It really hit me during our physician assistant orientation two weeks ago: you are now in P.A. school.
We walked into Morosky, professionally dressed with our white coats in hand and we took the professional physician assistant oath.
For three years, my classmates and I have been working through our undergraduate requirements.
We became incredibly involved in extracurricular activities, letting the resume grow longer.
Our courses ranged from dissecting cadavers in human gross anatomy to performing plays in theatre.
Overall, we thought we had grasped what it meant to be a college student.
I knew the studying habits that would help me succeed and how to panic last minute if I did not take the time to fully study.
Then we started P.A. school.
Now, I am not one for dramatics, but the amount of information has probably tripled compared to classes in the past.
Our giant binders are being filled with packets of notes that expand each day.
Our professors, who are certified physician assistants themselves, provide us with the true stories of what we will expect in the clinical setting.
A thorough understanding of the workings of the human body only takes you so far as we analyze the characteristics of the human spirit.
A patient is a person, not a test subject.
Only part of the job entails the medical science. The other half is human interaction and connection.
Studying every single day for multiple hours has become a part of our lives these past few weeks and it will continue to be like this in the future.
A weekend is now a time to catch up on old lecture material.
And while many are complaining, I cannot help but try my best to remain optimistic.
For all of you who are pursuing your future career, you must notice the true blessing it is to have an education that lets us follow our dreams.
Yes, I have spent hundreds of dollars on textbooks, but the reality is that this knowledge is rather priceless.
The other organizations and clubs take a backseat when it comes to learning what is needed for our future rotations, boards and careers.
While it is hard to manage the stress of it all, we have to realize that this education is not about us anymore.
During our first day of class, our professors mentioned to us that the concepts learned are meant for the impact we can have within our future career.
This education is for our patients.
While my brain is overwhelmed with understanding disease processes, there is still that bit of excitement when we finally understand an illness that a loved one has been affected by.
To have the ability to explain what is going on inside one’s body truly matters.
This knowledge is so powerful and we can never forget that.
Despite the panic I experience when I look at my to-do list, I know that in the end, we are all capable of much more than we may think.
I am too blessed to be stressed.
However, I am still accepting lots of prayers.