The Inspirational Candle – We all need one!

“Keep The Inspirational Candle Burning” – Picture taken from

As I look at my calendar, two very disturbing ferrets posing among flower pots glare back at me … but aside from the scary little rodents, I can’t help but notice that it is already MAY and there are literally only 17 more days until school is over! 2014 will have officially completed their first year of school, and 2013 will move on to their rotations. Time does not stop for anyone, and I think it’s important to be reminded of just how valuable you are to every person you will help in your profession. So, I decided to ask Dr. DiMeo if he could reflect and give students some advice for after they are finished with their first year of Medical School, this is what he had to say:

“What a difference a day/year makes. The person that walked thru these doors in August is gone and the first metamorphosis into being a physician is under way. The days and weeks were long but the year went fast. Realize that the stress and anguish that you go thru is normal. Nothing that is worthwhile is easy and if it were easy more people would do it. The dedication required to become a physician is one of the reasons our profession is so respected. You should feel proud of what you accomplished even if it all does not make sense yet. Keep the inspirational candle burning and carry the knowledge from your first year forward as it is the foundation for the future training.”

I believe that Dr. DiMeo’s advice is something that we can all glean from. We each experience our own trials and tribulations, but at the end of the day, month, or even year, it’s those same challenges that have resulted in changing YOU into a stronger, more knowledgeable individual who is ready to face the next challenge in life. If ever you are in need of a reminder, just look in the Office of Academic Support window, we’ve got our own Inspirational Candle burning for you!


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2011Immunology Pageant

Don’t forget to stop by the Cadwell Student Center Lecture Hall on Thursday, May 5th from 12PM – 1PM. Your fellow students will be in the Immunology Pageant, and there has been “rumors” of RJ wearing a unitard, I don’t think you want to miss it! A lunch buffet will also be provided for those who attend the pageant.

UPDATEDThe Wonderful World of ImmunologyPageant2011

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Ever been in one of these Anatomy Lab groups?

It is Wednesday, the middle of the week, and upon researching different topics for the next blog, I stumbled upon this funny comic strip (compliments of and thought I would share it with you. You can view these bigger and read the comic strip if you click on the image, into a slide show. Happy Wednesday!

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Writing Tips & Resident Tricks!

picture from

How well do you think your CV represents the person you are, and all that you have accomplished? We are all guilty of putting words down on paper, giving it a quick scan, and calling it “good”. “Good” might squeeze your way through a class, help talk your way out of a speeding ticket or even pass you on to the next level of a video game, but “good” probably will not guarantee you a job in the medical field. Here are few tips on how to write a GREAT CV for residency:

1. Type your name, address and contact information: Type your full name at the beginning of the first page of your CV for residency. Write your physical address and any other contact information like a phone number or an email.

2. Add a personal profile: Describe yourself in a few sentences. Then add your career goal in the medical profession. Let them know for example that you are hardworking, motivated and you want a long lasting career as a surgeon.

3. Education: Describe briefly your educational experience. The credentials you have will usually speak for themselves. This is because the education path for the medical field is standardized. List the name of the school, the degree and the beginning and the end dates of schooling.

4. Memberships, Awards and Publications: In these section, you can list all the medical memberships you are part of, any awards you won and any publications that list you as a contributor. Do not neglect these sections because they are important. They show that you care more than the average person about working in a medical field.

5. Employment history: List all the places where you worked. Mention the company, its address, the dates of employment and a brief job description. They will be interested more in the types of work similar with what you are going to do during the medical residency. So, you can skip the irrelevant jobs.

6. Hobbies, Interests and Other Relevant Skills: Your hobbies are crucial. They tell you to your next boss more about your personality. Your job will not be only about work. You also need communicate and make friends with your future colleagues.

7. Language and computer skills: In this day and age, everyone needs to know how to use at least a personal computer. Companies are becoming paperless. Now you can even sign contracts on the Internet.

8. Referrals: It’s advisable to have a few important people who say good things about you. People will unconsciously respond more positively to you if you are associated with important people. Type the referees’ name, title, position and contact information. Make sure that your referees know that their personal data is included in your CV. They may be contacted by your future employer.

9. Your specialty area: It’s best to know what you like the most in the medical field. This will reduce the number of medical residencies available. But it will make you more appealing for the few that meet your criteria.

