5 Reasons Elementary and PT Graduate School Are Actually the Same Thing

Graduate school.

Those two words would have terrified me as a child. Who would go to school as a job? As I sat on top of a slide during elementary school, I couldn’t imagine wanting to learn something so much that I would professionally go to school. I wanted to be an astronaut. To my second grade mind, all I had to do was show up at NASA headquarters, and they would let me play in the zero-gravity simulator.

Little did I know that I would end up in Indy studying after college to be the best physical therapist I can be. After a lunchtime aside made by a few of my DPT classmates, we were shocked to realize that grad school isn’t all that different from elementary school, and I was inspired to write this post.

1) Class

Whether there were 25 students or my current class of 48, we all go to class together. We walk across campus in a student physical therapist bundle as we drag our feet skip happily toward our next class. We’ve graduated from 50 minute classes to 3 hour classes, and we spend a good 31 hours per week together in the classroom, but it’s essentially the same thing. Continue reading

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Pacific Rim: The Official Movie Novelization

Pacific Rim: The Official Movie NovelizationPacific Rim: The Official Movie Novelization by Alex Irvine

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

WARNING: Spoilers for the book and movie ahead. 

After falling in love with the movie, it was natural that I read the novelization. Irvine crafted an excellent tale with intriguing details that were absent from the movie due to the inherent limitations of film. However, what really ruined this novelization was one paragraph near the end of the novel that was different from the movie.

One of my favorite aspects of the film was the relationship between Raleigh and Mako. It is one of the few examples out there of a male and female working together without the need for romantic undertones. After the pair resurface from saving the world in the movie, they embrace as best friends drawn closer together by virtue of a shared experience. The novel has them kiss and provides an anecdotal thought from Mako that she had wanted to kiss Raleigh ever since she first laid eyes on him in his room. This lasted for only one paragraph, and I wish I had never read it.

It was as if the author had belatedly realized that he wanted there to be a romantic interest and tossed that in at the end. That he couldn’t have a complete book without some sort of romance. There was no buildup and no tension. If that paragraph were removed, the plot would not change. This was a novelization and was not the basis for the movie, and this change severely disappointed me. I enjoyed the deeper look into the world of Pacific Rim, but if I were to recommend this book to anyone, I would tell them to skip that paragraph. It has no effect on the plot, and ruined that moment of character development by turning Mako Mori from an incredibly awesome woman who could kick butt and run in the same world of robots with the best man into a ditzy female, consumed by her attraction to the protagonist.

Book Review: The Book Thief

The Book ThiefThe Book Thief by Markus Zusak

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Book Thief is one of the most fascinating and enjoyable books I have read recently. The voice of Death as the narrator is appropriately witty, sarcastic, blunt, cynical, and hopeful. The brilliance of the book lay only partially with the choice of narrator. What makes this book special is that Death tells you outright what is going to happen. He is clear and blunt, yet when what he foretold does happen, it is just as emotionally wrenching. While I may have been frustrated at times while waiting for an anticipated event to occur, the power of the emotional impact made up for it.

Additionally, the characters were well rounded and had hidden aspects of personality that were cleverly revealed throughout the book. I would rate this book 5 out of 5 stars. My only disappointment was the frustration of waiting for something foretold to occur, yet that very experience made the book more impactful.

This book tugged at my heartstrings making me cry and laugh, often within a few pages of each other. Highly recommended.

Do you have a book you think I should read? Loved or hated The Book Thief? Let me know in the comments below!

Book Review: Self Editing for Fiction Writers

Self-Editing for Fiction Writers: How to Edit Yourself Into PrintSelf-Editing for Fiction Writers: How to Edit Yourself Into Print by Renni Browne
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

While I don’t agree with quite everything in this book, it was a well-written way to wake up to some amateurish mistakes that I have made in my own writing. I enjoyed reading it, and will keep in on my shelf to reference through my revision process. If you have a strong sense of your own voice, I highly recommend taking a look at this book to help refine your writing and edit out easy errors you never knew you had.

