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PREMEDLIFE

THE MAGAZINE FOR PRE-MEDICAL STUDENTS

NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2014

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A Doc coming

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DO YOU REALLY HAVE WHAT IT TAKES?

There are many individuals who want to become doctors. But what they don’t know is the extremely difficult road it takes to get there - determination, persistence, hard-work.

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How to Turn Your Setbacks Into a Competitive Advantage Key points to consider if you find yourself wondering how to handle “black mark” situations on your medical school application.

Staying Motivated During MCAT Prep 4 ways to help you stay energized, focused, and on track for test day

Likable Traits of Medical School Candidates Characteristics that make you standout during the medical school admissions process

Most Med Students Multitask During Lectures p. 10 | Med School Enrollment Reaches All-Time High p.12


M I NOS CAN ACH IEVE ANYTHING. We make sure they get to college. Federal Student Aid provides more than $150 billion each year in grants, loans, and work-study funds to make college possible for anyone with the mind to get there. Learn more about money for college at StudentAid.gov.

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contents| | | | |

premedlife | november/december2014 “The majority of medical students multitask during lectures, according to a new study.” p.10

p.16

WAYS TO TURN YOUR SETBACKS 16 3INTO A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE

FOR MEDICAL SCHOOL ADMISSIONS

How to look at things from an optimistic point of view for the sake of your med school dreams.

p.20 COVER STORY DO YOU REALLY HAVE WHAT IT TAKES TO BECOME A DOCTOR? Pre-medical students have one thing in common; a dream. Their determination makes them push forward, and that’s what counts in the long run. While simply getting accepted into medical school does not necessarily mean that you will definitely now become a physician, it does mean your dreams of one day working as a doctor are at leas one step closer to fruition.

OF LIKEABLE MEDICAL 18 TRAITS SCHOOL CANDIDATES

Admissions committees will be quick to tell you that these characteristics definitely make you stand out as a more likable applicant.

EXCERPT: 24 BOOK MEDICAL SCHOOL OPTIONS

There are two paths to a medical degree, each with their own distinct advantages. Pre-med students also have several options both domestically and abroad when applying to medical school.

FOR STAYING MOTIVATED 27 TIPS WHILE YOU PREP FOR THE MCAT

If you’re studying for the MCAT, chances are you will find yourself at times fighting to make it though the process. Don’t worry - you’re not alone. Here is some advice to help you push through to reach your medical school dreams.

November/December 2014 | PreMedLife Magazine |3


contents/departments 27

IN THIS ISSUE 28 | INTERVIEW WITH DR. POLITES

Here are some highlights from an interview with Dr. Polites, instructor for MedPrep, a special course at Washington University.

30 |ENERGY DRINKS: SEPARATING FACTS FROM THE BULL

A personal essay exposing the facts and figures on energy drinks.

34 |4 SIMPLE WAYS TO BUILD AWESOME NEW STUDY HABITS

While everyone may study best in different ways, these ideas are great ways to get on the right track.

DEPARTMENTS NEWSBITES | 10

Relevant news and information for students applying to medical school and pursuing medicine.

THE GOODS | 36

30

Gadgets, gizmos, and other unique things to keep you entertained. Check out our picks for this issue including Chromosome Pillows, the Experience Passport, a Notepad Roller, and more.

THE GOODS Left Brain, Right Brain Pillows

p.42

4 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014


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AND, THAT’S A WRAP! as we approach the end of the year, there is a lot to look back on, as there are many things to be excited about in 2015. For me, the month of December brings about a host of mixed feelings. On one

hand, there is so much to be excited about - spending time with friends and family, cooking and eating delicious foods, and giving and receiving gifts. But there’s also no shortage of stress, with lingering, end-of-the-year things to complete and deadlines to meet not only in our personal lives, but also in our professional and academic lives. Since this is our last issue of the year, I thought that now was the perfect time to take a look back at 2014 as well as let you - the readers - know what we’ve been working on and what you can expect from PreMedLife next year. First, after over a year in development, we were quite excited to finally rollout our newly-designed website. Our new spiffy site, www.premedlfie.com, received great feedback on the clean look-and-feel, new sections and content, and easy-to-use functionality. For 2015, readers can look forward to new and exciting features on the site, including a complete medical school directory and original video content. It will also include an up-to-date archive of news articles you see in our print edition, as well as more “online only” original features. Second, throughout the year, PreMedLife Magazine staffers partake in activities that we feel will greatly enrich both the website and publication. Last month, we conducted several focus groups to gain insight on the type of stories you’d like to see. And with another year of PreMedLife Magazine issues under our belt, we’re looking forward to bringing you more of the stories you’d like to see, more of the resources that you’re searching for, more of the interviews you’d like to read in 2015. Third, you can expect more of the same. We will continue to provide you with relevant, useful resources for becoming the best medical school candidate possible. We give you original content, inspiring interviews, and solid expert advice. This will continue next year. With that said, we would really like to know what you want to read about. What interest you? Which stories catch you attention? What kind of content is the most important for you? Send an email to editor@premedlife.com, and we’ll do our best to cover it. Fourth, by popular demand, we are trilled to announce that starting in 2015, we will offer home subscriptions of the print version of PreMedLife Magazine. Previously, the print version of the magazine was only available as bulk subscriptions for pre-health advisors. The print edition contains all the content from the digital issue. We will continue to offer our digital version, which consist of a ePub and .pdf version of the publication. We’re excited about this and we hope for all of those who have been asking, you’re excited too! We want next year’s PreMedLife to reflect what you - our readers - want to see. Want to see more interviews? Let us know. Want more videos? Let us know. Want more information about financing your medical school dreams? More local stories? More personal stories? Send an email to editor@premedlife.com and tell us about it. We want to give you what you want to read. To the readers who are graduating this semester, I wish you the best of luck and hope we were able to be the resource we set out to be. To the readers who will be back next semester, I’ll see you again in January. I speak for the entire PreMedLife staff when I say that we appreciate your readership, and we look forward to another year with you.

