Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Time's up 2008!

Too say the least, it's been a disappointing Christmas.

I won't deny it, Leicester was a blow. But it's the first of what will be four rejections. A book I order in August from Amazon also arrived today. It was Succeeding In Your Medical School Interview. That stung.

Also the revision is dragging. I'm finding it so hard to work but I've had the strength to ignore request to get drunk over the holidays from mates. It's been a bit lonely to say the least but I need to do this. I can't see any other way.

New Years is upon us. I've never been up for the New Year Resolutions idea but this year I did have some pretty obvious goals pinned to my wall. The main three goals are:
  1. Achieve AAAA at A2
  2. Get into a Medical School
  3. Get Tickets for a Coldplay Concert
#2 is already slipping away for this year but I'm glad to say #3 has been achieved. I bought tickets to see Coldplay at Wembley!!! Be bloody amazing!

Not the most joyful post but the idea was inspired by Harry and Ellisa.
Happy New Year to all!

Monday, 22 December 2008

First Rejection

So the first letter came today. It was Leicester. My dad bless him, actually woke me up and handed my the mail while I was still in bed. My dad is a big fan of Leicester you see. Took me there for the open day, loved the campus and it got his two thumbs up. Yet I forgot to explain to him the thin letter rule.

I know it is very unlikely, bordering on impossible to get an offer of medicine based on my AS grades this year but it still knocked me a little. Don't know why but it did. Crazy. I did love Leicester and it was bordering around my 2nd/3rd choice with Leeds. I don't know. I suppose they might take pity on my application, that my PS might really stand out. Fat Chance for Leicester.

Got the generic response though. "Appreciated your application", "large volume of students" and "your application have been passed to the biomedical department". It was nice of them to send a letter rather than let me know through UCAS so thanks Lecister.


Sunday, 7 December 2008

Can't believe I didn't mention it before...

I realised I missed out the most importance news of the past month!!!! I didn't say anything my previous posts!!!

On Monday, I went to see COLDPLAY LIVE in Birmingham! It was bloody amazing and one of the goals I set to achieve this year. However as if that wasn't enough. On Friday tickets to see Coldplay at Wembley. WEMBLEY! Went on sale. Guess who was first in line for tickets?? Yours Truly, that's who!

I'M GOING TO SEE COLDPLAY AT WEMBLEY NEXT YEAR!!!!!!

It's amazing, and really helped boost me to get through the next few weeks.

COLDPLAY!!

Update

Sorry it's been a while. Every time I promise I'll write more often only to post a month later apologising. I will try to post..... who am I kidding, see you in a month :P

Well the Big 18 has come and past. My week long celebrations were amazing. It's made me much closer to my best mate and I love how I can actually go out on a Saturday night, as I did last night. Don't worry, I'm not overdoing it. In fact I'm reigning it in cause I know the work that I need to do. These next few weeks are gonna be long as difficult as exams get closer. But that goal of getting a place at Med School is keeping me going.

I've yet to get any rejections. Good sign or bad, I'm not sure? Fingers crossed, although tbh I'm expecting complete rejections from all my med school choices. Just don't tell my HE advisor that, I could imagine the smug look on her face even now.

So how do I plan to get those As? Well when the crappy results day came, I worked out what I need to retake. It worked out that I need 2 retakes in each subject except law. I've 10 exams this Jan and while all my friends scream at the idea, I see it as a challenge to prove to the medical schools.

Not much else to say really. Christmas is coming but I'm not that festive at the moment, too much too think about. I know TSR is flooded with questions at the moment about the interviews and stuff like that, while I'm no where near as experienced as the people on their feel free to leave a comment or email me at supermarketcashier [at] googlemail [dot] com. Be happy to help or just listen to any pre-meds.

Wednesday, 29 October 2008

The Big 18

Eighteen soon and can not wait! To be exact, I'm Eighteen on Halloween. I've loved this holiday for obvious reason with this one being no exception.

I'm currently planning to go out for a family meal with friends I've known for years on Friday Not before seeing the new James Bond film!

Then Saturday, I'm heading to town to have an amazing time with my friends. Finally able to pull out ID when they challenge me.

Then it's back to work so I can get those As. I've feel I've been making much better progress this year.

But I suppose my biggest news is I passed my driving test. It only took me 3 attempts, but I passed with only 4 minors! Too bad I'm broke with no money for a car. Especially with my gap year to pay for.