10. Apply to as many position as you can. This will help you get access to more interviews which in turn will increase your chances for getting a better job. So, you may want to write multiple CVs. Each CV will be aimed at one single medical residency.

*This information was provided by the following website:

Since it is Friday and the 2013 Class had an exam, I thought it was only appropriate to share a clip from Scrubs playing a practical prank, Enjoy!

*This video was provided by the following website:

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Did you just cram for that exam?

Have you ever had one of those nights where you feel completely overwhelmed because you not only have one exam, but maybe two or three .. and they all just happen to be on the same day, or maybe even a day apart from each other? I’m sure you’ve felt the pressure of literally cramming as much information into one night, hoping that it will all stay with you the following morning. And yet, you probably have the urge to wake up a few hours early with a quadruple shot latte, and repeat that same cram session from the night before. According to, there are a few techniques to practice if you absolutely have to cram for an exam:

Cramming for exams should be avoided at all costs. You should only cram for an exam as a last resort. It’s hard to take in and retain a large amount of information in a short period of time.

1. Eat some food to give you energy to study (an apple) but avoid consuming excess sugar which will make you hyper and will make it more difficult to study.

2. Keep a positive attitude, it is easier to study when you are relaxed than when you are stressed out.

3. Focus on the main ideas and learn key formulas.

4. Write down the key ideas/formulas on a sheet of paper and keep on studying from that sheet, repetition is important.

5. Highlight the important points in your notes, and text and focus on that.

6. Study from past tests, review questions, homework & review sheets.

7. Take at least one five-minute break an hour so that you can gather your thoughts and let your brain relax.

As the article mentioned, “Cramming for exams should be avoided at all costs.” Studying ahead of time on each topic is always more productive when it comes to your own personal study time and preparation for an exam. Do you cram for your exams? Have you tried any of the above techniques? Repost your own experiences with cramming for exams, or even better methods you might have to avoid having to cram for exams.

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How to stay focused..even on a beautiful Friday afternoon!

It’s 10 minutes to five on a Friday afternoon and you probably are not thinking about the last thing your teacher just said, or that test you have might have in a few weeks or even a week from now. Instead, your mind is already drifting away to that day trip over to Seattle, sleeping in Saturday morning or maybe even getting ready for that 5K “Run For Your Life” Fun Run. At any rate, you have mentally checked out for the weekend, and you are ready to indulge in something other than your studies.

It’s easy to get side tracked, but it is important to stay focused, especially while you are still in school. Here are a few tips that I found from The Revolution Health Group website on different ways to staying focused on your school work:

Set Deadlines:
At the beginning of each semester, make a calendar of due dates. Be sure you know what the main assignments are (if the professor doesn’t mention them at the start of the semester, ask) and what format they will take (an essay, presentation, group project, etc.). Set clear goals.

Set your space:
It’s best to study at a desk or table where you can spread your work out. You’ll also need a chair that’s comfortable: It should support your lower back and allow you to keep both feet on the floor in front of you. To make studying less of a strain on your eyes, be sure you have enough light.

Have resources handy:
What do you need in your work area in order to avoid interruptions? Books, supplies, notes, research sources? Keep these in one place so you don’t have to go off in search of that book you know you just saw, somewhere around here.

Get focused:
Studies show that when people do lots of things at once, they tend to do a worse job at all of them than if they’d focused on just one thing at a time. So when you multitask as you study, you’re less likely to absorb and retain the information you need to do well on an exam.

**What are you doing right now to stay focused? Repost any tips you might have to stay focused … **

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How awake are you today?

Do you ever consider the benefits of allowing yourself a full 8 hours of sleep? What about the consequences of depriving your body the sleep it needs to be successful at school, work, and your own social / personal life?

According to The National Institute of Health, studies have shown that adults should allow themselves at least 7–8 hours of sleep each night to be well rested. In 1910, the average person slept 9 hours a night. However, recent surveys show that the average adult now sleeps less than 7 hours a night, and more than one-third of adults report daytime sleepiness so severe that it interferes with work and social functioning at least a few days each month. As many as 70 million Americans may be affected by chronic sleep loss or sleep disorders, at an annual cost of $16 billion in
health care expenses and $50 billion in lost productivity.

Here’s a fun game called “Sheep Dash” that will tell you how alert you are today:

Repost your results, let your classmates know if you a “Sluggish Sheep” .. “Bobbing Bobcat”

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