My TY – Mini Med Programme in the RCSI 

During my transition year, I applied for a place on the Royal College of Surgeons Mini Med Programme which they run for transition year students. My application was successful and I received a place on this years Mini Med Programme. The Mini Med Programme ran from Monday the 24th of February to Wednesday the 26th of February. 

On the Monday I arrived at the RCSI and was given a bag, a coloured t-shirt and name tag. In the morning I received a talk from a practicing GP about her job and her journey through Medical SchoolLater, we then had two students in their final years talking about how they are balancing their college work and extra-curricular activities. This was then followed by a talk with a CF patient that had received a lung transplant. She told us about her experience with her condition and her fascinating story before and after her transplant surgery. At the end of the first day we were brought in groups to another part of the college to learn how to take blood by using fake prosthetic arms especially made to collect blood samples and we learned how to apply a plaster cast onto someone’s arm. We then practiced by applying plaster casts on each other’s arms. 

On the second day of the RCSI Mini Med Programme we received talks from a rheumatologist, a Plastic Surgeon and a Pathologist. They spoke about their line of work, conditions they might see and the training they completed to get to where they are today. A member of a Kidney transplant team came to talk to us about kidney transplants and brought a former patient of his that received a kidney transplant. The former patient had a great sense of humour and enjoyed telling us his story and answering the questions that we had for him. During the middle of the day we were able to watch a real-life cesarean section being performed via a live stream being broadcast from a hospital to the lecture hall that we were in for all the talks. After the Cesarean section was completed the lead surgeon video chatted with us and answered any questions we wanted to ask about the surgery and/or his job. 

On Wednesday, the final day of the Mini Med programme, we had a busy schedule ahead. In the morning we received a lecture about head injuries from a consultant neurosurgeon, a lecture about epilepsy and living with epilepsy from a neurologist. Lastly, we had a lecture from one of the doctors from the Irish football team. After our lunch break, we had a Q&A with two RCSI students studying medicine in the college. Then we had a lecture with a deputy state pathologist about forensic medicine. In this lecture she told us about the training she had received to become a forensic pathologist, some of the different areas in which medicine is used for forensic evidence, what scenes a state pathologist may be called to and what they normally do in their job as a forensic pathologist. In the afternoon, we received a talk about leaving cert subjects and the HPAT exam. In this talk we were informed of what subjects you need for medicine, the minimum amount of leaving cert points that you can get, how the HPAT exam works and how to prepare for it. We then watched a real-life Laparoscopic surgery to remove someone’s gallbladder. This surgery was recorded in the hospital the day before, so the surgeon that performed the surgery could be in the lecture hall with us to explain everything that was happening in the surgery. 

I really enjoyed this fantastic opportunity that I was lucky enough to receive and I would highly recommend it to anyone looking into a career in Medicine and Healthcare. My TY has helped me learn more about life after secondary school and has given me the chance to experience new things that I may have never tried or thought about if it was not for TY. 


Category: Transition Year