Sunday, 12 October 2008

So much so fast...

It's been a while since I've posted but I've got so much to write about. So watch out, this is along one. For you (and me) I've got a brief summary so this is a bit organised. What's happened since last time we talked then?
  • UKCAT
  • Arguing with college
  • UCAS form
  • Work load
  • Job search
  • Learning Spanish
Well my ukcat is done, the points are in and results calculated. Ended up getting a 640 average which isn't great compared to the millions of people on TSR. It should be okay but I was hoping for more, considering my AS grades. I also discovered shit loads of people at my college are applying for medicine. This is actually an advantage cause I've been able to find out about loads of resources and which teachers to avoid (more later) for med advice. Quite a few none-med friends have been really supportive but don't really realise the work I have to further commit.

Now because of my infamous AS grades, the people who deal with oxbridge/med/vet have been a pain in the arse. The headwoman, a physic teacher, and my personal tutor, a maths teacher, have tried to "pursuable" me to choose a different course/career. They actually reduced me to tears one day but I would never give them the pleasure of knowing that they got to me. They critised my AS grades repeatedly. However when I explained my volunteering, work experience, job, £75 entry exam (not cheap for a student) and other med commitment they realised how committed I was. They continued to push other subjects which only further drove me to medicine. They even wanted me to sign a disclaimer saying they had warned me there was no chance of getting an offer from medicine. I kind a saw their point of view but I don't see grades to be the end all. With some admission offices mentioning the "smallest possibility" of offers, the worst that happens is I lose £17 and continue with my gap year plans (more later). So naturally after the disclaimer issue, I got my parents involved. They were amazing backing me 120%! They threatened to go to the LEA, UCAS and local press. My college soon changed their tune and while not supportive, they became more cooperative. To be fair, the head women wrote a great bit in my reference for my principle. After all this fuss about not being able to back me academically and to not lie about me in my application, she wrote a great bit about my dedication to medicine and my continual clinical exposure etc. It sounded great with my other tutors writing truly amazing stuff. I was especially surprised how warming my Law reference was. Even my personal tutor described my AS grade as not reflecting my true ability. It's amazing what a little nudge can do.

Well that dreaded personal statement. I spent a month on mine, and it still didn't seem right. I was working on it till Wednesday night, just gone. I feel it's perfect now and truly reflects my drive for medicine. When this year's applications close I may even post it here (proud snipits). of course, surprise surprise, my college had something to say on my PS. TBH they loved it (not cocky swear). This caught me off guard but they still wanted a paragraph changing. They felt it was too bold and cocky because I told the med schools to set me a conditional offer of AAAA. I did eventually remove this but I kept the strength and arguments behind the point. I loved it and just hope it does me justice.

I suppose you want to know where I applied to. well in order of favourites: Barts,Leeds, Leicester and Pennisular. I also applied for a paramedic course at St Georges in London. All these choices are for deferred entry. I currently plan to go to Latin America for my gap year. It gives me the opportunity to spend a year without exams while learning Spanish and volunteering in a foreign health care system. I love the idea, and this way rather than get no offers and chucked into the abyss, I've got a planned year of fun and adventure.

Naturally at A2 my workload has double plus 6 retake exams for AS. I need to get As in every exam to be able to get 4 As at A2. This is my goal that I will achieve. I currently have exam papers for every exam I'm taking on my tablet pc. So I can literally ink on virtual paper. If it's wrong rub it out. If it's right, reuse the paper and write the perfect answer again. I've yet to establish a proper routine or timetable; something I'm fixing tomorrow. I am however using "free time" at college more effectively. It's no longer free time but just extentions of classes. Without putting to much pressure on myself, I cannot fail. There is no chance to repeat.

I was searching for a job since late July. However I've given up since September. I just can't find a job that only needs 8 hours or less a week. Even this seems like too much. I've managed to get by but it's been difficult. I've kept a look out but who knows. It just annoys me when I apply for jobs e.g. Woolworth. When I went for an interview, they obviously hadn't read their own application form. They offered me Christmas temp jobs at minimum 14 hours. When I pointed out my maximum hours, they realised it wasn't going to work. DUH!

