Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Top 10 Tips for Clinical Year

With only 4.5 weeks left until graduation, I thought I'd give my top 10 tips to having a successful clinical year!

1. Never take a pathologist's criticism personally. You'll soon discover that every pathologist has their quirks and preferences. Just be willing to go roll with it; you'll develop thick skin in no time. But at the same time, welcome constructive criticism with open arms. Listen to their critiques and adapt yourself for the next time you receive that specimen.

2. Try your best to never make the histotechs angry. You don't want to make them work harder if it can be avoided. Strive to not submit staples or super thick fatty sections!

3. If you notice that the techs need help accessioning, printing cassettes, etc. and you have a few minutes to spare - lend them a hand! They'll appreciate it and it'll give you a better understanding of what goes on in the lab.

4. Don't get discouraged if your first ever lymph node search takes 2 hours (it happens to the best of us, you'll get better)!

5. Don't be afraid to ask questions. You're learning; it's ok to not know something. Better to ask than to jeopardize patient care.

6. Along those lines, sometimes you will feel that you are asking a million questions. Don't worry - your mentors are saints and are incredibly patient! They will do anything to help you out.

7. Don't be scared or intimidated of specimens. This is your chance to soak in as much as you can. It's better to stumble through things now than to have no clue what to do once you're working in the "real world". If you've already grossed 36 hysterectomies, try getting out of your comfort zone and picking up that kidney instead.

8. Build relationships with the pathologists and PAs - networking can land you a job that you may have never been originally considered for!

9. Work smarter, not harder. Pick up tricks/tips from your mentors.

10. Have fun and love what you do!


  1. Any update on finishing up? Where did you end up getting a job?

    1. Good question! I'm working on a post regarding this now!

  2. If you're looking for a pathologosit nearby you then do visit web health network