As a premed student you barely have enough time to do the things that you enjoy and sometimes it is difficult to make time to stay up to date on current events. You also feel displaced from the rest of the world because while most of your friends are aspiring to get a “real” job after undergrad, you are aspiring to go to school yet again. For you it may be difficult to try and stay in touch with the rest of the world because after undergrad instead of stepping into the real world, you will be stepping into the world of medicine. So it is even more difficult for you to justify staying on top of all the turmoil-political and unpolitical that is going on in the world. That being said, even though we all understand that it is hard to read newspapers on top of your Chemistry, Biology, and Physics books, it is still expected that you remain well educated in the affairs of the world around you.
Since the upcoming presidential election is less than a year away, this is a topic that is on everyone’s mind and is important for you to take into consideration as well. The reason for this is two fold: primarily you could be asked about this during an interview and secondarily, you should be well educated on the election prior to making your own decision as the election will affect you directly. You are probably thinking well how will the election affect me directly? This election more than others is all about healthcare and in some instances there are minute differences between presidential candidates on this issue. These changes in healthcare will directly impact the way that physicians practice medicine so it is important to keep this in mind prior to voting. Also, because future physicians will have to deal with the changes in healthcare that the presidential election will bring, medical schools do expect premed students to know what is going on. If not for making the most informed presidential vote, think that reading on these topics is preparation for your upcoming interviews.
I remember being on the interview trail and thinking that I did not have to be well-versed in any of the presidential election topics (I interviewed exactly 4 years ago) but honestly I felt so displaced from the rest of the world that when people would talk about daily happenings in the world, I had no idea what was going on. Remember that the rest of the world keeps moving even if you are stuck in your room studying and when you leave your study cave, you will encounter people who will ask your opinion on the Presidential candidates.
This is such an important lesson as you pursue your career because it is so easy to forgot about the world around you especially when you are in medical school. Always stay grounded, mentally and physically, because any journey requires you remembering not only those around you but the events that are happening around you. So today instead of taking a 15 minute break to go on Facebook, Twitter, SnapChat, or Pinterest, take that time to read an introductory article on the upcoming Presidential election and how that may affect your future in healthcare.