Congrats, you’ve made it through an entire year of medical school! It may seem like a minor accomplishment, but you must make time to acknowledge the small steps climbed in route to your ultimate goal. This letter will give you some insight into making the most of your summer.
Before I get into the strategies that will enhance your critical thinking skills and improve your chances of doing well in school next year, let me put a rumor to rest.
I am not leaving the university. Yes, I did post my car for sale, but I do not have plans to leave my position in the Education Department. I will be back in August to encourage you and provide you with guidance in the process of developing lifelong learning habits.
Don’t fall off over the summer! It is easy to get carried away with the comforts of home and neglect your studies. I want you to enjoy your summer. It's also my desire to see you thrive and earn the medical degree that you moved abroad to take back home with you.
These three suggestions will empower you to have a mindful, productive, and enjoyable summer.
1. Make time to read - My new book counts!). You must use this break to read and expand your knowledge of the medical field. If you want to advance your understanding of the concepts learned this year, make time to read for 30 minutes every day. You should read medical journals, blogs by physicians, or other materials that can expand your familiarity with the field of medicine and social justice.
2. Watch videos. Create a schedule that enables you to watch YouTube videos or other content that can reiterate the topics explored in lectures this year. Educational videos can help your brain to make connections to materials that you learned by reading texts in journals, books, or other resources.
3. Have fun! It is vital that you spend time with your friends and family while on vacation. This time with loved ones can enable you to get closer to your WHY for being in medical school. There is also significant research suggesting that downtime away from your work can strengthen your abilities to be creative and engage in critical thinking skills.
I know that you will not have a hard time making my suggestion for having fun a top priority. There will be plenty of opportunities to chill and do whatever you want. My advice for the academic-related activities may be challenging to place at the top of your to-do list.
Think of your academic responsibilities as the gateway to doing what you want to do for the rest of your life.
During the summer break, establish for yourself set hours from 9 am - 12 pm, for study-related activities. Hold yourself accountable. If and only if, you complete your work, can you go out and do whatever else you want to do. Having fun with your friends and family should be viewed as a reward for doing the things that are necessary to push you closer to completing medical school.
For most of the summer, I will be in Antigua. Do not hesitate to reach out to me through email.
I will look forward to seeing you in August.