Vet Student Blog 3 - Oct 18

Educating the Veterinary Students of Tomorrow



Spinning Plates...

So with this post I thought I’d go with a little bit of a change of scenery from

vet school applications and talk a bit more about my day to day vet school life.

Firstly, as many of you will be aware of either through witnessing my stress induced moments of panic wondering how I’m going to get through my ‘To-Do List’ or by trying to organise meeting up with me, I became a pretty busy person this year! As it’s reputation rightly suggests, Veterinary Science is an incredibly intense and time consuming course with about 30 teaching hours per week, a vast amount of content to get through and placements to plan, yet I’ve recently been determined that’s not going to stop me from getting as much extracurricular experience out of being a university student as possible!

It’s safe to say that in first year I was pretty cautious with my time, particularly after taking three years to get my A level grades right for vet school I was constantly scared of failing, hence activities were limited to 2 orchestra rehearsals per week-there’s no way I could have gone a year without my music! Second year for me was fairly similar, with the addition of a flute student. However, this year I have really pushed myself an set myself one of the biggest time consuming challenges I could possibly have managed.

This year, the University of Liverpool’s very own ‘Vet Band’ (or Appugiatura to give its full name) was born thanks to a lot of stress and hard work over the summer from myself and the two incredible girls who also for the committee. I could spend ages singing their praises but I’ll get straight to the point: as much as I love our tiny band and have thoroughly enjoyed the challenges associated, it is a lot of work! I’ve suddenly found myself having to organise meetings, organise performances, sorting music, learning to conduct and then there’s the actual rehearsal time on top of that- all of this takes time, time which arguably I don’t have!

How do you find time? This has to be the question I’ve been asked most often over the last couple of months when people learn I’m juggling my degree, the band, other rehearsals, and writing articles for the student newspaper and I’m never quite sure how to respond! Of course, I have just as many timetable hours as every other vet student (which is a lot!) and although I always manage to get through my ‘To Do Lists’, it certainly is a challenge! But the point is it’s do-able, so here are my top 5 tips for metaphorically spinning plates!

Stay organised

Seems like an easily said response, right? It is also easily achievable though! All it takes is a little bit of forward planning, some thought and an action plan- I do this through To-Do Lists so I don’t forget anything important!

Make use of dead time

This is one that takes a bit of getting used to! Firstly, by ‘dead time’ I mean the 10 minute breaks between lectures, the bus journeys, the time you spend waiting for your lecturer to start and similar situations! For me, this is more than enough time to file my lecture notes, organise things for the next band rehearsal and write blog posts and articles. It may not seem worth it because it’s only ten minutes, but all those minutes add up!

Ask for help

There is absolutely no shame in asking for help! Vets do it all the time and it’s much better for everyone than struggling along on your own. Your friends, family and even staff members will be happy to help, all you need to do is ask!

Get plenty of sleep

This one is absolutely essential! Aim for 8 hours each night at least, it’s no use trying to get things done if your eyes are heavy!

Look after yourself

You are very very important and deserve time spend on you! Remember when you’re trying to get hints done to set aside some ‘you time’- read your favourite book, pick up an instrument or curl up on the sofa with a film. You’ve earned it!