Monday, September 28, 2009

Week five as a grad student

It's officially Week Five. Here are the various tidbits of wisdom gathered from these past few weeks:

1. It is okay to have a life outside of school. That feeling of guilt while you acknowledge there are classmates who study for six hours each night does eventually melt away.

2. Readings are important, but seem to work best when you use them to confirm what you've learned in lectures, or to look up information you aren't sure of. Trying to do the required 150 pages per night is impossible, so you might just as well resign yourself to never ever accomplishing that feat.

3. Dissecting a sheep brain is very much aided by a stuffy nose. You'd never think a cold could work to your advantage, but there you have it.

4. Speaking of sheep brains: They're incredibly small -- just barely larger than a golf ball. You might marvel that it's so much smaller than a human brain, until you actually see a human brain. Then, you realize the human brain is also smaller than you had imagined.

5. Having a labcoat during a dissection lab is a good idea. I learned it the hard way.

6. A studio apartment is not conducive to any type of schoolwork. Sitting in Starbucks with a chai latte does help.

7. Getting up early enough to pack yourself a decent lunch really is too much of a hassle. Doing it the night before always seems like such a great idea, until you find yourself barely able to crawl into bed.

8. Tell your family you're studying when they call, even if you're not. All that time you confess to spending at the mall or watching movies will worry them more than the image of you burning out from the exhaustion of scholarly pursuits.

9. Bubble baths are wonderful; everything else can wait.

10. You wake up every morning feeling like a bit of an imposter. You go to your lectures, talk about thesis ideas, traipse through the medical sciences labs and university hospital donning your labcoat.... It's the most fantastic feeling in the world.


  1. You're not really spending time at the mall, are you? Rather uncharacteristic, I must say.

  2. I found you!
    Amazing how this internet works - the not cooking was the first hint and then Duncan was the second. :)

    Here we are

    Miss you - and hey if you are in Edmonton maybe I could come and visit. I'll try to find your email and email you.