Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Back to School Day

I might be four years through a university degree, but I still keep finding myself heading back to my old primary and secondary schools to help out or talk about my experiences of life after school.

With my practical exams (OSCEs) out of the way, I've come home for just over a week to have a change of scene while I'm revising for written exams. This fitted in nicely with being invited back to my secondary school to chat to some of the high-achieving pupils about studying Medicine.

I find some excuse to go back to my school every year and normally end up chatting to some of the older students who are at the time of applying to university and giving advice about personal statements and interview technique. 

This week it was nice to have a slightly younger audience and to chat to some really enthusiastic pupils in years seven to nine. After a couple of quite tough, boring and slightly stressful weeks preparing for OSCEs, it was refreshing to go in and talk about all the best bits about studying medicine - it reminded me why I'm doing it! I was impressed at how many questions the pupils had for me - they definitely made good use of the opportunity.

When applying for medicine myself, I had excellent support from one of my teachers at school and so I feel I should try and pay this forward by going back to talk to students who are thinking about it, even if it's still a few years off in the future for them. Hopefully I've managed to inspire at least a couple of them! The only thing I'm not sure I'll ever get used is going back to school but getting called 'Miss'!

I also went back to my primary school for an hour in the afternoon as this week is Animal Week there. I took Saffy along to meet the nursery and reception children who absolutely adored her and Saffy lapped up all the attention (although I think she'd have quite liked a bit of peace to go exploring behind the tool shed). Luckily we weren't there on the same day as the guide dog because Saffy would definitely have been shown up, but she did behave herself very well considering there were about thirty very excited children all desperate to stroke her! I'm actually pretty proud of how well she coped with all the excitement - although she probably isn't in much of hurry to go back.

Do any of you ever get the chance to go back to old schools or workplaces?

Sunday, 7 June 2015

I'm Still Here, Promise! - Fourth Year Exam Time

Just in case you were worried, no I haven't disappeared off the face of the earth! It's just that the only way my life could get more boring at the moment would be to spend time writing about the boringness. And that's assuming I had time to do so anyway...

While the rest of the world seems to be finishing uni forever, or at least packing their books up for summer, my exams don't even begin until tomorrow. Which means the past few weeks have really just been a case of revise, revise, revise. For the first time today I noticed that there are people with actual sun tans around now, meanwhile I've got eye strain from staring at pictures of skin cancers. 

Even just keeping track of the days of the week is a struggle since finishing placement at the start of last week. This is really not helped by Saturday morning lectures though. Some people might go out for dinner or drinks or to the cinema on a Saturday night. Fourth year medics take it in turns to pretend to be six year olds needing a cranial nerve examination.

The trouble with medicine is that it's pretty hard to switch off from. Stick the TV on for a bit of 'downtime' and there's a pretty good chance you'll hit on something medical (Born Naughty, Embarassing Bodies, Dementiaville have all been on this week). Even just walking to the supermarket and back, I can't help trying to guess the age of each and every child I walk past. 

I'm looking forward to having done my first two exams on Monday and Tuesday. I then plan on heading home for a few days to revise somewhere different before coming back to do the four written exams.

So you'll just have to bare with me for a while when it comes to this blog. I love being able to write here, but I'm afraid I'm just not doing anything especially exciting!

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