Sheema

Sheema Prince Publisher tprince@premedlife.com

6 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

PREMEDLIFE the lifestyle magazine for premedical students www.premedlife.com

Founder & Publisher | Sheema Prince Executive Director| Jonathan Pearson Executive Vice President | Monique Terc Contributing Editor | Njeri McKenzie Online Marketing Consultant | Portia Chu Contributing Writers Marilyn Chau, Ryan Gray, MD, Joseph Johnson, Chrstopher A. Perez, Bryan Schnedeker Find us on Twitter @premedlife Find us on Facebook.com/premedlife Here’s How to Reach Us: Kisho Media, LLC P.O. Box 7049 New York, NY 10116 Main Office (347) 857-7491 Have a Story Idea? Email us at editor@premedlife.com Want to Subscribe? Visit www.premedlife.com and sign-up to our mailing list to receive an email when the latest issue is available online Want to Join Forces? (a.k.a. Partner With Us) Email us at info@premedlife.com Advertising Inquiries? Email advertise@premedlife.com PreMedLife magazine is published six times per year by Kisho Media, LLC. and copies are provided to select colleges and universities free of charge. The information in PreMedLife magazine is believed to be accurate, but in some instances, may represent opinion or judgement. Consult your premedical/pre-health advisor with any questions you may have about the medical school admissions process and related topics. Unless otherwise noted, all articles, photographs, artwork, and images may not be duplicated or reprinted without express written permission from Kisho Media, LLC. PreMedLife magazine and Kisho Media, LLC. are not liable for typographical or production errors or the accuracy of information provided by advertisers. PreMedLife magazine reserves the right to refuse any advertising. All inquires may be sent to: Kisho Media, LLC. P.O. Box 7049 New York, NY 10116 To reach us by phone call (347) 857-7491 or email us at info@premedlife.com.


ONLINE Habits to Make, and Habits to Break for the MCAT When most students think of the MCAT, they think primarily of the academic challenges it presents. Here are the most important habits to set for test day.

What’s on Premedlife.com? 6 Things We Learned From An Interviewer For a Top Med School’s Reddit AMA

Last year, an interviewer for a top medical school joined Reddit for an AMA. Here’s what we learned...

How Smart Students Study (and Ruin the Curve)

If you’ve ever wondered how “smart” students study, thinking that whatever it is that they’re doing, you could do the same and join them...

Cleaning Up Your Social Media Profiles For Med School

Your test scores, GPA, and everything else you enter into AMCAS aren’t the only factor medical school admission committees are taking into consideration.

Call for Pitches We are officially opening up the submission process for upcoming issues of the magazine and our website. If you have an idea (or an essay that you think might work for the magazine or website, contact us via email (info@premedlife.com), pitch something on our Guest Post page. If it’s something we can use, we’ll be in touch in the very near future - and you could see your piece published!

8 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

How to Snag Recommendations From Your Professors Each semester, for every class you have, one of your goals, aside from getting good grades, should be to develop a strong relationship with your professors.

Jobs & Internships Check out www.premedlife.com/opportunities.html to view the latest jobs and internship opportunities in your area.


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THELATEST

Being around a stressed person or witnessing a stressful event can induce feelings of stress, according to a study conducted by The Max Planck Institute for Cognitive and Brain Sciences. {PAGE 12}

Recent news & information relevant to students applying to medical school

flickr_john keane

Most Medical Student Multitask During Lectures, Study Found

The majority of medical students multitask during lectures, according to a study published in The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association. The study, led by Ankit V. Shah from the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine, was designed to determine the extent to which medical students multitask during lecture, and more specifically, the types of multitasking, how often, and the relationship between multitasking and their academic performance. Investigators administered a survey to 125 second-year students at Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine and following a 50-minute lecture, students were given

an unannounced 10-question multiple-choice quiz to asses the students “knowledge acquisition” from the 50-minute lecture. The results of the survey revealed that multitasking during lecture is prominent among medical students. In fact, 98% of students check e-mail, 81% use social media, and 74% study for another class. Furthermore, the investigators found that students spent the most time studying for another class (23 minutes) followed by using social media (13 minutes) and checking e-mail (7 minutes). “Today’s medical students grew up during an era with rapid advancements in computer technology and electronic media that changed

10 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

our daily lives, from how we interact with others to the ways we do our work,” says coauthor Ronald P. Januchowski, DO, assistant professor of family medicine and associate dean for curriculum, assessment and medical education at VCOM-Carolinas. “With the technological ability to constantly be ‘on’ coupled with the rigorous demands of medical school, students might feel compelled to perform more than one task at a time.” A closer look at the factors which influenced students’ multitasking during lecture revealed that the top reasons were exam schedule, lecturer, and the number of lectures in the day.¡


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Study Shows Stress Can Be Contagious

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THELATEST

Medical School Enrollment Reaches Highest Number Ever Medical schools across the country have enrolled over 20,000 students for 2014, the highest number ever, according to new data released by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). The swelling number of enrollees, as well as applicants - which increased by 3.1% - is being attributed to the expansion of the medical school capacity in the U.S. “In spite of the ongoing partisan debate around the nation’s health care system, it is gratifying to see that increasing numbers of students want to become physicians. However, these results show that our nation must act without delay to ensure an adequate number of residency training positions for these aspiring doctors so they will be able to care for our growing and aging population,” said AAMC President and CEO Darrell G. Kirch, M.D. “As we face a worsening shortage of both primary and specialty physicians over the next two decades, Congress must increase federal support for residency training by

lifting the 17-year-old cap on residency training positions imposed under the Balanced Budget Act.” The findings from AAMC also showed progress towards increasing diversity among the medical student population. Specifically, the number of Hispanic or Latino enrollees increased by 1.8% to 1,859 in 2014, with the number of applicants increasing to 9.7% to 4,386. Furthermore, African American enrollees rose 1.1% to 1,412 while the number of applicants increased by 3.2% to a total of 3,990. “Medical schools understand that an effective physician workforce is a diverse workforce,” said Kirch. “In addition to schools using new, innovative admissions practices that look at attributes and experiences in addition to grades and test scores, they also are working to strengthen the K-12 pipeline. The gains we are seeing show that we are making progress, but there still needs to be more work done to diversify the talent pool.” ¡

12 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

Being around a stressed person or witnessing a stressful event can induce feelings of stress, according to a study conducted by The Max Planck Institute for Cognitive and Brain Sciences and the Technische Universitat Dresden. The conclusion is the result of a large-scale cooperation project which found that empathic stress arose primarily when the person who was watching and the person who was experiencing stress were partners in a relationship and the stressful situation could be directly observed through a oneway mirror. Specifically, 26 percent of observers who were not actually exposed to any stress showed a significant increase in the stress hormone cortisol. Moreover, the effect was significantly strong when the “observer” and stressed individual were partners in a couple relationship. For the study, participants were subjected to difficult mental arithmetic tasks and interviews. The result – only five percent managed to remain clam while the others “displayed a physiologically significant increased in their cortisol levels.” Stress is a major factor in the lives of students who are planning on applying to medical school. It can cause many problems like anxiety, depression, and even feelings of being burnt out. And even for premeds who manage to keep their stress under control, the chances that they are around individuals who are stressed is high, “The fact that we could actually measure this empathic stress in the form of a significant hormone release was astonishing,” says Veronika Engert, one of the study’s first authors. ¡


THELATEST

Medical School Admissions Officers Weigh In On Whether Pre-Meds Take New Or Old MCAT

flickr/Brian Talbot

A new Kaplan survey reveals that medical school admissions officers show no strong preference or consensus for which version of the MCAT pre-medical students take, submit with their application.

