have to and hate it. I'd cautious picking an overly difficult major though. At the end of the day, GPA reigns far supreme over prestige of major(med schools want to boast about their 3.8 GPA average class, not their class full of biochemical engineering majors.) Some here will even say major plays absolutely no role in determining admissions.


    And have fun. There are a lot of gunners here, but try not to be one. In fact, I'd bookmark this forum and not visit until next summer. If you stress too much over getting into med school, you'll miss a lot of what college has to offer. If Greek life interests you at all, at least give it a fair shot and rush. If you get involved though, be sure to know school is your number one priority. I have several fraternity brothers who most likely won't be getting in first try if at all. Go meet some awesome people, don't be afraid to try new things, and have a blast.

    Sorry for the rambling. That's probably my longest post ever. :laugh:
     
  28. Graywolf

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    Don't start college as triple major, stick to balancing ONE girl, not three. And a little physics might have helped...
     
  29. haha wat

    graywolf? more like courage wolf
    jesus...
     
  30. 45408

    45408 aw buddy
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    about how I feel. I did really well freshman year, but it could have been more fun. Living at home kind of cramped my style that way.
     
  31. Graywolf

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    MOST IMPORTANT:

    Surround yourself with people who bring out the best in you. I would suggest finding a fellow premed [a normal one] that has some similar interests. That way you have some steady, reciprocal encouragement. Also, it's always nice to have company when pulling multiple all-nighters studying that MAP = CO x TPR, hemoglobin Bohr effects, and the Perutz mechanism.

    Don't be like me, surrounding myself with people who seem to rely on ME as the source for their motivation, but the only return is constant distraction and bad influence...

    Remember, the people you surround yourself with is who you will slowly become.

    Choose wisely, my friends.
     
  32. NightGod

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    Disagree. Balance as many as you can fit into your room at the same time. And remember that confidence will get you farther with members of the gender you find attractive than anything else.
     
  33. Graywolf

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    A pimp's gotta stay ice cold, but hot enough to make the ladies melt
     
  34. WeAreNotRobots

    WeAreNotRobots doctor of medicine
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    Try your best to create a schedule that has no classes on Friday...Or at least no Friday morning classes. It gives you an extra guilt-free night to stay out late doing whatever you should be doing as a college student.
     
  35. Sailor Senshi Dermystify

    Classifieds Approved 7+ Year Member

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    I wish I knew about the Gates Millenium Scholarship and the Barry Goldwater Scholarship when I was in college :mad:
     
  36. MaenadsDance

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    I had the best semester of my undergrad career this spring with a 9am on Friday and no other classes. Because I was already up, I did all of my weekend homework/studying, and then had Saturday/Sunday almost off to relax, it was great.
     
  37. rcheech7

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    I'm gonna third this. When I went to pick my major the first day, they told us you "have to major in biology to go to med school". Even though biology is by no means really difficult, I would have loved to major in something else (Anthropology) and have a higher GPA.
     
  38. wholeheartedly

    Administrator 7+ Year Member

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    my thoughts:

    It's easier to start strong than catch up later. Don't put yourself in a position of having to do damage control.

    along that same line, if you really want to go to medical school, don't keep trying to talk yourself out of it. (non-trad now out in the working world, who will apply, finally. that said having some non academic post college life experience can be a great thing too).

    Be fully invested in studying when you're studying, and fully invested in playing when you're playing. Don't take breaks where you spend your whole break feeling guilty you're not studying/etc. Taking a real break where you don't think about school will help you focus better when you do go back to studying.

    Choose research advisors wisely.

    You're at college to learn more than just academics. For the sake of your sanity, and for your future patients, have a life outside of class. College is a great time to explore so many different things, and you'll probably never find yourself in an environment quite like that ever again.

    There's a big difference between studying for a long time and studying efficiently. Learn that difference as early as you can. Longer isn't better. Different courses might require different strategies. My favorite study tool was a dry erase board.

    Agree with keeping an open mind. Also, pick a major you'll enjoy that also has employment options at the end in case you can't go straight into medical school or decide not to at all.

    Finally, if there's some experience you really want to have (SURF, Fulbright, special scholarship, study abroad, volunteer abroad) just go for it, even if you think the logistics might be too hard to work out. You'll figure something out to make it work if you get it. It's better not to regret not taking the chance to go for it.
     
  39. vnicolas

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    Plan out my 4 yrs better, volunteer at a place for 2 years then the final two years shadow.
     
  40. 45408

    45408 aw buddy
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    Don't worry about other people's study methods. Some of them look really impressive (several different colors of highlighters, re-writing all of their notes, extensive annotation in the margins), but the person still does poorly. Sometimes, they do poorly because they spent more time making notes than studying them.

    If you're doing well, then keep doing what works for you. If you're doing poorly, then you should re-assess your study plans immediately, rather than doing twice as much of something dumb the second time around.
     
  41. iFLo

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    that I wanted to be a doctor. didn't start pre-med until after freshman year.
     
  42. Drrrrrr. Celty

    Drrrrrr. Celty Osteo Dullahan
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    I wish I had known what major I wanted to exactly study and which place was the best place to study it.
     
  43. Stumpyman

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    The fact that despite all the resources, how unorganized and scrambled eerything is before applying to med schools (where to do this?, what to take now?, what's the point of this?, where to find research?, where to volunteer?, what job should I take?, etc.)
     
  44. Pietrantonio

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    To have known what I wanted to do. Would have saved me a lot of $$ and time.
     
  45. expendible

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    [​IMG]

    You know how to use one of theseeeee????
     
  46. Charles Darwin

    Charles Darwin KFBR392

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    Step 1: Set up 6 plastic cups in pyramidal formation.
    Step 2: Acquire several ping pong balls.
    Step 3: Locate oneself approximately 10 feet from said plastic cups.
    Step 4: Practice tossing aforementioned ping pong balls into plastic cups.
     
  47. Web MD

    Web MD Doctor of the Internets
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    Wish I'd known that 4loko was going to become a limited edition item. Brother saw it coming and stockpiled them and not only do they get you different, they sell for $10/can
     
  48. KTownGT

    KTownGT RNA-->DNA-->RNA-->Protein
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    That high school today does not prepare students adequately for college.
     
  49. orangeblue

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    Don't take hard upper level classes no matter how "smart" you think you are. You are smart, correct, but the point of classes to get a GREAT GPA.

    There are ways to challenge your intellect without jeopardizing your GPA. Take advantage of your first year and take easy classes. Don't do anything to piss off professors in smaller classes.

    You will sad, lonely at times. Find an outlet, embrace your feelings, if you dislike something abut your life, have the courage to verbalize it, talk to many people until you find an option that works for you, refuse to settle, if you get a n advisor who you don't like for WHATEVER reason, ask for SWITCH!! You have every right to this.

    If you envy anyone of your peers, embrace it with positively. Envy tells you what you want--understand that you are just as capable as them to get it or to achieve it and then think if this is what you really and truly want.

    Be social, go to parties, learn some basic social skils: smile, etc and talk to people.
     
  50. ElCapone

    ElCapone Don't Lawyer Me
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    Ponyo, can you please give us suggestions on how to study efficiently?

    I totally get your username btw.
     
  51. Medbits

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    I would benefited greatly from taking a cooking class...
     

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