secondary-school-student

My city is in chaos.
This is what’s happening to Hong Kong right this minute.




It is difficult for me to put into words, but simply put, University students started a class boycott movement demanding democracy and universal suffrage from the Hong Kong and Chinese Government this week, and the movement has escalated into citizens occupying Government Square and now, a main road leading into Hong Kong’s central hub.

Most protesters are younger generation Hong Kongers, including university students and even secondary school students. The leader of the student movement himself is barely even old enough to drive a car. 
The movement began peacefully with citizens merely sitting quietly and occupying a public space in a silent protest on Friday night. 

Then at 7:00 in the morning the next day, policemen stormed into the public square and began clearing out the area by force, dragging youngsters out violently, injuring many of them. Policemen have also been witnessed to beating youngsters without reason, and using high-concentration, anti-riot pepperspray on civilians who are merely attempting to protect themselves. No civilian put up any sort of fight or attempt at assaulting the police as far as i know,
(Police justified clearing out the area with the reason that protesters are holding illegal meetings in a public space.)


(Protesting civilians who remained on the streets overnight are wearing plastic wraps and raincoats under 30 degree weather in an attempt to protect themselves should the police utilize peppersprays again.)

The movement escalated again tonight when the protesters (now 4 times the size of the student movement the previous week) occupied a main road leading to the central hub of Hong Kong.

The police barricaded the roads and attempted to stop more people from joining the crowd this whole afternoon, but the peaceful crowd remained persistent and would not leave the area even after the police issued verbal warnings. (I emphasize “peaceful”, because protesters continued to be orderly and did not display any forms of aggression. They even cleared out a path for cars to pass the area, something the police didn’t even bother to do.)

At around 6:00, the police began using peppersprays on civilians again, this time high-powered ones that came in tanks instead of in bottles. Our people continued to shield themselves with umbrellas, but the umbrellas were also soon snatched away by the police. Live feed videos have also confirmed that police have been misusing peppersprays by firing them at close proximity, and also not giving any sort of verbal warnings before firing.

Video of a policeman firing at an elderly man at point-blank range:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=0r4jKkcDA7E

Yet again, protesters remained, and at 7:00, armed forces were sent into the crowd. They began firing tear gas capsules INTO the crowds and even INTO First-aid stations. The rounds came every few minutes and i counted at least 5 capsules being fired in a 10-minute period according to the live feeds. 

at least 30,000 people continue to stand their ground right this second, more armed policemen are being sent in, and news is that these police are ordered to use guns (loaded with plastic bullets) on civilians if protesters continue to remain. 

I fear for the people because policemen are not what they used to be anymore. These “police” who should be protecting us are now private armies for the government. I am watching my city die. It’s a terrifying feeling. If the police feel they are justified to use force on innocent civilians, tonight could end up in another massacre just like that of the Tian An Men June Fourth Massacre in 1989. 


And at this point I am too emotional to say anything else except that we need your prayers and your support. Please spread this out, people all over the world need to see what is happening right now. 

LIVE FEED OF THE CURRENT SITUATION:
http://sonoapp.net/stream/u/MeeJTV

I get a ton of messages basically asking the same question: How do I make myself the best applicant to medical school I can be?

1. Most imporantly: Do everything in your power to be a well rounded applicant
- Pick a major your interested, does NOT have to be a science major!

– Just because you want to be a doctor or work in healthcare doesn’t mean only science topics interest you! You can be an art major and still take all the courses required for premed. Ex. I did anthropology and Psychology, I have premed friend who were engineering and music majors. 

- Volunteer in the community with organizations that you are passionate about, NOT just ones that look good on an application

– These should be diverse but should be things you are passionate about, if you get more out of planting trees than volunteering in a hospital gift shop, thats okay! Volunteer in different groups and organizations, some should be medically related but they don’t all have to be! Showing a commitment to life long service doesn’t just mean in medicine. 

- Shadow: different fields of medicine and not just doctors, look into dentistry, nursing, psychology, social work –> figure out what type of healthcare provider you want to be. Contacting people may seem scary but it never hurts to ask, look for positions available, write them an email talking about the strengths and skills you have, maybe you don’t have a lot of experience but you can still be a fast learner and hard worker! 

- Research: if this seems boring to you, find someone researching something you’re interested in so you will actually enjoy it! I appreciated the results of research but always thought working in it would be boring and it was just another thing I had to do to put on my application. I was very WRONG! I found something lab researching a topic I was interested and it consumed me, I now have a greater understanding research and how fun it can be exploring a hypothesis! 

- Extracurricular: again do what your are passionate about, everything does not have to be about medicine, different life experiences teach you different life lessons. I learned different things from being VP of my Doctor Who club vs.  in my medical internship vs. being a ski instructor! 

