First, which kind of elective are we talking about? It might depend on where you are going. Perhaps it is an international elective (next Feb? April?). An elective at, say, the Mission Interuniversitaire de Cooperation Des Eschanges Franco-Amercains (MICEFA) in Paris, France
? Then vous apprendez beaucoup, but definitely go see The Louvre
and/or go shopping (bring me back something nice). In my 4th year of medical school, I spent a few hours each day learning in the NICU at University of Valladolid
in Spain, but definitely took the opportunity to explore some old castles, tour Madrid, and walk around Salamanca's plazas and palaces. The medical staff there nearly required me to do this. Or, you can go somewhere to foster global health
. But where ever you go, please do represent our country well.
But let us focus domestically for a moment. If you are going to some Boston
-like place (in no particular order), definitely check out Boston/Baltimore/Cleveland/Philly/NYC/Houston's finest restaurants and pick up some souvenirs, but more importantly...
1) Be professional at all times (be safe not sorry)
2) Don't tweet about your patients (nor talk about them in the elevator)
3) Go to morning report, noon conference, or similar. Go to everything to which you are welcome.
4) Say "yes." As in yes, I'll go see that patient in the ED
, or yes, I'll get started on that consult
, or yes, I'll be happy to check with radiology about the CT results
, or yes...
you get the idea.
5) But be honest.
6) Meet people. Remember people you've met. Be friendly.
7) But not too friendly.
8) Read. Teach. Listen. Learn.
10) All of the above.
For our visiting 4th year medical student electives here at Children's National
, please apply through VSAS
, and you are welcome to stop by my office if you have any questions or just to say hello.