Med Students

I have met a number of Korean medical students here in Jeonbuk Province (for some reason, I keep meeting calligraphy majors, and med students) and I think a number of them really ought to be in other professions. What I mean is that I think a lot of them would be pursuing other professions, if those other professions became the most respected and lucrative possible—because that is what their mommies and daddies would tell them to do.

Outside the library where Lime studies, she once pointed out the student parking to me. It was full of nice cars, driven by kids with nice clothes and nice expensive haircuts, and no sense of what it means to have a human life in your hands that you need to save, no sense of what kind of moral imperative there is for someone who takes a vow to fight for human life.

Lime’s different, of course. She was one of the first people I know in the medical school establishment who criticized this to me. Most of the med students I know went around scared to do something like wear a certain kind of clothing to class, but often enough after classes I see her in jeans and a T-shirt. Early on she spoke to me about her frustrations with these kids who really have no idea what being a doctor is about, who parade around proudly about themselves and their wealth, gossip like nobody’s business about the doings of others, who thinking that dating outside of their school-major (let alone dating outside of race) is as questionable as dating outside of species. They sounded a lot like my worst students, except equipped with formidable powers of memorization (but lacking in any ability to think critically or creatively). These are not the sort of people I want to be treated by, should I fall ill. And, having visited several hospitals in my life, I have been treated by such people many times before, not just in Korea but also in Canada.

Of course, not all med students are like this. Lime isn’t, and those of her friends whom I’ve met seem not to be like this either. Medical students, like students of all majors, come in many, many types. I wonder if Lime has seen this: The Twelve Types of Medical Students. It’s up at the underwear drawer, but I found the link at Undisclosed Location. What’s interesting about both of these sites is that they’re English versions of something like what Lime’s blog is, but in English: they’re documenting not just their lives (as most bloggers do in some way) but also the process of becoming a physician.

Of all the types of med students in the cartoon, I am pretty sure Lime’s gonna be the Painfully Enthusiastic or The One-Track Mind, but only because, while she is very very sane, I don’t think she’d gonna give up and work at the Gap.

One thought on “Med Students

  1. I think the holier-than-thou type of med school students are unfortunately present at all med schools in the world. My cousin, who’s in med school at Chula University, complains about the Thai med school students all the time. A lot of them don’t even want to be there, but are only there because “it looks good”. It’s sad, really, especially when you realize that these are the people who are going to be caring for the country in the future.

    But onto lighter things. Ooh, the underwear drawer! I discovered that site through a medical student forum about two weeks ago, and I have been thoroughly addicited to it ever since! Did you check out the scutmonkey section of her site? It’s sooo hilarious!

    I’m really looking forward to med school this coming Jan… I have yet to find out which category I fall into amongst the twelve. ;)

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