It finally occurred to me today as I listened to some of peers lament the one B they got this year that ruined that 4.0 exactly what I piece of advice I would offer for incoming PA students. Our class was told the exact same thing and no one listened. I will now continue that tradition and impart my new wisdom on the class of 2019 and it will fall on deaf ears. Perhaps it won’t fall on deaf ears but the response will be “right but I need to make A’s. I have always made A’s.” I’m one of the two students in our class with Art degrees. Yes, I have a bachelors degree in fine Art with a concentration in photography and I’m in PA school and I’m going to succeed. Mind blown. I make good grades but I do not always make A’s. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t jealous of every one of my peers with straight A’s but I am aware that making straight A’s on every exam is just not my strength. It never will be and that is okay. I shouldn’t sell myself quite that short I suppose. I have made good grades. However, the bread and butter of medical training for me is working with patients and having conversations. I spent my undergraduate years learning to observe, listen and critically think through what is presented before me in a vast array of different contexts.  My strengths are doing just that with people, not taking exams or studying. I am beyond excited to begin using those strengths next year. My point that I hope the class of 2019 will take away is that maybe you won’t be ace every exam next year. Maybe you will be but SP exams will give you sweaty palms and bring nervous to a whole new level. Regardless, you will all have different strengths and you will find them. Calm down and wait for it!

-Mollie

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