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MedSoc Newsletter


Welcome to the most highly anticipated newsletter of the year, the infamous MedSoc annual newsletter! As MedSoc has officially been crowned best Society in Ireland for a 2nd year running at the BICS awards, this year’s committee have no intention of losing that title anytime soon. We at MedSoc have been extremely busy planning and organising some of your most loved events such as Welcome Back night semester 1, Premed/ 1st med surf trip, Wine and Cheese, Déan Athrú, Electives night, USMLE information talk, Masquerade Ball, MedBall, Welcome Back night semester 2, Sports Day to name but a few. We hope you have been enjoying them all so far and are eagerly awaiting what we have in store as the year continues…


This newsletter is designed for you to get a glimpse into what MedSoc does, and also articles and publications written by members of the NUIG Medical School.

Masquerade Ball nuigmedsoc

Read all about ball #1 of semester 1 which was held in Clayton Hotel, Sligo in November.


NUIG Medical Society

Life of a 3rd med student Every year we encourage students to submit literary masterpieces and articles for our newsletter. Read what one student wrote about their experience of 3rdth med


Moving to Ireland by Sanchsith Rajalingam

Being a transfer student from IMU, International Medical University, it is new, awkward, and exciting to come to Galway to continue studying medicine. Through the orientation month before starting 3.1 we get to slowly adjust to Galway and explore the city. Initially, when 3.1 started it was awkward and we felt out of place, but luckily most people in NUI are nice and helped us slowly adjust. The many MedSoc events, VSA events, and clubs definitely helped us to have fun and meet a lot of our classmates and other NUI students. By the end of third med we felt pretty integrated and at home in Galway. As far as studies were concerned, IMU had prepared us well for all of third year and a good chunk has been taught to us previously in Malaysia, so it made things easier. Although the clinical phase is completely new for us, I feel our OSCE days in IMU prepared us well to adjust and do well here.

Overall, coming to NUI was a great choice. It was initially hard and I’m sure most of us felt like going back and finishing off our studies in Malaysia, but after the first year passed it definitely feels like we made the right decision to come and study at NUI, Galway.


The annual International Medical dinner

The annual Medical International dinner is being held on Saturday 24th March, at 6pm in the Galway Bay Hotel, Satlhill. It is sure to be an excellent night full of food, traditional dancing, singing, and entertainment from all different countries and cultures.

MEDSOC NEWSLETTER depression is an all-consuming monster. it wrecks all in its path and doesn’t discriminate. don’t turn a person away. you don’t want to be saying the words, ‘I was too late’.

Poetry corner by Alicia Tan

Listen I see them talking, smiling, joking, perfectly comfortable in this scene, I’m envious of it all, a part of me just wishes I could belong, another wishes I could just fade away, wishes the earth would just swallow me whole, – but then again, even the earth would spit me back out.

I hear a voice saying, ‘Hi.’, and my brain goes into overdrive, trying to think of a decent reply, for goodness sake, please let it be normal, try, later I’ll spend an entire night analyzing it all, no matter how much I try my mind doesn’t stop, ‘That was a stupid thing to say.’ ‘Why didn’t you say this instead?’

How could something that seems to come naturally feel so foreign to me? It’s like I missed a class on how to interact with people properly, a language that everyone seems to speak fluently, yet to me – it’s alien, my version of normal consists of fear and silence.

please listen when I say to you that talking is hard, I promise you i’m trying my best, please listen when I say my words just get stuck halfway, I promise you I’m not rude or unfriendly, please listen when I say nothing at all, I promise you I’m just terrified of saying anything wrong, please listen when I say I’m not weird or crazy, I promise you i’m just different – on another frequency, maybe if you just listen, someday we’ll be on the same connection.

Depression Pt. 1 Every day the same tiresome routine draining him till all that’s left is bone and skin He’s angry of being like this all the time no control of his emotions – he feels like he’s losing his mind.

