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The “last summer” is winding down for us rising M2s, but I think it is safe to say that many of us have really made the most of the past two months. Our classes start up again on August 18, which will be upon us before we know it. My classmates are slowly returning to Ann Arbor from adventures all over the globe (literally) and our first sequence schedule has already popped up on our Google Calendars. I can’t say that I mind seeing it, though — a big part of me is excited to get second year underway! And a bigger part of me is just grateful that we aren’t starting on August 4th, like the M1s. 🙂

I have spent my summer quite happily in the Emergency Department, working on a research project for SBRP. The Student Biomedical Research Program is a very popular choice for those students who want to stay in Ann Arbor, do research, and make a little money during the summer between M1 and M2 year. Students in the program had to identify departments of interest and mentors pretty early during our M1 year, design (or hop onto) a research project, and then write up a proposal for approval to participate in the program. My classmates are doing a huge variety of projects in departments all across the hospital. I’m not much of a bench researcher myself, never have been, so I used this opportunity to spend some time with patients in the Emergency Department. My project looks at physician communication styles in the ED, which means that I have the privilege of observing a lot of amazing doctors and PAs at work every day, and then following up with their patients. As a pretty social person, this has been the perfect project to keep me busy this summer. I love the ED and enjoy being surrounded by the activity, the many different personalities of the care providers and patients, and the huge variety of medical phenomena that come through the ED doors. Plus, I can’t complain about getting to wear scrubs every day… They are seriously the most comfortable work attire for any job, ever. My project has several phases, but my team and I are already starting to write up our initial findings for publication, which is quite a daunting task.

Although I have spent most of my daylight (and quite a few twilight) hours in the ED this summer, I have certainly found the time to have fun with my classmates, to see my family, and to relax. I traveled out to the East Coast to spend July 4th weekend on the beaches of New England and I just returned from a trip to northern Michigan this past week, enjoying the less salty water and even better beaches of our fine state. In Ann Arbor I have kept busy with those quintessential Ace Deuce summer activities, such as tubing down the Huron River, wandering around the Ann Arbor Art Fair, enjoying the Ann Arbor Summer Festival , and eating outside at as many Main Street restaurants as possible. Excited to have a few final weeks to enjoy this sunshine before we all hit the books again.

I’ll leave you with a few shots from “up north” from my trip to Lake Michigan. And to the incoming M1s, congratulations on your upcoming White Coat Ceremony!!