- Study hard: create study groups, find tutors or be a tutor! If you are struggling in a class, study groups are shown to be a very effective way of studying, or spend the money on getting a tutor because it will be worth it in the end. When you are struggling in a class, especially a premed class, it can be a good time to reflect on whether this is a career for you. Being a doctor means a lifetime of learning, school, and tests. Seriously look into other career you might be interested in, its okay to change your mind about medical school, there are other careers in medicine, or other professions you might enjoy more. Everything in life takes hard work, its finding what you can endlessly work hard for. General Chemistry made me seriously look at whether of not this was the right path for me. After some serious self reflection, there was nothing else I could work this hard for. 

- Time management: Managing work, school, social life and everything else can be hard, don’t take on too much, figure out your limits, remember to ask for help when you need it and to take care of yourself. If you push yourself too hard you will break, we are not invincible. Its okay to say no, to take time for yourself!

Keep a detailed resume of all your actives, exact dates of when they started and ended, who to contact about them and a detailed summary of what you did and what you learned form your experiences! This will help you immensely when filling out your AMCAS 

If your application isn’t perfect or not very well rounded (lacking in areas), I highly recommend taking time off to fill those gaps. The biggest reason people who apply straight out of college don’t get in, even with great applications is maturity level. You may think, I am adult, I am mature! But just because you can act professionally doesn’t mean you are mature. The maturity they are looking for is achieved through life experiences. Many college kids really haven’t had much life experiences other that college, what adversities have you overcome, do you even really know who you are yet outside of your college experience. 

I have take two years off, even though I had a pretty good application before, it has only become stronger and I have lived life, I thought I knew who I was before but I really had explored that until I was out of college on my own.   

Optional: Take time off before applying (Recommended)
- Gaining more life experiences: Maybe move to a new place or Travel 

- Get a Masters Degree: this can help boost your GPA if it is not competitive 

- Work: doesn’t have to be in medicine but if you lack hand-on patient experiences than this is great opportunity to chance that! If you have never worked a job, than I highly recommend taking time off and working for a living to experience what its like to pay your own bills

- Learn about who you are: this will help you appear more mature when interviewing and make you more confident 

The Process of Applying 

- Competitive MCAT Score: you don’t have to pay for a course, do what works best for you. I believe the examkracker books were most helpful, Kaplan tend to have the hardest BS and PS practice test but Examkrackers is the best for VR. If you don’t do well the first time, figure out what went wrong and retake it! Learn from this experience because your future in medicine will require many more standardized tests so figuring out how to best prepare for them now will help you in the future! 

- Picking Medical Schools: pick 15 schools, have a few reach schools and a few back up school and then the rest ones you can reasonably get into. Take into account their curriculums, locations and if you are thinking about a competitive speciality look at the what residencies their students are matching! If you are interested in research, or rural care, looks at schools that over special programs for these paths. 

- Letters of Rec/Committee Letter: hopefully in college you made meaningful relationships with professors you had (you should definitely do this!), you will need a science class professor letter of rec, if you did research you will need one from your PI, if you worked with a doctor for an extended period ask them to write you one or if you worked with a volunteer organization for a long period.  Write them a nice letter in why you are asking them, provide them with your resume and all the information they need to know as well as where to send it to. Its okay to send emails reminding them to write it, they are busy people and reminding them shows it is important to you. Also figure out if your school offers a committee letter and be diligent about keeping up on every thing you need to do for it. 

Primary Application AMCAS

- Personal statement- make it personal, talk about experiences that have lead you hear today, but most importantly what you learned from them. This is about you, WHY YOU? vs. everybody else who is applying. This is a Persuasive essay! 

- Academic Record- make sure to request you transcripts to be sent as soon as possible so AMCAS can verify them quickly 

- 15 Activities - out of everything you have done you have to pick the 15 most important activities you have done and briefly talk about them. Then you get to pick three that were most important 

Secondaries 

- Strong Essays- These are your chance to show again why you!? highlight your strengths when you can, make sure they are concise and well written free of grammatical errors. Ask friends to read them over for you. 

- Resume - Remember that detailed resume I told you to about keeping! Many schools allow you to upload addition documents like a resume! Now beyond your 15 they have a list of all the actives you have ever done and what you have learned from them! 

- Headshot- passport photo size, 2 x 2 inches. Dress profession, SMILE, only should show show just below the shoulder and up. Remember this is their first glimpse of you, putting the face together with your application! 

- Research abstract - if you did research, make sure to have a document with just your abstract to upload if the offer additional documents area. 

Interviewing

1. Practice - Practice answering interview questions, use examples, highlight your strengths! Try limiting your answer to two to 3 minute: look up “Elevator Speech” - pitch to the ceo a great idea on an elevator ride of only 4 floors! 

