Gasp of air!

At last, the post mid-term week-end, and I can take a breather and not feel that it will set me irrevocably back.

I’m in the 3rd semester of a self-built post-back program, currently enrolled in: Basic histology & lab, mammalian physiology, cell & molecular biology, organic chemistry & lab – total 14 credits.

I’m spread very thin right now. This year is very different from last year, when I was able to stay on top of the load. Now I’m barely keeping up, slowing the pace here to get better ready for a mid-term there. It’s a juggling act the sort of which I’ve not been involved in for a long time.

Why am I posting? Maybe to say: “It’s hard.”

I’m completing a couple of courses over and above the stated pre-reqs for schools I plan to apply to – in an effort to demonstrate that ‘I can hack it’. That decision has not come without a price – i.e. a lot of hard work.

My university has an outstanding reputation – both in research and in medicine. I’m very fortunate. The flip side is that the school is a magnet for a very large crowd of aspiring health care workers. The teachers, while they are good and have impressive research backgrounds, are lacklustre in their teaching methodologies. In grading students, emphasis is placed on separating A students from B students, as well as understanding of concepts – at least a couple of my professors test on factoid recollection ability as a way separating As and Bs. Not fun.

Now I understand how truly it is a marathon, there are many hurdles, one does fall and one must learn to get up and run some more. Over and above the role TFIIB transcription factors, Pol alpha and Pol delta, and how to assess enantiomeric excess of a substance which rotates plane polarized light, I am also learning what it means to keep on running.

I will be applying to 3 local medical schools in January 2007, while completing Organic II.

Thank you for bearing with me.

It’s almost enough to make one want to chug a large beaker of sodium ethoxide, t-butylchloride, or even some tasty, chilled, 1-chloro-4-cycloheptene! =P Organic is making my head swim… I’m having reaction mechanism & synthesis nightmares.


May those unwanton elimination side reactions not change those nice alkanes to those wiked alkenes of any man’s worst nightmares!