Tag Archives: Madeline Cusimano

The Power of Discomfort in Learning Medicine

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If you don’t like what you’re learning, look even closer.

TL;DR

  • Dave asks his co-hosts to think about the role of discomfort in learning. It’s a signal that you need to pay very close attention, both to the topic and to why you feel that way.
  • Listener Michelina, an undergrad mom with a full-time job, asks if her COVID-affected grades mean she should extend her time in college to seek a toxicology degree or just stick with biology.
  • The discussion on working during medical school continues, as Michelina wonders if she can work full time while she balances motherhood and med school.

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NOT EVERYTHING NEEDS TO BE MEANINGFUL, Y’ALL.

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The Meaning of Purposelessness

On This Episode:

Join this week’s co-hosts M4 Madeline Cusimano, M3 Nathen Spitz, M3 Mason LaMarche, and M4 Ananya Munjal for the show!

  • Facing a content-free episode, we discuss what medical students do when they’re avoiding purpose and meaning (ie., they want to just have fun).
  • We discuss a more nuanced view of work-life balance in medicine than is usually discussed (referenced: this Medscape article).
  • Madeline challenges the gang to play 5-second rule, Medicine Edition.
  • Bonus: As many tangents and asides as we can fit into an hour.
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Background: https://www.flickr.com/photos/89396956@N00/

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How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!
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Lessons from the Wards: what Future Residents Need to Know (Ft. Dr. Abbey hardy-Fairbanks)

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TL;DR

  • Abbey Hardy-Fairbanks is an OB/Gyn who often works with expectant moms who use drugs.
  • Future resident MDs: this episode features some of the many things she’s learned about meeting patients where they are, practicing medicine without judgement, and understanding what she and her clients can and cannot accomplish in the moment.
  • Approaching patients with an open heart from the first moment, even when their lives are outside society’s mainstream or approval, can mean the difference between losing them for good and them coming back to see anyone for more help.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!
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Sociaizing and Studying: How do Med Students Do It?

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Med students are usually intentional about everything, even the balance between social and school

TL;DR

  • The M4s are picking their favorite residency programs in the hopes that they love the next phase of their training. We discuss the factors they’re weighing now that interviews are done.
  • A listener about to start med school wants to know how students study, and how they also have social lives when studying is so intense.
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Listener Sunrise Warghost called the Short Coat Listener Line (347-SHORTCT) because she’ll start school in the fall, and is wondering about the study techniques and mental habits medical students use to crush it in medical school. M4s Emma Bar, NIck Lind, and Madeline Cusimano, and M3 Nathen Spitz help with the tips and tricks they’ve discovered. And they also offer their methods for maintaining a social life as well, both within and outside the cloistered world of medical school.

But first, a discussion from the M4s on the factors they’re weighing as they nail down which residency programs they would like to train at next year, because like everything else in their lives, intentionality is key.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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Why Med Learners are Asked to “Reflect,” And What Does It Even Mean?

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How students should think about reflection when the word isn’t always well-defined.

TL;DR

  • Whether it’s a class assignment, a personal statement, or a scholarship essay, students are often commanded to reflect on their experiences.
  • Reflection is can be a useful part of understanding what you are becoming. But what that means and how to do it are frequently not well defined.
  • Our M4 co-hosts discuss whether their fears about the residency application process were well-founded or just wheel spinning.
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Listener Empirica Soberface (not her real name) called in to ask us about reflection–something medical learners are often asked to do during their education–saying that it doesn’t come naturally to her. So Dave invited Cate Dicharry, the director of the Writing and Humanities Program here at the Carver College of Medicine, to come on and give us her thoughts on this common assignment. M4s Emma Barr and Madeline Cusimano, M3 Ananya Munjal, and MD/PhD student Riley Behan-Bush are on hand to supply some of their ideas on how best to process what it is they’ve been becoming.

Emma and Madeline also discuss the fears they had about interviewing for their future residency jobs, the anxiety that many senior medical students are feeling right now, and whether their fears were realized or proven to be wheel-spinning.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

Continue reading Why Med Learners are Asked to “Reflect,” And What Does It Even Mean?

Overcoming Your Undergrad Apathy Now that You’re Applying to Medical School

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Good news: medical schools don’t just want perfect people!

TL;DR

  • If your undergraduate studies in a different field lacked a certain enthusiasm but you’ve now decided to pursue medicine, it can be difficult to know where you’ll stand with admissions committees.
  • Fortunately, adcomms don’t just look for perfect grades and unwavering and early certainty from med school candidates on their path to medicine.
  • We discuss a great way to fill a hole in what your school teaches–create a course on the subject!