A Kaplan study found no preference among medical school admissions officers about whether or not pre-meds should take the current or the new one. The survey, which polled 78 medical school admissions officers from across the United States, found that 44% said it makes no difference which test score is submitted; 28% recommend pre-meds take the current MCAT; and 27% recommend they take the new test debuting in April 2015. “Students should take whichever version of the MCAT for which they’ll be better prepared. That said, there is a pretty compelling reason for students to take the current test by January if they can: the new MCAT will be nearly twice as long and will cover three additional content areas. This means that students’ limited study

time will be spread across a broader scope of content review and more hours will be required for each full-length practice test in preparation for the new MCAT 2015 exam,” said Eric Chiu, executive director of pre-med programs, Kaplan Test Prep. “However, for students who won’t complete the prerequisite coursework for the current MCAT by this fall or who aren’t planning to apply to medical school within the next two to three years, the new exam will be their best option.” Here are some other key findings from the Kaplan survey: Medical schools may be adjusting their prerequisites as the 2015 MCAT introduces biochemistry, psychology and sociology to the test;

Biochemistry is currently a prerequisite at 27% of medical schools but survey responses indicate that percentage will increase to at least 32% for student enrolling in 2016 Forty percent of medical schools say that a low MCAT score is the biggest “application killer.” With the elimination of the MCAT’s Writing section, 63% of medical schools say there are no other sections of the application they may look at more to evaluate students. The full results of the survey can be found at http://press.kaptest.com/research/kaplan-test-preps-2014-survey-of-medicalschool-admissions-officers/attachment/ kaplan-test-preps-2014-survey-of-medical-school-admissions-officers. ¡

November/December 2014 | PreMedLife Magazine |13


THELATEST

Letters of Recommendation Have Limited Value to Medical School Admission Committees, Study Shows Letters of recommendation (LORs) have limited value to admission committees, as very few LOR characteristics predict how students perform during medical school. That’s according to a new paper forthcoming in Academic Medicine. The study, led by Kent DeZee, MD, MPH, FACP, Associate Professor of Medicine at the Uniformed Services University, was designed to determine whether medical students’ LORs from their application to medical school predicted medical school performance. Included in the study were 437 LORs from students of three consecutive graduating classes (2007-2009) at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland.

14 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

The findings showed that of 76 LOR characteristics, 7 were associated with graduation status. Specifically, being rated as “the best” among peers and having an employer or supervisor as the LOR author were associated with induction into the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society, whereas having non-positive comments was associated with bottom of the class students. Despite the findings, LOR are still kind of a big deal and should not be written off in any way. The truth is, the decision of whether or not to offer a prospective medical student a seat in the next incoming class goes well beyond impressive grades and stellar MCAT scores. For the schools and admission committees that do like to consider LORs heavily in the process, they will look at these documents as an important factor, and in some cases just as important as personal statements, medical and clinical work experience, and leadership experience. Remember, medical school admissions officers are preparing to evaluate you as a possible student in their next class, and want to know who prospective students are as individuals. LORs may be one of the few persuasive factors when it comes to medical school admissions. And since they are not going away anytime soon, prospective applicants should still give a lot of thought to whom they will choose to write them. The key is to select individuals who will be able to speak highly of their academic abilities, motivation to become a doctor, level of maturity, and various accomplishments, and individuals who ultimately wan to see that student get accepted into medical school and become a doctor just as much as the student does. “Think of recommendations as a way for the admissions committees to find out what you are really like and to show your well-roundedness,” wrote Dr. Suzanne M. Miller, medical school admissions consultant and author of How to be Pre-Med. “Recommendations are notorious for making or breaking an application. One luck-warm or (cringe) outright negative recommendation can sink your changes of becoming a doctor.” The paper will be published in the October 2014 issue of Academic Medicine.¡


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3 WAYS

TO TURN YOUR SETBACKS INTO A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE FOR MEDICAL SCHOOL ADMISSIONS How to look at things from an optimistic point of view for the sake of your medical school dreams.

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etting offered interview slots for medical schools you’ve applied to is a huge honor. Getting offered acceptance letters to those schools is an even bigger honor. But what happens when you don’t get offered those interviews or acceptances during your first round of applications? What should you do if you’ve got a few black marks on your academic transcript or job record? If you’re like a growing number of medical school hopefuls, these issues are probably something that you’re struggling with. While smoothly getting accepted into medical school on your first try is obviously an exciting accomplishment, the reality for many medical students (and current doctors as well) is that they were rejected by admissions committees on their first tries. The key difference between these students and those who never make it into medical school, however, is not usually a difference in intelligence or capabilities. Instead, it is often just a difference between students who know how to take advantage of their failures and those who don’t. If you’re finding yourself wondering how to turn “black mark” situations on your application into competitive advantages, consider these key points. BE THE FIRST TO ADDRESS IT Failure is not something you can easily hide, whether it’s academic failure, failure on the MCAT, or even failure to decide on an under-

graduate major in a reasonable amount of time. Your medical school applications prominently display your entire undergraduate academic career, and there’s really no point in trying to hide any of the black marks that might be used against you. Because of this, take it upon yourself to address any particularly outstanding negative issues that might be there. Practically speaking, this means acknowledging such an issue somewhere within your personal statement. While you don’t need to focus your entire essay on a single “failure,” it can be beneficial for you to address that failure and provide an explanation for it. Similarly, you may also choose to address the issue within your essay, followed by focusing on one (or both) of the next two key points: FOCUS ON WHAT YOU’VE GAINED The key for turning failure into a competitive advantage lies largely in choosing to focus more on what you’ve gained from an experience than what you’ve lost. There’s a good chance you lost time, money, and (probably) your personal pride somewhere along the way. However, learning to focus on what you’ve gained through those experiences will not only give you the strength to keep trying, but it can also be a great discussion point for setting yourself apart from all of the other med school applicants. For instance, if you had a particularly poor MCAT score on your first try and you chose to retake it, you may have to answer a few ques-

16 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

tions during you interview about why you failed it the first time. While providing an answer to these questions is important, it’s even more important to draw attention to what your experience with failure has taught you. Has failing once (or twice, or three times) showed you how strongly you really do want to become a physician? Has failure showed you how to study more efficiently in the future? Has failure taught you better time management? Whatever it is, make sure that you redirect the attention from the failure towards what you’ve gained from the experience. Failure is only true failure if nothing is gained from it. OFFER AN ALTERNATIVE POINT OF VIEW

As an extension of the last point, choose to offer an alternative point of view to anyone who might be viewing your failure as a negative issue from your past. In addition to pointing out what you’ve learned from the experiences, choose to highlight what your failures (and subsequent decisions to keep pressing on) show about you as a person. You are an over comer. You have endurance, motivation, determination, and strength. You are not someone who fears failure, since you know how to deal with it. While failing feels positively miserable when you’re going through it, choosing to use those failures to showcase your positive character qualities can actually make you stand out as a better candidate for medical school in the long run.


