2:31 AM

Author | Stefan Garcia

Hey, thanks for taking the time to read my poorly-written, hopefully moderately entertaining post. As this is my first post, I would like to introduce myself. I was born in Pueblo, Colorado, a town of about 100k people 1.5 hours south of Denver. I graduated from CU-Boulder in 2012 and worked as a medical assistant for an orthopaedic surgeon during my 'gap' year while interviewing for medical school. I grew up playing/watching most sports and love the outdoors (hiking, fishing, hunting).

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My third year of medical school has gotten off to a wonderful start; I was lucky enough to get the same clerkship rotation schedule (commonly referred to as the bro track) as many of my friends. Here is what I have learned about life as an M3 after finishing my first rotation (pediatrics) and after a week of surgery:

1. Sleep is valuable- Some people are machines and seem to function at a high level with minimal amounts of sleep. I am not one of those people. My brain takes about 4 hours to wake up if I am sleep-deprived. I often found myself sacrificing study time, relaxation time, and ignoring friends phone calls to make sure I got at least 8 hrs/night. You could always tell which students needed to grab more sleep at night.

2. Eat when you can- You never know how long you will be with in a patient room or in an operation, and no one enjoys hangry people. I just spent $200 at Sam's Club on energy bars and quick, pre-made snacks.

3. Third year is fun! You get to meet interesting families, each with an unique background, and work with some awesome, down-to-earth attendings and residents. I have been pleasantly surprised by the approachability of our faculty and residents here.

4. Take advantage of your switch weekends to have some fun- I booked a last minute flight home to Colorado for the 4th to boat, fish, and ATV with my family (photo above)

5. Make your free-time stress-free- I put this one last because I think it is the most important! You need to find a way to relieve your stress. For me, I know I would go crazy (figuratively, maybe) if I did not have a healthy way to let off some steam.

Life is good!


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