I remember my days as a 5th grader, officially the top class in elementary school. The oldest and the wisest of the students.
I remember stomping around my middle school as an 8th grader, making sure everyone knew I was older and had experience. Been there, done that.
And nothing beats being a senior in high school, knowing the halls of the school as well as anybody. I remember looking at the freshmen and thinking, “You have so much to learn.” For some reason, four years in high school made me feel powerful and wise. Of course looking back now, I feel embarrassed to admit that.
But arriving on the campus of USC School of Medicine Greenville last fall was a unique experience for the charter class. Although we were in our first year of medical school, we were suddenly the big dog on campus already. We had many responsibilities and expectations of us, and also an ability to help make changes to grow and improve the school.
With all of the attention we got as the charter class, I suddenly felt that same feeling I felt in elementary, middle, and high school all over again when the second class arrived. I worried that someone would unknowingly take the study room I had used consistently last year. I worried that the new class wouldn’t understand the things we did as the charter class. I felt a strong sense of ownership for the school, and admittedly I was feeling a little selfish as well.
It’s so easy to fall into that pattern of feeling special as the “big dog on campus,” but this school is very different. Each and every student who comes through the doors as a student of this school has a chance and a responsibility to play a role in helping the school continuously grow and develop. The new class has already made impressive contributions to the school after only two weeks.
As easy as it is for the now second year students to feel like we own the place, we are excited to have more people helping us to constantly improve and develop. It has been a wonderful process so far, and I am excited to see how all of the classes to follow will improve our school.
Copyright 2014 USC School of Medicine Greenville