The last two weeks since the White Coat Ceremony have been a whirlwind but in a good way. So much has happened, but I should probably introduce myself before I get started. I am a Michigander through and through. I grew up in Lansing, MI, went to undergrad at Hope College, and have a Master of Public Health from the University of Michigan School of Public Health. I just finished my Masters in May, spent the summer relaxing and traveling, and returned to Ann Arbor very excited for the start of medical school (IT’S FINALLY REAL!).
The med school adventure began with the White Coat Ceremony, where we heard some inspiring speeches and had our coats placed over our shoulders, signifying that we are finally members of the UMMS community and future doctors in training after years of preparation. My favorite part of the ceremony was seeing my family members and friends cheering in the audience. They have watched me experience pretty much the entire spectrum of human emotion as I navigated the application process over the past year, and it was so special that they could share in the start of this part of my journey.
The day after, we woke up bright and early to start orientation. It was so great to finally meet our class (Class 168!). My classmates are an amazingly talented group of people both in and out of the classroom, and so many of them have experienced some really cool things. We spent the next few days learning about the history of the med school, what we would be learning over the course of the year, and a whole lot more. On Leadership Day, we went to Zingerman Farms and learned about the importance of having a vision, participated in some really fun teambuilding activities, and ate lots of really delicious food.
The day after Leadership Day, classes started bright and early. We had our first patient presentation and got to wear our white coats for the first time. That was definitely an experience. It finally felt as if everything was real.
My classmates decided to wrap up the first week with a tubing trip down the Huron River. It was so nice to spend the day getting to know each other better and enjoying the sun. We created a massive roadblock in the river, though (sorry kayakers and canoers…). It was also one of the few quiz-free weekends we will have over the course of the semester, so we made sure to relax and meet as many people as we could.
Since then, we’ve had another week of classes and our first quiz. Over the weekend, I also volunteered with some other medical students at a health tent at the Ypsilanti Heritage Festival. The more experienced med students were taking blood pressure and doing other screening while the M1s helped direct visitors. It was a nice change of pace to do some community outreach, and it was great to meet some of the med students in different classes.
That’s all for now. I can’t wait to see what this year has in store!
Don’t miss the next Dose of Reality.
Angelica is a fourth-year medical student at the University of Michigan Medical School. When she’s not on the wards, you can find her on a run around Ann Arbor or passionately discussing medicine and public health over tea.