EMR: Electronic Medical Records or Extraordinarily Malicious Requirements?

It was with a heavy heart that I left the Notre Dame campus just a short while ago. The feeling was rather absurd because I have just this afternoon returned but I know I will experience the same feelings at the end of June. Why have I returned to Notre Dame, you ask? To play in the dirt, of course! I am thrilled to spend the next three weeks working on the Bailey Homestead excavation here in northern Indiana. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Let me fill you in on what has been going on for the past month.

I was lucky enough to shadow my own primary care physician a few days a week these past four weeks. In just a short time, I have learned so much about medicine and the life of a physician. I also discovered three dreaded letters: E-M-R better known as electronic medical records. My first day on the job just happened to coincide with the second day of launching eClinicalWorks, one of many EMR programs.

Now, the common consensus states that EMR is the way of the future and will make everything easier on physicians. In the long run, sure, I can see it speeding up appointments and keeping things organized. However, on the short term, every single patient is a new patient. Even if they have been seeing the same doctor for thirty years, they are required to give their entire family history during their visit. Couple that with staff who were not raised with computers and it tends to cause a large headache.

Some physicians won’t have too much difficulty with this because they have only a few patients who return every few weeks. But for family medicine physicians, some patients only have to come in every six months! This means that the transition will last for over six months, providing that all patients keep their appointments. It seems a big hassle now, but I still bear a shred of hope.

Even so, there are other issues with EMR. Doctors are some of the highest employing bosses. They need lab technicians, diagnoses coders, medical record keepers and more. With the advent of EMR, most of these roles are becoming automated. A nurse will not need to call down to medical records for a chart when a few clicks will pull it up. Nurses won’t be needed to call patients with lab results when they are securely posted online and emailed.

I’m not sure about ObamaCare…it may benefit us in the end but from the evidence I’ve seen, I don’t like it.

Fairytales and Daydreams

 Have you ever wanted your life to be like a fairy tale? Have you ever wanted to be swept off your feet by that guy who you initially hated but grew to love throughout your far-fetched encounters? Have you ever wished for Prince Charming to show up with one of your favorite shoes and slide it onto your foot as he professed his love? A fantasy of almost every girl who has ever picked up a Disney movie or a romantic comedy is to have a movie moment in her own life. Why else do romantic comedies make so much money? It is off of the girls who dream about them coming true!I know men will go see them–even pay for them– to appease the woman they are with, but the movies are not designed for a male audience. They are for our girlish dreams. Dreams that we one day hope to come true and see us with the love of our life and a castle and a tiara and rainbows and unicorns and–stop me whenever you feel like it. While that might not be every girl’s dream, we all have something along the same lines that we wistfully daydream for.

Not only do we witness these fantastically cheese-filled perfect endings while we are at the theater, or curled up on the couch with a blanket, pillow and box of tissues in the case of the Notebook, but we also see them on Facebook. I particularly remember the phase where everyone was taking “quizzes” on Facebook. One that struck me in particular was the “Which famous movie kiss are you?” quiz.

If you take a second to logically evaluate that question, you can see that it is preposterous. How could I, a three dimensional, living, breathing human being, transform into a two dimensional lip-lock? It is just not feasible. Even so, anyone flipping through the results of that quiz (Yes, I took it, no I will not tell you which movie I got unless you have food for bribes) can catch a glimpse into the desires of most women to reach that kind of picturesque, iconic romance in their own lives.

Is it unrealistic to daydream about these kinds of these? Maybe, but where would we be without them? Where would we be if Cinderella never dreamed to go to the ball to meet her Prince Charming? If Simba did not fall in love with Nala? If Captain Shang never forgave Mulan? If Catherine Heigl never decided to act in rom-coms? In my opinion, it would be a sad, sad world and I am more than happy to indulge in my daydreams, even if only to write a blog post about them. Happy dreaming!