“Organizing is …

“Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up.”
A. A. Milne

The heat wave of summer is finally upon us.  Those magical few weeks where the air conditioning’s nerve is being tested.  This is the time of year when greatness happens.  Millions of students will be heading back to school.  Some will be heading to college for the very first time.  As a third year, I’ve been through so much and have experienced a lot of what college has to offer.  I still have a long way to go, but I am very confident that I can make it through pharmacy school.  Heck, I”ll be participating in the White Coat Ceremony in a couple of weeks!

There are so many ways to find success at STLCOP, it is almost limitless.  The key is to set a goal and stay organized.  Juggling  organizations, clubs, jobs, friends, family, schoolwork, etc.. is challenging, and if you aren’t organized something will fall through the cracks.  I personally use Outlook because I can keep everything in one central location (and sync to my phone!)

My main goal is to worry about one week at a time.  This doesn’t go to say I don’t occasionally check out the monthly calendar, but a week seems much more manageable and less overwhelming.  This strategy may or may not work for you but find something that does!  Being organized is the number one trick to STLCOP.  I know people who treat their Franklin Covey planners like their own child.  If the interweb isn’t your strongest suit, definitely take advantage of a paper planner.  These work nicely because you can write notes down in the margins about whatever you need to do.  Some people even combine both the online method and the paper method.  If you have any questions about being organized, make sure to stop by the Success Center in the Residence Hall.  The staff there are extremely knowledgeable about how to become and stay organized.  Message me if you have any questions too.

I’m not kidding when I say that, as I’m writing this, I’m jotting things into my outlook calendar.  I know for a FACT that if I don’t write it down it won’t get done.  Multitasking is a skill that everyone should work to develop, but planning on keeping something in the back of your mind will almost always backfire.  Stay organized and make your life SO much easier.  Trust me on this one.

Just Study?

Class, lunch, class, dinner, library, sleep, repeat.  This is what people think a pharmacy student does in a typical day.  It may hold some truth, but there is a much bigger picture.  Yes, pharmacy school is tough.  It isn’t a walk in the park, but what doesn’t challenge you doesn’t change you.  Nobody learns from an easy class.  Nobody makes strides by taking the easy road.  Not only do you have to challenge yourself academically, but socially, in the community, and through leadership.  I’ll use something that I know a lot of people can relate to as an analogy.  Let’s say you are going to the gym because you want to be summer ready.  The first few times are fun because it is a new experience and you are making steady progress, but after a while the workouts become stale.  No longer are you working your hardest, and as a result you aren’t making nearly as much progress.  You aren’t finding the same early success and you become discouraged and quit.  This happens much too often for college students.  You dive into school work head first without any other types of outlet.  What these students don’t realize is by finding organizations, hobbies, and other things of interest you will be more committed to school work and achievements.  If our imaginary lifter would have mixed up the routines, tried different compound exercises, and changed the scenery and frequency they would have made more gains and not have lost interest.  This is why I’m such a big advocate for trying out every different avenue at STLCOP.  I’ve held positions in SBU, worked as an RA, am getting much more involved with SPA and MPA, and have tried out research at the Radiation Oncology Center at Wash U.  You may think I’m working myself too thin, but I truly believe that my grades would have been worse had I not taken on so much.  I have an invested interest in the college in things besides just classwork.  I work to challenge myself in everything that I participate in.  I’m developing leadership, interpersonal, and academic skills.  I highly recommend to any newcomer to give any interest you possible have an attempt.  It’s absolutely fine to try something out, find out you don’t like it, and move on to the next interest.  I’m not saying don’t continue to strive for excellence in the classroom.  If you go to the gym and don’t do the core exercises like squatting, bench press, running, so on and so forth, then you won’t be making much progress.  Find a happy medium where you can succeed, but continue to challenge yourself outside of schoolwork.

Good luck to everyone this upcoming month with finals! Image

I LOVE Being an RA

I LOVE Being an RA

By far the best decision that I have made while at STLCOP has been being an RA. I’ve learned so much this past year, it really is ridiculous! I have the coolest boss, and my peers are such a great support group. I love working with the students and being a resource.

