Congratulations – you’re going to medical school! You’re probably very excited to pack up and get going – but what do you need to bring? There are plenty of obvious things which you don’t need me to remind you about, but here are five things I think are super useful to bring to medical school.
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Make sure you have a laptop! It doesn’t have to be a particularly fancy one, just something that can handle writing an essay and using the internet will do fine! What is important to accompany that is an external hard drive – you can use this to back up all your notes and essays so that if something happens to your laptop your stuff is safe. Be sure to back up your stuff regularly – you’ll be so glad you did if things go wrong!
Some university halls already have these but if not I highly recommend getting one, they are so useful! You can practice drawing out diagrams for difficult concepts; you can brainstorm on them; plan your day; organise revision – it’s incredibly useful and doesn’t waste paper unnecessarily.
Opinions differ on when you need this but I would recommend getting it early on. It has great summaries of pretty much every condition you’ll need to know for your exams – and in the pre-clinical years it’s really helpful for PBL in particular.
Make sure you have a couple of outfits packed which you could wear to placement in hospitals or general practice. You don’t have to have a whole wardrobe, just a couple of pieces you can mix and match that look smart.
A good idea is just to copy the outfit vibes of the junior doctors you saw on your work experience. You can always buy more outfits when you’re at uni but it’s good to come prepared.
This is an absolute lifesaver. You’ll need it in the three hour anatomy lecture you can’t pay attention in as well as on a night out to help you get home – and wait until you have your first on call shift, you’ll definitely want it then!
A portable charger is not expensive and is so handy to have on you, we are all glued to our phones and it can be a real hassle when it dies – especially when you’re just starting out at med school. You will want to keep it charged for when you get lost and need to use Google maps!
Words: Ruari McGowan
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