Got sick at such a bad time…
I hear this question a lot. Whenever I meet someone new and they talk about their awesome science classes at Yale, the question seems to always just pop up. But what does it really mean to be pre-med? It’s not just a set of classes you have to take to be semi-capable in the view of an admissions committee. Being pre-med entails so much more than what we think. It’s the first step to being a doctor, something not to be taken lightly. The real question is, why are you pre-med? Why do you even want to practice medicine? Because you’ve taken some science classes and have done decently through cramming the day before exams? Or because of the persistant knudging of parents for a valuable, secure job future? Or because deep inside, you really care for others? To be a doctor is to be compassionate, to sacrifice your life abd dedicate yourself to learning and helping the patients who trust you with their life and wellbeing, the very essential part of our lives. Without our health, we are nothing. The responsibility of being a doctor is enormous, not something to be taken lightly. Yet does everyone who says they are premed truly inderstand the gravity of what they are pursuing? When you go to that volunteer job at the hospital or that research position at a lab, are you thinking, “wow, this is amazing! I can’t wait to come back tomorrow,” or are you simply trying to push through because the medical professions advisor said it would look good on your application? You can fake your way to med school, but you cannot fake the passion it takes to be a doctor. We must find a profession we are truly passionate about, and then it will barely feel like a job at all. It’s a trite thought, but if I’ve learned anything so far this semester, it’s that if you like what you do, it won’t seem like a chore at all. Sure, ballroom dance is hell sometimes, but the problems always fade in comparison to the amazing time I’m having. Hopefully, I can find a profession like that. I don’t know if it’ll be premed, but it’ll be something to find down the road on this journey through college. To claim you are premed is no longer impressive in my mind. Who gives a shit if you can cram and ace some science classes (as if gpa is honestly a good indication of how good a doctor you’ll be) or give a couple hours a week to a hospital. Anyone can do that. It’s the drive, the passion, the heart that makes a good doctor. And if you have all these qualities, then you have your why, and nothing can stop a stronger devotion than that. And it doesn’t matter what you pursue; there’s always a why. Have you found yours?
Perks of Being a Wallflower…WHY ARE YOU LIMITED RELEASE!?!
The moment when your heart skips a beat when you see her, as if every time were the very first time.
I remember in middle school, we got a new principal who would say this phrase after morning announcements everyday. Everyone thought it was cheesy and annoying, and after a while, people even started mocking it. But now that I think about it, there seems to be so much truth to it. I feel so much better this semester, maybe from sleeping more, but also just from waking up everyday ready to go and take hold of the day (Carpe Diem!). In the past, I’ve always gotten up from bed a wreck, feeling like crap and wanting to go back to bed for a couple more hours. Maybe that’s why I would have such sucky days sometimes. Hopefully, waking up with a more positive attitude everyday will make it a great day, no matter what happens.
Play the carillon bells at Yale…check
1. Question everything. I’ve grown up through 12 years of education, accepting all facts and knowledge as truth, thinking that what we were taught was what was fundamentally true and accurate. But being at Yale has caused me to think, to learn, to wonder, yet not accept the professor’s words for true. Because what you learn is not always right. What you learn in history class is what the winners wrote in the books. What you learn in science is only truly scientific because it is falsifiable - its truth because there’s a chance we could prove it false. It’s time for me to stop learning by osmosis, and learn active diffusion (sorry for the terrible bio analogy) and learn while questioning.
2. Man up, with no regrets. I am anti-social, an introvert, quiet, and shy. Everyone can see that. Even my chem lab employer tells me to speak up and be a leader and teach the new hirees with some confidence and leadership. It’s time to change that - it’ll be hard, but i the long run, what could go wrong? So what if I look stupid in a seminar class, so what if I fumble up words in my Spanish class and sound like an idiot, so what if I get turned down by a girl I really like when I ask her out. It’s better than those times of regret, thinking why didn’t I just raise my hand or speak up. My voice will be heard this year.
3. Do something new. I hope that this year, I can actually do things I’ve never done before. What did I do last year? Running and orchestra. Which I have been doing for at least the past 4 years. This semester, I am going to do something completely different, and if it fails, then oh well, at least I tried. Things I have lined up right now: Ballroom dance, guild of carilloneurs (playing the bells at Yale’s Harkness Tower!), playing guitar in a band, working in a lab with an amazing professor and the most unique research I’ve ever heard about, and taking the most diverse classload ever. I can actually say that I enjoy all my classes this year (except Physics, which is just bleh for a requirement). Biochem at Yale is mindblowing, so much better than Dr. Achilly’s bio lectures in high school. My music class is a wonderful morning class, and the professor is so nice and knowledgeable, and music theory is just something I’ve wanted to learn in a long time. Spanish is such a great class; right now, we’re arguing about ethical issues in the world, and the debate is so much fun! Intro Psych is with Paul Bloom, a hilarious professor who is so insightful and thought-provoking. I’m taking a heavy class load, but class just goes by so fast since everything’s so interesting! I resolve to do new things, because once it’s off to med school or grad school or whereever, I may not have the chance to start new things again.
4. Do some crazy shit (excuse the language :P). We often look for the crazy awesome college stories when we meet a high school friend. I found that I really didn’t have much to talk about to my friends though…as if my life at Yale was kinda boring. This year, that will all change. For one, just doing ballroom dance will certainly result in a lot of hazing stories…and doing more things with my suitemates will just always be insanely fun and crazy. Like the time we broke into another suite and stole the rug they stole from us the year before, and ran across the courtyard past the freshman class and our residential college dean just to get it back to our room, what I like to call the rug wars. I hope that the next time I see one of my high school friends about my soph year, I’ll have some crazy stories to tell.
5. Ask for help. In the past 2 weeks, I have met with…7 different advisors? Two were advisors of 2015 biochem majors, one was a department head, one was my freshman advisor in the med school, one was the pre-med advisory councilor, and then I met with three people form a lab to listen to their research and goals. It’s actually amazing how there are so many people willing to help out; Even in their busy lives, they still put undergrads as a high priority, and it’s simply amazing how easy you can get help if you just ask for it. It’s always better to listen to a person’s opinion rather than read from a department website or handbook or something.
6. Stay organized. The last thing I want to do is get disoriented by everything I’m doing! I plan to stay organized and dedicated to my work. Procrastination is okay at times, but I will try to avoid it whenever possible. And thank god for iCal…without it, I wouldn’t know where I would be going most of the time. So colorful too!
Yeah that’s what I have for now. (9/14/2012). I’ll probably add to this list, but it’s a good starting reflection of what I want from this year at Yale. And this year, may I say, will be legen…wait for it…
Google Chrome Commercial: Dear Sophie