A good friend comes over one day to ask his what’s wrong Her kind eyes make him want to confess the whole night long but he chokes on the words that are trapped inside Finally he gives up and just says to her, ‘Don’t worry, I’m fine.’

Later, he berates himself for not having the courage He feels like a bird trapped in a locked cage maybe she had the key that could have set him free at the very least maybe she could have provided some company.

if you’re struggling with depression, please talk to someone don’t suffer in silence, hide or run find the courage and strength to reach out it’s not shameful to say that you need help.

Pt 2. People keep asking him what’s wrong ‘I don’t know,’ he answers honestly and they look at him as if he’s crazy ‘I’m not crazy,’ he wants to tell them but he’s lost all the remaining strength.

‘Just be happy,’ they keep telling him as if he’s the one who chose to be sad ‘Just let it go,’ they keep telling him as if he doesn’t want to ‘Other people have it way worse,’ they say as if he didn’t feel terrible enough already.

‘I’m sick,’ he tells them but they can’t believe something they don’t see they brush it off because to them it’s just an excuse to be lazy he’s tired of nobody believing exhausted from living and breathing.

he swallows a whole bottle of pills one night his last thought? maybe they’ll finally believe me come light

Mental health services: As medical students, we are keen to help other people, however it is important to realise that we must help ourselves before we try to help others. If you are having mental health issues, please reach out and seek help.

Liaise with academic mentor (assigned in 1MB)

Liaise with module lead (Galway based) or Academy Dean (Academy based)

Walk in service with Student Counselling on campus http://www.nuigalway.ie/student_services/ health_unit/ or ring 091 49 2484

Skype counselling via Silver Cloud (Skype counselling service from Student Counselling service NUI Galway http://www.nuigalway.ie/counsellors/ or ring 091 49 2484

Samaritans: http://www.samaritans.org/branches/sama ritans-galway Freephone 116 123 / 1850 60 90 90 or Phone : 091 561222


Life of a medical student by Anonymous

20/10/2017 You don’t wake up as much as find yourself sitting at the table in a shirt and jocks spilling Weetabix onto your exposed legs. Your alarm went off thirty minutes ago and unlike your productive house mate who’s already made ward rounds you’ve snoozed it twice and slept through the other wailing shrieks till you’re already, once again irrevocably tardy. You slip onto the tail end of the rounds, the yellow book brigade trailing the consultant from floor to floor. You’re little more than a duck and every three weeks when your new rotation comes around you’ll find another reg, sho or consultant to imprint on in the hope that they’ll sign you off for something. Two hours pass, you’re hungry, you decide to forge the signature and grab a quick coffee, another two hours pass and you spend what could be valuable study time sitting through a tutorial on something that sounds vaguely familiar but you’re not quite sure. Word association has gotten you this far but it doesn’t help when the reg persists on using every word in your medical vocabulary in one lecture, you give up and wish you’d sat behind someone so you could scroll through your phone unexposed. You’re on your way for lunch when you realise you’re meant to be in clinic. Guilt gets the better of you and you decide to brave the three hours of imitating a wall flower on an empty stomach. Three patients in and already on your second fungal infection you thank whatever deity it was that made you skip lunch as the speculum opens and the dense miasma fills the room once again. There’s some sort of a talk on in the large lecture theatre. What? You’ve no idea, Who? Not a clue, but there is free pizza and possible a coffee so you arrive early and stalk out the scene from the back of the lecture hall. The place fills pretty quick and you end up pinned, unable to escape. You sit down and nibble on the crusts while checking out memes of Putin and Trump. There’s a video of guys diving off black rock during storm Ophelia and a little bit of you wishes

something other than mild concussion strikes them down. Your bag is still safe and sound by the seat you took at the start of the day in the library. You look scornfully at the second meds who’ve been studying there all day and wonder, possibly out loud, who do they think they are. While you’re packing up one of the lads comes over and dangles a night out on the town in front of you. You feign some sort of assignment but you don’t need that much convincing. You throw you stuff in the NCHD locker room and hit the front door in your clothes, the prospect of premeds, American girls and maybe the odd student from another faculty lying before you. Tomorrow you’ll rinse and repeat the same routine.

