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Journey to my white coat


Deku
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Mol Bio grades came back today! Looks like all my stressing was for nothing...

4.0 is looking like more and more of a possibility for this semester!

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You're such a typical straight-A student, stressing over how you're gonna get really bad grades and then getting really good ones ?

Been there done that myself, although definitely not to the point of a 4.0! Good work man!

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Welp that’s a wrap—4.0 this semester is clinched unless I somehow choked in Project Seminar. 

I’m still worthless at getting girls but at least I’m feeling a lot better about my ability to succeed academically at this point. 

Best of luck to all my fellow GameQuitters in your final exams. 

Edited by Deku
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@Samon Med school is still reaaally far off, even by the most generous estimates. At the very earliest it's looking like I'm going to be applying in the Summer of 2020. I actually pulled an all-nighter tonight just thinking about all the actions I need to take and how I'm going to make it all work within the next 18 months. Some thoughts I scribbled down:

1. I need to find myself a good premed advisor. Maybe my school has one, I need to poke around.

2. I need to take more undergrad classes. Remember the 4.0 I got this semester, and how damn hard I worked for it? It all pretty much means nothing, because med schools actually strongly prefer undergrad grades. So I'm looking to take 10+ units of undergrad next semester to really kick up my GPA.

3. I need to start studying for the MCAT and volunteering. Gah. It feels like every time I type this, and I never make any solid concrete headway into getting these done. Goddamit Deku get your shit together. The MCAT is like the final boss that's the biggest obstacle right now. If I can nail that test then I'm pretty much through, if not then all the work in the world won't help me. So I guess I really should be making that test a bigger part of my life right now.

I'm pretty beat right now, so I'm going to crash, but I have a nagging feeling that there's more I have to do that I've just forgotten for now. More later.

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Spent most of today working some scheduling magic, and finally came up with a course load that will somehow allow me to take 9 undergraduate credits and 19 total credits, instruct Immunology lab, and still give me the cap space to fit in potentially 2 volunteering activities, bible study and MCAT preparation. Next semester is going to suck but I'll theoretically be in a good position if it all goes well.

This all of course hinges on the professor of Path Micro and Hematology allowing me to add into his 7:30 am - 8:45 pm classes without having taking the prerequisites. ^__^"

Also, I have more news in that I've decided to sign up for a 9-day mountaineering trip in the Pacific Northwest this summer, comprising of 6 days climbing in the Cascades followed by a 3-day attempt of Mount Rainier. Climbing Everest has always been a dream of mine, and hopefully this becomes a stepping stone to accomplish that goal. This was the reward I promised myself for acing my classes last semester, landing the instructor job for Immunology lab, and securing two good references for medical school, so I'm looking forward to it. Somehow I'll have to figure out a way to incorporate the required conditioning into my saturated schedule.

Edited by Deku
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Setting goals for the rest of break today:

--Review 1 Bible Study lesson a day

--Take notes on MCAT Biology, Biochemistry, and Organic Chemistry sections

--Begin conditioning for Mount Rainier. Also, bought the ultimate mountaineering book "Freedom of the Hills" today. I'm going to read and take notes on the content whenever I get the chance.

I've noticed that there are a lot of active members on the forum right now, and that makes me very happy. I can't wait to learn about/catch up on all of the daily journals here, so I'm going to try to allocate at least 15-30 minutes a day to browse around on GameQuitters.

That's all for now! Good night!

PS Had a wonderful chat with a premed advisor and turns out my undergrad GPA will be fine as long as it's above a 3.55 (which I can get with just 6 undergrad credits next semester instead of 9--phew). It doesn't sound like much but it's actually a HUGE load off of me for next sem, so I'm very happy about that.

Edited by Deku
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Yea, thats true, lot of going on currently here. Thats nice. I remember when I came one month ago, there wasnt nearly as much people as now active

deku, i am interested how this system in your country works. Maybe you get some time to explain which ways u have to get into medical school, what u have to do for it etc. i cant really look through 

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16 minutes ago, Samon said:

Yea, thats true, lot of going on currently here. Thats nice. I remember when I came one month ago, there wasnt nearly as much people as now active

deku, i am interested how this system in your country works. Maybe you get some time to explain which ways u have to get into medical school, what u have to do for it etc. i cant really look through 

Ask and ye shall receive!

What you need to get into medical school in the US:

-Undergraduate degree with a competitive GPA

-Entrance exam scores

-Extracurriculars (clinical work, research, volunteering, leadership, etc)

-References from 3-6 individuals

-A buttload of money, maybe $10,000 total for the whole process

Currently working on 1 and 3 and studying for 2. I'm hoping to pick up references for 4 along the way.

