lifestyle

Pursuing Medical School via a Non-Traditional Route

Do you wish to change your career and become a doctor? Pursuing a medical career after staying out of school for a significant number of years or after working/studying in a different field can be quite arduous. Luckily, you can effectively pursue medical school via a nontraditional route as many people do (myself included). As a non-traditional applicant, you can leverage the skills you earned from your previous career to better inform your pursuit of medicine as a career. Regardless of the reason why you wish to change your career, you need to be thoroughly prepared to impress admissions committees and prove your dedication to your ultimate goal. More importantly, you need to be ready to embrace your status as a non-traditional pre-med student. If you are set on applying to medical school as a non-traditional pre-med student, below are some invaluable tips to guarantee your success. 1. Be fully decided and committed. It’s all or nothing. Being a nontraditional student, you are required to show an unparalleled level of maturity and responsibility. You need to ensure that you are making the right decision. Having specialized in another field, you have certain advantages over your younger peers. You have more diverse life experiences from which to draw, which means you have more compelling reasons as to why you have chosen to change things up and pursue a medical career...

How To Remind Yourself Why You’re In Medical School Studying

In the middle of a semester where the days are filled with endless studying, lab work, real work, homework, club responsibilities, and an attempt at a social life, it is very important to remember why you are doing it all. For me, I anticipated this semester to be one of the most challenging – full of three upper-level science classes and an English class, a TA for organic chemistry, two jobs, two leadership positions in clubs, in addition to a slurry of other unnamed obligations that I am thankful I get to do. I admit, though, that my mindset the entire semester has been to just get through it, while maintaining my GPA, friendships and social life, and my mental health. In the midst of studying late nights for physics exams or waking up early to review biochemistry notes, I became unaware of the wave that is carrying me through the semester. I think this is a popular defense mechanism; it is essentially focusing on surviving instead of thriving. However, as I am carried along the wave characterized by work, school, and sleep, I easily lose sight of why any of it matters. I live in the mindset of “just get it done”. If you’re in this type of semester or phase of life, I urge you to find yourself something that will daily, weekly, or monthly remind you...

Personal and Professional Growth: Writing a Physician Biography

Growing personally and professionally enhances success. It’s significant to develop this way since life is a journey. Some of the means of fulfilling personal and professional growth are; having a positive attitude, setting goals for future attainment and having a great bio that clearly shows your knowledge and personality. Looking at a physician biography (in this case) which is not different from any other bios, requires essential tips to write. Writing a doctor’s bio is necessary for career requirements or need to post it on your blog as a way of “marketing your brand” to viewers. You can also write it for presentation purposes and applications for teaching students. Therefore, it shows your extensive knowledge of medicine and who you are. This biography is a vital document that gives a preview of you to the world. All your experiences, qualifications and personality need to appear. Thus, when new in writing it, you may want to go through samples of physician biography examples available online for references.   Tips for Writing an Impressive Physician Bio Know that it’s wise to know what information to include and what not to when writing it. 1. Give a brief background information There are many doctors out there; therefore, only names don’t tell who exactly you are. Consider indicating where you come from. Also, background information entails giving what inspired you to take the...

How Do You Imagine Your Future Career As A Physician?

I’ve done it, you’ve done it, we’ve all done it. Lying down in bed at night right before you’re about to go to sleep, imagining your life after 15 years when you are an independent, practicing physician. We all know what it’s going to take to get there – working your butt off, passion for the field, etcetera etcetera. However, given the people of science that we are, it might be worthwhile to look at it from a more objective lens. In other words, here’s the question that I want to try to answer – what are the factors that contribute to the decision you make when choosing a specialty? Inside the OR vs. Outside the OR vs. Somewhere in the Middle I would encourage you to reference an earlier article I wrote where I described the process that every first year medical student should consider going through, trying to shadow in as many specialties as possible in order to figure out between medicine and surgery. In my opinion, this is the most important decision that you need to make while you are still in infancy for the long road ahead. If you like being in the OR and nothing else, then you should do something in surgery. If you can live without the OR, but still want to do something procedural, then you should look into something along...

The Passover Seder’s 4 Questions Interpreted by a Med Student

Ah, Passover, that one time of year where being a Sephardic Jew seems like the most compelling thing in the world. If your in Jew-town like me, you are currently living a cold and empty life without bread, or all grains for that matter. Despite all of the archaic and seemingly pointless rituals of Passover, there is one that stands strong, the reciting of the four questions at the Seder. One person, traditionally the youngest child, recites one question, “Why does this night differ from all other nights?” followed by 4 answers. As an aspiring doc, I was never quite content with the answers given to these questions. They’re questionable either from the standpoint of a medical student or from a pure medical standpoint. Here’s why: 1. On all other nights we eat bread or matza, while on this night we eat only matza. I’m not sure about you, but my fam and I don’t sit around nomming on matza, “on all other nights.” Bread is our go-to. Also, last time I checked Passover is 8 days, meaning it’s not only that on this night we’re gonna choke on dry, disgusting matzah, but I will also have a whole 192 hours to risk my life eating the choking-inducing food. Thanks a lot, Pharoah. A closer look at those nutrition facts suggests that maybe we should switch over to matzah-instead-of-bread diet....

My Thoughts on Fluoride

We live in one of the freak towns that doesn’t have fluoride in the water. My kids have both already had cavities, so I want to make sure to follow our pediatrician/dentist recommendation to get them fluoride pills, but it hasn’t been so easy. So we don’t have to wait in line at the pharmacy every month, we had been getting our pills from Express Scripts, but we changed insurance, so now we can only use Walgreens online pharmacy. This has proved to be quite the challenge. Walgreens would not allow me to add the kids to my pharmacy account until I placed an order with physical pharmacy, so I did this first. The local pharmacy would not fill the medication because they covered only drops but not pills unless they got “extra info” from our pediatrician. After a week, this was not received. Our giant peds practice did not know somehow that this info was being requested. Finally, we just paid $11 each out of pocket for the month’s worth of pills. I was still unable to add the kids online to the pharmacy and had to call to do it. I then asked the pediatrician to call in the pills to Walgreens online. They assumed that was the same as Express Scripts and called it in there. I assure you, they are not the same. I called...

Five Ways To Keep Your Brain Alert In Medical School

Reading a Fast Company article this morning,  I was inspired to consider the ways I can keep my brain alert for the long haul. As a student, I do study most of the time so one could argue that my brain is constantly alert. It’s true that I do have to make a conscientious effort to relax my brain.  But, the suggestions in the article were very helpful. I’ve slightly modified the five daily habits that were recommended to the general public to be more school friendly. With a schedule as busy as ours, the following five suggestions may not be feasible to do on a daily basis. I think weekly is more manageable. Change your diet. I recently made changes to my own diet by drinking more water. If you’re anything like me, spending money and investing in a more expensive product such as the trendy Swell bottle could motivate you to drink more water. Or, adding fruit like berries, or lemon slices, or herbs like mint, help to change the flavor of plain water. Take inventory of what you could benefit from the most. For example, if you order Domino’s 3X a week, perhaps making home cooked meals would be an appropriate swap to incorporate more greens and vegetables to your diet. I have also found that switching the grocery store you shop for food adds some...