For the last couple of months I have been doing fieldwork in the New Forest – a National Park in my home county of Hampshire. The New Forest was previously sampled by the Natural History Museum Soil Biodiversity Group during the New Forest Qualitative Inventory in 2010 and I have been revisiting some of the sites and also new ones. The aim of my sampling is to collect soil and leaf litter invertebrates, and soil cores for microbial analysis in six different land uses which correspond to those used in the PREDICTS project: mature secondary vegetation, immature secondary vegetation (heathland), plantation forest, grassland, cropland and urban areas.
Wahoo I am halfway through medical school, officially! We had our ICSM Class of 2019 Halfway Dinner on my birthday (15th October if you need to put in diary for next year).
It was such a lovely evening, we had the whole year group come down to a hotel in London. Everyone looked so good in black tie, and the venue was so well decorated! It was all organised by a committee of people in our year group, and I can’t believe what they managed to pull off.
Evening started off with a drinks reception. It was so bizarre seeing the whole year together in black tie… like a REALLY formal lecture.
This final #throwbackthursday looks back to the interview and application process for my PhD, I can hardly believe that is was two years ago and I am now a third year! #gulp
Science Uncovered is part of European Researchers’ Night, and is a free annual festival of science held at various institutions across the UK giving the public the opportunity to discover rare items from the Museum collections, meet experts and take part in interactive science stations, debates and behind-the-scenes tours.
What firm are you on? How’s placement? Where are you at? The medics I know keep asking all these questions and leaving the house really early dressed smartly, but what actually are clinical attachments?
Year 3 is clinical, with attachments (‘firms’) in hospitals across West London. They are called ‘firms’ from back in the old days when you would be with the same medical team for a while and became like a little family. Firm means the group you are with, and the name seems to have stuck (we like using technical terms to confuse non-medics).
Hospital placements at Imperial covered a lot wider area than I expected- from Paddington (St.
So, final year, what even is that? And how did I get there?
At Imperial Medicine (MBBS/BSc) is a 6 year course:
Years 1&2 are pre-clinical years, learning how the body works and all the science behind diseases. Lectures run 9-5pm pretty much every day, with practicals, PBL, Communication sessions and anatomy mixed in. Practicals varied from looking down a microscope at your own blood, to drinking 2 cans of energy drink and measuring your observations whilst doing 10 minutes on an exercise bike! PBL (problem based learning) sessions were group sessions tackling clinical presentations (e.g. a man with shortness of breath just returned from LA on a long-haul flight) and teaching each other relevant information.
“Hi, I’m Franz. What’s your name?” 29/09/15
“Which lecture room do we have today?” 12/10/15
“Here’s your first summative assignment.” 03/11/15
“1st term’s over! Merry Christmas and a happy new year!” 18/12/15
“Welcome back. How were your holidays?” 11/01/16
“This term’s tough. More assignments and labs!” 15/02/16
“Yeah, I’m going home for Easter.” 23/03/16
“How are exam preparations coming along?” 25/04/16
“The first exam actually went pretty well.” 29/04/16
“I’m really glad they’re over.” 01/06/16
“Congratulations on passing the year. See you in the 2nd.” 19/07/16
I finished my 1st year at Imperial several months ago, and it truly went by too fast.
Today I look back at my volunteer work sorting leaf litter samples with the Natural History Museum Soil Biodiversity Group.
It’s not long until term starts again, so I thought I would write a couple of posts for the new freshers to prepare you about what to expect during your first few weeks and months. It is a daunting and exciting time, so relax and enjoy it and remember if we all made it then you can too!
My top tips:
- Where to work: Find somewhere you can work well- try a public library or college computer room. If you do like the library get there early- it gets very busy and warm
- Make friends with hall seniors: they can be a great source of support and advice as they understand life at Imperial and have been around longer than you!