What’s The Best Part About Being A Medical Student?

How would you define a “medical student”? In the simplest sense, a medical student is an individual (or creature, depending on which attending you’re talking to) who knows just enough to realize what’s going on yet not enough to be entrusted with any real responsibility.

While this may seem demeaning to some, I myself find it to be absolutely fascinating. For instance, imagine being in the operating room as a medical student. You know what procedure is going on, why it’s being done, and maybe even what could go wrong (depending on whether you quickly googled the procedure during morning rounds). However, you are essentially free from concerns of making sure that the procedure goes exactly as planned and can instead appreciate the art of it all. You are there to learn and pretty much nothing else. What more could you want!


The residents and attendings are there to make sure that the patient pulls through while you are there all scrubbed in to hold the retractor and watch the magic unfold. I recall being in a laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery where I was entrusted with the responsibility of holding the camera and following the surgeons as they did the resecting and suturing. It was at that moment I realized what a cool job this could be.

The flexibility and opportunity to figure out what specialty you want to choose is yet another treat that is often unrealized by most students. If I can leave you all with one advice, it would be to shadow physicians in different departments and figure out what you like versus what you love. Because if you wait to be inspired, it might be too late.

The four years you spend as a medical student are your singular opportunity to just open up your arms and embrace everything that medicine has to offer. From the expert lectures and research data collections to the pizza lunches and social mixers, I would say just take it all in. Once you become a resident, it’s time to put on the big boy pants and get to work.

Image Sources: Wikimedia

Related Link: Read about the top ten things I learned in med school


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Yash Pandya

Yash Pandya is a science writer at The "Almost" Doctor's Channel. He is a rising third-year student at the University of Pittsburgh, majoring in Emergency Medicine with minors in Neuroscience and Chemistry. Yash plans on attending the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in Fall 2016 with guaranteed admission. In addition to the usual humdrum of academic involvement, Yash loves to play Ping Pong, catch up on the latest "Big Bang Theory," and travel. Having lived in India for half his lifetime, Yash aspires to expand his horizons into international healthcare by practicing medicine globally.