Friday, August 11, 2006
Days 1 and 2 of my latest adventure:
Well, I just went through 2 days of orientation for the graduate program in which I will be participating this year. It is a one-year "Special Masters Program in Physiology and Biophysics" at Georgetown University. It is a program tailored for people who want to go to medical school. A few things I picked up on:
1: This year will be extremely challenging. They told us so. Over and over and over again. Teachers, advisors, and former students made it a point to remind us that this program is ridiculously tought. Approximately 5 hours of studying each day, every day, is "necessary." yuck.
2: This year will be very stressful as far as applying to med school is concerned, mainly because I will be surrounded by 150 other people who are also applying and who will be talking about the schools they got interviews at, etc... double yuck.
3: This year is going to be great.
I'm excited. Really. Despite the fact that I will study more than I have ever studied in my entire life, I'm honestly excited. It's great and energizing to meet 150 new people. I already met some classmates. They seem cool so far. I love meeting new people. I know that many of my classmates will be uptight pricks, but that's life. I need to get used to being around uptight pricks. It's good preparation for medical school, which will surely be chock-full-o-pricks.
The whole studying for a gazillion hours a day thing turns out to be not so bad when my "big sib" (a student who went through this program last year) put it into perspective. He said "see it as a full time job." I used to work full time at the lab. That's 40+ hours a week. School is my new full-time job. I will attend classes for no more than 4 hours each day (only 1 hour on some days). Add up study time and there I'll have something around 40 hours a week. It's my new full-time job. I can deal with that.
Another reason I'm excited is because of my surroundings. The Georgetown campus is sweet. The surrounding area is very nice. If I will have any time to party, I look forward to visiting the bars and pubs in the area. Also, Washington DC itself is very nice. I will visit the museums and monuments at least once. I saw them when I was a little kid, and I remember loving it.
I am nervous because it is my first time living alone. I know it'll be a great experience. My wonderful parents are having major separation anxiety. They insisted that I got a place big enough for them to come stay at frequently. Fine with me! Maybe 2 years ago I would have rolled my eyes at the thought of them interrupting my life. Now I realize I'll miss them a lot and that it would be great for them to visit- particularly my mother, who is a phenomenal cook and who will organize my room out of sheer nervousness. She is allergic to mess.
The house hunting was a pain in my Lebanese posterior, but I think I finally found a place. It is a basement apartment, walking distance from the bus. On a really nice day I can walk to and from school (approximately 30 minutes).
And thus begins my adventure. This year will be littered with rejection letters from medical schools, all-night study sessions, and high-levels of stress and anxiety. On a brighter note I will be super-duper mega prepared for medical school, have some interesting experiences, and meet new people.