Hope that answered your question!

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Hey Deku,

Been meaning to post this a little bit earlier, but:

As far as I remember from my med school friends is that the MCAT is basically a summary of all the science you've learned in your undergrad. So the big problem people have is they study, say, Organic Chem in their first year of uni and then have to basically re-learn it for the MCATs.

I'd strongly encourage you to check out spaced-repetition flash card methods (there's plenty online about them). You can get a free app like Anki, which does the spaced repetition bit automatically. Basically, every time you get a card right, it increases the amount of time it waits to show it to you again. If you get it wrong, you see it again the next day. But as you keep going, you only need to review a card once every few months to remember it.

If you do this at this point in your studies, you should be able to maintain a lot of your knowledge into the MCATs, which will save you time.

Actually, it'll also just save you time in terms of studying for your finals. If you're constantly reviewing your flash cards, you won't need to study extra for the final, because you'll still remember everything. And with phone apps, you can now do this kind of studying while commuting, walking, eating, or anything else.

It's something I wish I knew about when in university and it's definitely helped me a lot with studying now.

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3 hours ago, karabas said:

Hey Deku,

Been meaning to post this a little bit earlier, but:

As far as I remember from my med school friends is that the MCAT is basically a summary of all the science you've learned in your undergrad. So the big problem people have is they study, say, Organic Chem in their first year of uni and then have to basically re-learn it for the MCATs.

I'd strongly encourage you to check out spaced-repetition flash card methods (there's plenty online about them). You can get a free app like Anki, which does the spaced repetition bit automatically. Basically, every time you get a card right, it increases the amount of time it waits to show it to you again. If you get it wrong, you see it again the next day. But as you keep going, you only need to review a card once every few months to remember it.

If you do this at this point in your studies, you should be able to maintain a lot of your knowledge into the MCATs, which will save you time.

Actually, it'll also just save you time in terms of studying for your finals. If you're constantly reviewing your flash cards, you won't need to study extra for the final, because you'll still remember everything. And with phone apps, you can now do this kind of studying while commuting, walking, eating, or anything else.

It's something I wish I knew about when in university and it's definitely helped me a lot with studying now.

Second this.

And definitely avoid procrastination and cramming before exams. 

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Oh I think that’s a pretty good idea. I think it’ll definitely be useful for all the formulas and stuff, among other things. Thanks @karabas and @Silverlining.

Grades have finally officially come out! I know med schools don’t really care about grad school GPA, but I worked so hard for these grades that I hope they’ll take notice...at least a little bit.

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Gz mate! Nothing better than the good results after hard work!(tbh hard work is everything the outcome is then just like it is)

The system in USA is interesting! In my country people do the highschool and then they usually start with 18years their things they want to study. For medical school you dont need much, just the best grades in high school(you can do tests to push your score or do some practical things, but the school grad is the most important thing)

@karabas ty, i will check this out too, since i struggle hard too with learning.

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Thanks for writing up this whole thread Deku and I hope you continue for next quarter/semester! Very impressive grades.

I'm about to go back and finish my undergrad degree(math) in January after not registering classes for the Fall quarter because of gaming related issues. I'm inspired by the hard work you put in and will be implementing some of the strategies you talked about in my own journal/life.

 

 

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@RS Addict Thanks for the kind words, and best of luck with your own journey!

The past few days have been pretty unremarkable, so there really hasn''t been much to write. Historically studying the MCAT has been quite a challenge for me because it takes months of dedicated effort and commitment, which was really hard to maintain due to urges and burnout. So this time around I'm trying to set a manageable pace of 1 chapter a day, and making it the top priority in my day--I'll roll out of bed in the morning and study my chapter before doing anything else. I won't be done with MCAT studying by the end of break to be sure, but if I can just keep this pace up until the end I'll definitely achieve my goal of finishing Bio, Biochem, and Orgo, which means I'll just need to study Inorganic Chem, Physics, and Psych/Soc over the next semester.

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@Deku Well I read some of your entries and what can I say... I really enjoy your journal. I also feel I can relate to most of it. I should take the time to read it through from start to end, maybe it's going to give me some motivation to go back to set goals to myself like I used to. Thanks for your contributions, and good luck with your journey! ?

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Deku I wanted to ask you, whether you already know what kind of doctor you want to be one day? Just curious and sometime its motivating to imagine the future. Of course not too much!

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On 12/27/2018 at 5:55 AM, Deku said:

@RS Addict Thanks for the kind words, and best of luck with your own journey!

