Tuesday, May 2, 2017

April Volunteering

So, we have come to the end of this semester, and the end of the school year. 
This year has been really a fascinating and challenging period. I thought that I had a moderate grasp of pharmacology just from paramedic level education, but after this program I feel like my knowledge base has expanded profoundly from where it was just one year ago. 
I feel much more knowledgable and much more prepared to start medical school next month! Not only because I have a more in-depth knowledge of this one piece of the medical curriculum, but because I feel like I've learned significantly more about the approach to studying for medical school material. The block format, with intensive periods devoted to understanding the minutiae of organ systems and their function, feels much more accessible as a result of the learning expectations of the past 10 or so months. I can't help but feel that having a solid grade from the first semester looked really appealing on paper when submitted with the rest of my application to medical schools, as I was moved from the waitlist to the acceptance list about a week after sending my grades in to the University of Miami School of Medicine. I can't wait to get started in the MD/MPH track there. 

Anyways, to volunteering: in April, I've started to return to my previous levels of physical ability. As a result of spending a good deal of time in physical therapy, I'm able to use my left arm fairly well, but I'm still not quite up to full strength. Even so, I've really been able to get out and do more consistent needle exchange hours. We've had a weekly drop in on fridays for about 3-4 hours, pretty standard distribution of syringes, naloxone and other safer injection supplies. A physician at UM just started a needle exchange in Miami, so I'm really excited to bring some of what I've learned over there and get involved! 

Dr. Clarkson, Dr. Katakam and everyone else, thank you so much for your expertise, your time and attention to detail, and your hard work! I've learned so much from all of you and appreciate y'all for everything I've gotten out of this program. It's been really great to go through this process. 

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