KEEPING UP WITH THE LIKEABLE CANDIDATES

And every medical school applicant promises to bring his/her special skills and gifts to contribute to a new matriculating class of students. However, despite everyone’s differences, there are some “across the board” traits of likeable medical school candidates. While obviously you’ll meet medical school students who don’t seem to have these traits, admissions committees will be quick to tell you that these characteristics definitely make you stand out as a more likeable applicant.

EVERY DOCTOR IS DIFFERENT. EVERY MEDICAL SCHOOL IS UNIQUE. HOW WILL YOU STAND OUT.

PASSION FOR PEOPLE Even though saying, “I want to be a doctor because I want to help people” is often mocked as a cliché statement, the truth remains that medical school admission committees are still more impressed by premed students who have shown a passion for serving people than by those who don’t seem to care. A good physician is one who actually likes his/her patients, and your general attitude towards the value of others can easily come across in how you spend your time, how you talk about your community service experiences, and how you answer certain questions during your interview. Fortunately for most med school candidates who truly have a passion for serving people, this passion for human lives will be readily apparent during their interviews, whether they blatantly state so or not.

18 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

PASSION FOR LEARNING A passion for people is great for serving a humanitarian role in society, but a passion for learning is also necessary in order to succeed in medical school. There are many ways to serve people that don’t involve taking on the marathon-task of medical school, and admissions committees will be sure to tell you this. A passion for learning, on the other hand, will take you above just a desire to serve people and will propel you through long nights and early mornings of studying. If you simply despise studying, then medical school is probably not the best route for you. PASSION FOR PERSEVERING Last but not least, choosing to have a passion for persevering above any odds in your own life is undoubtedly a very impressive trait to possess. Medical school is hard, but so are many of the issues one will come in contact with while training to be a doctor—from early morning rounds to late night on-calls, persevering and doing your best despite circumstances will help you be successful both as a medical student and as a future doctor. If you’ve overcome great odds to get to where you are today, go ahead and weave that fact into your medical school interviews or personal statements. Let it be known that hard times can’t come between you and your dreams.


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Do you have what it takes?...

BECOMING A DOCTOR Pre-med students have one thing in common; a dream. Their determination makes them push forward, and that’s what counts in the long run

Getting into medical school is a huge accomplishment. While simply getting accepted does not necessarily mean that you will definitely now become a physician, it does mean that your dreams of one day working as a doctor are at least one step closer to fruition. However, the truth remains that the majority of medical school applicants for each admissions cycle will not be admitted. A few students who don’t get accepted may make it onto some institutions’ waiting lists, but such a predicament certainly does not guarantee eventual enrollment. So what do medical school admissions committees really want? Why do some students get admitted while others are rejected? While the thoughts of some admissions committee’s reasoning in certain cases will probably always seem like a mystery, there still are some overarching trends that seem to run within the minds of medical school admissions committees.

November/December 2014 | PreMedLife Magazine |21


S

imply put, medical school admissions committees tend to look for students who display similar examples of strength, while also being unique individuals. In other words, while there are some certain skills that are essential to doing well in medical school (and as a physician beyond medical school), these strengths in academics and social skills alone are often not necessarily enough to ensure a spot within an institution. Other factors play into the admissions decisions; while schools desire students to have a certain level of academic prowess, they also desire for their student bodies to in some way exemplify the diverse patient population that they will someday be serving.

ACADEMICS

As mentioned previously, perhaps one of the strongest determining factors of whether or not a student will actually get accepted into medical school in the first place is his/ her academic record. While a relatively low MCAT or GPA is not necessarily indicative of whether or not an individual will actually make a good doctor, these academic markers are used as ways of “weeding out” less academically strong candidates. The first two years of medical school are filled with an enormous study workload, and schools want to pick the candidates they think are most likely to successfully pass their regular courses, as well as score highly on their Step I exams. High Step I exam scores mean that students are more likely to successfully match to their top-choice residencies, a statistic that medical schools will hold with pride. Again, while academic performance may not necessarily correlate directly to how great of a doctor a student may be someday, academic performance does often indicate how strongly a student may do on certain standardized tests that provide important statistics feedback to medical schools on how their students are “performing.”

SOCIAL SKILLS

At the same time, however, even though admissions committees often use past academic performance (or specifically, lack thereof) to rule out certain candidates, admissions committees also often use certain markers of social skills to rule in applicants. This is the primary reason behind interviews typically being a part of the medical school application process. Of course, most admissions committees understand that students are probably nervous and therefore do a bit worse than they might otherwise do in their interviews because of this, but a good interview (or series of interviews) will definitely

make a candidate more likely to be admitted. Similarly, strong personal reference letters can also speak of an applicant’s social skills as well. The actual work of a physician rarely involves performing well on standardized exams, and admissions committees want to make sure that their students are those who can interact properly with patients also.

“Admissions committees recognize that those students who were only able to receive good marks in undergrad because all they did was study might actually be less likely to perform well in medical school than students who received slightly lower grades but had many other activities on the side as well.”

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DISCIPLINE

While general social skills and academic abilities can typically be ascertained by the above methods, other more character-based factors are also typically assessed by admissions committees as well. This is where the list of “extracurricular” activities that is an offered slot on the primary AAMCAS application really comes into play. Sure, a student may have done well in all his undergraduate classes and earned a stellar MCAT score on top. However, if all that student has done is academic-related activities, then he simply may not stand out to an admissions committee as anything particularly special. Getting good grades when all you are doing is studying all day every day is not necessarily impressive; getting good grades while balancing a full life that includes extracurricular activities at the same time is. In fact, admissions committees recognize that those students who were only able to receive good marks in undergrad because all they did was study might actually be less likely to perform well in medical school than students who received slightly lower grades but had many other activities on the side as well. This is because the workload is much more in medical school than in undergrad, and students who were able to succeed in undergrad while doing other activities will more than likely be able to succeed in medical school if most of their energy is now poured into one main focus. For anyone who had just one focus (academics) in undergrad, however, the amount of work in medical school might prove to be too much. Additionally, being able to balance studying and extracurricular activities (campus jobs, sports, club involvement, leadership roles, etc.) often means that a student will be more likely to be disciplined enough to be able to balance the “real life” difficulties of being a doctor someday. He/she might be more likely to deal with the demanding work of a physician while also being able to successfully handle any stresses in his/her home life as well. While academics and interview skills will always look good on an application, leading a life that shows you have extreme discipline in your time management skills shows an admissions committee that you probably won’t only be a good student-you’ll probably be a good doctor as well.


