Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Kevin is unimpressed with some of his future colleagues

Recently David and I went with many of our classmates to a medical student research conference to present the groundbreaking research we all did this summer. There aren't a lot of requirements for submitting an abstract but nevertheless it’s a great opportunity to waste 4 days in a cool location meeting students from other medical schools and boozing it up at night. At the end of the weekend you get your “research” abstract published in a journal that will likely benefit no one. But we're really hoping JAMA accepts Beef Stew.

Anyone presenting at this conference is assigned a specific time slot which falls into one of many half-day time blocks at various rooms/locations around the conference site. The format is rather simple, you give a 10 minute talk followed by 3 minutes for questions from the audience. Our school was very insistent about students maintaining a certain level of professionalism at this event. Most of it is pretty straight forward: wear a suit, be respectful, don’t be drunk during the day. Easy. They were also especially adamant about students attending the entire half-day session they were assigned to rather than just showing up for your specific time slot then peacing out after the 15 minutes was up.

All this seems straight forward and self-apparent but not so for some of our colleagues from other medical schools... especially this one from the north. Instead of waking up early and showing up at the start of the half day session, these kids would swoop in about 5 minutes before their slotted time. Inevitably 10 of their classmates would also march in to root them on. When it was his turn the main kid would give his schpiel aboot his research into something related moose-related hunting injuries. Then as soon as his/her presentation was done, the entire posse would stand up and dash out before the moderator could make a passive-aggressive plea for students to stay.

So essentially a large gaggle of students would loudly file in during the middle of another student’s presentation, stay for 15 minutes for their friend's topic, then make a run for it when the next student is setting up his slides. Way to go guys.

*I just wanted to add that while I witnessed a few of these incidents, personally I was not a victim since there were no students from that school scheduled after me.  


Anonymous said...

Mr. K,

your fabulous feed is broken.


K said...

Is it? I just checked on my Opera feed + Google Reader and they both work alright.

Are you using: ?

Anonymous said...

Thanks, that's working.

Your "link" tag points to, which in turn redirects to, so clicking on that magic symbol doesn't work.

M said...

Were they from Canada? They sound like they were from Canada.

*Lynched by Canadians*

It's funny that the moderators made passive aggressive pleas. We get threatened with "You will find that the following peer presentations will directly pertain to your end of session examinations. Those who choose to leave should do so whilst being aware that they WILL be sacrificing their holidays in deference to their failing grades."

Med school: Get as much drinking done as possible in between exams. Your year denotes how many recovery days your liver needs, while your school's rank denotes the number of standards you're likely to consume on an average binge night. Huzzah.

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