Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Life of a Medical Student

So maybe you've been wondering how Ryan is doing in his first semester of medical school. Aside from putting up with my cooking experiments and giving me advice on what I should knit next, he keeps himself quite busy with his studies. He spends more hours in class or the library than he ever thought possible.

He has four classes this semester - Anatomy (8 credits), Biochemistry (5 credits), Histology (4 credits), and Bioethics (1 credit). Anatomy probably comes the easiest for him. Although, with his biology degree, he does well in any science class. Histology and Anatomy both require many hours in the lab, either looking at disected cadavers or slides of microscopic cells.

On a typical day, he begins by having class from 8am-12pm. He'll come back home for lunch and a quick nap shortly after 12:00, but leaves again around 12:45. The next round of classes are from 1-5. I try to have dinner ready for him right at 5:00. After dinner he either goes for a run or works out. Then it's off to the library to study until at least 11:00pm (usually closer to 12am). On the weekends, he spends most of his time in the library. Now that college football has started, he picks one game a week (usually Clemson) that he'll watch. But other than that, it's study, study, study! Here's a picture of the library on campus. At least he has a nice view while he's memorizing every muscle and nerve in the body!

This semester has made us even more thankful to be living on campus. Ryan can walk from our apartment to his classroom in about 5 minutes. This allows him to make the most of his time without having to wait for a bus to take him home or waste time traveling. The Lord has been so good in giving us such a convenient place to live that also gives Ryan the best chance of doing well in his classes.

A couple weeks ago, he had the first quiz of the semester. It was a combined quiz for Anatomy, Biochemistry, and Histology. There were 25 questions for each subject, and it is worth only about 5% of his overall grade. The purpose of this quiz is to give the students an opportunity to see if their current study habits are effective. You can actually fail the quiz, and still make an A in the class, so it's not too important grade-wise. It is helpful to see if you have an understanding of the information so far, though. Just a few days ago, Ryan found out his grade for the quiz; Anatomy - B+, Biochemistry - A, Histology - B+. We were extremely pleased with those results, especially considering a lot of his friends were just happy they passed. He is definitely on the right track for the rest of the semester!

On Monday, he had his final exam for Bioethics. Since it was just a 1-credit class, the final exam came early in the semester, and now he is finished with that class. Historically, this class has been somewhat difficult. Not only because of the subjective material, but also because the professor feels that students don't take her class seriously. Many students that have gone on to make all A's in medical school get a B or C in this class. Ryan spent most of the weekend studying for the test, and this evening the grades were posted. The average for the class was an 82%, but Ryan made a 97%!

In less than two weeks, Ryan will have his midterm exams for his three main classes. This will be about 50% of his overall grade and cover about 30 lectures-worth of material for each class. I know he'd appreciate your prayers October 4-8.

I am so proud of him and glad to see his hard work paying off in a big way! It's definitely clear that this is what he was meant to do, and the Lord has gifted him in this area. Ryan is just happy to be doing something he loves!

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