The ProspectiveDoctor Podcast

How to Thrive as Med Student: From Classroom to Clinic

Dr. Erkeda DeRouen talks to Dr. Megan Osborn, the Associate Dean for Students at UC Irvine School of Medicine. They talk about how students can excel in medical school and in their clinical years. 

  • [00:55] Introducing Dr. Megan Osborn
  • [01:45] The Advantages of Taking a Gap Year
  • [04:21] Qualities of a Successful Applicant
  • [07:28] Thriving in Medical School
  • [13:11] Transitioning to the Clinical Years
  • [18:10] What Dr. Osbon Would Change About Medical Education

Should You Take a Gap Year?

It’s hard to make up for a low GPA, so students should focus on academics while in school. Taking a gap year or two is beneficial so you can build your resume with clinical experiences and other activities. Applying to medical school during a gap year allows you to focus on the process while strengthening your resume. Gap years provide the perfect opportunity for you to explore and figure out what you truly want. 

How to Thrive in Medical School

Humility is a quality that can certainly help medical students thrive. Accepted applicants are all brilliant, which makes the learning environment feel competitive. Getting a below average score does not mean that you are a failure. 

Medical school is about lifelong learning, not high grades. As such, students may need to develop better study habits that can help them absorb and retain information better. Getting a tutor or asking for help can allow you to study more efficiently, while allowing you to make time for wellness or hobbies outside of medicine. 

Preparing for Clinical Rotations

During the first and second years of medical school, the curriculum has been designed to prepare students for the Step 1 and Step 2 exams. However, the clinical years are different. Students will need to be responsible for their own learning as they complete their rotations. To help you prepare for Shelf Exams, make an outline or list of topics to cover during each rotation. Didactics and review questions are good additional sources of learning, but they should not be your main resource. 

To learn more about how MedSchoolCoach can help you along your medical school journey, visit us at Prospective Doctor

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Erkeda DeRouen

Dr. Erkeda DeRouen is a graduate of Hampton University with a B.S. in Biological Sciences, followed by completing medical school at the Boston University School of Medicine. She then completed residency at The University of Maryland Family and Community Medicine Program. After that, she worked at an underserved community health center, and currently is an Associate Medical Director of a telemedicine company. She recently became one of the first 1,000 lifestyle medicine certified physicians in the world! Her areas of interest include: health equity and eliminating health disparities, service of underserved populations, HIV management, transgender care, mentorship, and lifestyle medicine.

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