If you’re a third or fourth year student of podiatry it may be somewhat miraculous that you have time to even read this blog! Chances are you are immersed in clerkships which are providing you with an up close and personal view of the podiatric work you hope to one day do. They can require long hours and are both mentally and physically exhausting. But wait—how do you fit in all of the outside reading that also must be taking place during these school years?
At The Institute of Podiatric Excellence and Development (IPED) there are many members who have walked the path you are on. For some it was quite a while ago and for others it was just last year (or they, like you, are going through it now). Our mission is to bridge the gap between all levels of the profession of podiatry from students to new practitioners all the way up through experienced and veteran physicians. This unique society allows all podiatric professionals the opportunity to grow and learn from each other. It’s like having an entire database of experience and answers to questions right at your fingertips.
Former students will attest to the fact that it’s very important to make the time to do as much reading as you can to build upon the knowledge you’ve acquired and the practical experience you’ve had. We’ve heard from other successful students and here’s some of their advice on how to make reading a reality.
Have a Plan
There are many textbooks, manuals and journals to choose from. At the end of the day it’s not so much about what you read but rather using your spare time wisely to be sure that you are getting through reading material in a timely fashion and retaining the information you are reading. Stay organized and don’t procrastinate (for a good read on this subject, checkout “Eat That Frog!” by Brian Tracy.) One way to do this is to employ SMART goals:
Here’s an example of a SMART goal: I will read 10 pages of McGlamry’s textbook every day and one article every second day. In this way you break up a large task into manageable pieces that can be successfully accomplished. Don’t be afraid to modify your plan along the way but do always have goals in mind that you will stick with.