PERSEVERANCE

However, acceptance into medical school is not necessarily always determined solely on one’s undergraduate experiences. Instead, admissions committees often tend to dig deeper into the past of an individual. While this does not mean that they are looking into your middle school GPA, it does mean that factors beyond the years you’ve spent in college might be considered when reviewing your application. Students who have risen above great odds to get to where they are at the point of their applications are often desirable applicants; these students’ resilience in the face of adversity makes them highly sought-after students for medical schools.

Photo / University of California, Irvine

LIFE EXPERIENCES

Similarly, life experiences in general are often considered by medical schools as they make admissions decisions. While the average age of medical school students tends to put the typical age of acceptance shortly after graduating from undergrad, often more “non traditional” students are more desirable applicants. Students who have spent time in other careers but who desire to switch over to medicine often have stronger desires for becoming doctors than those who do not have any work experience at all. This increased determination to become a physician may eas-

ily be the determining factor for which students will do better in medical school when the going gets tough.

being accepted, not coming from a medical family also shouldn’t be a problem.

DIVERSITY

So how does the trend of medical school admissions committees taking a more holistic approach to considering applicants really help the future of medicine in the long run? How will future patient populations benefit from future doctors who exemplify the above mentioned character qualities and cultural backgrounds? Simply put, the goal is for medical schools to educate better physicians who are then able to provide better healthcare for all. Seeking out applicants who have proper social skills will hopefully result in doctors who are able to provide better patient-physician communication; these socially aware doctors will also hopefully be able to display adequate empathy when dealing with difficult situations with patients, leading to a better physician-patient relationship overall. Additionally, accepting medical students from a variety of backgrounds will hopefully work to help address the problem of health care disparity found in certain socioeconomic populations. More doctors who are able to serve in previously underserved communities across the States will equate to more immediate access to medical help when it is needed.

Despite commonly held conceptions about what a “doctor looks like,” medical school admissions committees are really looking for students who can add diversity to their student bodies. This means more than just racial diversity, however. Admissions committees are also interested in accepting students who don’t fall into the typical “science major” categories. Students who chose to study math, humanities, government, and business are actually often more desirable applicants than the more commonly encountered biologymajor premed students. Studying areas outside of typical science courses often makes for a more well-rounded student who has an understanding for how the world outside of medicine functions. Additionally, students from various socioeconomic backgrounds are desired by admissions committees. Even though many medical students have parents or other family members who are physicians, medical schools are seeking to get out of the “rut” of accepting mostly students who already come from medical families. While coming from a “medical family” will not hurt your chance of

BENEFITS TO MEDICINE:

November/December 2014 | PreMedLife Magazine |23


>>> Christopher A. Perez is the author of Getting into Medical School: A Comprehensive Guide for Non-Traditional Students.

Medical School Options

An excerpt from the book Getting into Medical School: A Comprehensive Guide for Non-Traditional Students.

T

flickr/ Seattle Municipal Archives

here are two paths to a medical degree, each with their own distinct advantages. Pre-med students also have several options both domestically and abroad when applying to medical schools. Research prospective medical schools and apply to institutions that are best suited for you. If you are having trouble deciding, speak to a premedical advisor to discuss your options in further detail. ALLOPATHIC VS OSTEOPATHIC There are two types of physicians: Doctor of Medicine (MD) and Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO). The traditional medical degree, the MD, practices allopathic medicine. Allopathic medicine is described as “a system of medical practice that aims to combat disease by use of remedies (as drugs or surgery) producing effects different from or incompatible with those produced by the disease being treated” (Allopathy). The newer

form of medicine is practiced by osteopathic physicians and it involves taking more of a holistic approach. Osteopathy avoids prescribing medications whenever possible and it is centered on treating the whole body and not just the patient’s symptoms or disease. Both medical degrees are equivalent as they receive similar medical training in their respective medical schools. Though they are alike, MD and DO medical degrees have their subtle differences. Distinct Beginnings As early as man had become injured or fallen ill, humans have begun practicing medicine to find cures. By the 18th century, new medical discoveries and technological advancements led to the formation of various medical societies around the world. Around the same time, the United States was placing a new emphasis on standardizing medical school curriculum. By the mid-1700s, the

24 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

first American medical school was established that awarded graduates with a Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree. Soon thereafter, other medical schools followed and the Doctor of Medicine became the universal degree for those who practiced medicine. As doctors learned more about the human body and its organ system, new types of treatments were created that focused precisely on patient’s symptoms. Approximately one hundred years later, a physician by the name of Andrew Taylor Still was growing displeased with the direction that the medical field was heading as he felt that doctors were narrowly focusing on treating the illness rather than the patient. “He recognized that the medical practices of the day often caused more harm than good. He focused on developing a system of medical care that would promote the body’s innate ability to heal itself and called this system of medicine osteopathy, now known as osteopathic medicine” (What). Osteopathic medicine was believed to be a pseudoscience and was not fully recognized by the rest of the medical community after its initial inception. As osteopathic medical schools began emulating curriculum from their allosteric counterparts, the perception of the osteopathic medicine began to shift. Gradually, it became accepted as an alternative to allopathic medicine. Today, the training that students receive at both types of medical schools is almost indistinguishable. Allopathic and osteopathic medical students can attain the same residency positions and practice in identical areas of medicine. Recently, several U.S. allopathic medical schools have taken an interest in osteopathic medicine as they now offer holistic courses that students can take. Medical School Admissions In the U.S., there are more than 140 allopathic medical schools compared to just over 30 osteopathic medical schools. One would think that it may be easier to get into a MDgranting medical school based on the overwhelming amount of schools but it’s not the case. Allopathic medical schools are more competitive than osteopathic schools as they focus mainly on the applicant’s GPA and MCAT scores.


