Race Director?

Posted: May 8, 2011 in Random, School

5K Race Director

Huh, that’s not something I ever thought I would add to my résumé. As of last Sunday (5/1) I directed my second 5K. It was a modestly sized event; there were about 50 runners, and 100+ people including volunteers and family. For me it has been one of the greatest experiences of my life, all the effort and stress that goes into an event is totally worth it, when people start thanking you for a great event as they leave the course.

Hundreds of safety pins, bibs, bags, plastic cups, bagels, and what not. Organizing such an event takes a ton of hard work and can’t be accomplished without help. My team this year was unbelievable, raising hundreds of dollars from sponsors, putting up hundreds of posters, passing out brochures and flyers. Organizing such a large event is a great way to learn the true value of team work.

Next year will be my last year as the race director, and I’m not looking forward to it. Hopefully I’ll be able to organize other races, perhaps bigger races 10Ks and beyond! If any one else is interested in organizing a race, and would like some pointers and what not feel free to contact me!

As a bit of a side note, I’m hoping to run a few races myself later on this summer and into the fall.

Midnight mullings #1

Posted: April 26, 2011 in Issues, Midnight

I’m thinking about returning this blog back to its roots and including some shorter reflection pieces, and little tidbits I find interesting.  What brings this on? To be 100% honest I’m not entirely sure. Its about 12:30AM here and I felt like writing.

Our generation is an interesting one, to say the least. We thrive on and consume everything in monstrous quantities. When is enough, enough? Where do we have to draw the line? At some point we will all wake up and see. See, what we have done to our physical and emotional health, our planet, our future generations.

I think it its this inability of ours to limit ourselves; that is not only our greatest strength, but also our greatest weakness. We are slowly losing the value of anything meaningful. Many of us have lost the value of a meaningful relationship. We have to schedule everything. We schedule that which must be scheduled (work, school, meetings, etc.) and that which should be spontaneous (family and friends).

We are overly simulated, it saddens me to see many of my friends have lost the value of a conversation. Think about it when was the last time you were shooting the breeze with some friends. Have we forgotten how to slow down? Are we missing the roses?

I plan to hopefully expand on this topic in a later post.  For now I want to hear your thoughts.

It’s Over

Posted: January 30, 2011 in School

It took a little bit over 5 hours; it was interesting to see how months of training and preparation ended in a matter of hours. I’m talking about my MCAT. The exam was a very anticlimactic event, I woke around 8 AM, and immediately it hit me, the nervousness started kicking in and I tried to ward it off by looking at flashcards. I ate breakfast and lunch before heading to the testing center.

The experience was fairly normal, as expected. I sat in the waiting area with one of my close friends while waiting for them to allow me to begin. I started at around 12:45 PM. The test was just that a test and legal guidelines prevent me from talking about it. It was difficult, some parts were weird, and usually I have a pretty good idea as to how I did after taking an exam, but nothing after this.

I either did good, or really bad. I’m hoping that I did well. I would really like to take this post to thank all of the people who have supported me through this and dealt with my cranky personality during these few months. More importantly I’d like to apologize to all those that I’ve neglected for the past few months.

Other updates, we’re looking for writers at Pre-Med Hell.

Thanks for reading guys.

 

Signing out,

Mohammad

 

Two weeks ago I had the opportunity to complete the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Volunteer training through my school. I thought that this was a great opportunity for me to learn about how disaster relief was managed and how the Red Cross worked. We learned many interesting things through the course of the day such as the criteria required for a shelter to be opened, or how shelter locations are determined.

For me the most interesting part was learning about how shelters are managed and the interesting problems that arise while a shelter is operating, the social sensitivities that must be observed, and the effort and attention to detail that goes into these affairs.

As a new volunteer once my background check finishes, I will most likely be involved in basic tasks such as registration, which I don’t mind at all. I think it’s a great idea for people to take this course. The course lasts about 3 hours and at the end you will be a certified disaster relief volunteer. Usually the reserve corps isn’t mobilized unless there is a large scale disaster, and only the closest reserve corps are mobilized first.

The Red Cross pays great attention to ensuring that all their volunteers receive the same level of training so that they can work together seamlessly in a large scale crisis. An interesting fact that we learned was that the most common crisis the Red Cross responds to is the common house fire, and in most cities high rise fires are the most common reasons for opening shelters.

I think that everyone should try to take this short class and become a certified disaster relief volunteer. It’s easy, and you will be prepared to assist on a short notice.

 

The Gift that Keeps Giving

Posted: January 15, 2011 in Random

It’s that time of the year again, my birthday is coming up and people keep asking what I want. This year I want to take the time to say, that I’ve had the privilege of growing up and living a fairly good life, and that there are many others that haven’t had that opportunity. So this year I would like you to refrain from giving me anything, but this year please pick any charitable project that you wish and donate something to them. I have a few favorites that I’ll outline below (in no particular order) but I leave the choice to you.

