I know I said that I had my Twitter account set up, but I haven’t done much with it. So I guess I’ll go ahead and start tweeting. Not sure what about yet, but I’m sure I will be overcome by something brilliant to shoot out into cyberspace in 140 characters. The Twitter feed is, obviously, @40yearoldpremed. Or you can just use the button at the top right.

Happy Tweeting!

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The Real Science Begins

Greetings people of the interwebs. It’s been a long while since I’ve posted here, but I wanted to get something down.

Last month I finished up my first semester at University. I took 2 Communications courses. Interesting but nothing to write home about.

This semester, I’m dipping my toes in the water with Chem I and Lab. I’m doing this with an online communications philosophy course. I wanted to gauge the level of work involved in this chem class/lab and my ability to do it before piling on too much and tanking my GPA right out of the gate.

So far so good. I enjoy the subject matter but as I’ve mentioned here before, I hate the math. Dimensional analysis is not fun but I like learning the common anions and the naming systems. There is a lot of information to memorize but I’m looking forward to putting it to use as the class progresses. There is a tutor assigned specifically to this class and, being an engineering student, he is pretty solid with the math. He assures me that he will get me through.

The lab seems ok so far. The Prof. is a Ph.D. in Quantum Mechanics. I’m quite sure he’s forgotten more than I could ever hope to learn.

As everyone seems so fond of saying, it’s a marathon not a sprint. So it’s just one foot in front of the other for now.

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Filed under Chemistry

Status update

Well, it’s been awhile since my last post, so I thought I’d throw something up here.

I am currently at a State University enrolled as a Communications major. My first semester was 2 basic comm classes which were fun and interesting with a great professor. In the spring, I’ve signed up for Chem I + Lab and an online Philosophy of Comm course. I normally take 2-3 classes per semester depending on course difficulty. I only chose 2 for the Spring because I want to give myself a wide berth with my first hard science + lab (which is really like 2 classes). It will be my first foray into the difficult sciences and I want to gauge my ability to do this work without too many other distractions. If I find myself doing well in the spring, I’ll consider Chem II in the Summer and another Comm Class.

As a graduation requirement, my university requires 40 “service learning” hours. Basically, this means going out into the community and volunteering in one way or another. The college website has a page dedicated to many of the service learning opportunities based on your skill and interest. I’ll likely be going to do mine at a local free clinic. I’ll update on that more later when I get there.

Make sure to get out and VOTE today!

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Filed under Chemistry, Pre med

Science major vs. non-science major?

I struggled with this decision for a long time.

My first thought was, of course, Biology. I like the material and I certainly thought it would do well for me in my path toward med school. But as I continued to read and research I found a couple of drawbacks.

First, I found out that a Biology degree generally requires a semester or 2 of Calculus. As a non-math kind of guy (I’ve learned that I can do it, I just don’t like it) this in itself would have been enough to chase me off.

I also did a bit of soul searching about the realities of my life. I’m 40+ years old. As optimistic as I am, there is a strong possibility that I may not be accepted to medical school. In that case, I have some decisions to make. Maybe PA school. Maybe something else altogether. But either way, if I choose for some reason to abandon this path toward a career in a medical field, I had to ask myself, what am I really going to do with a BS in Biology? Not to much, really.

Then I read a post by Gonnif over at Oldpremeds. In fact it was this one:

What to Major in?

This really helped to put my fears at ease regarding a non-science major. So, I decided on a degree in Communications. After all, an employee that can express him/herself verbally and in written format is valuable to any employer.

I’ll be taking all my remaining science pre-reqs as electives and I’ll also be able to hedge my bet a little in case of an unfortunate outcome in my pursuit of med school. The fact that the Comm curriculum may be somewhat less rigorous than of a hard science degree may be an advantage in doing well in the pre-reqs and studying for MCAT.

So I’m happy and confident in my decision and my advice is study what you want, do well in it, and never look back.


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The Wrath of Dr. Khan – Star Trek

I thought I’d add in a little levity from time to time so this is my first installment.

As a young kid in the 70′s, Star Trek (Yes, the Kirk version) was a big part of my TV entertainment. I had the toys, the shirts, the phaser, the cool communicator, and even the Underoos! So when the movie franchise came out, I wanted to be first in line.

Now, I kinda dig medicine. So when I came across this video, I couldn’t help but post it up.

Thanks to the guys over at You guys do some awesome work.

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Plant biology? Meh.

Bio II is not what I thought it would be. So far is has been about 90% plant biology and histology and 10% what I would call “earth science”, meaning origins of Earth, man, evolution of bacteria and so on. The lab dissections are middle school level. Sponge, earthworm, hydra, clam, crayfish, sea star. And none of them are even great specimens. I’m really trying to like this class but I constantly find my mind wandering when she starts talking about gametophytes and eudicots and …uhhhhh. Only 3 more weeks and this one will be over.

I thought I was done with math only to find out that in order to take College Physics, I need Precalc. Being a non-math guy, I was, needless to say, less than thrilled with this news. But there’s no way around it so I signed up for Fall Precalc and bought the book. I imagine I’ll get Physics out of the way as soon as possible after finishing precalc. Then I’ll work on knocking out the Chems.

Precalc and my communications class will be my first experience outside the junior college level. So I’m preparing for some culture shock. I need to try to judge the level of difficulty of university courses to determine how many credits I can be successful with (successful meaning A or B).

August can’t come soon enough.

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Filed under Biology, Chemistry, Math, Physics

Some science sucks

I normally think of myself as a science guy. I haven’t yet had Physics, Chem, or O-Chem, but as a paramedic, I’ve been surrounded by science for 20+ years. I haven’t yet had a science class I didn’t like until I met Bio II. Apical meristems, mycrorrhizae, xylems, and apoplastic movement. Ugh. I seriously couldn’t give 2 rabbit pellets about plant science. I am bored to tears in this class. And studying? Yea right. I can’t read a paragraph without my mind wandering. Glad it’s only a 6 week summer semester. I couldn’t take 15 weeks of this.

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Filed under Biology, Pre med