26 March 2012

First Day of EMS

It was pretty great. The morning commute was awkward (mostly because I got turned around and got off the bus for apparently no reason, making myself late). While I don't love small animal work, I'm glad I did something familiar for my first EMS. Good way to get my feet wet. Saw a bunch of consults, watched a rabbit dental, and had a few spare moments to study in between. Welwyn, where the practice is, is really cool, too. It's a tiny little town that's been around for a looooong time and there are some pretty cool old buildings.

Also, birthday was pretty good. Made myself and roommate A. a huge feast of enchiladas, and she made a flourless chocolate cake. It was amazing. Granted, I studied most of the day...but that's what happens when you decide to go to vet school.

22 March 2012

Goin' to Church.

David Church, that is.

We had a bunch of clinical scenarios given to us today by Church to work on in small groups. Honestly, they weren't easy. I did them with two friends instead at home (mostly because I'm poor and didn't want to stay and pay for lunch).

At the end of the day (3pm), we all got together as a class and Church took us through each of the scenarios.

First of all, he is kind of a difficult lecturer. Difficult in the sense that he will hardly ever give you the answer that he's looking for. This is good, though, because it prompts us to think and actually speak up when we have an idea. Learning process and all that, ya know?

Second of all, nothing is ever as straightforward as it seems. The first clinical scenario was about a 6 month old Mastiff, and it was all over the place. But somehow, between him and all 200+ of us, we got down to the cause of it all.

Of course, once we got there, I spoke up and wondered why the original problem occurred in the first place. He was hysterical; apparently for this first scenario we (as a class) followed the exact progression of signs/things that he did in the slides, and my question couldn't have been better if it was rehearsed (cue excessive blushing, because he asked me my name in front of the class and I meekly told him).

Oh, have I said that he was one of the interviewers for my RVC interview?

Anyway, for lack of a better point of this post: I really wish more lecturers were like this. I like being challenged almost to the point of frustration, because it pushes me to think past the edges of the box. While a lot of veterinary practice is about pattern recognizing, we have been told over and over that pattern recognizing is NOT a good thing to do, and to not get caught up in fitting clinical signs to what you think is the problem. And Church does EXACTLY that.

One more day of class! Going out to dinner tomorrow and then watching Hunger Games. CANNOT wait. It's kind of for my birthday, since no one is (ever) here for my birthday. My actual birthday will be spent studying, possibly watching a movie, and then making myself chicken enchiladas for dinner. Yum.

19 March 2012

One more week!

This is the last week of classes until we go on Easter holiday, which also means there is only one more week until clinical placements start. I'm nervous and excited for it, but I'm also more nervous because the amount time I have to study is basically cut in half from last year.

I must say, though, we had a mock EMQ exam last week and it went better than I thought it would. I don't think I'd go so far to say that I'm completely prepared for the May exam, but I do feel much better about the format. Results for that come in on Friday, so we'll see.

The weather here is finally getting sunny and warmer. Not as warm as back home (70 in Providence RI this past weekend?? What?), but warmer for UK weather. It's a bit schizo, though; sometimes the sun is out in the morning and it rains by mid-afternoon, and then gets sunny at around 5:30 (just in time for the sun to set...), but hey. Any sun is better than no sun at all! Unless of course you sleep through the sunny morning bit.

Also, my birthday is right around the corner (literally). I'm not old, but most of BVetMed 3 is on their way to turning 21 this year...so that makes me feel a little old. But hey, another year wiser too, right? Hopefully?

07 March 2012

Lame? Heck yes.

I'm part of the Equine Clinical Club, since I'm a huge geek about horses. The club sets up various things in the year to expand our horsey knowledge. A few months ago, we had a lecture about horse behavior and such, and today we did a mini-seminar about horse lameness.

It was pretty awesome. The sky cleared just in time for us to be outside for it, and the equine vet that ran it did a pretty good job. A lot of it was revision for me, since I've shadowed vets that were very invested in my learning and would quiz me and make me guess which leg was lame, and why, and how I could tell, etc etc. (I have some pretty awesome horsey mentors back home). Plus, he was a riot. The pony wasn't exactly the perfect patient and tried more than once to bite/kick the people who handled her, and he got visibly annoyed. I was close enough to hear him mutter some not so nice things to the bratty pony. I actually took a turn trying to get her to trot back and forth, but I was wearing steel toed boots and my legs would NOT move fast enough.

Renal module started this week. It's nice to have a new subject to listen to; I was getting a little sick of Respiratory. And renal physiology is something I can wrap my head around. I studied it so much last year because I was so worried that we would get an essay question on it for the exam (AND WE DID), and thankfully I feel pretty comfortable with renal stuff.

Less than 3 weeks until my first clinical placement (and my 26th birthday..wah). I realized the other day that I didn't bring any good office clothes with me, so I've got a major shopping trip in store sometime in the next few weeks (yay!).

03 March 2012

Too early for revision?

So I may be crazy, but I've started to do objectives for our different strands/modules. Yeah, the exam is the first week of May. I know this. But that eager beaver side of me is just taking over.

For those of you who don't know, all of our lectures/DLs/CALs/etc come with a set of learning objectives; what we're supposed to get out of them, really. Last year, I included writing out these objectives as part of revision, which really helped (or at least I like to think they did, since I managed to pass). Not for everyone, since they're really time consuming, but when you have nothing to do all day for 10-12 hours, writing out objectives for about...100ish lectures is doable.

This year, my study tactic has been a little different. Since getting the trusty iPad, I've not been writing out every lecture. Instead, I've been making flashcards from each lecture through Quizlet.com (an amazing website, if you've never heard of it, you better go over there now). First of all, it's FREE (the best word in the world for students), and you can upload them to your iPad or iPhone (or iPod, I hear those still exist) through Flashcardlet. So basically, I've got all my lectures on hand to study from all the time. Granted, I haven't really had time to take advantage and actually DO all the sets, but when I'm on placement it will come in extremely handy when I'm on lunch or have absolutely nothing to do.

Mmmm..placements. I'm both nervous and overexcited for them. I managed to clinch another 2 weeks at a mixed animal clinic in Gloucestershire, which brings me up to a total of 8 weeks. Probably going to book another 2 weeks at the very end of the summer with whoever will have me, but that's contingent upon me passing exams first round. Otherwise, I'll be doing my last 2 weeks during Christmas 2012.

This term is flying by so damn quick! Scary to think that it's almost over.