Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Dean's Dinner

This evening was a late one because we had a Dean's Dinner. The way the Dean's Dinners work is that my whole class goes to the Foundation House for a talk by a senior, well-established scientist, and then we get dinner too. I think I already told you about the Foundation House. It's the same place where we had our CCLCM white coat ceremony on the first day of orientation.

Anyway, considering that several of us hadn't initially wanted to go, and considering that we were grumbling about them making us go and not warning us that we HAD to go until the last minute, and considering that I spent the entire afternoon in a rush trying to get my experiment finished in time so that I could make it to the Foundation House for this #@*& talk by 5:30, I have to confess that the talk was fantastic and well worth attending, and I'm glad they made us go. The speaker is the head of the Taussig Cancer Center here at CCF, and he is an expert in bladder cancer. Besides the fact that his research is really interesting, he is a great speaker too. He was joking around with a bunch of the students and with Dean Fishleder during the talk. After the talk, we had dinner, and then he was telling us about his programs to increase minority access to cancer treatment. He had been in Los Angeles at USC before he came here, and they had started a program there to improve access. He is interested in doing the same kinds of things here as well, and he invited us to get involved.

One other really nice thing that he did was to tell us how he got to where he was. He's from Australia, and he got his MD and then his PhD. The professor that he worked for when he was a grad student is still a mentor of his, and he spoke to us quite a bit about the importance of mentorship in affecting what you do and where you go in your life. Dean Franco and Dean Fishleder talked about the importance of mentors in their lives as well, and so did Dr. Drake, who will be our anatomy professor starting in October.

Speaking of anatomy, it turns out that we will continue to have anatomy sessions during M2 and not only in M1. Doing dissections during M2 is optional as I've said, but studying anatomy with the prosections is part of the regular curriculum for both years. We will also be having optional office hours and optional online tutorials to do, so there is no shortage of help to learn anatomy. I'm pretty excited about starting, and I'll post more about anatomy class as I go along, because as far as I know, there is no other school anywhere that does anatomy the way that we do it.

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