FOR MORE INFORMATION For more a factual and positive outlook of the different medical years and what to expect from each, go to our website – NUIGmedicalsociety.com.


Association of Medical Students of Ireland (AMSI) by Anonymous

Five questions to the Association of Medical Students Ireland (AMSI) NUIG What is AMSI?! We are the National Member Organization to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). Founded in 2013, AMSI engages an inspiring and dedicated network of thousands of medical students from all 7 Irish medical schools. Each med school has their own AMSI committee, like ourselves, and is steered by a national executive board, which is comprised of dedicated medical students and junior doctors. Currently, our president is a final med, Hannah Gillespie from Queen's University Belfast. What does AMSI actually do? Our association is divided into six standing committees, both at the national and local levels. These are: public health, reproductive and sexual health, human rights and peace, medical education, professional exchanges, and research exchanges. Each of these committees carry out their own projects - in the form of advocacy, research, events, or policy. AMSI also organizes a national annual general assembly, whereby any Irish medical student can attend for a weekend of induction into IFMSA. We aim to engage with the general population and the Irish government as well. Essentially, we are a national platform for all Irish medical students, to a) improve medical schools and b) advocate for the health needs of our general population. Twice a year, AMSI brings a delegation of students to the IFMSA General Assemblies. These are opportunities for AMSI to showcase their projects internationally, and to collaborate with other national member organizations. What sets us apart from other healthcare societies? That’s simple: we engage internationally, we engage with government, and we are a voice for all medical students, not just our soc members. We bridge the gap between the general population and university. And probably our most popular unique trait, is

that we organize summer exchanges around the world, through IFMSA. Professional Exchanges! A huge component of IFMSA is their worldwide network of exchange opportunities. Because AMSI is a recent full member of IFMSA, we are now eligible to organize reciprocal exchanges between Ireland and other countries we have signed contracts with. Each exchange, no matter where it is in the world, or who your supervisor is, has 4 things included: a local medical student liaison, social programme, one meal/day, and free accommodation. This year we have 10 places available for any NUIG med student finished at least 1 semester of clinical placement. The exchanges will take place in one of 16 countries, for 4 weeks in June, July or August 2018. If you want more information, please look at https://www.amsiofficial.com/generalinformation/, or talk to our local exchange officer Timothy at leo.amsinuig@gmail.com. How can you get involved with AMSI? Email amsi@socs.nuigalway.ie with your student ID to get added to our membership list. Sign up for the IFMSA emails by sending a blank email to ifmsa-generalsubscribe@yahoogroups.com, to get calls for submissions, conferences and internships. You can also drop us an email if you have any questions or ideas for us, we are always eager to grow and improve.


Déan Athrú by Aisling Gallagher

Déan Athrú 2017 took place on the 28th September, and what a day it was! After 5 weeks of intense volunteer hunting, t-shirt ordering and baking up a storm, the day arrived when over 200 students would take to the streets of Galway and Salthill to shake some buckets in a bid to raise much needed funds for this year’s 4 charities. This year, Déan Athrú was run in conjunction with “Ageing in Ireland”, an awareness week which was organised by the Association of Medical Students of Ireland Galway (AMSI Galway) society. Their campaign week aimed to educate healthcare students about the challenges facing the elderly in healthcare, and how we can improve on our current resources in the future. To support the “Ageing in Ireland” campaign, MedSoc chose to fundraise for 4 charities that were central to the care and support of the elderly; ALONE, Friends of The Elderly, Galway Hospice, and The Alzheimer’s Association of Ireland. In spite of the wind, rain and stormy weather, the bright blue Déan Athrú t-shirts were a cheery sight across Galway city and Salthill, and our volunteers were out in full force all day. Over 30 buskers took to Shop Street to serenade the lovely people of Galway from morning until night, with everything from Irish dancing and trad, to singer songwriter and pop. Some of our volunteers also ran blood pressure clinics in the Eyre Square and Corrib Shopping Centres