With this year flying by (20% of my academic course is already done) I've begun initial plans for my gap year. I hopefully want to travel round South America. I won't write much more but I've decided to learn Spanish using the Michel Thomas programme and also the Pimsleur audio CDs for my pronunciation. From there I'll develop my vocab by using a range of texts and other mediums. Hopefully I'll have a good grasp of the language in 4-6 months.

So there you have it. My life in the past month and a bit. It's felt quite good to blog again. I'll make this a regular thing and I'll add a side feature to let you guys keep up to date on my UCAS status. Doubt I'll get offers this year though for med but fingers crossed.

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Too long

This month has been hetic. I've been pilling on the revision ready for January and I've just had some much to do. I promise I'll write a real post soon but right now I've got my UKCAT tomorrow. Revising for that but main thing on my mind is that I've bought a TC1100. It should revive tomorrow (can't distract me till UKCAT is over) and then I can play.

For those who don't know, the TC1100 is a hybrid (I see it as a slate) tablet pc. I am unbelievably, over-the-top, head-over-heels, crazy about tablet pcs. I love the idea of keeping all my notes in one place, scanning in my textbooks and working so productivly. I love it so much I'm suprised I've yet to mention it on my blog. I'll keep you updated if anyone interested. But just before I go, here's a picture of my (to-be) new tablet just to tease you...

http://i.i.com.com/cnwk.1d/i/tr/gallery/hptr1105/Image00021_small.jpg

P.S. If anyone uses a tablet for studying at college/uni or just in general then give me a shout through comments or email (supermarketcashier at googlemail dot com).

Thursday, 4 September 2008

Holiday

Sorry it's been a while, I've been on holiday for the past week and just settled into college (first day back). Wanted to just say thanks to people who have left comments on previous posts and would like to take them up on their offer, either leave a comment or email me at:

supermarketcashier at googlemail.com

Thanks, proper posts coming

Sunday, 17 August 2008

Never

I never thought I'd be the kind of person who get so upset over results. Maybe a bit glum or just annoyed but about 3 hours ago I just completely fell apart. IT took me four day but here it is, the overwhelming stress. I can't believe 4 letters can make me feel like this but I feel like I've ruined my chance. I've rescheduled my ukcat as I'm in no state, but I just feel so helpless. I just have to pull through some how

Goals

With just over 2 weeks left of the summer holidays and my AS results being less than amazing. I've been planning how to make a difference to my grades. Using a method I though to be extremely stupid at school, I've decided to set clear goals and how I'm going to achieve them.

Being that some of you have actually taken the time to follow my blog I thought I'd share it with you.

I want to get AAAA for my A2s. I also want to get into Med School. I refuse to let this dream go. I've thought of nothing for the past year and a half. I smile everytime I imagine myself at uni. This has to work, proving that bastard on the helpline wrong. But my favourite is I want to get tickets for a Coldplay concert. I regretted it when they kinda broke up and now that they're back and doing a world tour, I've got a second chance.

AAAAs
  • Prepare for lessons
  • Review class material from the start, don't wait till exams come around
  • Use the cornell note system
  • Keep my desk tidy for studying
  • Get resources like exam questions at the beginning of the year
  • Produce a study time table and stick to it
  • Use my free periods more productivitly, not just for subway
  • Maintain a calander linked with my study timetable so I can work in friends and other commitments
Med School
  • Some more Work experience: Gp, Hospital, Childcare and Nursing Homes
  • Stay on the student union
  • UKCAT 700+
  • Get back into hockey or just pick up a sport
  • Go to the gym
  • Book some more open days
  • Finish off my online sign language course
  • UCAS Form
Coldplay
  • Get a Job!!!

Aptitude Tests

Currently revising (if at all possible) for the UKCAT on Tuesday. I've managed to stumble across gold on TSR thanks to Lu-x. Although the wonderful skill of procrastination keeps rearing it's head. My room is spotless and I've taken every opportunity to dodge the revision (probably explains the Cs and Ds). Maybe I'll have more luck when the house empties in about 20 minutes..

Thursday, 14 August 2008

That Time of Year..

So A-Level Results Day came round today. The one time a year where students across the country are filled with nerves, excitement and possible disappointment. So cutting to the point my results are as followed:

Biology - D
Chemistry - D
Law - C
Maths - C

To sum up, crap results. When I found out I called the Radio 1 Helpline and the guy was "kind" enough to tell me that no university would give me an offer and that I should reconsider my career choices. A little extreme but the first part is true. Based on these, what university would give me an offer for medicine. They wouldn't expect me to jump from CCDD to AAAA, especially when they already have a massive supply of A grade AS students.

