“Qualities you need to get through medical school and residency: Discipline. Patience. Perseverance. […] Unfailing optimism that the end is in sight.” – Khaled Hosseini

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And just like that, medical school is over. The end of my 12 hour overnight ED shift serves also as the end of my clinical duties as a medical student. ✌🏿 Like woah – how crazy town is that?

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“I Matched!”

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July of last year, I asked one of my advisors if I should apply to institutions like Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) or BCRP or Cincinnati for my upcoming residency application cycle. And he looked at me and said: “Historically, people from Tulane do not match to CHOP or BCRP. And quite frankly, you aren’t junior AOA, so…if you wanna spend the money, I won’t stop you. But I just want you to be informed.”  Continue reading

“I forget what day it is at least once a week … sometimes I wake up knowing that it is Tuesday and by the time the sun sets it is Thursday. Friday?” – O.L.

This year has gone by swiftly and if I am being completely honest, I’m glad that 2017 is coming to a close. This year has been equal parts trial and tribulation. This year has been equal parts exciting and exhausting. This year has been a year of opportunity and obstacle. It has been months since I have shared anything personal or academic in this space. This semester has been one of the most academically challenging and I can finally give a sigh of relief (now that grades are in). As I have mentioned at multiple times elsewhere on the blog, I’m one of the four-year MD/MPH (in Tropical Medicine) candidates at Tulane. This program is hands-down one of the reasons why I wanted to receive my medical training at Tulane. I elected for the tropical medicine concentration for quite a few reasons such as my interest in international medicine and infectious disease. They told (warned?) us early on that the tropical medicine concentration requires coursework in the fall semester of MS4 but I truly underestimated the chaos of juggling five classes, interview season, and clinical rotations. It has been: crazy, exhilarating, informative, stressful, but most importantly worthwhile. There were points during this semester when I legitimately forgot the day of the week (hence, the quote – an excerpt from O.L’s poem “blurred“). There were points during this semester when I woke up in a different city every single day of the week. So honestly, the life recap for the past few months is succinct: I have been traveling and studying. 

Last year, I posted about: 1) the highlights of 2016, 2) the lessons I learned in 2016, and 3) my resolutions for the upcoming year. I wanted to keep the tradition alive and give a quick recap of the highs and lows of 2017! I’ll start by saying that the lessons I learned in 2016 were re-learned and revisited this year. I’ll repost the list and highlight the lessons that were most relevant to me in 2017.

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Guest Post: Getting Into Medicine

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of you. The holiday season is always a time during which I am extremely grateful. It is a time of year when I reflect upon the individuals and moments in the past year that have truly lifted my spirits. I truly do not mention this enough, but I am so grateful to be part of the community of medical bloggersalmost doctors#girlmedtwitter, and medical instagram. This platform has been a great outlet for me and an amazing albeit unexpected way for me to connect with high-school and premedical students.

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Pediatrics: Funded Away Rotations

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I won’t lie to you: I’m not the most spontaneous. When it comes to academics and life-planning, I’m (to be frank) not spontaneous at all. This may not come as a surprise to those of you who have read my series on “How to Survive Medical School.” This time last year, a flurry of emails from then-MS4s-now-PGY1s launched a series of conversations amongst my classmates: “should we go on away/audition rotations?” For some of you pursuing fields such as orthopedics and urology, the question is not “should I?” but rather “how many?” For others, it really depends. The argument is raised that: if you go on an away rotation and perform poorly, you ruin your chance of matching to that program. I think that point is fair but I also think that if you go on an away rotation and you’re motivated and excited, it’s hard to leave a terrible impression.

Sure, there’s the “fish out of water” effect that is to be expected. Sure, you’ll get lost a time or two. Sure, the MS3s may perform better than you at the start. Sure, you’ll be frustrated because you’re nervous and feel like you’re not performing at your best in a new environment. You’ll acclimate. You’ll progress. They’ll notice. It’ll work out.

In the case that it truly is a terrible away rotation experience in regard to fit or workload – there’s a chance that it might not have been the right place for you as a resident. So even in that case, you’ve learned a lot about where you want to end up or what sort of programs you’re looking for when you start on the interview trail. Speaking of the interview trail, if you want to follow my journey the best places to do that are Instagram or Twitter. I’ll share a recap of my trail here on the blog after match day (March 2018!).

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