Balancing life

Easter break fast approaching – a much needed respite from the early hours surgical ward rounds. Over the past couple of months, I’ve found my feet have have learnt things differently – in a clinical context.

Weekends were a time for relaxation – caught up with friends and family, overindulged on food with my bears, hung out with my Monash peers, did a little bit of running – medicine was the last thing on my mind. Special mention to Chlo’s birthday.

Good news – looks like my bears and I have secured a December 2018 elective with the University Edinburgh. Also thinking about electives with the Oxford and Cambridge universities…

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Here’s our MD2/MBBS3B cohort photo:



Catch ups:


Hanging Rock:


Run for the kids:



Transitioning into MD2 Bendigo

Summer holidays are over and I’ve had the pleasure of catching up with friends – celebrated PanPan’s birthday, made watermelon cake, made ‘eating lots of food’ an understatement, and had a classic BBQ. For future summers to come, I endeavour to continue my learning on overseas placements. I’ve now moved into Bendigo with my housemates and it’s already been a week of orientation.

Rest of my holidays:


Feel free to check out my summer cover:


Rural clinical school; Bendigo clinical school:


Back for the first weekend – with my bears:




Just got back from Hawaii – overall a good experience, but lots of tourists and expensive.

In terms of the food, highlights include Maguro Brothers (sushi tacos), Marukame Udon (tempura udon), Kyoto Ramen Yottekko-Ya (pork ramen), Ahi Assassins (poké), and Tropical Tribe (açai bowls).

We hiked Diamond Head (moderate – $1 entry fee), Koko Crater (hard – someone needed a helicopter to get down; spent Christmas here) and Manoa falls (easy – muddy shoes).

We visited the Iolani Palace to learn about the Kings and Queens of Hawaii, and the downfall of the monarchy. We checked out the University of Hawaii Manoa Campus. We travelled to the Dole Plantation (which had the world’s largest maze) and the North Shore. We also visited Pearl Harbor and attended the USS Arizona Memorial, which was hauntingly beautiful. We flew to Big Island for a tour and saw an active volcano from a distance. And on New Years Eve, we went snorkelling at Hanauma Bay ($7.50 entrance fee) – there were so many beautiful fishes in the reef!

As with any trip, we also had some bad experiences – tipping awkwardness, the worst restaurant service in my life, and temporarily losing my wallet.



MD1 reflections

So the last of my results came out today. For FBS, I scored 93/120 for MST5, 95/120 for the MCQ/EMQ paper, 117/180 for the SAQ paper, with a 17/20 for CSL participation. For PCP, I scored 33/40 for the headache history (pass mark 26) , 37/40 for the cardiovascular examination (pass mark 27), 30/40 for the jaundice history (pass mark 23), 30/40 for the eye examination (pass mark 26), with a 14/20 for class participation. Overall:


Feedback on PCP1 Semester Two OSCEs 2016

FBS EOY Announcement

Looking back on the year, I’m lucky to have befriended some of the smartest and most hard-working peers I know ; it is truely an honour to call you guys and gal pals friends (thanks for carrying me in the past, present and future; you all know who you are). Although I found MD1 more difficult to do well in, it was nonetheless more enjoyable than undergrad thanks to said friends. Looking forward next year, I don’t feel quite ready for clinical placements – but really, who ever is?



Celebrated my birthday early this year. We went to Red Spice Road for the pork belly and Berlin Bar for the bunk(er) bed. I wanted to see what it would feel like being Santa Claus for a day – so as a gesture of gratitude for each friendship, I got everyone their own small gift and nice card. In the end, I was spoilt instead!

Couldn’t have asked for better company (missing PanPan):

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MD1 exams complete

So I just finished the last of my exams this week, and I’ve spent these past few days organising a small birthday dinner for myself – just to spoil some of my friends you know?

Overall, I found the OSCEs this semester quite fair. We had a headache and a jaundice history, and a cardiovascular and a visual examination. For the jaundice history, I left my stickers in the previous station and lost some time running back for them. As for the visual examination, it was so out of left field – no one (but my tutor) really expected it.

The SAQ paper this year was atrocious. They examined us on such low-yield concepts. On the other hand, the MCQ/EMQ paper was more reflective of the content we learnt this year. Now the exercise, locomotor, reproduction and intersystem blocks MST#5 was an interesting one. I felt so confident upon finishing the test, but then the more you talk to your peers about the questions, the more answers you realised you got wrong.

SWOTFAT this year was probably the most enjoyable one I’ve had. I started a new TV show called We Bare Bears, and so much camembear and bluebearries were consumed – not to mention all the other food we got delivered!

The adventures of Grizz, PanPan and Ice Bear:


Now it’s time to catch up on some friends, reading, movies and TV shows.


MEDevice hackathon, blood donation

Over the past 3 weeks, I’ve had the immense pleasure of working with Team Baemax – my first year medical student friends and final year bioengineering students. I had so much fun working together and pitching our hack Sole-Guard – a personalised protective foot guard for diabetics in the prevention of foot ulcers. It uses 3D scanning of their feet and 3D printing of the materials to achieve the perfect fit. Out of the 5 amazing teams, we placed 3rd – our team leader (and Queen of Mandareen) was beaming and was so proud of us! There’s just something fantastical about group projects without pressures of assessment.

Sole-Guard Presntation

Having more fun than work:


Feeturing our lovely foot model (double entendre pun intended):



The dream team:




With the judges:


With everyone:


Also, I donated blood for the first time, so look away now if you don’t like the sight of it. Apparently it takes a day to restore your blood volume, but 2 months to restore your red blood cells:



As for now, we have our final block test in a month’s time, and following that our final exams and OSCEs. Fun times ahead.


‘Grand’ medicine ball and results

The ball was held last week at the Pullman. Overall, I had a good time – I cheekily rode on my friend’s shoulders and managed to pull off 3 backflips! Here are some photos featuring the Champion of Mandareen and my table members:




Neuroscience, endocrine and metabolism block test results also came out last week. I scored 79/90, which isn’t bad considering the insane average of 80.8%.

Class Distributions for MST#4, MEDS90001 2016

Now I’m on my week’s break, which I hope I’ll use this time wisely. My older brother is soon leaving to work/travel in London for 2 years, so I hope to spend quality time with him. In terms of study, I hope to finish up on the exercise block and start outlining what to revise for in the finals and OSCEs.

What’s new and exciting in store for me is the MEDevice hackathon – where we network and form teams, learn about 3D modelling and 3D printing, and pitch our idea/’hack’ to a panel of judges. I’m also going to donate blood for the first time – last week I had a ‘cough’ and couldn’t donate. So look out for these in my next post.