Tuesday, April 28, 2009

It couldn't B U

Ahh yes, the pressures of med school. So he bet $10,000 the Detroit Lions would win one game in 2008. Who wouldn't take that bet? So he lost and decided to rob and kill to make up for the loss of his semester's living expenses. I wonder what would have happened had he not gotten caught and realized when he was done with residency that his $250,000 of debt with compounding 10% interest had suddenly become a burden. He would have made Jeffery Dahlmer look like Mr. Rodgers... I am still amazed that he was given $1,400 to use for rent. Dude must be selling coke because $1,400 per month is all I get for everything (rent, food, gas, books, clothes etc.). I had to stop collecting magic cards just to make ends meet. I would like to meet with his financial aid counselors.

Well this story got me thinking a little bit. It brings up a few points regarding med students in general. I don't know about BU specifically, but I am sure its largest revenue stream screening process for acceptance is pretty close to other schools, you know, essays, money, essays, money, interview and letter of acceptance for the minorities qualified applicants and rejections for all others. (I realize the craigslist killer was white, he must have been part something. I'm not bitter though, just mad at myself for not checking Native American because technically I am one...) So this brings to question a few things:

1) How accurate is this "screening" process? I mean, how well do they know who we really are? I am speaking about the Hawthorne effect. Basically, everyone improves their productivity and personality, etc. when they are being watched and KNOW they are being watched. They are speaking perfectly and holding doors open for you and acting like they would give you the shirt off their backs, but in the parking lot they are flicking you off and cutting you off. Shoot, if I owned a med school, I would be visiting your hometown and releasing stray puppies near your route home to see if you stopped to pick them up. I would be sending tools from the 909 to hit on your girlfriend in front of you. I would pay the waitress to take as long as possible to give you your food. You would be taking a lie detector test and I would know all your deep dark secrets. I would want to know that you are doing the right thing when no one is looking. Because anyone can put on a smile and act like they love everyone when they know it means the difference between and acceptance and rejection. And my school's reputation would be at stake. I don't need to be known as the school that produces fine doctors but better murderers. Also, you would think that they have the process down to a science. They make it seem like they know the stats and that if you are getting accepted, you will pass. Weird because 6 people have failed out of my school so far (and with them went my "curve assistance"). Unless they knew this and accepted them for their money (which wouldn't surprise me) they missed the signs of those who wouldn't do well in med school, not to mention the murderous profile. Might want to re-examine the qualities of the people you accept. I am glad I am here though, because I would hate to have to do psychological testing along with the essays. And that is next if people like Markoff are getting into schools. To tell you the truth, I am scared that they will make me undergo a psych consult. I can just see it now.......

Dude in suit: Hello Week, I am going to ask you a series of questions. Just answer yes or no. Do you ever feel anxious?
Week: Yes.
Dude in suit: Do you ever feel like an outcast?
Week: Everyone in med school is super strange and I think-
Dude in suit: Yes or no questions week, follow instructions.
Week: Sorry, yes.
Dude in suit: Do you ever feel like you could harm someone?
Week: Well, if someone was trying to rob me or hurt a family member I think I-
Dude in suit: Seriously, yes or no, Week.
Week: Yes.
Dude in suit: Do you ever thinks about killing people?
Week: Well, I worry about making medical errors and killing people all the time. I feel like I know noth-
Dude in suit: Yes or no Week, for the last time.
Week: Well, I guess I would say yes I do think about killing people.
Dude in suit: You sick bastard. Lock him up with the rest of the creepos.

And just like that there would be no one left in med school. Which brings me to my next point.

2) Med students are different. Look, we are socially awkward, that shouldn't come as a surprise to you. Now imagine if I were to tell you that at one time or another the average med student can be described like this:

Smart. Pompous. Clean-cut. Creepy. Weird. Polite. Extreme changes in mood.

Pretty sure you would all agree that on average med students can be described as such. But that is also describing the craigslist killer. Either the profile for a murderer closely coincides with medical students' personalities, or any med student has the ability to break and become the next craigslist killer. How does that sit with you? Kind of makes me wonder if I want any of my tank-mates touching the scalpel...

Speaking of tank-mates, I love the investigative work going on. Here is the description his classmate gave:


"extreme changes in mood."

"Warm and friendly one day and then brooding and depressed the next."

"He just wasn't right in the head, and I knew it, and probably other people did, too."

"He spoke only when someone else initiated a conversation" adding that he seemed nice but "strange in a dark way."

Wow, you just described 90% of american medical students. We all have to be disturbed to be in med school. To know that we are looking at 10 years of hard work, little pay, little sleep, and little hapiness, yet we still pay thousands to be here is quite disturbing. Add in the looming everyone deserves health care mantra Obama is supporting, and we have to be beyond disturbed to be here.

Extreme changes in mood...huh, I wonder if it had to do with test scores. Monday he is confident he is getting an A and then after taking the test, realizes it is more like an F. Instant depression. I am not impressed by her description, because everyone in my class fits her "profile". Nice going.

One and a half weeks left and I have made it through year one...


  1. The screening process at times leaves every med student scratching his head wondering how a particular student made it to med school. Especially when, say, another qualified applicant & all-around nice person didn't make the cut.

    Thanks for entertaining me tonight as I enter the home stretch of preparing a presentation for tomorrow.

    Good luck in the final stretch of 1st year!

  2. Almost second year med student (but hey, I don't want to jinx you and get any disturbing mood swings going here)-
    Message to all the adrenaline junkies with quirks and foibles and even a drop of Darth Vader: Learn to morph, and you, too, could be Dr. BU or maybe even President.
    Good luck on your finals...and I know that even if you were running late, you'd pick up the stray puppies; but letting a "909 Tool" hit on your girlfriend might see the transition to Dr. WWF!

  3. hahaa... love and miss you tons!