2. Reading - the more you read the smarter you are! Reads books about doctors and their experiences, how to apply to medical school, affordable healthcare act, current events, current events in medicine, NIH, read papers on tough ethical topics, read papers published by people from that school, read everything you can on their schools website! Schedule a mock interview, video record yourself answering questions. 

3. What to wear -
Females - professional fitted pants suit or suit with skirt no more than an inch about knees with skin tone matching stockings. flats or heels no more than 2 inches high, make sure you can walk all day in them. simple jewelry, studs and a necklace, no more than one ring on each hang. nothing big and distracting. suite should be black, navy, or gray. Blouse or profession top not showing cleavage. If you hair is long wear it back. Make up, light. You don’t want anything distracting from what you’re saying!
Males- Well fitted suit, tie (safer) or bow-tie, pick a professional one that is not busy looking or distracting. Suit color: black, navy or gray. business professional shoes. Belt and shoe color must match. 

Don’t wear fragrances (but wear deodorant!), bring a briefcase or similar size professional purse or professional folder (just need something to hold business cards and papers). Look well manicured make sure nails are trimmed and neutral colors only. 

Remember to be professional, have a firm handshake, ask them for their business card at the end to write them a handwritten thank you letter. Sit up straight, smile, be you, and don’t forget its a conversation so don’t be over rehearse your answers. If you don’t know the answer to a question, say “I honestly don’t know the answer to that”. Come up with a list of your 3 strengths and weakness and examples of each as well as what you are doing to work on your weaknesses. 

Good luck! One day your hard work will pay off, there will be bumps along the way but each one will teach you something and bring you closer to your dream of going to medical school! 

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Dear Future Doctor by Stanford Medical School

Some medical student humor to lighten up your studies! 

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novemeber 27 7:32pm // some messy handwriting for your timeline, there are so many concepts for economics, this is only the first chapter. help

Once upon a time, there was a girl who flew.
— 

This is a quote (slightly adapted - the original quote is boy who flew) from one of my favourite people - Chris Colfer. It makes more sense in context: throughout the book, you have excerpts of this little kid trying to write a story, and it starts out as this little kid who wants to fly, but doesn’t know how. And the kid tries to figure out how to fly, until he realises it’s not about wanting it - you have to be an active agent in your own life and do it: do it and trust that it’ll work out.

I’ve spent my whole life looking at things that I want to do, but giving myself a thousand reasons why for me, that’s not possible - why I can’t do it. 

This year, that changes.

This year, I fly.

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Nigeria: Victims of Abductions Tell Their Stories

Women and girls abducted by the Islamist group Boko Haram are forced to marry, convert, and endure physical and psychological abuse, forced labor, and rape in captivity. The group has abducted more than 500 women and girls since 2009, and intensified abductions since May 2013, when Nigeria imposed a state of emergency in areas where Boko Haram is most active.

While Boko Haram has taken some victims arbitrarily, it seems to target students and Christians, in particular. The group threatens victims with whipping, beating, or death unless they convert to Islam, stop attending school, and wear the veil or hijab. Boko Haram translates roughly from the Hausa language as “Western education is forbidden” religiously.

A 19-year-old secondary school student in Konduga, Borno State, told Human Rights Watch that when armed Boko Haram insurgents stopped the vehicle in which she and five other female students were traveling home from school in January, one of the insurgents shouted, “Aha! These are the people we are looking for. So you are the ones with strong heads who insist on attending school when we have said ‘boko’ is ‘haram.’ We will kill you here today.”

Read more. 

Well it is hard to believe that first year has almost come and gone. I remember “Welcome Week” like it is the back of my hand. Showing up, moving all my stuff in, having people cheer and yell at you as you do all of this. My first nursing class, my first midterm, my first final exam and of course my first program change. + ALL of the friends and adventures I have had this year. Time definitely flies as you get older. I never thought that it would go by this fast. 

One month left before I am officially done with my first post-secondary school. That means that I need to start studying and get the firing going to complete these courses! Then it is summer time and I cannot wait for some warm sun, only having to worry about showing up to work and getting to sleep in + spend time with friends and family. 

Keep going Sarah! You’ve got this! Only one more month! You can do this! 

The South Korean Ferry Tragedy

Our take on the South Korean Ferry Tragedy -

The following blog post might be a little scatterbrained due to the difficulty of handling this topic. For those of you that don’t know, on April 16th, 2014 while heading to Jeju from Incheon, the Sewol Ferry capsized and sunk while carrying 476 people, mostly secondary school students from Danwon High School located in Ansan City. Around 150 people managed to escape the ferry, but the rest…

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High School Aces: We’re Looking For Your Stories!

We’re still looking for 50-300 word submissions from high school students to be included in our school resource kits and workshops!

These submissions can be reflections of your high school experience, a story from your coming out to parents/peers, an experience where your orientation was validated/invalidated in the classroom, how you felt when you discovered the asexual spectrum, how other aspects of your identity lend to others validating/invalidating you, how your ace identity intersects with other experiences or identities of yours, or any other topic you choose.

