exams · MS-1

Exams

Why’s the blog so pink? Well, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. My family’s had a scare with breast cancer some years ago — everything turned out fine for us, but so many men and women are not so lucky. So even though I detest the color pink as a rule, I decided to go Pink for October to try to raise awareness.

Ladies, self-exams are good. I admit that I don’t always remember, myself, but we had a lecture a few weeks ago about breast cancer and mastectomies, and the post-op pictures were so frighteningly raw and bloody. If I can get a link to one of those “click and we’ll donate a mammogram” things, I’ll put it up here as well. Breast cancer may not be preventable, but it is certainly treatable if detected early.

*descends from soapbox*

My exams were not so hot. I am notoriously bad at predicting my own performance, though, so perhaps I did better than I thought. And many of my classmates felt the same way, so perhaps there will be a curve. Or something.

Honestly, I was just thrown by the level of complexity of many of the questions. I’ve taken tough exams in undergrad, but they were almost all short answer or essay. The few multiple choice exams were mainly focused on recognition of the right answer, rather than a logical thinking process of connecting Random Fact A to Seemingly Trivial Minutia B. This is good to know, because we have 6 more exam blocks to get through by the end of the year.

It does help, though, to know that our exams are Pass/Fail only in first year. That is, I think I passed. Removes a lot of the stress. As for competition/cooperation, I have to say that I haven’t seen much of that going around. We get a ton of help from the second-years here (they run special workshops the week before the exam to review all the major concepts). But intraclass cooperation seems to be mainly based on study groups; I don’t think anyone sent out study guides they’d made. (I did want to upload mine to the class website, but I couldn’t figure out how to get the silly thing to work.) I think, though, that we are all still in premed mode, and that will change as the year goes on.

I took some much needed time post-exam to chill, buy groceries, go to the library — it was delightful. My friend A invited a bunch of people to have dinner at her apartment on the UWS, and it was so wonderful to sit around talking with friends for the first time in weeks. L brought champagne, so we toasted to “finding balance.” The past week has been very rough, academically and personally (I kept having to hang up on my mom so that I could study, and I hated that). Hopefully, we’ll all find a way to pass but still retain some semblance of a normal social life.

Sucked that we had a full day of classes today. I skipped out on the second lecture to go to an interview for a Saturday school enrichment program I’d like to get involved in. Hopefully that will come through, because I truly want to get more involved in the community here than I was in my undergrad. I should be hearing back from the program director sometime tomorrow. As a good friend from elementary school used to say, “Cross your fingers and hold your nose!”

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