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It feels like just yesterday we were white coated, but I, along with another 169 M1s, have completed one week of M1 Launch (more traditionally called “orientation”). Within this past week during the launch, I have experienced a plethora of emotions, ranging from anxious, touched, humbled, inspired, nervous, challenged, welcomed, and curious.

On the first day of the M1 Launch, we became acquainted with our M-Homes, with whom we went on scavenger hunts all over Ann Arbor. It was a lot of fun; people came up with some pretty creative poses and locations.

The Block “M” on the Diag has new meaning

Doctoring group bonding: Exercising on campus

We then traveled to Cornman Farms in Dexter for Zingerman’s ZingTrain leadership training. Not only did we eat delicious food, but we bonded with our doctoring groups through teambuilding events and activities. We also heard a panel of patients and their families discussing their experiences with the healthcare system. As I listened to the panel and participated in discussions, I couldn’t help but to be humbled by the personal strength of the patients and their families. It also highlighted the need for compassionate care and that here at UMMS we aim to not only be doctors, but to be the very best. I think it is experiences like these that remind me of both the type of physician I would like to be and why being part of patients’ lives is such a privilege.

Outside of the launch, I have been impressed with how welcoming everyone has been. Several M1s have already hosted the class at their homes and social events are continuously posted on our class Facebook page. Despite our sizable class (170), our class has managed to bond!

Saturday morning, originally only a few of us went to the Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market in Kerrytown. But as we meandered through the market (which has been a pretty cool selection of both flowers and produce), we ran into several of our classmates completely unplanned! Afterwards, we visited Teahaus and snacked on delicious macaroons and tea. There, we met a few other med students, again, coincidentally.

Alongside with many social events going on, we drove out to the Dexter Blueberry Farm and picked only a tiny amount of blueberries though not from a lack of trying. It gave us a newfound appreciation for the blueberries sold at grocery.

If this week has been anything like the upcoming four years, then I am in for an amazing ride. I can’t imagine being in a better place or with any better people.

Joy, a native Ann Arborite, is a third-year medical student at University of Michigan Medical School. In her spare time, she enjoys working on quality improvement issues in cardiac surgery, playing violin & piano, and hanging out with friends.