About my college education:
Ateneo is known to offer high quality education when it comes to sciences and management. B.S. Biology, which falls under School of Sciences and Engineering (SOSE), is a four-year course with summer classes. It is a quota course, which means that the admission of a student requires getting an average higher than what other courses demand.
I chose BS Biology as my pre-med course because of the extensive knowledge that it offers. When I passed the entrance examination, the university held an orientation for the students in order to get a good grasp about the course's curriculum, the facilities used in the classroom as well as the significance of Bio as a pre-med course especially for those who are opting to go to medical school. My course has two tracks: the research track and the medical track. Research is very advisable to those who want to take a master's degree after college or anyone who really is into research. In contrast, medical track is more appropriate to those who want to be future doctors.
The first two years of Bio include subjects such as Zoology, Histology, Chemistry, Botany and, other Bio-related courses that are considered to be basic sciences in preparation for the more in depth subjects tackled in third and fourth years. Along with these are minor subjects which enabled me to gain friends from other courses. In minor subjects, the student can actually choose his/her own schedule unlike for the major subjects, which falls under the schedule of the block section where the student belongs. My major subjects were very interesting especially the laboratory classes. In my zoology subject, we dissected different kinds of animals in order to determine their anatomy; some of these animals were cats, frogs and turtles. In botany, we studied different species of plants and we even had a trip to a protected area in Batangas, Philippines in order to experience environmental site mapping.
In third year, the major subjects were the main focus. My major subjects are Genetics, Parasitology, Biochemistry, Developmental Biology and, Cell and Molecular Biology. In Genetics, we did PCR, Agarose gel electrophoresis and, DNA extraction of chosen species of plants. My Parasitology class involved dissecting a fruit fly, an earthworm and a cockroach. I also learned how to process a stool and urine culture in my parasitology class. We also did an actual research in my Developmental Biology class. The approach is really very extensive. Not only did I improve my laboratory skills but I was also able to enhance my research and speaking skills especially during defense.
Fourth year is a bit more challenging for me because we had our thesis, which we accomplished for one year. The thesis is only done with a partner and with a chosen thesis adviser. My thesis concerns microbiology entitled, “Comparison of Two Isolation Methods for the Detection of Salmonella from Swine Farm Effluents." I had a lot of fun doing my thesis work. I also had my Physiology class where I learned how to perform laboratory tests done in the hospital such as blood extraction, CBC, blood typing, and lung examination. We also had a trip to Candaba, Pampanga in my Environmental Biology class. We did bird watching for almost 6 hours and it was really very educational. Aside from that is the fun that I got from the trip, particularly the opportunity to bond with my friends and fellow colleagues.
The minor subjects were also very helpful for me, especially in instilling values. In my Philosophy subject, we went to Zambales where they assigned a foster family for us to experience how marginalized people deal with life. It was an eye-opener for us who went there. I really went out of my comfort zone-I tried taking a bath in an open field, hiking for hours just to get to my foster family, having no electrical gadgets because there were no electrical lines to the island, and eating organic foods.
My current job:
I am currently a 2nd year medical student in Saint Louis University, Baguio City, Philippines. I went to medical school immediately after graduation.
Am I using what I learned in college:
Biology as a pre-medical course is very useful in most subjects that I'm currently taking such as Microbiology, Systemic Pathology and Parasitology.
Time and stress management which I learned during my college years have also been very helpful in medical school.
Do I recommend studying BS in Biology:
To those who are Biology enthusiasts, this course is very right for you especially when you are into plants and animals. Biology is also a good choice when you are into researching about health sciences. Although Bio has its own advantage when you are already in med school, basing from experience, I would rather recommend taking up Medical technology or even Nursing courses.
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