September 17, 2012

From the Horse's Mouth

So I'm sure many of you have been looking forward to the day that I (Matt) would write something for the blog. Well your wait is finally over!! Michelle has asked me to talk about my views on MERP thus far and my experiences for our family and friends back home but also those future students who may happen to come across this. Now please bare with me as I am definitely not the wordsmith she is, but I will try.
First and foremost I would like to give a HUGE thank you to all of our family and friends back home for your support and words of encouragement!!! It has meant so much to me (and Michelle!!!)!

So what do they teach us in MERP? Well we have four classes. Physiology, Immunology/Microbiology, Anatomy/Histology and Biochemistry, but the main thing I am learning is how to study. You can't study the same way you studied in undergrad. You have to understand the concepts and be able to manipulate them instead of just memorizing facts. My study routine has been to pre-read the day's lecture notes. I do not spend too much time on it just reviewing what we are going to learn and try and pick out the main points. After lecture I will go through and write out all the learning objectives for that subject. I find this helps me to put things into a linear or systematic order. Then on Saturdays I will go through all of my learning objectives. I usually do this with my friend Jon (who is seriously one of the coolest guys I know! and a great study buddy!!) Then on Sundays I get together with a small group and just go over questions. I have found this really helps me to see where the holes in my knowledge are. I will usually review my pathways everyday and draw them out on my dry erase board or use our glass table. You go through A LOT of dry erase markers. Luckily for me my mom gave me a whole lot be for I left!!!

The individual subjects are taught to try and coincide with each other. So in anatomy we are learning about the heart and lungs and in physiology we are learning about the cardiac cycle and hemodynamics and in Biochem we are learning about the how our body uses/makes glycogen (in micro we are learning about viruses so it doesn't really coincide but you get the idea). The material isn't necessarily too difficult, it is just the volume at which they present it.

All of the professors here are all very nice and all really want you to succeed. They are all very approachable and really do want you need to succeed. They all pretty much have an open door policy. We have two "junior faculty" who are Ross graduates who are waiting to get into a Residency program. They are a HUGE help!!! They give us a review session every Friday afternoon to go over the week's material and to answer any questions we may have.

Well there you have it. My quick summary of my life here! Wednesday will mark our half way point. I am having fun learning and taking this whole experience in, but I am sure ready to be home. Thank you for reading and your continued support!! I miss and love you all!!!



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