No matter what happens, I will get onto a medicine degree. It just happens it may take longer than expected.

Sunday, 10 August 2008

When A Good Night Out Goes Wrong

I'm filled with anger even as I write this. You see this evening I went to a Harvest Home in Weston. The main attraction being the live performance from the Wurzels. Cider being a Somerset drink, there was plenty in supply.

Lots of People + Small Space + Cider = Bad Times

It basically came down to my dad and his best mate being assaulted by these two 30 year old pricks!!! The worst part for me is that the red mist took over and I picked up a bottle, trying to smash in their heads. I feel so ashamed that I used that behaviour. I'm embarrassed to tell my family, and feel it's better to vent somewhere else.

I really hate cider.

Sorry how random this is, just need to vent before I sleep or I never will.

Thursday, 31 July 2008

Camping: Student Style

These past two weeks have been hectic, I've been doing loads of volunteering; ringing every Tom, Dick and Harry for a job; and to top it off I've had to cancel appointments with doctors over the weekend to go on a camping trip with some friends to Wales.

One of my mates' birthday was on Tuesday, and every year she likes to go camping in Wales at a certain campsite cause it's amazing apparently. So a few months ago I nodded my head, sounded interested and then never thought about it again. I've got work experience next week, two appointments to talk to docs over the weekend and a driving lesson and the dentist. Normally I would have refused based on no job = no money or just busy. But so many people have pulled out and I do feel bad because I kinda committed. Her mum has even payed for tent, minivan and all the food for the weekend. It's practically a free trip = student heaven.

Yet either way I lose and I have unfortuantely now committed myself to her birthday weekend (I didn't go last year so key factor) and I've managed to rearrange my meetings with docs. However I still feel like I've done the wrong thing and really need to sit down with my friends again and explain the stuff I'm going through.

I'm looking forward to all the partying and such that will happen, so I can't really complain. I just might take a few medical books and get some ukcat practice questions on my ipod just so I feel little it isn't a complete waste - medically speaking.

On another note, over the past week I've done all my laundry, ironing and cooking in what my parents call a preparation week for uni. Still got a year to go but they want me to have these skills nailed so that local takeways aren't the main outgoings from my student loans.

Sunday, 20 July 2008

Summer Holidays...

It's been two weeks into the summer holidays and I'm already bored. I see my friends everyday but still bored. T4 was also on my beach today which was a laugh but still bored. I get home and I'm bored.

I've been watching a range of day time telly and I'm ashamed to say that I've become addicted to Gilmore Girls. I've been watching it at every opportunity and have watched nearly 3
seasons online already. It's sad but I've got nothing else to do so far.

http://blogs.mediavillage.com/tv_maven/archives/gilmore%20cast.jpg

However what I really love is the idea of Lukes. A nice little dinner where you can hang out and have a laugh with friends. There isn't a dinner/cafe in my town that suits me and my friends criteria. I'd love a coffee hangout but am yet to find one!!! I'm honestly considering building my own shop and getting it sponsored by my college and the student union.

I need that coffee place of my dreams either now or at uni!!!!!

Thursday, 17 July 2008

Pre-med Tools

I'm about to make my application for Medicine and while I'm not in yet, I thought I'd give a list of the resources I currently use:
  • TSR - The Medicine section is full of current med students which are great to use. A quick post can settle a question in minutes.
  • Local NHS Trust Website - My local trust has a rather good site with contacts and info on work experience. I found this a great help when applying.
  • Local Library - Besides what some people think, I found pre-med books amazingly helpful when starting out. They can help set a base knowledge so you're not badgering forums with basic questions. But also once you've read the book, I doubt you'll need it again so pop down to your local libary and borrow the whole section. Or you'll end up with a shelf of books you need to sell on.
  • Med Students - These people are an amazing resource. They've been there, done that and got the stethoscope. Something I don't regret is that at all the open days I asked for their msn contacts. Some thought I was a little wierd, but the majority were fine and I've kept in contact with many to this day. Any questions about the social life or the real view of the med school are happily recieved.
  • Friends - My friends have been really supportive and I found that they've completely understood what I've had to do e.g. During exam period I completly geeked up, and it actually encouraged my friends to revise a little
Just my ideas and hope it helps

Tuesday, 15 July 2008

Hot off the Press! Grand Rounds!!!



