Congratulations on your place in medical school!
The past year has seen lots of blood, sweat and tears as you've fought your way into medical school and it's not about to stop now...
Things to bear in mind this year...
1. New Place, New People, New opportunities
This is the most exciting time of university so make the most of it. It's likely that you haven't lived away from home and you can smell freedom in the wind, whether that involves you running to the shops to spend your student loan or drinking one too many, it's time to pretend to "adult'.
Explore your local area
Talk to any students who cross your path. It might be daunting but you're all in the same boat!
Go to the Fresher's Fair, find a society to join and eat that all important free Domino's pizza.
P.S. you'll soon learn nights out aren't everything student life is about, so you'll need something fun to do
2. Medical School is a challenge
There are good days, even incredible days to look forward to like when you see your first baby being born, but there are some really difficult days as well. It's okay to admit it's hard, it's even more okay to admit your struggling. There is an extensive support network for medical students- use it!
3. Remember, you got your place here because you deserve it
As the seats fill for the first medicine lecture, the nerves kick in and you'll find yourself wondering how you got here. Medical School can be incredibly overwhelming at the beginning as they begin to throw all sorts of knowledge at you. Try to remember that you have already shown you deserve to be here
4. It's a whole new world..
It's estimated that we can learn 13, 000 new words in our first year alone.
The world of Medicine has it's own language, and yes you will be stumbling your way through the greek/latin mixture but soon you'll be will be explaining what peritoneum is and naming ligaments of the uterus.
Look up fancy medical words you don't know, you might be using them one day or worse, you might be asked what it means!
Wait until you hit drug names later in medical school, you'll be wondering how to say it's name, nevermind spell it!
5. You''ll finally realize you can't learn everything
because that's what 5 years is for
so it's best to work out the level of understanding you need this year and take it a step at a time
6. Friends and Future colleagues
Medical School's take the top 10% of students in the country so you're now part of an extremely intelligent cohort but they aren't your competitors.
You will meet some amazing friends in Medical School.
Consider them dearly, good friends make a huge difference
They understand the burdens of the medical student life as well as all the exciting moments it brings
You will most likely have to help each other throughout the course
Equally, direct your beergoggles away from fellow medical students
Things can get very awkward in the group session the next morning
7.Compete with yourself and only yourself
You will gain nothing from comparing your progress to others,
You will gain everything from competing with yourself and only yourself
the beauty of self-directed learning: learn at your pace, learn how you want,identify your own weaknesses and set your owl goals
be careful to not become the "gunner" in medical school
9. Live your life, not just as a medic, but as a person
Do not put your life on hold at any point
celebrate your small victories:
you've finished learning a system = weekend break from work, dinner/night out and treat time!!
Learn how to treat yourself sometimes.
Make cookies, go to dinner with your family, buy yourself a non-med school book.
Make time for your loved ones especially the friends you want to hang onto. This will keep you sane.
Make sure you do some form of exercise: it makes a HUGE difference to get a work/life balance and your health rather than hiding in the library with textbooks
become a part of a sports team, go to the gym, or find a class that suits you
10. Don't give up...
You know how ambitious you are right now. Hold on to that raw feeling.
You will, at least once, have a break down where you’re not sure why you’re in medical school.
You will get past it.
You will have good days and bad days.
You will realise that if there was anything else you would rather be doing you should be doing it—the only reason you survive medical school is because there is NOTHING else you would rather do with your life.
You’ll love medical school, trust me...
"You have chosen to join a group of accomplished and intelligent individuals who include not only your classmates, but all physicians worldwide. Amongst your peers are Hippocrates, Galen, Haeckel, Hess, and other great thinkers in the history of medicine. Whether or not you have grand plans for the future, your contributions will have a lasting impact on others’ lives. "