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Every major has its ups and downs. They each entail various courses, commitments and experiences. With such diverse areas of study to choose from, considering the components of each one is crucial. Some paths involve significant coursework, while others involve early exposure to a future work opportunity. Currently, I have chosen to pursue a pre-medical pathway. Even though I am only a sophomore, I have learned to adapt to a different lifestyle that strengthens my education, and physical and mental health. Here are some weekly activities I partake in as a premedical student.

Morning Routine

Typically, my mornings begin around 7:30. I run through my morning routine to freshen up for the day. Most mornings, I try to incorporate a workout to keep up with my physical and mental health. Whether it is a quick yoga session or strength workout, I always find time to get active during the day. After taking a shower, I spend some time focusing on self-care. Depending on how much time I have, I will either do a face mask, journal or read for a few minutes. Then, I pick out my outfit for the day ahead and get ready.

Classes

Although I prefer to have class in the mornings, a majority of my classes have been during the afternoon. Most days of the week, the middle of my day is spent attending all my classes. These can range from biology and physics to organic chemistry and honors seminars. On days that I have classes in the morning, I spend my afternoons performing research in a psychology lab. This allows me to strengthen my basic science techniques as a premedical student. 

Work

After I am finished with my classes for the day, my focus shifts to my work schedule. I spend 4 days of the week working two jobs. Personally, I enjoy teaching and working with kids, so both of my jobs involve tutoring a wide range of students in math, reading and science. One of my tutoring jobs is online, so I work with my students from the convenience of my apartment. My other tutoring job is at a center that I actually used to attend as a child. I devote about 15 hours a week to my work schedule. 

Volunteer

Giving back to the community is something that I really enjoy taking part in. In a typical week, I make time to volunteer at least 3 days. Some of the places that I rotate between are the local food bank, the hospital and the COVID vaccine clinic. These are the three primary organizations that I devote most of my time to because I resonate with their goals. Finding volunteer opportunities in areas that you are passionate about make them that much more meaningful and allow you to learn more about your areas of interest.

Extracurriculars

Although my schedule seems quite packed as it is, life as a premedical student places a heavy emphasis on being involved on campus. With numerous organizations to choose from, finding a select few that align with your interests are an integral part of the premedical lifestyle. Personally, I am involved in several organizations on campus, but there are a select few that I focus most of my attention on. These include my premedical and service co-ed fraternities. In my premedical fraternity, I am highly involved and have served as chair on multiple committees. Through my service organization, I broaden my scope to volunteer opportunities and strengthen my leadership skills.

Night Routine

Most evenings, I make it back home around 7 or 8. I take some time for myself before I start my homework. I make myself some dinner and chat with my roommate for a short amount of time. Talking about my day helps me destress from all of its happenings. I shift my focus to my homework once I have had time to relax. Since I have to start my work later, I leave my phone on silent to maximize my productivity. I have found that leaving your phone in another area of the room can help to prevent it from distracting you. I always end my night with my daily self-care routine to freshen up for the night. 

Although my schedule may seem jam-packed as it is, I still find time to keep up with my social life. It is important to incorporate a balance between your responsibilities and your mental health. For me, finding time to destress with friends during the week is difficult, so I tend to stick to grabbing a quick bite or working out with them. Over the weekends, I set aside more time to relax, catch up on a show and do something fun with my friends. The key to maintaining such a busy schedule is balance. Without having a healthy balance between the different components of your lifestyle, it can be easy to lose sight of your ultimate goals.

Dharani Ramaiah is sophomore at the University of Kentucky majoring in Biology and minoring in Neuroscience. During her spare time, Dharani loves working out, reading, and planning outings with her friends. In the future, she hopes to become a physician to make a difference in and beyond her community. Her instagram is @dharani_ramaiah.
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