By Courtney Hughes
Hello everyone! My name is Courtney Hughes and I am a third-year veterinary student at Michigan State University. In a couple of months, I start my clinical rotations. I cannot wait. Here is a typical day in my life:
My FIRST alarm goes off and I immediately shut it off. The next 3 are back up alarms that fire off and the last one gets me out of bed. I dress in scrubs, make a large cup of coffee, and grab breakfast to go. I feed my almost 1-year old Holland lop bunny, Nova, and head out to seize the day.
I drive to school and park with the rest of the clinical staff and clinical students. It is a lot closer to the hospital and school this year then where we parked as 1st and 2nd years.
Lecture begins everyday promptly at 8:00 am. For the first half of the semester, it has been theriogenology but now we are transitioning into the urinary portion of the course. Our lectures run 50 minutes in length each. Your day can really get a jump start when your first lecture involves videos on canine breeding!
A quick 10-minute break is over too soon, and the next lecture begins. They differ and can include neurology/ophthalmology, dermatology/hematology/oncology, surgery, endocrine, or digestive disease courses. Today, we have endocrine which I thoroughly enjoy because its finally teaching me how to manage diseases that are common in the veterinary field!
We are allowed a 20-minute break after our second lecture. The next two hours consist of more of the same thing. We have two dermatology exams coming up, so I have been paying close attention to what is being emphasized in class. For the past 4 hours, we have been in the same seats and same lecture hall, which takes a toll on all of us students.
Lunch time! This generally includes a meeting or club event as I serve on a multitude of committees, executive boards, and as a class representative. Some days like today I am lucky, and attend an event for the free lunch, and knowledge of course!
Laboratory sessions are after lunch. I head to surgery lab which is fun this semester because it involves real spays and neuters. It is great working on live patients! This week we are also learning surgical procedures in ophthalmology such as how to perform an enucleation.
I have picked up a shift as a receiving student in the small animal intensive care unit. As I walk in, I notice five cases have all just came in at once and I immediately go to triage. My first case of the night is a young cat who just ate a sewing needle attached to string. Off to surgery we go! It is hard work but my time in the ICU is always very rewarding and never boring.
I am home and I start thinking about all the work I have piling up and the quiz I have tomorrow. Time to start studying. Studying includes re-watching lectures and writing out notes in my sketch book. The tv is on low volume or mute in the background. My bunny tries to distract me by chewing on things she is not supposed to.
I am a night owl. Tonight, I get a lot of my work done and am up late. Finally, I force myself to go to sleep after falling asleep on top of my notes. Six hours later, I’m shutting off the first, very annoying alarm again.
I hope that gives you a small insight into a typical day in my life. If you’re interested in keeping up with the rest of my veterinary journey, you can follow me @dogtorcourt on Instagram or Facebook!