EXTRA! EXTRA!
Grand Rounds is hosted by the wonderful Harry at Unprotected Text.
GET IT WHILE IT'S HOT!

[Can you guess the theme?]

My Feeds

Decided to work a bit more on my blog. Set up feed burner, so should be up and running. My new link for feeds is http://feeds.feedburner.com/FutureDoc. There is a little RSS graphic on the left as well, so you shouldn't have any trouble Mum. Also I'll probably change my banner again. Not really liking it so Photoshop to the rescue.

Short post, but am planning on a blog about resources I've been using for Med Application so far.

Monday, 30 June 2008

Choice

I try not to get politically but something really annoyed me today. I was watching the news and Lord Darzi came on talking about patient choice, patient centred care and etc.

It all sounds good at a first glance but I just fail to see why care should be dictated to by patients with no medical experience. Understandably we should not live in fear of entering a hospital, but at the same time budget, hospital location and referrals should be in the hands of clincal staff and management. Not passed down from government on a whim.

It makes me want to break into Darzi's home sometimes and just slap him with a fish. Seriously, polyclinics and choice and lack of accountability make me want to scream at how stupid this government is. I'm moving to America once I'm through med school!!!

Friday, 27 June 2008

Apple Really Knows The Little Things

Quick post, I've just noticed that if music or a film is playing on my ipod nano and I pull out the headphones, the music will pause after about 3 seconds. Something so simple but such a cool design trick. Thanks Apple

Monday, 23 June 2008

Здравствуйте

Nope, the title isn't a typo. It's hello in Russian. This post is really about an embarrassment that I'm not sure many British citizens would acknowledge. You see when I went on holiday to Mallorca last year, every European I met spoke minimum 2 languages. I never had trouble with translation as often my fellow holiday makers spoke fluent English, which to be honest embarrassed me.

Multilingualism was often compulsory at school, appearing to be a normal expectation within European citizens. However there I laid in the sun, with only a pocket book back home full of rude French words.

This embarrassment lead to me learning sign language and I have also decide that I will use the following summer months to learn a language. I've yet to decide but I'd love to learn Russian. Something draws me to the language, however Spanish, Polish or French would also be wise choices. ED -- (Opinions Welcome)

I don't know if anyone else understands or has experienced this but I hope I've conveyed it well.

Sunday, 8 June 2008

Saying Goodbye

Off to a meal tonight, saying goodbye to a friend. She's moving to Australia because of a parent's job. I'm going to miss her but it makes me think about what me and my family wanted to do a few years ago.

You see we were planning to immigrate to Canada. We tried for four years, but unfortunately it didn't work out. They simply didn't want us. So we moved on, naturally devastated but we thought about our lives here and it's helped me to release how lucky I am in Britain. Don't get me wrong, if I could I'd be on the first plane to Canada, America or New Zealand but I'm glad I was raised in England.

So I understand why my friend is going, she's got the chance of a better life in a new country. Who could say no to that? I just hope she'll knows how good a friend she was.

Thanks Leah

Thursday, 5 June 2008

Exam Results

(Sorry for the long post, it's an issue I've let build and now feel the need to express on my blog)

All my exams are now over and I cannot stop smiling, well actually I do ever time I release how I've wasted a year. I've held off from posting my AS Jan results on here because I'm embarrassed that I didn't kick myself up the arse and work.

Chemistry - C
Law - C
Maths - C
Biology - D

These grades were appalling in January and I can only blame myself. I went to every party the college had, I joined the hockey team, joined the student union, spent free periods in subway and spent nearly half my week at work. It was poor organisation and yet my motivation is medicine, surely it should have been a walk in the park.

Naturally I resat every exam but fear the outcome will not be much better. My current modules were great but I fear the resits will not have a better outcome. I expect I'll have to carry all on to A2 so I can resit again, but I have learnt something from this year. Revise from the beginning!!! I wish someone had told me at the start, I could have saved myself some hassle and the cost of resits. I know that if I can get my grades to As and resit within the two years, I'll be fine for medicine but it's work that I should have released I didn't need to do.

