Your intern year is the year you begin to decide your future career direction; decisions you make now will have an impact as you progress through your training, so it’s important to make choices that keep your options as open as possible. It’s a high-paced and, often, stressful year, so here are a few tips to help you get the most of your intern year.
Soak it in
Be ready to take each and every opportunity that comes your way. Never stop asking questions and seek out a broad variety of experiences so that you can really explore what area of medicine fits you and your career goals. Popular terms are difficult to get, so grab the ones you can get when they become available. The Generalist Pathway guarantees term experience in paediatrics, anaesthetics, and obstetrics & gynaecology because these skills are vital for rural generalists; these are usually some of the hardest to get, but Pathway trainees get priority access during PGY1 and PGY2.
Take care of yourself
You can’t take care of others if you don’t take care of yourself. Your intern year will be stressful. As you adjust to shift work and a steep career learning curve, you’ll often be tired. You may even feel overwhelmed and out of your depth. That’s ok, it is part of learning on the job but remember to pace yourself. Focus on one thing at a time and don’t waste energy worrying about the little things. Our admin team are on hand to help Generalist Pathway interns keep on track, avoiding the common pitfalls of missed submissions and forgotten deadlines.
Find a mentor
Having a mentor is a great way to help alleviate early career stress; they’ve been in your shoes and they can help you sort out what deserves your time and mental energy and what doesn’t. On the Generalist Pathway, a Career Navigator supports you. Career Navigators are experienced clinicians and they are available to answer any questions you may have about your career training or to offer support and advice on balancing personal and career stresses.
You’re on track to finding your calling, so remember: soak in every experience, find support and take care of yourself. Still unsure of what career path to take? Click here for career advice.