Listener Abby is thinking about taking the prereqs for medical school, but worries that her trajectory thus far isn’t distinguished enough.  Is she setting herself up for the poor house and failure? Hear the words of encouragement and wisdom we have for Abby, featuring MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk, M4 Madeline Cusimano, M4 Emma Barr, and M4 Abby Fyfe.

We also discuss the course on Sexual Violence that Aline and her team of enthusiastic partners developed and delivered this past fall to medical students interested in learning the signs of sexual assault and the roles that students and residents can play in getting help for victims. 

And we compose the voicemail greeting you’ll hear if you call our SCP Listener Line at 347-SHORTCT, and we discuss Aline’s impending return to medical school as she looks forward to completing her PhD.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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Academic vs. Community MDs: Who Has It Better? Ft. Santa Claus

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Among the many choices med students make is between community medicine and academic medicine.

TL;DR

  • Doctors who practice community medicine make more than academic physicians (sometimes lots more).
  • As it often does, the question of which to choose depends on which aspect of each you can live without.
  • The co-hosts also visit with Santa, because Dave’s been naughty, to answer pop quiz questions on holiday crimes.
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Santa Claus is on hand for this episode to help listener Josh with his dilemma: which life should Josh choose, that of a community physician or an academic physician? As M4 Emma Barr, M1 Matt Engelken, MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk, and M4 Madeline Cusimano see it, there’s lots to consider. For instance, do you want to teach and do research? Do you want to make a lot of money? What kind of patient population do you want to work with?

Plus, Santa gives the co-hosts a pop quiz on weird holiday crimes.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

Continue reading Academic vs. Community MDs: Who Has It Better? Ft. Santa Claus

Electronic residency Application Service Glitching…Again?

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More tales from Residency Interviews

TL;DR

  • Puzzled by the interviewer’s question? You can fumble around with the answer, or answer a question that wasn’t asked.
  • Did the Electronic Residency Application Service screw some applicants (again)?
  • We get to know this week’s cohosts using interview questions they might actually enjoy answering.

This episode is sponsored by Panacea Financial, a division of Primis, Member FDIC. See how they are helping med students and doctors with better banking built just for them at https://panaceafinancial.com/.

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We’re not going to lie: amid reports that ERAS is glitching yet again, this week’s episode is kind of a bitch fest. If you want to hear about the problems associated with medical education, this is the episode for you. And hey, if you thought that med school was hard simply because there’s a lot of studying, well, this ep will broaden your horizons a bit on that front.

To take the curse off all that crankiness, Dave decided to get to know his co-hosts with some questions that he recommends interviewers ask instead of “What are your strengths and weaknesses?”

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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Is Medicine the Squid Game?

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Are there parallels between medicine and Squid Game?

TL;DR

  • The experience of job hunting for a residency position is unlike any other.
  • It’s way easier to donate bone marrow than many think.
  • Dave stuffs the episode with Squid Game references in the hopes that various algorithms love us.

This episode is sponsored by Enso Rings, makers of soft, safe, attractive silicone rings. Listeners get 10% off rings at EnsoRings.com using promo code SHORT!

MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk, M1 Noah Wick, and M4s Madeline Cusimano and Abby Fyfe have their souls crushed this week by Dave’s suggestion that the Netflix smash hit Squid Game has some parallels with medicine and medical education. See, Dave read a listicle by Rebecca Richardson in McSweeny’s comparing the features of the game to academic job-hunting, and it seemed a little…familiar.

But first, the crew takes a look at recent developments in Madeline’s and Abby’s own job hunt, and we learn about bone marrow donation as that’s also something Madeline’s preparing for.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

Continue reading Is Medicine the Squid Game?

The Right (and Wrong) Ways to Get Help with Your Application

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Photo by desbyrnephotos

[Once again, our circumstances force us to endure mild sound quality issues. Sorry, but that’s round-table podcasting in the pandemic age. You’ll be alright.]

We got some lovely responses back from listeners of last week’s show (in which we discussed racism in America and in medicine), including a most important one from Cachae on the best ways to talk to your black friends about racism (hint–it’s not asking them to educate you).

And Cam wanted to know whether he could ask an admissions office member for feedback on his primary application before he submits it instead of getting a rejection after. Wouldn’t it be more efficient?

And Dave and his co-hosts–Abby Fyfe, Nick Lind, Madeline Cusimano, and newb Holly Conger–exercise their minds with a game of Would You Rather.


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This Week in Medical News

Science made Dave mad again, with a study on how bald men are more susceptible to poor outcomes from COVID-19 because of the androgens that make them bald–except they didn’t control for one itty-bitty variable! And that study of hydroxychloroquine that found that it’s more deadly than other treatments, thus halting trials around the world? Turns out we shouldn’t trust it much.

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So, how’s it going? Do you even read these questions down here? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.