The worst thing is none of my friends get it. I try to explain that if I retake the whole year, that less than 10 med schools would even considered me, that UCAS would sell my story down the river in a heartbeat. It's lost on them, many of their careers while academic do not worry about retakes.

I've already started research and developing review methods. I've found some electronic flash card software and am looking at exam papers so I use them much earlier in my learning stages. I hope it doesn't come across as wanting pity, because I don't. I may have risked my chance of a (BARTS) medical school place, something I'll have to live with, but I accept that it rests solely with me.

Thursday, 29 May 2008

Exams are upon us...

Exam season has already begun for Alevel students but my heart does go out to 5th year students. I look forward to getting there one day, just not yet. I've left off posting for a while because of exams and in the hopes that an interesting topic would pop up. Instead this has become a procrastination post.

One thing I can say though is that you must see the new Indiana Jones' film. It doesn't let the previous films down in any way, although the ending is unexpected and a slight stretch. I saw it last Bank Holiday Sunday and have never seen the Cinema so busy. Ever seat was sold in our screening. I think it will be a massive hit, but who knows Bristol could have been a one off.

I've also started to get really excited about next September. In less than 5 months I can apply to 4 medical school and start the journey I can't stop smiling about. Even though post graduate training is screwed for junior doctors, I still smile. How weird am I?

Saturday, 17 May 2008

It's all Over


Recently one of my all time favourite blogs, Panda Bear, has decided to stop blogging. I completely understand his reasons to stop, but none the less I'd like him to stay. The blog itself is going to go offline soon, so have a dig through the archives, he's really written some great stuff.

I'll miss you Panda Bear, MD

Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Barts FTW!!!!

I went to an open day at Barts today and I am officially in love with Queens Mary uni. I got a tour of both Mile end and Whitechapel. I loved every minute.

I wish I had got some photos because at Whitechapel they have this amazing converted church. The church has be converted into an impressive library for med and dentistry. Even the glass windows had been altered with medicine related pictures.

I think the mile end campus is so impressive because the way it's self contained but at the same time so close to central London.

This has been for a while and will definitely be my first choice!

Saturday, 5 April 2008

Sainsbury's continues....

We'll I've left from blogging about the situation because I wanted to see what work did but the drama has finally ended. I handed in my notice 4 weeks ago (yes I know rediculous) and am now officially a student bum!!!

Today was my last day and I have to say probebly the most enjoyable. I did not work, had the best time with my colleagues who are now actually friends and discovered that real life is a bitch. I suppose I had a slightly naive notion that my company would care for me and try to stop me from leaving.

But I am now jobless but ready to focus on my exams. TBH while I bitch and moan about that place, I'll probably end up back there in 3 months. I just love the people there!!!!

Friday, 4 April 2008

Coursework

Every year I say I won't leave my coursework till the day before yet I'm here at 4am while I type away at biology. I am going to be knackered tomorrow, but I don't care cause it will be done and Easter will start!!!!

Edit: Finished my coursework at about 4:30 and handed it in today. woot! Going to work and then going to get an early night

Thursday, 20 March 2008



Short post, I've passed my theory test. Had to travel up to Bristol on the train which was surprisingly easy and fun. Ultimately I got 47/50 on the theory and 60/75 on the hazard perception test. It rocked and I'm one step closer to getting my licence, although I don't need to rush because I have up to 2 years to take it!!!

Monday, 3 March 2008

Work is Shit

Had a crap day and need some advice.

I work for sainsbury's as you may have guessed. I have been having trouble with college work load for the past 2 months so 5 weeks ago I applied to drop Friday nights and take up an extra hour on Thursday. I currently work Thursday - 3hours - Friday - 3hours - Saturday - 9hours = 15 hours a week.

Personal are claiming that we are understaffed across the store on Fridays so I cannot drop it.

I am also one of about six people who are trained to work in the kiosk with the lottery machine. If I were to leave they would have no one to work on thursday nights, saturday lunch breaks and saturday afternoon.

What should I do? I love the job and my colleagues but can I force a contract change? If not shall I go above to the store manager or just leave (or threaten)?

Saturday, 16 February 2008

Key Skills...more like Get Rick Quick

Decided that I just make a quick blog today.

I'm working on my key skills folder. For those who aren't aware I have to prove that I am capible of communication, basic maths and other skills demmed appropraite. Forgot the fact I got As and A*s in my GCSE Maths, English, IT and a B in AS Critical Thinking. However talking to my tutor (great girl/woman) I discovered that if I complete my key skills, college get £3000 for government. College is putting the pressure on and have already thrown people out and down graded them to part time for not completing key skills, so no rocking the boat this time.