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3. Keep your brain guessing

flickr/Eustaquio Santimano

Trying to do too much of the same thing in one day is a fast way to burn out. Make sure that your study regimen has you switching between topics every day. Do a mix of content review, practice passages, and timed work. If you just feed your brain a single type of work every day, it’ll get bored and out of shape just like your body would if you fed it the same food every day. Also, if you try to do too much in a single day your productivity will drop to zero. The brain requires sleep to consolidate short-term memories into long-term ones. Do about 2-3 hours of MCAT prep work and then stop and take a break. Go for a jog, do other school work, eat lunch, take a nap, whatever. Come back and do another round of 2-3 hours of prep and take a second break. Then wrap up the evening with a final hour or so of work. Even the most intense, serious MCAT student shouldn’t be spending more than about 8 hours a day doing MCAT work. Past that your brain isn’t going to learn anything else.

4 Tips for Staying Motivated While You Prep For the MCAT 1. Sleep is your friend

Your brain is an organ in your body just like any other. If you neglect your body, your brain will suffer too. Make sure you’re taking of the three basics: sleep, diet, and exercise. Set a sleep regimen that will fit your test day schedule. Since the new MCAT is only given at 8am, you need to get yourself set on a schedule of waking up every morning at the same time. Depending on how far you have to travel to get to your test center, you should plan to wake up some time between 5:30am and 7am. To make sure you’re getting enough sleep, you will need to be getting to bed by 10pm or midnight, at the latest. It’ll put a big dent in your social life for a while, but better to spend a few months getting to bed on time than having to re-take the MCAT and lose even more of your free time.

2. You are what you eat

Lots of leafy green vegetables. Avoid overloading on simple carbs, since the insulin crash afterwards can kill your motivation to do anything, including MCAT prep. Finally, exercise. No need to go nuts here doing hours a day of crossfit. Just a simple 2030 min daily dose of light aerobic exercise can have a ton of benefits. Research has shown it helps delay the onset of Alzheimer’s, boosts performance on IQ tests, and elevates your mood. Sleep, diet, and exercise. Get on a good regimen here and you may even find that your MCAT motivation stays strong the entire time!

4. Feed your soul

If your emotions are wreaking havoc with your study schedule, it’s a sure sign you’re neglecting an important part of your prep. Give yourself time off. Even God got a day off once a week (although sometimes it can feel like getting into med school is harder than creating the universe). You need time to relax, recharge the batteries, and hang out with family and friends. If you don’t build break time into your schedule, your brain will simply force you to take a break by shutting down. You’ll find yourself staring off into space at random moments that get longer and longer each time. That’s your brain’s way of telling you that you need a break. Take time for meditation, yoga, hanging out with friends and playing video games, whatever. Just make sure you’re giving your soul time to recharge those batteries. Keeping yourself motivated during the MCAT is quite the challenge but if you take care of your body, your brain, and your soul you’ll be in great shape. So what are you planning to do with your MCAT breaks? Bryan Schnedeker is the National MCAT Director at Next Step Test Preparation, a company that specializes in 1-on-1 tutoring for the MCAT. Bryan has taught the MCAT for over a decade and has scored a 44 on the test himself.

November/December 2014 | PreMedLife Magazine |27


The Partner Podcast

012 SHADOWING SECRETS FOR EVERY PREMED AND BEYOND

The Medical School HQ Podcast is an extension of MedicalSchoolHQ.net. Interviews with deans of medical schools, chats with trusted, valuable advisors and up-to-date news.

For this session, the Medical School HQ Podcast talk about shadowing. They define what shadowing is, discuss one of the biggest challenges, and give some ideas on how to find a physician to shadow, as well as valuable tips on how to act and how to make the most of the experience.

MSHQ 023 :

Interview with Dr. Polites of MedPrep at Wash. University Dr. Greg Polites is an Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at Washington University School of Medicine. For premeds at Wash. U., he’s the instructor for MedPrep, a course that has very similar goals as the Medical School Headquarters. Upwards of 90% of all premed students at Wash. U take the MedPrep course on their way to medical school. It is a look into the life of a medical student, resident, and physician. It explores many topics over the two semesters that students can sign up for. MedPrep II even takes students inside the hospital and lets students shadow as part of the class. Here are some highlights of what Dr. Polites had to say with his interview with Dr. Ryan Gray: ON HOW MEDPREP EVOLVED... MedPrep evolved because I thought there was a void that needed to be met in giving students a better idea of what a life in medicine is all about. In college I don’t remember getting an accurate idea of what the next decade of my life was going to be like. And I find it interesting that students can call themselves “premed” but most of them don’t really know what they’re in for until they’ve invested quite a bit of time and energy in the first few years of college. And then they still don’t know much about the process they’re about to enter. Unfortunately, the pre-requisite science courses don’t really give students a blueprint either. It’s not that courses that Chemistry, Biology, and Physics aren’t important, because they are, they are the

building blocks that students need for medical school. But in it of themselves, they don’t a student a picture of the daily challenges of a physician or the road that it takes to get there. Many students don’t even begin to explore what medicine really is, in terms of volunteering in a hospital or a clinic until their Junior year in college. But in those first two years, they can put in a lot of work to get to a point where they’re not even sure if medicine is right for them. That’s why I felt MedPrep was a good answer. I have an analogy - if you were heading out on a 2,000-mile trip cross country, would you simply just wake up one day, get in a car, and drive? I think the answer for most of us would be “no.” You would take time to sit down, plan your trip, plan the route, and have checkpoints along the way to make sure you’re heading in the right direction. So the goal was to create a course that laid out the entire process - from the first day of college to they day one becomes a board certified physician and discuss every step that occurs along that path. ON HOW REPLICATE MEDPREP NO MATTER WHAT SCHOOL A STUDENT ATTENDS... The key is having a plan. The advice that I would give a student anywhere would be number one: the biggest mistake Freshman students make is they get overextended early

28 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

on. And what I recommend is that they get the lay of the land first. They start out slow and set up a foundation for success. Students should come into college and figure out how difficult their courses are and really be a bit of a bookworm until your first set of exams. And you really don’t want to engage in more than one serious extracurricular activity per semester. People get overextended, they get too involved in things, and then that first set of exams hit and they realized that they realize they weren’t quite prepared and that exams are a little harder than there were in high school, and already they start behind the eight ball. So, I think it’s important to start our slow, get to know your advisors, get to know your tutors, and use tutors even though you don’t think you need them. Go to the university provided tutors, go to help sessions, get to know your professors, and really try to start out on a high note - start the process with momentum. And just ease into col-


059 MCAT RETAKES - CHANGE & IMPROVE TO GET THE SCORE YOU WANT

088 WRITING PERSONAL STATEMENTS FOR MEDICAL SCHOOL

Dr. Ryan Gray talks with Bryan from Next Step Test Prep about retaking the MCAT. Bryan is the Academic director of Next Step Test Prep, and the National Director for their MCAT Program

For this session, the Medical School HQ Podcast talk about shadowing. They define what shadowing is, discuss one of the biggest challenges, and give some ideas on how to find a physician to shadow, as well as valuable tips on how to act and how to make the most of the experience.