in the afternoon, where the public could have their blood pressure taken in exchange for a voluntary donation of their choice. If all that wasn’t enough, some of our volunteers also ran bake sales in the CSI, Smokey’s Café and Bank of Ireland, where the sweet treats were snapped up by both students and doctors alike! In exchange for all their hard work and dedication, volunteers were greeted by Mr. Waffle sandwiches, tea, and coffee when they returned from their post in town, and that night we all went to our usual haunt The Skeff for some food and free passes into DNA. All in all, our fantastic volunteers managed to raise €7,242.96, a phenomenal achievement! Thanks again to everyone who gave up their time on the day to raise much needed funds for some very worthy charities.


Masquerade Ball On 18th November, the annual Masquerade Ball in aid of Voluntary Services Abroad (VSA), took place in the beautiful Clayton Hotel, Sligo. Students and doctors were eagerly awaiting the date to arrive as it is always one of the highlights of the year! Our masked guests arrived and prosecco began to flow. An exciting time for the 4th meds as it is their first time to attend the event – ‘are you wearing your mask? How long do we have to wear them for? Is it just for the photos?’ (To answer that question yes – just for the photos. They’re too annoying to wear all night long!) The Clayton provided a delightful 4 course meal, catering for vegetarians, and meat lovers alike! Following the dinner, the annual VSA raffle took place. Prizes consisted of Medball tickets, bottles of wine, even a hotel stay! When the wine bottles ran dry and bellies were filled, music by the wonderful Off The Wall band and DJ continued late into the night. This successful night raised over €3000 for VSA. This money will go towards purchasing medical equipment for hospitals in Africa during the summer when our students volunteer in their hospitals. This would not be possible without the help from our sponsors – Medical Protection Society (MPS) and Bank of Ireland. Thanks to Dubary books, Ward’s Pharmacy Sligo, and Bulters chocolates who donated prizes for the raffle. Special thanks also to Medsoc Ents officer, Alice Hegarty and Auditor Semester 1, James Morgan for organising the ball and Eavan Mcloughlin our photographer on the night.


Medball 2017 On a cold, wintery December evening – Sunday 17th, the Radisson Hotel was magically transformed into the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry! The most anticipated night of the academic year, Medball is a night to party after the stressful and sleep deprived exam season! MedSoc were busy from the start of the semester until 2am on the night to make sure this Ball would be just as successful as every other year! From magical wands, to Dobby’s socks and the Chamber of Secrets – there was plenty to discover to keep you entertained. We provided you with lots of photo ops and props – including witchcraft and wizardry tattoos – be it a scar or the dark mark, wands, a sorting hat, owls and bird cages or even a photo with Dumbledore himself! Plenty to make a decent insta pic. The reception was flowing with prosecco and our very own Harry Potter beers! An enchanting meal was provided by the Radisson which was followed by electrifying music by Galway Street Club. DJ Byrno provided music for the rest of the night which kept the muggles, squibs and pure bloods dancing all night long.

As always, this event does not organise itself – a huge, massive, enormous, special thank you to our Queen of Medball Alice Hegarty for making it all happen. To the rest of the committee for all their help, another huge thanks for putting up with Alice’s bossing them around and constantly giving out. A special thank you also to Eavan Mcloughlin who was our photographer for the night. And of course to our sponsors – Bank of Ireland, MPS, Skeff and Mr Waffle without whom the event simply would not materialize.



MedSoc would like to thank all our sponsors for their kindness and generosity throughout the year, without whom many of the events would not be possible


That’s all for now folks, You have come to the end of the newsletter for another year, so it’s time to stop procrastinating and get back to the books. We hope you enjoyed the read and look forward to next year’s edition! Lots of love, Medsoc xx 2 photos of the committee because we are incapable of getting a group photo, and we still are missing 1 person (Gavin). We’ll try better next time.

Profile for Medical Society

NUIG MedSoc newsletter 2017/2018  

NUIG MedSoc newsletter 2017/2018