Sunday, May 17, 2009

Where I'll be in the next year

So for the fourth year of medical school I had the opportunity to set up my own rotations. The idea is not only to learn a lot, but also to rotate in places I may want to do my residency. So I submitted applications to programs across the country, and my choices were governed by the following criteria:

1) I wanted a program with a "family-friendly" work schedule. You always hear horror stories about the long hours and sleep-deprivation that residents experience, and I decided that's not for me. Call me crazy, but I think I can learn what I need to learn in a 40-hour work week, and if it's a little longer than that so be it, but who needs to work 80-100 hours a week and walk around like a zombie while not having any free time for three years? I don't.
2) I wanted a program that provides a good learning environment and a fair balance between surgical and clinical experiences.
3) I did also consider geography, but in a way different from most people. I tried to figure out what cities in country would be best for dating. In other words, where are there a lot of single Mormon girls around my same age? The answer of course is Utah, Idaho, and Arizona. But since I couldn't get a spot in Phoenix and there weren't any appealing programs in Utah or Idaho, I had to go to the next best thing. For this purpose I set up rotations in Boston and NYC. And then I incidentally ended up with a few rotations in Tucson, AZ, which may be rather good on that front as well.

What did all this yield? A rotation schedule that will be taking me literally all over the country, including moving a minimum of eight times. Here's my schedule for the next year, all rotations are podiatry externships unless otherwise specified:

  • Jun: Tucson, AZ - Inpatient Medicine
  • Jul: Tucson, AZ - Emergency Medicine
  • Aug: Tucson, AZ - General Surgery
  • Sep: Tacoma, WA
  • Oct: Binghamton, NY
  • Nov: Boston, MA
  • Dec: "vacation month"
  • Jan: Detroit, MI
  • Feb: New York City
  • Mar: New York City
  • Apr: New York City
  • May: Dallas, TX - elective with Hanger Prosthetics and Orthotics
Housing is provided or arranged everywhere except for NYC, Boston, and Tucson in August. (That's right, just August. Basically my school screwed me over on that one.) I'll be driving to all of these locations and carrying nearly everything I own in my car. Consequently I've been trying hard to downsize so that moving will be relatively easy. It's hard, but I'm getting better at throwing things away with every passing day. I've also been trying to use up all my food before leaving but I don't think I'm gonna make it, even with two months of focused effort.

So thus begins the great adventure. Starting over in new cities eight different times, making ridiculously long cross-country drives almost every month, all while trying to both learn all about podiatric surgery and make good impressions everywhere I go. Difficult? Fun? Stressful? Invigorating? Life-changing? Utterly ridiculous? Time will tell. I guess this is what happens when you're a fourth year med student whose priorities are to have good work hours, get a good education, and be around good girls.


  1. Yowzaa! That's quite the schedule! Hopefully it all works out for the best on all fronts. Good luck!

  2. I will miss you, but it sounds like you'll have a great, jam packed year of adventures! :) We should definitely hang out before you leave - maybe watch UHF?? :)

  3. What? Nothing in DC? Sounds pretty exciting otherwise.

  4. Wow! You can do it!

  5. Ok, so I'm just going to throw this question out there... Can I be a part of the few things you carry in your car as you travel to these places? I mean, c'mon, it's a guaranteed good girl with you in all places and.... i'd love to visit home and... boston? It just sounds like you're going to have lots of fun. I'll be at home at the end of august. When will you be getting there?

  6. Awesome! I'm way jealous, I'd love to live around the US. Keep us posted of your adventures!

  7. Wow, Benj! Off you go! You may run into Daniel and Diane while you're in New York. . . We had a blast visiting them last December! : )

  8. Yeah, what about DC? I hear it's pretty neat there, but I'll find out for myself this summer.

  9. Thanks for the fat (and phat) info. :) Actually, P90X includes a fat portion in the portions approach, which lists the oils and other items that you mentioned as options. It's the other areas that I'm trying to improve, such as only using low-fat cheese and non-fat dressings, etc. Thanks for the input though. You basically listed the acceptable fat items verbatim. You should probably start your own diet plan and make millions.

  10. Sounds like you are going on tour for a year! Cool! Best of luck at each place. We're looking forward to having you here in May!