During these next two weeks, I will be shadowing doctors at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) through what we call a preceptorship program (essentially a shadowing experience/program) organized by the school. There are about 10 of us premeds participating in this program. The people at CHLA try to arrange our schedules so that we can gain exposure to aspects of medicine we’re especially interested in. For example, I told them that my interests were in OB/GYN and pediatric surgery, so for the first week, I am scheduled to shadow plastic surgeons in both the operating rooms (OR) and the surgical clinic. Since most of us premeds have different interests, we probably won’t see much of each other while at the hospital for the next two weeks. I am incredibly excited for this experience!
Orientation at CHLA this past Friday. We got badges that refer to us as “medical students” and everything!
No shorts or jeans.
Closed toe shoes.
“Bunny suits” for the OR, which are essentially not-so-form-fitting nor attractive white coveralls.
Largely dependent upon your own personal schedule. If we’re shadowing in the OR for the day, they expect us to get there around 6:45AM. Yikes. Shadowing in clinics begins a little later (around 7:30AM).
My first-week schedule:
Monday: Shadowing in the OR (plastic surgery)
Tuesday: Shadowing in the clinic (plastic surgery)
Wednesday: Shadowing in the clinic (plastic surgery)
Thursday: Shadowing in the OR (plastic surgery)
Friday: Shadowing in the OR (plastic surgery)
I’ll be sure to keep you all updated throughout these next 2 weeks…maybe I’ll see some child stars hoping to make it to Toddlers & Tiaras or the like :)
One of the most exciting aspects of college life is the freedom that students enjoy when living on their own. When most students think about college life, one of the first things that comes to mind is Greek life, with the many sororities and fraternities on campuses across the country. While Caltech does not have Greek life, per se, we do have a unique housing system, similar to that of Hogwarts. There are eight houses and one residence on campus: Avery, Blacker, Dabney, Fleming, Lloyd, Page, Ricketts, Ruddock, and the Bechtel Residence. Each of the houses has its own unique culture, character, and traditions. I am a member of Ruddock House!
This past year was so different than most of us could have ever imagined. Living in “the virtual school year” posed a plethora of challenges, but at the same time, it opened the door to new possibilities. As a society, we learned how to better operate in a virtual world, and as individuals, we had time for new endeavors. For myself, this meant taking the leap of faith to move away from home and live with some fellow Techers. While I had already had the experience of moving away from home and coming to live in the Caltech houses, this was quite different. Instead of living in organized student residences with hundreds of other students, a meal plan, and tons of support resources, I was about to go live with just 5 other people (some of which I did not know super well) and we had to find and manage our own housing, food, and necessities.
My favorite part about Caltech is the Houses! The easiest way to describe them is as Hogwarts houses: each has their own personality and group of people and the first thing you do at Caltech is go through a “sorting” process. The people are what makes the Houses at Caltech so great. As a frosh, it’s amazing to be able to come in and immediately have a group of 100+ people to support you. Because the Houses have students from every grade, you make friends with upperclassmen and can ask for help on tons of things like: