Life, Pre-med

MCAT Study Schedule

Hi everyone,

I started studying for the MCAT today. Since I don’t have a ton of time, I’ve decided to study one hour a day during the summer. During the weekends I will probably increase it to two hours a day. It’s not a lot but since I’m about a year away from taking it, I figured this is a good way to start.

Wish me luck!

Andrea.

PS: This is the only way I’m allowed to study. Better than not getting anything done, right? This little one is Syrus, the oldest. Sirius is sleeping peacefully on his crib. The dog in the background is Harry; he thinks he’s their babysitter.

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Pre-med

The Beginning of Summer

Hi everyone,

So final grades are in… straight A’s! My very first 4.0 in college! I was very excited when I found out. It was definitely a hard semester and I’m SO glad it’s over. As excited as I am about this 4.0, I’m also very nervous that I won’t be able to pull off another one I’m taking hard classes during the upcoming school-year, and I really don’t want med school admission committees to think I’m a bad student…

Now that I have literally nothing to do all summer, I’m looking for ways to keep myself entertained and still making progress in my pre-med journey. I was able to get a hold of my volunteer coordinator for hospice so I’ll be getting a new patient to go visit soon! I’m very excited because it’s been a year since I’ve had a patient. I also need to find another animal shelter to volunteer at; I miss being around furry little critters! I have two cats but I still miss being around kitties that need my help to find a home.

I’m also set to shadow the doctor that delivered my twins and became my friend along the way; I just have to get some blood work done that proves I had varicella so I can start. She’s finishing her residency soon, so I will only be able to shadow her for a short amount of time. Anything I can learn from her is appreciated though, so I’m excited.

That actually reminds me… I was able to attend a surgical conference in a city close to where I live this month. I went last year for the first time and I fell in love with it, probably because it had a neurology/neurosurgery theme. This year it was all about family practice and it was equally interesting. I learned a lot, but my favorite lecture covered Malaria. I honestly did not know anything beyond being transmitted by mosquitoes; I wish I could tell you about it with more detail, but it was a lunch lecture so I was not able to take notes and I don’t want to misquote anything. The one thing I know is that I came out of the lecture wishing I could do something to help get rid of it… but I think that happened with every disease they talked about ha ha.

Back to what I’ll be doing this summer… I wasn’t able to get a hold of my match specialist for Big Brothers Big Sisters before the program for the school I volunteered at ended for the year, so I’ll have to wait till September before I can rejoin the program. That’s okay though, because it’ll give me time to settle into the huge amount at least that’s what it feels like of extracurricular activities I take a part of!

As far as studying for the MCAT goes, I bought this book to start studying. I wanted a book that will go over the concepts as a review but also give me some practice tests and lots of examples. This one was the only one that had all of that at my local B&N, so I’m hoping it will be a good review. I eventually plan on buying this book once I’m done with the first one. I really need want a really high score, so I’m hoping the second review will help. I’ll let you guys know what I think of them as I work through them and if they were helpful/worth it. On top of all that, I really want to take a practice course in about six months. They’re really expensive though, so I’m not sure if I will be able to do it. I’m really nervous about this test… I had no idea that the highest score was a 528! 528?! Does anyone know what a “competitive” score is?! I know that you wanted to aim for at least a 30 in the last version, but I have no idea what it could be for this one. I think the fact that it’s a higher number makes me more nervous; I dunno if there’s a psychological reason behind it, but a 40 seemed easier to accomplished than a 528. Does anyone else feel this way, or am I crazy?

But anyway, the last thing on my to-do list for the summer… if you read a few of my entries from last year I talked about becoming a CNA. I finished the course and everything, but I wasn’t able to get certified due to my pregnancy. I have until October to become certified if I want to work in a hospital setting, so I’m going to start studying and take my certification exam as soon as possible. It’s been a while since class and clinicals,so I hope that most of it will be review and not re-learning everything… Ideally I would like to work at the hospital where I delivered because I loved their level of care and want to be in the type of environment where the patients are treated with utmost respect. I think I would enjoy working in postpartum, but I wouldn’t mind the NICU. I’d be happy anywhere though, so I really hope I’m good enough to work there!

That’s pretty much all I’m planning to do this summer, besides taking a vacation to my favorite state, Washington! I absolutely love the beach and the trees are beautiful. The rain is also very calming, so it’s just the perfect place for me. Oh, and they have stratovolcanoes! I’m kind of obsessed with volcanoes since I learned about them in geology last semester, so living next to them would be a dream as long as they don’t erupt. I tried getting a hold of their med school last year when I went to visit but I wasn’t able to, so I’m hoping to do that this year and see if it’s possible to take a tour or at least talk to someone in the administration to see what I need to do to be a strong candidate for their school. I’m extremely excited for this trip and I can’t wait to see all my friends! Washington feels more like home than the state I currently live in, so I always feel like I’m coming home when I travel there.

It’s going to be a great summer!

Wish me luck!

Andrea.

Pre-med

End of the Semester!

Hi everyone!

The semester is officially over! I’m pretty sure I got straight A’s but I’m not sure since my theater professor hasn’t graded anything in months. I’m nervous about it; I really want to know how I did! I still have to turn in my semester long research project but I’m almost done with it. I should probably be working on it right now, but I’m so exhausted that all I wanted to do today was relax. Plus my birthday was on Thursday and I spent all day doing extra credit for my Sociology class I really wanted an A and an A- is not good enough. So I spent all day technically yesterday relaxing and going out for a walk with my husband and kids; we’ve been keeping them home to ride out flu and RSV season, so we were excited. 🙂

Anyway, I forgot to check when registering for classes opened so I wasn’t able to sign up for the O-Chem class I needed. Instead I’m taking Cell Bio, Biochem, Research Methods, and Anatomy. I’m nervous but excited at the same time; my school has an Anatomy lab that goes with the course, so I’ll have some experience with cadavers before med school.

Oh! And if everything goes well I’ll be graduating the day before my birthday next year, April 29th! I’m already excited and nervous about it. Not sure what I’m gonna do after that, since I’ll hopefully have no more than a year in between graduation and med school.

That’s all I have time for now… the twins are waking up.

Wish me luck!

Andrea.