"As University of Minnesota Medical School students and future physicians, we take this oath as we enter into a career of partnership with our patients, collaboration with our colleagues, and improvement of our health care system.
We pledge to commit ourselves to excellence in the care of our patients.
We pledge to uphold the integrity of medicine and commit to maintain the highest standards of professionalism.
We pledge to be stewards of education.
We pledge to embrace our social responsibility to practice medicine justly.
We pledge to lead a balanced and healthy lifestyle.
Let this white coat be a reminder of this pledge, of the privilege we hold as students of medicine, and of our commitment to service."
-Excerpt from University of Minnesota Medical School Class of 2014 Statement of Commitment
When asked how medical school is, a common response is "It's like drinking water from a fire hose"...basically a lot of stuff comes at you very fast. With two full weeks of classes under my belt, I would have to agree. The amount of material we are learning is delivered quickly and the courses are fast-paced, so it is easy to be overwhelmed.
This year, the University of Minnesota Medical School has implemented a new curriculum that involves a lot more independent learning time as well as small group work. For our first semester, the first year medical students (MS1) have 3 courses:
1. Human Structure and Function (HSF): This course includes anatomy, histology, and embryology all rolled into one.
2. Science of Medical Practice (SMP): This course includes genetics, biochemistry, and presentations from patients.
3. Essential of Clinical Medicine (ECM): This course entails learning about how to do patient interviews, physical exams, and case studies.
As you can see, a variety of topics are covered in just a semester and I am literally knee deep in books. However, the faculty and staff are very supportive and have provided resources to help students. In addition, there is a very supportive and collaborative atmosphere among students, which makes things are manageable when you have the "we are all in this together" mentality.
This feeling of belonging and community was very established during the White Coat ceremony in which the class of 2014 received white coats (as well as a nice stethoscope and reflex hammer!) as a symbol of our commitment to medicine and our official welcome to the medical community. At the ceremony, not only were we able to celebrate with our family and friends, but we all recited a commitment statement that was written together as a class. So when the going does get tough and the hours of studying get long, we will have the oath to look back on and remind us of our commitment to medicine and becoming doctors.