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Many of the students who come to DIFC do so because they wish to study medicine.

Becoming a doctor is a wonderful ambition, but as Dr. Kennedy explained in this post, it takes a lot of hard work and diligence. It can be a long and challenging road. The first year in medical college can be extremely difficult, especially if it is in a foreign country.

To help us understand a little bit more about that first year in medical college, we spoke to Rumaysa Bugaje. Rumaysa studied with DIFC in the class of 2014 and was a fantastic student: intelligent, hard-working and passionate about becoming a doctor. She has just finished her first year studying Medicine in Egypt, is doing really well, and has very kindly offered these words for anyone wondering what medical college will be like.


Rumaysa Bugaje hard at work in the lab

Rumaysa Bugaje hard at work in the lab

What did your first year consist of?

My first year consisted of 2 semesters. The two semesters differed in their alternative courses. So, the 1st semester I took Anatomy, Histology, Biochemistry, Physiology and Computer/ I.T while in the 2nd semester I did English instead of Computer/ I.T . The English course however is specific to the field, for example, you’re being taught terms associated with Medicine .

How did you find your first year?

The beginning of my first year was a little bit intimidating to be honest because I didn’t know what to expect. Of course, I had a rough idea of what my subjects would entail but I had no idea what turn they could take and if I would love them. I think the overall nervousness of being in a new environment played a part as well. Especially one that spoke a different language. In Egypt, Arabic is their official language, however, students in the medical field are being taught in English.

As time went on, I started interacting with other students and I realised it wasn’t half as bad as I thought it would be. Everyone was helpful and all that fear that was once holding me back, was long gone. I looked at my fears in good light, for example, not being in an English speaking country enabled me to learn how to speak an additional language. At some point, I didn’t even realise I came into the University wondering how I was going to figure everything out. Once I got all that out of the way, I felt more confident and focused and it reflected in my academic performance.

What advice would you give someone trying to study medicine?

I think I would advise them to put in all they’ve got into DIFC. It can be challenging and it can get exhausting but from my experience, it helps prepare you for the work load University has to offer. Also, think of it like this – you do all the work now, meet your requirements and get into your school of choice all smiles.

Another advice is to be open minded. Open minded in the sense that you can think you’ve worked to your full potential but you don’t get into your university of choice.  So, it is important to think about your second and third choices as equally important. You can aim to achieve your first choice or even higher but its necessary to have a back up plan in case things don’t turn out the way you want them to.

Lastly, appreciate the accessibility of your teachers. It becomes much tougher to have that close contact with your lecturers and trust me, you don’t want to regret using it.

Was your time in DIFC helpful?

DIFC was very helpful as it made it easier to interact with people from different backgrounds. It also made it easier to deal with the work load and time management. The most awesome thing was that, in University we studied topics we had done in DIFC and it was revision for me, as opposed to learning it for the first time.

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