Archive for tag: students

Catch Ya On the Flip Side

It's a bittersweet entry this week, as this is my last blog as an NUHS student. Sad right? I can't believe it's been a year and half that I have been sharing my "wisdom" with everyone. It's been an incredible three and half years. I know its cliché, but the time really did fly by. It seems like yesterday I was sitting in orientation with Dr. Stiefel, listening to how rigorous the next 3+ years of my life were going to be. He wasn't joking either. Those first 2 years, I was a slave to my textbooks, notes, and presentations. The load thinned out over this past year in clinic, but the practice and studying was still and will always be a huge part of my week to week. 

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Jeff, Guy, and I at a graduation dinner on Saturday.

I cannot thank our professors enough for the countless hours of help and dedication they've put towards us:

  • I'd like to thank Dr. Jennifer "Vice-Grip" Illes for being patient with me constantly nodding off during her post-lunch E&M courses, and of course for teaching me how to adjust!
  • The incredible Dr. Jaya Prakash helped me understand pathology and microbiology in a way I never thought I could.
  • Dr. Richard Leverone, Dr. Terry Sandman, Dr. Heather "Awesome DACBR" Miley, and Dr. Rudy Heiser made me realize how much I love radiology, and who knows, maybe one day I'll follow in their DACBR footsteps.
  • Then there is the always smooth, Dr. "Wiki-SRI-dia" Sridharan Manavalan, who along with Dr. Leslie Pearlstien, taught us the ins and outs of the human body in anatomy class.
  • Who could forget the dynamic Lombard duo of Dr. Robert Humphreys and Dr. Daniel Richardson? Dr. Richardson always made class a blast, especially when he couldn't find his glasses that were always resting on top of his head. I can't thank Dr. Humphreys enough for allowing me to co-manage his Florida neuro cases, and teaching me a lot of his tricks of the trade along the way; and yes, I still owe you lunch, Doc.
  • How could I have gotten by without the incomparable Dr. David "Coach" Seaman? I can break down the conversion of just about anything you throw in your mouth to the enzymatic level thanks my advisor and pal, Dr. Seaman.
  • I am more than confident in rehabbing just about any condition that will walk into my office, thanks to Dr. Tim "You can always be faster" Stark. Dr. Stark has always been there with either quip or advice whenever I've approached him. Thank you.
  • For the past year, Dr. Rudy "wild-assed-clinician award recipient" Heiser, has molded and refined my clinical skills. Dr. Heiser has let me learn through mistakes, treat in my own way, and all the while made sure I was doing it correctly while offering great advice along the way.
  • None of this would've been possible without the countless time and effort put in by Dr. Joe Stiefel. Dr. Stiefel not only taught, but administrated, and handled all the behind-the-scenes activities that made the Florida Campus what it is today.
  • Finally, I'd like to thank my mentor and friend, Dr. Chad "The Intimidator" Maola. There is no way I would have been the student, or the intern, or the doctor I am without all the extra time Dr. Maola put in with me. I'll never forget the day during my last final exam of third trimester, when he came in halfway through the exam and told me to report to his office as soon as I was done. The conversation Dr. Maola and I had that day in his office is the reason I am as good and confident at what I do. I know Dr. Maola has taken some flack over the years for the extra time he has taken with me, but I want to let him know that it never went unnoticed.

Enough with the goodbyes. My time at NUHS has been great. I can't believe all that I've learned over the years, and all the friends I've made along the way. Congratulations to the graduating class of 2012!

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Jeff, Guy, Dan, me, and Margaux

All of us down here have plans on practicing in Florida. Margaux plans on pursuing veterinary chiropractic in the St. Petersburg area, Dan Johns has his eye on a practice in Fort Lauderdale, Guy Reshamwala is taking over one of his older brother's practice in Hudson, Jeff Bourguignon will be independently contracting in Tampa, and of course I will be opening my practice in Tampa as well. My door will always be open, and I will continue to answer any emails that come my way. Thank you to everyone who has read the blogs, and Ms. Marie Olbrysh for allowing me to send in my thoughts each week.

I'll leave everyone with an excerpt from one of my early blogs, a fable I took from Aesop's fables: "Hercules and The Wagoner":

A carter was driving a wagon along a country lane, when the wheels sank down deep into a rut. The rustic driver, stupefied and aghast, stood looking at the wagon, and did nothing but utter loud cries to Hercules to come and help him. Hercules, it is said, appeared and thus addressed him: 'Put your shoulders to the wheels, my man. Goad on your bullocks, and never more pray to me for help, until you have done your best to help yourself, or depend upon it you will henceforth pray in vain.' 