“Pharmacy, the …

“Pharmacy, the one profession where you have to be a little of everything.”

The biggest piece of advice that I have for any future STLCOP student is to find what you love and pursue that with all you have.  The best Pharmacists are well-rounded and can relate to the individuals they are helping.  It is crucial that Pharmacists have good communication, relational, and empathy skills.  Patients could go online or to the library and find most of the information that they would need from a Pharmacy.  Patients need Pharmacists because this information is in a language that they patient usually cannot understand, and they need help to take this information and use it properly in their everyday lives.  Pharmacy is one of the most trusted professions and this is due to the fact that Pharmacists are known to be not only knowledgeable but approachable.  

Whether you enjoy music, sports, art, or the internet, find an outlet that will help you become a very well-rounded individual.  Jump on every opportunity you can to develop every aspect of your life.  

Don’t be sad because it’s over, but rather smile because it happened… – Dr. Seuss

Wow that break went by fast!  Six weeks is nothing when you are working and trying to survive all the family time.  (Just kidding I promise)  Here’s what’s going on in the life of Nick Potter for the next few weeks.

I had a seizure the week of finals, so Dean Kilgore was generous enough to let me postpone my finals until after break.  Well now is that time, so in the next few days I’ll have to finish up my finals that I missed out on.  The secret to succeeding at STLCOP is to not fall behind, so I have to make sure that this next semester doesn’t start off poorly. 

I’m going to beef up my floor for this next semester too.  I’ve really been trying to come up with an original theme and the best idea I thought of was MOTIVATION DOMINATION.  I’m going to fill my floor with inspiring quotes, images, and anything to cheer you up and push you forward. 

As the president of my class I’m working with the Class of 2018 on future projects and also finishing up projects that rolled over from last semester. 

My last big project will involve participating in research with the Radiation and Oncology center at Wash U.  I got to meet with my research team that was introduced to me by Dr. Salama here at STLCOP.  I’m ridiculously excited about this opportunity and am seriously looking forward to this project.

Have a great week everyone!

Class of 2017 Care Packages for Troops!

The Class of 2017 has been busy at work raising funding to send 50 Care Packages to Troops overseas.  With the help of many sponsors and volunteers we were able to fill each box with supplies that the troops could use in their everyday lives.  We are very thankful for their service and hope they remember the support they have back home.Image

SBU Class of 2017 members from left to right:

Shefali Barot, Nicolette Duong, Nick Potter, Alyssa Wilt, Jeff Pasucal, Katie Toeniskoetter, Cecy Wang, Sarah Samuel, Steffany Nguyen

We are very thankful for our sponsors who donated funding and resources to our initiative.  Below is a list of the sponsors who donated.Image

Chance At A New Future

Obama won the election.  Whether or not you like this statement or not, one thing shines through.  U.S. citizens are witnessing issues in the political and economic system.  People turned out in droves to vote for the person who they felt would do a better job at tackling the issues.  What these people need to realize is that this person is THEMSELVES.  Sitting helplessly and pointing all of your past and current problems at one individual is dodging the real problem.  I am a firm believer in this definition of insanity.  “Insanity is doing the same thing time and time again and expecting a different result.”  If you want a change in your life, MAKE THE CHANGE.  If you want to see a difference at your job or in school, BE THE CHANGE.

As I progress through the program at STLCOP, I constantly feel the pressure of growing up.  I have to make decisions that will affect the rest of my life.  It’s very scary to think of the consequences of a poor choice, but it’s equally as exciting to think of the power that I have to positively impact others.  I have been given the wonderful opportunity of being born a citizen of the United States of America, and I intend on taking advantage of the freedoms that this brings.  YOU NEED TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS SAME BENEFIT.

I hope this blog post makes you really think and realize the tremendous power that you do have as a citizen. Not everyone is on the same playing field, but if we all do our best to advance our current situation and the situations of others, we will finally turn this nation around.  It is our duty to not only make the change in ourselves, but hold others accountable as well.  We are all on the planet together and we all want to succeed.  Why not work together?

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