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A Friday in the Life (and Mind) of a Vet Student a.k.a An Adrenaline Junkies Paradise

12:00 am:  Lying wide awake in bed.  Can't fall asleep.  Thoughts of tests, homework, horse shows, and Aggie football keep my mind racing.  Can't believe the Aggies lost to OSU.  Give in.  Get up.  Start cleaning the apartment and packing my bag for the weekend.  Judging a horse show on Saturday.  My personal escape from school and Aggie football.

1:00 am:  Finally feeling tired.  Fall into bed.

6:30 am:  Alarm goes off.  Get up.  Pull out pharmacology and finish the readings.  Test looming on Monday, midterms the week after, 2 horse shows in between.

8:30 am:  Just saw the clock.  Class starts in 30 minutes.  Close the books.  Shave and dress in a hurry.  Drive to school.

9:00 am:  50 minutes of clinical correlates.  Learning about physical exams on birds, lizards, and snakes.  "To perform an oral exam on a snake grab the base of the head." WHAT?????  I am terrified of snakes.

9:45 am:  Class gets out 5 minutes early.  I have 15 minutes to sprint to the computer lab and print off notes for afternoon classes.  Discovered in midnight rummaging that I have run out of ink.  Always something.  Wait, now the school printer is jammed.  Go to examine the printer with another student, 5 minutes until class starts.  We diagnose and remove the paper.  Nothing.  Found another piece of paper, remove, nothing.  Our 2 years of veterinary medicine are no match when trying to triage a printer.  Time to get back to class.

10:00 am:  Pharmacology, clicker questions.  Glad I finished my readings as these are for a grade.  Buzz, my phone vibrates.  Check the email.  I forgot that my article was due to the national online vet student publication, part of the joy of holding a national committee chairmanship.  No sweat, already finished just needed to forward it on, now if I can only pull it off my iPhone…..wait….another email, I have to write the blog you are reading by Monday.  Boy this day is getting out of hand in a hurry.  Wait, what did the prof say?  Did that drug relax or constrict the external urethral sphincter?

10:50 am:  Class over, run to the other computer lab in the basement.  Got to print of these notes, I will have no time at lunch.  Why is the computer so slow to load?  Okay, at least this printer works.  Got my notes.  Rush back to class.

11:00 am:  Whisk into class right before the pathology professor dims the lights.  We are learning about liver pathology today.  Coagulative necrosis, liquifactive necrosis, caseous necrosis, okay I have heard this before.  Things are quiet for this hour, and I can focus on the material.

12:00 pm:  Off to the apartment, I am glad I only live 2 miles from the school.  Grab a quick lunch.  Review the rulebook for the show that I am judging tomorrow east of Dallas.  Wait….do I have a stop watch and whistle…..

12:30 pm:  Going to the sporting goods store.  Got my whistle and stop watch and headed back to class.  Where did all of this traffic come from?  Have to make it back for correlates lab.

1:00 pm:  Arrive in the basement of the small animal clinic, a little out of breath, but I made it.  Going to practice physical exams, injections, feeding tube placements, and blood draws on pigeons and turtles.  At least I am getting my hands on some real live animals.  This is what it is all about.

2:30 pm:  Taking a rectal temperature on a turtle.  I would have never guessed I would be taking a temperature on a turtle, but that is the joy of vet school.  Turtle wiggles and defecates on me.  Another joy of vet school.

3:00 pm:  Out of class for the day, WHOOP!  Back to the computer for the third time of the day.  Finish printing off stuff for the horse show tomorrow.  Head to the store for a new writing pad.

4:00 pm:  Pack my bag, wife isn't home yet.  Grab the computer, sit on the couch and pound out this lovely piece of work you are now enjoying.

(Hopefully the rest of the day goes as follows, but as you can tell, anything can happen in the day of a vet student.)

5:30 pm:  Throw the bags in the truck and head towards Dallas.  My wife has graciously offered to drive so I can study for my Monday pharmacology test.  She is the greatest.

8:30 pm:  Arrive at the in-laws, and go out to eat.  I finally start to relax.  Hope nothing else comes up today, but I am ready for anything.

Did I mention that I am fighting a head cold?

This is probably the weirdest blog post that you have ever read.  When I received the reminder e-mail earlier today to write my entry by Monday, I figured I would try something a little different.  Veterinary school is one of the most intense, fun, frustrating, and gratifying experiences.  As students, we joke that it is a marathon at a sprint pace.  For that reason, I wanted to give you a peek into my day.

My name is Joe, and I am a second year veterinary student from Canyon, TX.  I am married to a wonderful woman that I met in class as an undergrad at Texas A&M.  We have been married almost a year and a half.  I grew up showing horses, and I hope to have an equine practice.  With that said, I do love dogs and other animals as well.  Each species has its own challenges and rewards, and it is all fun.  Most of all though, I am just focused on getting through the next 2 ½ years to graduation.

My life is not all about vet school.  Obviously, I am married, and I thoroughly enjoy spending time with my wife.  I am one of a few married vet students.  I don't know how I could possibly handle vet school and the dating scene all at the same time.  My wife and I are both huge sports fans.  We enjoy, although after the A&M/OSU game, that terminology may not hold true, watching and attending games.  We have tickets to all home football and basketball games.  That is our little escape from school and work.  I firmly believe that every student needs to have some sort of an outlet.

In reference to that horse show I kept talking about, I am an AQHA approved judge.  This weekend will be my first AQHA approved show, and so I have been juggling school and preparing for the show.  Judging keeps me "in" the horse world even though I am not showing while in school.  It also gives me a way to earn a little money on the side.

Lastly, I am the chairman of the Government Affairs Committee of the Student AVMA, a national organization of veterinary students.  Like I needed another thing to do, but I am a glutton for punishment.  Just another piece of my wild and crazy life as a student, but I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world.

Thanks and Gig'em,