A Day In The Life: Christina Bogdani
A Day in the Life
D.O. (1st Year)
My name is Christina and I am currently a first year DO student. I grew up in South Huntington, Long Island and went to Stony Brook University for undergrad where I majored in psychology and minored in chemistry.
I had visited NYITCOM in high school through the National Youth Leadership Forum for Medicine and I loved the campus community. It was very welcoming and left such a positive impression in my mind. I also wanted to stay close to home since I am very family oriented, so NYITCOM was one of my top choices.
I just completed my first semester of medical school and although it has been a challenging transition, keeping an organized schedule and taking advantage of the school’s amazing resources has helped me be successful! Although my schedule changes slightly from day to day, this is what a typical day in my life looks like.
Every day I wake up at 7 AM and go for a run. It helps clear my mind for the busy day ahead.
From 8-8:30 AM I get ready for school and arrive at campus at around 9 AM. My commute is about thirty minutes.
From 9 AM-12 PM I usually have enough time to watch a lecture and take some time to review and prepare for the class I have that day.
From 12-1 PM I like to meet up with some friends and we have lunch together before we head over to class. If we have some time, we like to grab sports equipment from Rockefeller (they have many options for us to use such as a football, frisbee, tennis rackets, volleyball or basketball) and enjoy an outdoor activity in the quad before class starts. Sometimes there will be club meetings during this time so you can grab the lunch that is offered there and listen in on the meeting. Occasionally we also have fun events planned by the school such as pumpkin carving contests and barbeques so I would stop by before class to get some food and enjoy the nice weather before it gets too cold!
In the first semester, classes start at 1 PM. On Tuesdays I had Doctor Patient Relationships (DPR) lab from 1-3 PM. In DPR, I would learn different skills on how to take a patient history and how to perform a physical exam for different body systems. During class, we are split into pods and practice those skills on each other. We practice these same skills on standardized patients before we move on to rotations. The academic scholars at NYITCOM (third year students taking an extra year to obtain a master’s degree in academic medicine) help facilitate the class and are extremely knowledgeable in the content. They are an amazing resource and are always there to help in and out of class. We are also assigned a physician to be our pod leader. They are also always willing to help and guide us through the exercises we need to learn. The pod leaders are full of wonderful clinical pearls so it’s great to listen to their stories and advice.
After class, I usually head over to the school library to study from 3-8 PM. I’ll take this time to go over content, prepare for tomorrow’s anatomy class, or practice OMM with a friend if I feel too exhausted to keep reading. Many times, clubs will host events on campus after class as well. One of my favorite workshops that I attended was the Intubation workshop held by the American College of Osteopathic Pediatricians club. We had mannequins set up at stations around the room and were able to practice bagging, intubating in different positions, and performing a cricothyrotomy on a mannequin. I also attended a workshop in the Institute for Clinical Competence through the Association of Women Surgeons club, where we learned how to perform a c-section on one of the mannequins, practiced placing a central line, IO, and IV catheters.
At around 8-9 PM, I head home and have dinner with my family.
From 9- 11 PM, I continue to review any content I haven’t finished for the day.
At 11 PM I always make sure to close the books (unless it’s exam week!) to ensure that I have time to unwind and get a good night’s sleep, so I am ready for the next day.
It can be challenging transitioning into first year, especially if you’ve taken some time off from undergrad, but the school puts in place many resources for students to succeed. The faculty is available to answer any questions and are quick to respond to emails. They are always available to schedule office hours with students. At the beginning of school, each student is also assigned to a “house.” Houses plan a lot of fun events like paint nights, community service events, and hiking events. You’re also assigned a mentor who is a faculty member at NYITCOM. They are there to support you and to answer any academic questions you may have. I know my mentor has been so supportive in helping me explore research options for the summer, giving me great advice, and answering all my academic and co-curricular questions.
At the beginning of the semester, you also meet with Academic Enrichment Specialists to ensure you have a good study plan. They are so knowledgeable, and it is a great idea to meet with them before exams if you want to be proactive about your study habits, but you can also meet with them at any point to discuss how to improve your grades moving forward. NYITCOM’s Counseling and Wellness is also very active on campus. They are an amazing resource to use if you need free, short-term, confidential counseling.
There are also so many different interest groups you can join on campus to help you gain exposure to different specialties if you are unsure what residency program you may want to consider!
My favorite part of NYITCOM is how active our community is. Chances are you will find something here on campus that sparks your interest. Everyone is so willing to help and support students, from upperclassmen to faculty. Within my first semester here, I feel well-supported in this challenging journey.
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