Anyway, my presentation (communication) is on the Tooke Report. I'm sure most people won't have a clue what I'm on about but it interests me. My main ideas come from the ferret fancier's 7 part coverage. Thanks.

It's actually going nice and slick. Will drop some comments latter and read some books on med interviews.

Friday, 15 February 2008

A Cashier's point of view

Inspired by a great day at work: If you want to annoy your cashier then:
  • Wait till 0'clock or half pass when change overs occur, and then pile two trolley loads onto the belt.
  • Watch me pack while you have no physically disabilitating illness with you arms folded and the occasional groan that I'm not doing it right.
  • Open food/drink IN FRONT of me and then explain that it was like that when you picked it up. I'm not an idiot so don't treat me like one.
  • When on fast track and I ask if you had any problem items, don't point or jester to your child. It's not funny and your not the first to say it.
  • Watch me open bags for you then refuse to admit defeat while you struggle with your own bag. I'm not going to do a dance in your face.
  • I am 17 not 7, so I'm more that aware of what a fake id looks like.
  • Naming members of staff does still not make you 18.
  • Don't scream help under a pile of men when you've just legged it with a crate of beer. You'll look an idiot.
  • Surprisingly I am considering a career in medicine. Don't look so shocked when I say this while handing out Sainsbury's leaflets.
  • Just because I work for Sainsbury's does not mean I will take shit, I am not will I ever be your personal slave. Respect can go both ways and make your day better/worse.
  • It's great that your kid wants to learn how to pay for things but when it's Saturday and I have a massive cue, count the cash out yourself.
  • Everyone wants a bargain, but when I price check, my supervisor checks the shelf and the main computer all say it's £14.99, you will not get it for a tenner!
  • Everyone loves reduced items, you can get the same pizza for £2 less. Unfortunately some like to buy nothing but reduced items. 15 digit codes that generally don't scan. More fun for me.
  • Complain on your phone about staff having conversations while serving you. Maintain a loud conversation as you pay, then try to pay with your Tesco's card. You can then laugh making some reference that you usually shop at the classier Tesco's .
  • Last but not least, buy as many clothes as possible refusing to put them on the belt encase they get dirty. Then expect me to fold them with the hangers still on and place them in a bag without ever touching the belt. Before you go, thank me and say you'll give them a wash when they get home anyway.
*Rant Over*

I do have nice customers, who do make my day. I also have amazing collaegues who've I've never laughed so much with. BTW, my local Sainsbury's banned from 4 pubs/restaurants for staff parties. We are a wild bunch!!!!

Tuesday, 12 February 2008

Blogs I Visit Every Day

I don't post much and am a rare find in the mass of comments, but I feel that I should say something to the blogs that I read each day and find great for news on a medical career and it's journey. These are in no particular order:

Unprotected Text - I've read this blog since it started out as COABS. Something about this blog made me stick with it and I'm glad. Harry has always provided great posts and I do love his writing style. He's got a sense of humour that I think I get. A main bonus though is that he has applied and got into the very medschool I deeply considered applying too!! I look forward to reading more about his progress though barts. I hope I'll be there in less than two years time.

Panda Bear - He comes across as someone who is always ready to put forward their belief. Not in a bad way, but as a confident, won't take crap, kinda guy. He is so detailed and helpful in posts, with a strong commitment. His four part series on what it takes to be an emergency resident was great to read and I feel others, even not considering it as a career should have a look. Part 1,2,3 and 4. Although Panda Bear is an MD, I recommend UK people taking a look.

Little Medic - I feel privileged to have been allowed into the Real Little Medic. It's like a cool club for all the med student bloggers and me. I feel like I've got to know him and that he's been kind enough to share possible quite open and deep posts. However what really tips the iceberg for me is the ability to create names for many characters at med school.

Med School Hell - This is the second blog I ever read. It was so honest and more truthful than a media portrayal that I stayed up till 4 in the morning reading every blog from the beginning. That was a year and a bit ago, and I still light up with joy when a post is sent down from my feeds. Thanks Hoover.