Wikipedia/Punctured Bicycle

schools where you’re applying through AMCAS, students are required to average their original grade with their retake grade. The benefit of retaking a course is diluted somewhat when it comes to your application. So I actually think it’s more useful to show you can do well in that subject and actually take a course that is a little more difficult. What I do recommend is that a student retake a course and receive a “C” is if they feel they didn’t learn the fundamental material well enough to do well in a higher level course. You have three years of coursework when you apply to medical school, if you’re applying without a gap year. If students really have some work to do in improving their grade point average, often times they will need to take a gap year to have all four year of grades going into their application.

lege. I think that is the biggest and best way to start out well. Then after the first semester I would start paying attention to the timeline. In MedPrep, we review benchmarks that a student should try to achieve each semester of school. Even if a student doesn’t have a course like this at their school, they should have a general idea of how they are going to use the next three and a half years. They should start making plans on how they want to use their summers early. So April is not the time to be figuring out what you want to do with your summer. I would recommend that in January students start thinking about the summer and start making plans about what they’re going to be doing in May and June. And have an idea of how you’re going to be productive during each summer of college. If you start out with that kind of plan, it’s not as daunting. It will give students the feeling of being able to slow things down and then students can start gradually adding more to

their plate as each year unfolds. So, all of this does not need to be done in the first year. But that, I think is the biggest and best thing you can do. ON WHAT TO DO IF A PRE-MED STUDENT STARTS OUT WITH MEDIOCRE PERFORMANCE... Medical schools look at a students trend in performance throughout their whole college career. If a student starts out with a mediocre performance, they key is to try to improve with each successive semester. In some ways, this also demonstrates that a student has some resiliency and can adapt and learn as well. The questions always comes up - what do you do if you receive a “C” in a course. And that’s really a personal choice. But in general, it makes more sense to just move forward on higher-level courses in the same discipline. You’ll hear different opinions about this but remember for Allopathic

ON HAVING AN UNDERSTANDING OF EACH COMPONENT OF AMCAS.. You shouldn’t fixate too much on the numbers. The two main things that a student should really focus on are: making academics your priority then you need to start branching out and exploring and answer the question - why medicine, why not something else? You need to figure out if they understand what physicians do, do you like what they do, and this is where shadowing comes into play. Taking the time to be a physicians office or in a clinic or hospital where you get to see what doctors do is important. It needs to be enough where you see the day-to-day process. And then you need to think about the other things about being a physician that you might like. Ultimately, at some point the student really needs to do some medicallyrelated extracurricular activities to demonstrate that they’ve explored patient care.The reason is not to just check the box for a medical school application but for them to answer for themselves - is this what I really want to do. Schools want to see that you’re passionate about these experiences. For the complete interview, check out the Medical School HQ Podcast 023: Interview with Dr. Polites of MedPrep at Wash. U. at medicalschoolhq.net.

November/December 2014 | PreMedLife Magazine |29


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ENERGY DRINKS

Separating Facts from the Bull by Joseph Johnson

I am constantly surprised at the unapologetic comments that misinformed

(albeit, well-intentioned) people make against energy drinks. “They’re bad for you,” “They’re horrible for your health,” “I saw on the news that they cause heart problems.” Unfortunately, this is a classic case where the idiom “a little information is a dangerous thing” is appropriate. I will use the popular energy drink Red Bull to prove my points since it has been the reigning king, as far as sales go, for some time now (although Monster has the potential to steal that title this year). >>>

30 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014


flickr/Tambako The Jaguar

November/December 2014 | PreMedLife Magazine |31


Most people would be shocked to learn that it is far better for a tired medical student to drink one Red Bull daily rather than four cups of green tea, concerning caffeine intake. This is because there is only 80mg of caffeine in a typical 8.4-ounce can of Red Bull, but each cup of green tea contains 25mg of caffeine. Just the other day a fellow student teased me for drinking a Red Bull, saying I was going to wear my heart out before becoming a doctor. However, she readily admitted to drinking 3 or cans of soda pop per day! This means she consumes an average of 100 – 120mg of caffeine per day vs. my measly 80mg. Please note that this is not uncommon; of the estimated 85% of adults who drink caffeine in the U.S., the average number of daily cups of coffee consumed is 3.3 (according to WebMD). To show an even greater contrast, an 8oz. cup of brewed Starbucks coffee has more than double the amount of caffeine of an 8.4oz can of Red Bull!

An average espresso shot has 75mg, so nearly the same amount as a can of Red Bull. How many of would knock out a cup of brewed Starbucks coffee and think we have had more caffeine than two Red Bulls? Many students would not fathom this as true. What’s even scarier is that an 8oz. cup is the smallest size that Starbucks sells! Sizes range from a “short,” which is 8oz., to a Venti, which is 20oz., in four 4oz. increments. The recommended daily consumption amount of caffeine varies depending upon personal situations. One article in Muscle & Fitness magazine advocated 200mg-400mg of caffeine on workout days as a good threshold for body-builders. However, a study from the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology found that women consuming but 200mg daily were twice as likely to have a miscarriage. It is a fact that caffeine can cross the placental barrier as well. Therefore, pregnant women are not advised to drink caffeine unless told otherwise by

their physicians. Energy drinks serve other purposes besides providing a boost for those all-nighters. Migraine headaches are believed to result from dilated blood vessels in the head. Caffeine is a potent vasoconstrictor is this area, thus it is able to relieve the pain associated with migraine headaches. In fact, many over-the-counter migraine medicines are nothing more than a generic analgesic with caffeine…often more caffeine than is contained in a typical 8.4oz can of Red Bull! For instance, the recommended Excedrin Migraine caplets dosage contains 130mg of caffeine. Before ending this article, I must address the source from which much of the “misinformation” stems. There are a couple of lawsuits against “Monster” energy drinks and “5-hour Energy.” Various claims in these lawsuits state that these beverages are responsible for arrhythmias, other heart problems, and even death in some situations. Two things put these lawsuits into a different category than what is concerned in this

32 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

article: 1) the lawsuits deal with beverages that contain many more additives in them along with the caffeine content; 2) the circumstances may not fall under what most health professionals would consider responsible drinking habits. Responsible drinking habits means that an individual has monitored the proper caffeine amount that he or her can consume for their daily needs, and that the individual is not under the recommended age for consumption, and is not currently pregnant. Certainly, many cases that present in the emergency room departments are due to college students funneling or shot-gunning energy drinks, mixing them with alcohol, or combining them with other stimulants. Neither this article nor any reasonable health professional would ever advocate such non-sense. So what’s my bottom line? Please get correct information before repeating statements that lack substance. While I will neither condemn nor condone energy drink consumption, I will say that anyone with an opinion of them should do adequate research. Sure there are energy drinks out there that do not label how much caffeine is contained. One such maneuver companies use to avoid enumerating the caffeine amount is to list caffeine as one ingredient amongst many others in the drink’s “proprietary blend.” Also, some energy drinks may include more caffeine than two or three cups of coffee; be conscientious and pay close attention to the serving sizes and servings per container. However, despite all of this, energy drinks do not harm people any worse than coffee or soda pops, concerning caffeine amount alone. Exceeding one’s recommended average daily consumption, being misinformed or drinking caffeine irresponsibly is what may possibly harm people. Caffeine consumption is the culprit here, not energy drinks in and of themselves.


