How to be a PA Student…. And a Human

PA student Kayla Manring shares  “How to be a PA Student…. And a Human ”

In undergrad people often noted the 3 “S’s”, social, study and sleep. Well, PA school is really just study and attempt, but fail, at the other S’s. Since starting PA school, I’ve noticed other S’s, that to me are more applicable: Sanity and Self Care.

I would be lying to you if I told you that studying comes easy to me, that I have my go to study method, my go to study plan, and my go to study group. It changes each exam, honestly each week and day. It’s taxing, it’s hard, but it’s part of the game to ultimately take care of my future patients. Being a student is listening, reading, and writing. It is comprehending and trying to stay dedicated for long periods of time. We are students, we are studying— always, but time hasn’t stopped, there are still things that have to be done and people around us that love us.  So yes, we are students, but we are also humans.

So, how can we, as students, be humans? I personally, have found that to feel like a human you have to find things that keep you sane, and you have to take care of yourself. Sanity and Self Care are my new Ss of PA school. These S’s can range and be small, like going to the grocery store and enjoying a study break to getting out of Buies Creek for the night for a nice dinner. I have found my sanity by being around the ones I love, taking out my anxiety with exercise and/or cleaning (truly shocking), and finding ways to laugh every day.

As Campbell PA students, I would say we are lucky. We have made our class feel like a second family and we support each other. I have found that when I am at my best, my studying is at its best. I think it can be hard when we are so concentrated on how to take care of others and the details in between that we sometimes forget to take care of ourselves.  It’s a balance of maintaining who you are and studying to be the best provider.  How can we, as future providers, tell our patients to take care of themselves, when at times, we aren’t taking care of ourselves? Find joy in the small things, take full advantage of the breaks to refuel you, and remind yourself you are only human.

-Kayla Manring, PA-S1