We are specifically looking for submissions from secondary/high school students (or your locality’s equivalent), as well as any other aces younger than 19; however, we are also open to submissions from any other ace, as long as those submissions relate to secondary/high school and/or your experience being younger than 19.

You may remain anonymous, may request that you are credited by name, and/or may request that you are credited as a student at a given school or in a given city. Your submission may be printed and distributed, may be hosted online in various formats, and may be read and/or projected in presentations and workshops unless otherwise requested; however, we will only credit and/or mention you with the name, pseudonym, or other identifier that you give us permission to use.

To submit, send us a message with your entry through Tumblr, or email us with your story at contact@asexualoutreach.org. You may also email us with any questions you have in this process.

Submissions are due by July 26th, 2015.

modern au where levi and eren are both secondary/high school students and they meet at a model united nations conference, and levi’s representing switzerland and eren’s representing some small oppressed nation, and levi’s giving a speech about a resolution he’s written and eren keeps raising his placard and pointing out flaws and debating points levi’s made and levi answers everything he says but he’s getting more and more angry and eventually he turns to the committee and is like “the nation of switzerland would like to declare war on the nation of (whatever ere’s representing)” and eren puts up his placard again and when he’s called on he just gives this shit eating grin and goes “isn’t the nation of switzerland a neutral country” and levi just growls out a “not anymore” and half the assembly is pissing themselves laughing by now and the committe have to dismiss levi and vote on the resolution quickly so they can get people to be serious again with the next one and levi send eren a note just being like “you are dead” and they end up sitting together at lunch

glsen.org
Some Good News and Not-So-Good News About the Last Decade of Bias-Based Bullying
This month was the 10th annual National Bullying Prevention Month, which provides an opportunity for the school community to come together to raise awareness of bullying and harassment.

The bad news? According to our new [2015] report, From Teasing to Torment: School Climate Revisited, A Survey of U.S. Secondary School Students and Teachers, an astounding 92 percent of students reported that their peers are bullied, called names or harassed at school based on their personal characteristics. Most commonly, students noted that other students are often harassed due to their appearance, sexual orientation, race/ethnicity, academic ability and how they express their gender – a trend that has persisted over the last decade. And although students’ reports of some types of bullying have decreased, in 2015 students were more likely to report that their peers are bullied due to their race/ethnicity, academic ability and religion than they were in 2005.

Students’ own reports of their experiences of bullying in school are also concerning. Almost three-quarters (74 percent) of middle and high school students reported being bullied or harassed themselves during the past school year. For example, 51 percent of students reported being verbally harassed due to their appearance and 29 percent reported being sexually harassed.

Unfortunately, we continue to see disparities in bullying and harassment and in the educational outcomes they are likely to affect. LGBTQ students experienced more victimization based on sexual orientation, gender expression, gender, appearance and disability, and gender nonconforming students experienced greater frequency of all types of victimization. Not surprisingly, female students faced higher rates of sexual harassment, and students of color faced higher rates of victimization based on their race or ethnicity. These higher levels of bullying were related to poorer educational outcomes, including lower educational aspirations, more school discipline and greater absenteeism.

The good news? The portion of students reporting that their peers are bullied due to their appearance or actual or perceived sexual orientation has decreased over the last ten years (although these types of bullying are still extremely prevalent). It’s also good news that both GSAs and inclusive policies have been on the rise over the last ten years, and most teachers already receive training on bullying (although less than half of students attend schools with GSAs or inclusive policies, and most educators do not receive effective training that incorporates LGBTQ issues).

Luckily, there are effective strategies to reduce bias-based bullying and harassment in schools:

  • Enacting and implementing inclusive anti-bullying policies that clearly include race/ethnicity, sexual orientation and gender identity/expression, among others, as protected categories (check out GLSEN’s model policies);
  • Providing educators with effective professional development that incorporates meaningful content on bias-based bullying and the tools to teach in LGBT-inclusive ways;
  • Supporting the development of student clubs, such as GSAs, which often help to mobilize students against multiple types of bias and make LGBTQ students feel safer and more welcome at school;
  • Regularly assessing school climate and the pervasiveness of bullying and bias, such as through GLSEN’s Local School Climate Survey, an online tool to develop and administer customized surveys to your local school community.

Due in part to campaigns like National Bullying Prevention Month, what was once seen as a rite of passage for students is now understood as a widespread problem with lasting consequences. However, it is time we turn this understanding into action and offer the school community the supports essential to creating safe and affirming educational experiences. And by doing so, we’ll ensure that all students have access to an education that allows them to learn in the most supportive environment possible – and that is the best news of all.

Christian Villenas, PhD, is the Senior Research Associate at GLSEN.