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4 Simple Ways To Build Awesome New Study Habits Winston Churchill once said, “Continuous effort—not strength or intelligence—is the key to unlocking our potential,” and the a similar concept can definitely be applied when considering a successful approach to conquering medical school. Oftentimes it is not the “smartest” or “brightest” students in a class who excel during exams. Instead, it usually is just those students who have developed the best study skills who find themselves at the top of their classes. While learning how to best study during medical school tends to be a bit of trial and error, it is still definitely ideal for students to solidify quality study skills prior to enrolling. While everyone may study best in different ways, these ideas are great ways to get on the right track. Set timers (and stick to them) Use your smart phone/favorite technology device to set timers for study periods within your afternoons (or evenings, or mornings). Often it’s easy to get distracted while “studying” with checking emails, browsing social media, or texting friends. Instead of letting yourself yield to these distractions while studying, set timers that dictate set periods of time that you will dedicate solely to studying, and set timers that allow you to take breaks to catch up on all your social media needs. Some students find that breaking down hours into 55 minutes of studying and 5 minutes of break time works well for them, while others do better with larger or smaller chunks of study time. Find a pattern that works best for you, and stick to it. You’ll be amazed how much more efficient your study time is when you don’t allow yourself any distractions. Review within a day The amount of material covered within a day’s lectures during medical school can seem enormous, leaving many stu-

dents to feel like they can’t even get through all of a day’s lessons within the day—yet alone go over materials more than once. However, studies have shown that students who spend time studying the same lectures more than once within a 24-hour period typically tend to remember those lectures better than those who do not. Although this seems simple enough, many students don’t allot time for review within their schedules. Make sure that you plan time for reviewing materials on the same day that you cover them for the first time; you’ll remember the concepts much better in the long run using this study method. Develop memory techniques Many medical students will be quick to tell you that the concepts presented in medical school are often no harder than the concepts presented during some undergraduate courses. However, the amount of material is simply much denser, leaving students to memorize copious amounts of information. Do yourself a favor and figure out what memory techniques can help you best—from drawing out pathways to visualization and association techniques. Set realistic goals Finally, set realistic study goals for yourself. You might want to push yourself to study 10 hours a day for 5 days a week, using a timer to monitor your progress. However, if you’re like most students, doing so much studying for an extended period of time is exhaustingly impossible. Push yourself to study more than you think possible (you’ll be grateful for the built-up study endurance once you’re in medical school), but be realistic in your goals at the same time.

November/December 2014 | PreMedLife Magazine |35


THEGOODS

Our pick of items that will add some flair to your pre-medical life and perhaps put a smile on your face

Chromosome Pillows

Rebecca Rodriguez’ pillows celebrate the graphic appeal of science in handmade style. Her chromosome pillows playfully represent “his and hers” DNA with pink felt applique for the XX chromosome and blue for the XY chromosome added to a screen-printed background of the full set of human genes.

u

u

Reclaimed Wood Mantra Blocks Designer Susie Frazier’s mantra blocks are a tangible expression of that idea. She uses blocks of reclaimed, unfinished wood that exhibit all of the marks and weathering of their past lives, and engraves them with a single, essential concept: Believe, Imagine or Inspire.

u 36 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014

Left Brain, Right Brain Bookends Watch your mind expand as your hardcover collection grows with this set of smart bookends. Designed with logical left and creative right brains in mind, this cerebral concrete decor holds your storied classics and soon-to-be-favorites, keeping your knowledge right where you can see it.


Notepaper Roller Feel like your to-do list is getting out of control? Then this handy list dispenser will have you on a roll. The contemporary styling of its design makes it an attractive accessory on your desk or countertop. You can even hang it on the wall to keep it conveniently close to your refrigerator or front door.

u

u Experience Passport

Break out of your routine, learn something new, and discover a whole world of inspiration around you with the Experience Passport. Part life coach, part Sherpa guide, and part itinerary of amazing activities, this pocket-sized book is filled with 45 ways to broaden your horizons.

Cardboard iPad TV Stand

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Don’t touch that dial—this recycled cardboard stand gives your iPad the look of a retro TV, recreating the golden days of tuning in with family.

November/December 2014 | PreMedLife Magazine |37


LASTWORD

Some final thoughts on getting through your days as a college student

“Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life --think of it dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success.””

SWAMI VIVEKANANDA, was an Indian Hindu monk and chief disciple of the 19th-century saint Ramakrishna.

“There are two types of people who will tell you that you that you cannot make a difference in this world: those who are afraid to try and those who are afraid you will succeed.”

RAY GOFORTH leads a union of 23000 Boeing Co engineers who revel in their pocket-protector image.

“Keep on going, and the chances are that you will stumble on something, perhaps when you are least expecting it. I never heard of anyone every stumbling on something sitting down.”

CHARLES F. KETTERING, was an American inventor, engineer, businessman, and the holder of 186 patents.

“Would you like me to give you a formula for success? it’s quite simple, really:

Double your rate of failure. You are thinking of failure as the enemy of success. But it isn’t at all. You can be discouraged by failure or you can learn from it, so go ahead and make mistakes. Make all you can. Because remember that’s where you will find success.” THOMAS J. WATSON, was an American businessman.

“The reason most people never reach their goals is that they don’t define them, or every seriously consider them as believable or achievable. Winners can tell you where they are going, what they plan to do along the way, and who will be sharing the adventure with them.

DENIS WAITLEY, is an American motivational speaker and writer,[1] consultant and best-selling author.

38 | PreMedLife Magazine | November/December 2014


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November/December 2014  

In This Issue: Do You Really Have What It Takes; How To Turn Setbacks Into a Competitive Advantage; and more for pre-medical students.

November/December 2014  

In This Issue: Do You Really Have What It Takes; How To Turn Setbacks Into a Competitive Advantage; and more for pre-medical students.

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