LIVESTRONG – this is Lance Armstrong’s charity that helps to support cancer research and victims. It’s a phenomenal charity that has been doing fantastic work.

charity: water – this is another amazing charity that is doing great work all over the world bringing clean water to underdeveloped nations and impoverished areas.

Donor’s Choose – this charity helps raise money for supplies in classrooms that are underfunded all over the country, I’ve seen some great things happen through it.

Alex’s Lemonade Stand – this is really a tear-jerking story of a girl who was diagnosed with cancer and decided to start a lemonade stand to raise money for research. She has since passed away but the charity continues to do fantastic work.

If you still insist on giving me something a Kiva gift card would be amazing, Kiva is a site were one can make microloans to rising entrepreneurs in third world countries and help them run their businesses, you can see my Kiva profile here.

Happy giving! I hope you guys enjoyed your holidays and are enjoying school/work.

Spring 2011! 3 Semesters Left.

Posted: January 2, 2011 in School

The beginning of this semester in a week or so will mark the start of my 6th semester in college, meaning that I will only need to complete this plus 2 more to finish. In short this time next year will be the start of my last semester of undergraduate education. So lets see how it breaks down”

Spring 2011 Schedule
BCHM 365 – Intermediary Metabolism
BIOL 372 – Genomics and Bioinformatics
PHYS 398 – Physics Research
BIOL 342 – BMB Cell Biology Laboratory
CHEM 295 – Chemistry Teaching
BIOL 229 – Biostatistics
HUMN 250 – The Contemporary World
PSYC 210 – Social Psychology

In addition to this the usual stuff, shadowing, research, volunteering, AMSA president-ing, etc.

Also I take the behemoth of standardized testing the MCAT in a few weeks, and apply to be interviewed by the Health Science Recommendation Committee (HSRC)…this will be fun.

2011

Posted: January 1, 2011 in Random

It’s a new year, and every year it is important to be better than the year before. This year I’m hoping to do better than last year on my resolutions. Everyone says that you should write your resolutions because that makes you more likely to do them; so here it goes, I have included the goal and how I plan on accomplishing it.

  1. Write 1 post every week (Project52)
    • Utilizing the project52 program and by setting aside time for myself to write posts every week.
  2. Minimize my procrastination
    • By creating and utilizing a schedule/to-do list and following it. Beginning assigned tasks within 24 hours of when they are assigned and laying out a concrete plan to finish them at least 72 hours before they are due.
  3. Improve my interviewing skills
    • By participating in mock interviews (in person and over skype) and placing myself into more public speaking opportunities and situations where I am forced to interact with unfamiliar people.
  4. Improving my fitness and overall health
    • By scheduling time to go to they gym every week and laying out a plan to use that time every week.
    • Also by training for and hopefully running some road races (5k,10K, etc)
      • This will be accomplished by using the many training plans available online
    • By improving my diet
      • This will be accomplished by actively monitoring my food intake, minimizing fast food, and making an active effort to eat less junk food.
  5. Devote more time to and develop Pre-Med Hell
    • I started this site almost one year ago exactly, and it has far surpassed my expectations so far, in 2011, I plan on actively instituting some sort of publishing schedule to make posts more regular, and to recruit more writers.
    • I also plan on working with our current staff to brain storm ideas to increase publicity and traffic. The goal will be to double traffic, and followers (twitter/facebook)
      • This will be done in a multitude of ways, that will be determined after an initial discussion with the other writers.
  6. Become more active in my current research
    • I plan on doing this by setting aside a hard schedule for when to do research, and set aside specific tasks to finish during those designated time slots.
    • My specific goals with my current research is to publish and present by the end of the semester ideally.
  7. Participate in summer research
    • This is an on going process and will be done by me submitting my applications for various programs that I am interested in well ahead of time, I plan on finishing and submitting these applications by the 14th of February.
  8. Become more consistent with my volunteering
    • Currently I have 223 hours of volunteering in a level one trauma center, and I plan on maintaining my 4 hours/week schedule through 2011.
    • I also would like to expand my non medical volunteering so far I have volunteered at two separate Chicago marathons, organized a 5K, and am assisting with another this year. My goal is to continue to expand and grow my non medical volunteering to at least 1 event per month.
  9. Follow up on my shadowing
    • I plan on doing this by continuing to keep contact with physicians that I have shadowed in the past and continuing to shadow them.
  10. Finish my personal statement
    • My goal is to finish this by the end of May, this includes having it proofread and edited. I will set aside 1-2 hours per week to work on this.

That’s pretty much all for this year. Lets hope for a better 2011 than 2010.