The past few days have been pretty unremarkable, so there really hasn''t been much to write. Historically studying the MCAT has been quite a challenge for me because it takes months of dedicated effort and commitment, which was really hard to maintain due to urges and burnout. So this time around I'm trying to set a manageable pace of 1 chapter a day, and making it the top priority in my day--I'll roll out of bed in the morning and study my chapter before doing anything else. I won't be done with MCAT studying by the end of break to be sure, but if I can just keep this pace up until the end I'll definitely achieve my goal of finishing Bio, Biochem, and Orgo, which means I'll just need to study Inorganic Chem, Physics, and Psych/Soc over the next semester.

To be fair given the way you have smashed your grading, I think it is fair to have a bit of a pause. Have you given any more thought to how you want to pace out your MCAT with your other goals? I'd be intrigued to know as I feel I need to get some.more structure into my routine.

Also don't worry about your relapse, I know.it was a few days ago and I'm late to the party, so to speak. The important thing is you are back and setting it for 120 days this time.

We are with you all the way 

 

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Hey ? 

I just read your entire journal (which I enjoyed a lot btw) and can't help but wonder how the marathon training is going?

Edited by Mads
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The reactions to this journal have been overwhelmingly positive, and I can't begin to express how grateful I am. I've said it several times before, but knowing that there are people out there who take time to follow my journey and offer support is simply incredible. Thank you so much @info-gatherer, @Peregrinator and @Mads  for your kind words, it really means a lot.

To my disappointment, I have not accomplished a whole lot this holiday season. My family members have all been kind of clingy of late, and while I do enjoy spending time with them it hasn't exactly worked wonders for my productivity. Rather than studying for MCAT and bible study, I've been dragged from hiking trails to reunions to football games, so I've fallen quite far behind in my work. I can't wait to get back to it now that the holiday season is over.

Belated responses to my fellow community members:

@Samon -- Haven't decided what doctor to be yet! At the moment I'm leaning towards oncology/emergency medicine, but honestly my only thoughts are on getting into medical school first. I'll have all the time in the world to think about specialties later ? (Also, congrats on veteran status! Proud of you and the progress you've made here!)

On 12/28/2018 at 6:20 PM, Mads said:

Hey  

I just read your entire journal (which I enjoyed a lot btw) and can't help but wonder how the marathon training is going?

 

It's uh...it's uh...yeah it's not going the best. I'm honestly hoping that my mountaineering training regimen (which I've followed religiously) will translate to stronger legs and greater endurance for the marathon, which would obviate the need for dedicated marathon training. 

On the bright side, I have fundraised my 1500 dollars for ALS, securing my spot on the team, and convinced my cousin to join as well. So it's not all bad ?

 

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15 hours ago, Deku said:

To my disappointment, I have not accomplished a whole lot this holiday season. My family members have all been kind of clingy of late, and while I do enjoy spending time with them it hasn't exactly worked wonders for my productivity. Rather than studying for MCAT and bible study, I've been dragged from hiking trails to reunions to football games, so I've fallen quite far behind in my work. I can't wait to get back to it now that the holiday season is over.

From my experience, it's best to just embrace these periods. Yes, you're not being "productive", but family is family and you only have these periods in your life a few times a year. It's worth it to just let go of the idea of being productive in this time (as long as you're not gaming/relapsing/etc) and be present with your folks.

It's a good way to relax after all the hard work, so why stress yourself out unnecessarily? You're going to get plenty of stress in a few days when you get back to studying ?

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15 hours ago, karabas said:

From my experience, it's best to just embrace these periods. Yes, you're not being "productive", but family is family and you only have these periods in your life a few times a year. It's worth it to just let go of the idea of being productive in this time (as long as you're not gaming/relapsing/etc) and be present with your folks.

It's a good way to relax after all the hard work, so why stress yourself out unnecessarily? You're going to get plenty of stress in a few days when you get back to studying ?

Seconded, also going hiking, football games and reunions is significantly better than gaming. Like Karabas said, use it as an opportunity to relax.

You will have time to study for your MCAT's when you get back, sometimes it's good to deload, refresh and come back to it. 

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Finally made tangible steps towards finding volunteer opportunities. Submitted two applications today, both for hospice care positions in my local area. 

I honestly thought last semester was pretty challenging between 16 academic credits, research and bible study, but next semester is looking like death in comparison. It's essentially going to be the same commitments as last semester, with the added load that comes with volunteering, instructing, training, and studying for the MCAT. I mapped out a projected schedule on Excel and it looks insane--my week is completely saturated with almost no free time or breathing room. This is the wall I'll have to climb if I want to go to medical school.

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