Kevin, M.D - I don't know how Kevin has the time but I am very thankful. With up to 15 posts a day I can be finding new blogs every week, and better resourses for medical news. His time and effort is much appreciated so I thought I'd give him a mention on my world class blog ;)

Some may ask why I've done this. Is it because if I continue down this road they'll be my consultant bosses :P? Or is it because they put time and effort into writing detailed and descriptive blogs that should be praised for their work? There are other blogs I would like to praise but do not have the time or space. These are the ones that truely catch my eye and hope always will.

Monday, 11 February 2008

Sunshine Radio

My Local MP supporting the radio!!!

Decided to join a new volunteer project a few weeks ago and looked for something different. I finally choose a project at my local hospital which evolves working on the in-house radio station (Sunshine Radio). Tonight was my first go, and I absolutely enjoyed it.

It was only for two hours but I got to talk to patients and get a few song requests, then head back to the studio and announce them over the radio. It was great and by the end of the evening I was having a real laugh. We played a few radio games and I got to meet the team.

I'm looking forward to next Monday now!!!

Sunday, 10 February 2008

As application time draws ever nearer, I've been deciding on the four uni's I want to visit for open days. Unfortunately that list is not made yet and I have several choices.
  • Barts - I don't no why but I have been drawn to this med school for a long time. Maybe it's the admission forum? Maybe it's Harry from unprotected text? or maybe it's because their student union webste seems more inviting and entertaining than others I've come across. I know it's silly but I'm going to be spending possibly 6 years in the same place, so everything counts. I usually go with my gut
  • Cardiff - Simply because lack or low levels of PBL (use I know barts is lovin' it) and it's far enough away from home to be uni but close enough to pop back for weekends and money ;)
  • Leeds - Apparently it's good...
  • St. Georges - love London, want to go to uni there if I can...
  • Manchester - love the team, love the city, would like to love the uni
  • Peninsula - went to Exeter with Aim Higher, had a blast, loved everything about the uni and want to find out.
I'm swaying towards Barts, Cardiff, Leeds and Manchester but who knows.

I'm going to be paying more attention to blogs by people in the above uni's. Will be commenting more and sending email's so watch out.

Why Be a Doctor over a Nurse?

This is in no way a dig at nurse or any attempt to insult doctors. A question that rises in most interviews which I could be expected to answer one day is "Why do you want to be a doctor?" or "Why a doctor instead of a nurse?". This post will incorporate my feelings and career knowledge so I can answer that question myself. I know I want to be a doctor, but I want to be able to explain it fully and here's my chance.



Above are print screens taken from the NHS website describing the careers of the two areas. To me there is an immediate difference. Nursing is described as a more caring and supporting job, while Doctors are more scientific and diagnostic. Yet I know that many nurses can prescribe, create treatment plans and are independent. Both aim to cure the patient but have different means and procedures. Also Doctors are not just leaders, they are dependent on the team (Nurses and co.) for support and help. It is a group effort.

Many people would beg me not to say these in an interview (People on TSR :P) but I feel they are honest answers to the question. I would of course phrase them differently but money, status and job certainty (in the world not necessarily the UK) are also reasons for medicine. Anyone who is doing it purely to repay the world or help others is kidding themselves. I've done enough work experience and read enough blogs to know this is simply not true. People abuse and use the NHS. Not every patients will want to be saved. You may have a kind heart but unless you are completely dedicated to medicine other reasons must drive.


Update: This is one of the most popular posts on my blog. I assume that it is mainly potential medicine applicants looking at it for ideas for their personal statement and blog. To help my knowledge and yours I thought I would update it with a better understanding.

  • Doctors gain trust very easy in comparison to other caring professions.
  • The combination of an mental challenging job with daily interaction with patients and staff is rare in other roles. While I'm not saying that a nurse's job is not challenging, there is only so much they can progress and even specialised they follow protocols. 
  • Teaching and research play a key role in the job. While nurses are involved in research, it is common for the doctor to take the lead and a nurse be involved in the practical execution. 
  • By studying medicine, you have the choice of being a GP, hospital, surgeon or a lab doctor. This level of variety is not afforded by a career in nursing. This initial training is very general so you can literally do anything. When a patient's management exceeds a specialty, they have this knowledge to rely on. This knowledge is also developed through clinical skills that must be tested by Royal College exams
  • Also doctors are financially rewarded for their work and with clear pay grades that can exceed higher than a nurse.