Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Transition Day

The end of my second year in medical school is fast approaching. In fact, I have only one day of real class left and finals start on Monday. This is scary for a number of reasons. The first is that I just have a lot of work to do between now and finals. I have to finish a number of projects and study, especially for the cumulative pharmacology exam that has around 500 drugs on it. Another reason school ending is scary is that it means that I immediately have to start studying for Step 1 of the boards. I'm taking the test on June 22 so I have a month and a half to study. I've heard that a person's score on their boards is the number one thing that residency programs look at so I would like to do well. I'll have to relearn everything I'm supposed to remember from the first 2 years of class. Perhaps more of a problem is that I'll have to have the discipline to study a certain number of hours each day and not get distracted. It's going to be interesting to say the least.

The end of 2nd year in a larger sense means the transition from all day in a classroom to rotating through the wards. We had transition day last friday where we heard from other med students and program directors what will be expected of us for the next two years. It is definitely going to be an adjustment. My schedule is going to be a lot more intense. Certain program directors made it sound like they were doing us a favor giving us one day off a week, as in Sunday only. Others stressed that even though there is technically an 80 hr work week cap for medical students it takes much more time than that for us to learn what we need to learn. It seems very overwhelming. I think it will be fun and interesting also but at the moment I'm also worried about my ability to function with little to no sleep and remain competent and pleasant. I also really don't like getting yelled at so I'm worried about that. My first rotation will be Psych in July. I thought it would be a good one to start out with because I do not want to go into psych so I can worry about learning the system rather than worrying about impressing people. One of the subjects of a workshop on transition day was blogging. Since we have to be so concerned about patient confidentiality it seems like I probably won't be able to talk very specifically about my experiences in the hospital. A med student that talked to us said her blog showed up on a search the hospitals regularly do for patient confidentiality violations and she got in trouble. So yes I would like to avoid that.

Other than that, I've been studying Blood and Infectious Disease. They are really concentrating on making us go to small group sessions for 2 hours every morning instead of uh... teaching us anything. I guess we are teaching ourselves and eachother, but really it feels like I have to sit around doing research all the time when if they just gave me a lecture on it I would know already. Also I'm bitter because I hate getting up early. Every course evaluation I do I say No small groups! But I doubt they will listen. It doesn't help that for the first time in two years I'm sick. Of course I get sick now! It makes me just want to sleep and watch tv more than usual if that is possible. How will I watch tv next year?!