With everything that is going on in the world today, there is so much turmoil and so much flux – I almost feel like nothing is certain anymore, including medical education. Most medical schools have been implementing virtual learning for over two months now, although my school just this past week has begun allowing students to return to rotations in the hospital. However, schedules are still up in the air, and there is much that is unknown about the residency application cycle as of now. With Step 2 CK dates getting cancelled left and right (my friend said he is currently on his 10th test date, having been rescheduled so many times), the Step 2 CS announced this week to be cancelled all together (can’t lie about this one, really glad about getting my $1300 back), and some students, including myself, still stuck at home away from the hospital, it is tough to not feel vulnerable and nervous about the future. Students are worried that they will not receive the clinical experience that is needed to succeed in first year of residency, that they will not get adequate time with attendings who are to serve as their letters of recommendation writers, that they will not be able to figure out what they really want to specialize in having lost the time to engage in certain rotations. This is an incredibly challenging time, and it seems the only way to manage is to take each day, one at a time. Although we all crave certainty and knowing what to expect, that is simply something that is not feasible right now, and learning to be adaptive is a skill that I am positive most of us will hone coming out of quarantine.
Alex is a fourth-year medical student at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. As an avid lover of the intellect and interspecialty collaboration associated with medicine, she is excited to be applying for Internal Medicine residency programs. Her interest in medicine largely stems from her volunteer work in free clinics in underserved communities and experiences growing up with a brother with autism.
Before attending medical school, Alex completed her undergraduate degree at Northwestern University in 2014 and her Master of Public Health (concentration in Chronic Disease Epidemiology) at Yale University in 2016.
When she is not working in the hospital or studying, you can find Alex running by the lake, doing circuit workouts outdoors in the fields, drawing and/or writing, or at home spending time with her family in the suburbs of Chicago.