I am a month in to veterinary school at UC Davis. Things are going wonderfully despite the fact that I am spending more time than I ever have in my life studying and in class/lab in an attempt to grasp the massive amount of material that I am required to learn in such a short period of time.
At this point, I have already successfully completed two mid term examinations and one final examination (Davis is unusual in that class schedules are rather random and scattered, such that we had 7 days of one class took an examination, and were done with that class). Although I have not yet received a grade for that final examination, I was shocked by how well I performed on both mid-term examinations, particularly physiological chemistry. To be honest, my chemistry background is rather pathetic. I took a single chemistry course that was one year long but was intended to cover all of general, organic, and biochemistry. Needless to say, it was a rough overview of chemistry.
I have to attribute my success on these examinations to my wonderful classmates! To my surprise, many of the lessons learned during orientation about teamwork were retained by many of us. Although my background in chemistry is lacking, my classmates have taken an interest in making sure I understand the material and am prepared for the exam. I’ve never been so comfortable honestly admitting my lack of knowledge or understanding as I know that my classmates will be patient and go through things over and over until I finally understand. I plan to return the favor for next week’s anatomy exam as I have had anatomy before while many of my classmates have not.
Life outside of vet school still revolves around vet school in many ways, but it is nice to develop ways to take some time off. For each of the two midterm examinations we’ve had, I’ve hosted a post-exam movie night at my apartment to help us all relax and unwind by taking the night off. I’m also starting to get some classmates into rock climbing and bouldering as the UC Davis gym that we automatically have memberships to has a large rock wall for us to use. Although the rock wall itself costs a little extra, $75 for a full year of us is pocket change to anyone who’s ever paid a hefty sum for an indoor climbing gym membership. In the future, some of the things I have hopes for are: potlucks, wine tastings, and a Superbowl party. (Clearly I love doing things that involve food!)
Although I am sure that as time goes on I will become more and more stressed (I’m already starting to feel that way), I can only think about right now and how happy I am to be here!