Always take responsibility for what you are doing, and remember that self-help is the best-help. Never stop learning, and never stop practicing.

Catch you guys on the flip-side,
Dex

An Exciting Weekend

Welcome back. I hope everyone's weekend went well. I definitely feel as if I need at least one more day off to recuperate. Seemed as if my weekend was jammed full of activities.

Friday kicked off the weekend when I met with the doctor I will be associating with once I graduate. The doc I'll be working with has 5 offices in the Tampa/St. Pete area and I will be lucky number 6. For the past 4 months it has been my job to find a space for my future clinic, and Friday was the day I presented the space to my future partner for approval; needless to say it was a big meeting. It has taken close to two months of going back and forth between the owner of the building, and the person currently leasing the space to concede to allowing us to take a look and hopefully take over the building.

The space is perfect. It is currently a doctor's office and therefore there is almost zero build out necessary. In addition to being a killer building, it is in the heart of South Tampa directly across the street from Palma Ceia Country Club on a major roadway. I guess I didn't need to be as nervous as I was with all things considered, but the nerves were there nonetheless. Long story short, the doc loved it, and he asked for the lease to be drawn up! So it looks like I have a place to set up shop, and we even set a tentative opening day of March 1, 2013.

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Purvi Patel, Dustin Bledsoe, and myself at Campus Visit Day.

After a heavy night of celebrating, I was up bright and early on Saturday to speak with prospective students at our Campus Visit Day. We could not have asked for a better turn out. I highly recommend the visit day to anyone reading who is considering the chiropractic program down here in St. Pete. This was the first time I was a part of the day, and I was completely impressed.

We began with a brief introduction of NUHS, its philosophy and the DC program, then proceeded on a campus tour. The first stop was our evaluation and management lab where Dr. Jennifer Illes spoke a little more on the curriculum, and Purvi Patel, Dustin Bledsoe and myself worked up a mock patient to show off some of the skills we've accrued throughout our education. From the technique lab we hit the always-popular anatomy lab, and finished up at the clinic. The day itself wrapped up with a question and answer period that put us students in the hot seat. We answered a lot of great questions, and did our best to give as accurate a portrayal of student life as we could. Even after all the talk of studying and practicing we had 7 applications turned in at the end of the day.

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Tailgate party with friends.

I wasn't done after the visit day. Saturday my FSU Seminoles played the USF Bulls here in Tampa at Raymond James Stadium. The visit day concluded at 12:30 p.m. and I was at a tailgate at 1:30 p.m. I had a blast catching up with old college buddies who were in town, and even more fun watching the Noles put another "W" on the board.

As, if my weekend couldn't get any better, I was invited to the Bucs game Sunday against the Washington Redskins. The Bucs didn't have the same fate as the Noles, but the game was exciting nonetheless. The Bucs went up 22-21 with about 45 seconds left. Unfortunately, the Skins used those 45 seconds to march 80 yards down the field and kick a field goal of their own to win the game 22-24. Regardless, we had a good time.

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At the Bucs game.

If anyone has any questions on Campus Visit Day, or getting going on a new practice, please let me know. Have a killer week.

Go NOLES! #3 RANKED!!

Dex

Another Tri in the Books

Well, another tri has come and gone. I can't believe my 9th trimester is already coming to an end. I have to say it was a pretty eventful tri. Clinic is a great experience and I'm amazed at how much I still continue to learn. I hope some of my stories of triumphs and failures were helpful and maybe a little entertaining. 

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Some of the 8th and 9th Trimester interns.

Finals week is a stressful time everyone. It's important to continue to prepare for your tests, and be confident that you know your material. When you know that you have your material down, it takes the anxiety down to a manageable level. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, I promise. There are only two weeks of exams, then a nice break to regroup.

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A sunset picture from the boat Friday night.

If you have a chance during the break, reach out to a local DC to see if you can shadow them. I know you probably want to be as far away from anything chiro after finals, but shadowing doctors is one of the best professional moves you can make as a student. I would try to shadow at least two doctors during each break to create a relationship with future colleagues and try to see what works and what doesn't in the real world. It's only a day off your break and it's extremely worth it.

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Sunday night's Rays game.

I hope everyone has a killer break. I had an awesome weekend, fishing Friday night (caught a 22 inch Snook, and a 40 lb. drum, no big deal), went to the WaZoo beer and food festival at the zoo on Saturday, and capped off the weekend at a Rays game on Sunday. There is always something to do down here in Florida, and with your break coming up, take advantage and recharge for another trimester. Thanks for reading; I'll be back in a few weeks.

