Nationally, our current medical education model fails to address the fundamental tenets of the U.S. health care system, health care policy, and business management. Despite the recent major shift in health care policy, medical schools have proved universally inept at equipping future doctors with the knowledge and tools they need to influence policy in their professional field and to thrive in their careers.
They say to become truly educated is to begin to realize how little you really know. I used to not understand this — it seemed the more I learned, the more I knew. How could it be different? This changed in medical school. It was only then that I began to feel more and more ignorant with each passing day of my education.
Walking into the conference room for grand rounds, I took a deep breath. I was terrified. My biggest fear was that I would hate it — hate the time spent in neurosurgery, hate the American health care system and even just hate surgery over medicine.
The last year of medical school heralds more than just the end of an era. It brings with it the confidence in a career choice doubted several times just a year ago.
With constant attention to our mission, the in-Training Board regularly brainstorms new ways to reach our peers and serve the medical student community.
The point of my story is to outline a scenario that many of us as students have probably experienced: being the target of a superior’s anger. This isn’t the first time that an attending or senior has treated me poorly and unfortunately, it won’t be the last.
The most stressful part of the medical school application process for me was the last phase, when there was nothing I could do except wait to hear back. I feel most content when I know there are concrete actions I can take to influence an outcome I care about.
Was it a fall? Did I miss the last step? These things I cannot recall / Hidden from sight, the blood crept from one lone vessel and began to compress / Nice to meet you, one medical student said, as he unzipped my sheath
Over 100 years since the 1910 Flexner Report resulted in the closure of all but two predominantly Black medical schools, underrepresented minority medical students and faculty still struggle to surface amid the rising currents of medical education.
I was once asked if medical school is an unhappy place. It is a good question, the kind that it takes someone outside of medicine to ask.
“No, no, no,” I repeated, first silently and then as a whisper, as I frantically pushed the elevator button. The reliable elevator chime did not ring, and the button light would not stay on. “Great. Fantastic,” I sarcastically muttered.
The entirety of the third year of medical school is an act. If you want to be a good medical student, you are what your team wants you to be. Amenable, pliant, easygoing — even when inside you are a bitter angry little thing who’s tired of being pushed around.