First Quarter Wrap-up

With our first quarter wrapping up and winter rolling in, it has been a very busy few weeks for us at the UC/CCHMC Genetic Counseling program.  With the unseasonably warm weather, it has been a challenge for us to start buckling down and studying for our finals next week.  The second years came back from the NSGC conference in San Diego and we were all very jealous.  It sounds like they had a blast at the conference and I can’t wait to go next year.  It is nice to look forward to three weeks without Molecular Genetics exams, lectures, or all of our other time commitments in a busy schedule with winter break coming up.  It hasn’t been all work though, we have still found time to get together to have a Thanksgiving feast with our classmates, tried many local eateries together, and have had volunteer activities such as PROM and VCFS support group.  It has so far been a very rewarding experience and it is shaping up to be a wonderful end to 2011. 
As a first year, I also started clinic rotations since my last blog post.  All of us first years are in an observational rotation with various clinics.  I am in general pediatrics right now and have learned so much from just observing a genetic counselor for a few cases a week, as well as figuring out case prep, EPIC, and case summaries.  It is just as exciting as I thought it would be, and I think everyone else in the year agrees.  I am learning more than I had hoped about specific disorders, and have seen a few really interesting cases.  We are getting more into role plays in class with IGC , and this helps with clinic too as we are practicing empathy, contracting, and medical intakes.  I am looking forward to lysosomal storage disorder clinic next quarter, as that will bring on a whole new set of genetic conditions for me to learn about, as well as taking on a role or two.  Yikes!
Recently we first years have gotten our thesis matches which we will be spending the next year and a half on.  There were many interesting topics, such as exomic sequencing, personalized medicine, and a study looking at direct-to-consumer testing.  I received my match on looking at adoptive parents with children who have DMD and their experiences.  I am so excited to get started, and I know a lot of the other first years are as well. 
I am hoping to make a more specific post about things we have learned such as exomic sequencing, course work, and other program happenings over winter break, so stay tuned! : )

Posted by Amy Gladstone, First Year Student