Catch ya on the flip side,
Dex

Happy 4th

Hello, everyone. The office in our clinic was eerily quiet this morning. Everyone seems to be still waking up from his or her 4th of July holiday, and I'm definitely one of them. It's a tradition here in Florida to hit the beach on the 4th, and far be it from me to break a tradition. Tuesday night my buddies and I took off to The Friendly Tavern on Reddington Beach to sing some karaoke with the beach locals, and on Wednesday, we fried on the beach the majority of the day. I wasn't finished with the beach, so my buds and I went back out Friday after work and stayed out till Sunday morning. Fun in the sun will definitely take it out of you, but it's important to have some time to unwind and clear your mind every now and again so not to get burnt (pun intended) out.

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Sand Key Beach

Starting at National

I always get a kick out of receiving emails from prospective and current students about what's concerning them, or what they're taking from the blog, plus it gives me a direction to follow. After all, this blog is for you guys. 

This past week a prospective student sent me a killer email asking what he could expect when starting at National, how he could prepare, and how he could be sure that he and his future classmates would be eventually ready for the next step of their education. I wrote the student back, and today I'd like to paraphrase what we discussed, just in case anyone else out there has the similar question.

In my opinion, preparing for this program is more of a mental game than anything else. Too often I see students enter this program with the mentality that they are still in undergraduate. Please realize that you will be entering a doctorate program equivalent to med school and quite a bit of work and responsibility will follow. I made this mistake myself my first trimester, and I had to work twice as hard in subsequent trimesters to make up for it. So please, learn from my mistake in this regard, and work hard from the beginning. Aside from being mentally prepared for this program, I think the next best thing to do to prepare for Trimester 1 is to review basic anatomy, as it will be a large part of your 1st year and provides a solid base for further topics.

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Fellow classmate Sue studying.

The first year or phase at National is dedicated solely to basic sciences. I still don't understand why it's called "basic" sciences--microbiology, biochemistry and pathology are anything but basic--but anyway. This is done to ensure that each student is well versed in the framework of being a physician, and so that in the second phase of your education, a clinical thought process can be applied to this foundation. I know this can sound pretty intimidating, but in actuality it is very doable. Everyone here at NUHS wants you to do well, and the school takes a ton of steps to ensure that.

The Florida campus currently has a 20-student cap on its class sizes, which ensures a unique almost 1-on-1 learning environment. In addition to the smaller class sizes, there are peer tutors available (I'm your guy for radiology, shameless plug), professor office hours, and open lab times for practice. The key to having a successful education here is to allocate enough time to study every day, keep current with the material, and like what you are doing.

There will be a ton of work ahead of you, and there should be. With the title "doctor," comes a lot of prestige and even more responsibility and it's our duty to be prepared for whatever is thrown in front of us. The workload has chilled out quite a bit since making it to clinic, and looking back on it, I would do it all over again. When that first patient thanks you for helping them, it makes all those hours in the library in front of books and notes worth it.

I hope this entry was more inspiring than intimidating and sheds some light on what to expect when entering NUHS. It's not all work; there is definitely time to play also. I'll be the first to tell you that. I hope everyone has a great week.

Catch ya on the flip side,
Dex

Like We Never Left

Welcome back! That had to have been the shortest 2-week break ever. I can't complain; I had an awesome break. I had never been to California, so over the break I shipped off to San Francisco for 5 days.

Wednesday morning, my pals Joe, Alex, Meghan, and I walked off the plane in San Francisco to mountains and water surrounding us. We did everything in San Fran, from dive-bar hopping through Chinatown at night, to renting bikes and biking through Golden Gate Park. As if San Francisco wasn't enough, we also hit Sausalito, Napa, and Sonoma, all of which were a wine-tasting blur.

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I hope everyone had a great time celebrating Mother's Day. My mom is the sweetest person alive. I have no idea how I turned out the way I did (HaHa). My younger brother Zack and I washed Mom's car in the morning then took her to lunch in the afternoon. All in all it was a pretty great day, and most of all Mom loved it.

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Last trimester we had to say goodbye to our 10th tri interns Mark and Katie. It seemed so empty in the office after they left. All that changed last Monday morning when we welcomed the incoming student interns, Khong Lamvichit, Brandon Fields, Sue Bedair, and Rachel King, along with our Lombard classmates Jeff Bourguignon and Dan Johns. The office is filling up almost as fast as our patient schedules, so I'm sure this tri's blogs will be full of helpful "Do's and Don'ts" for seeing patients. 

The break was one to remember, but it's time to throw my intern hat back on and get these patients better. It's easy to fall into a somber groove, but one must always remember why we are here--to help people. So as difficult as it is to get back to the grind, pull up a chair, open up a book and get the trimester off to a good start.

Cheers,
Dex