Once you graduate from high school, should you just forget about it and leave it behind forever? Well, that’s not what Cheah Yun Zhi, a Han Chiang High School graduate in 2018, who’s now a medical student thought. Yun Zhi returned to Penang from her studies in Ireland to visit Han Chiang High School and relive her memories for the last time.
As of now, Yun Zhi is pursuing an MBBS at Trinity College Dublin as a fourth-year medical student. She explained that it takes about 5 years to study general medicine in medical courses which later progresses to attending an internship for about 1.5 to 2 years. You’d then advance to a SHO (Senior House Officer) for about 1 to 2 years later on. Lastly, you ought to go into residency, where you start to specialise in specific courses and become a specialist doctor.
Life After High School
After high school, Yun Zhi went to INTI College Penang to study A-levels so that she would have a wider choice of: where to go, which university to study in, and the course she wanted to pursue. Yun Zhi thought studying A-levels and high school weren’t much different, as in high school, the teachers were quite extreme in terms of their teaching. The teachers would give out past year questions to go through and individualise their teaching, so it would be more detailed. On the contrary, in university, it’s just a big lecture hall with 200 students, which is a big difference. Although some may struggle as they don’t get as much attention, it forces students to be independent and to do their proactive learning, instead of being spoon-fed information by teachers. There is no longer supervision by teachers, thus, forcing students to be proactive in learning knowledge out of what is taught in the lectures. Besides that, COVID hit after Yun Zhi graduated from high school in 2018, which forced her learning to transition, having to learn online. Due to that, Yun Zhi struggled to completely adapt to learning physically because everything was online. Virtual learning has been very different compared to Yun Zhi’s high school times where everything was printed and hands-on.
The challenges Yun Zhi encountered during the COVID lockdown were the biggest ones of them all. The lockdown happened during Yun Zhi’s first year of university, which was supposed to be the year when she could explore Dublin and get used to the new environment. Other than that, the lockdown made it hard for Yun Zhi to socialise and meet new people in the course. So, the lockdown had not only impacted Yun Zhi getting to know Dublin, but also her ability to make connections with her peers. Fortunately, she managed to overcome her problem by joining various extracurricular activities outside of school after the lockdown had loosened up.
When one problem ended, another emerged. As she shifted back into physical learning, it troubled her because she needed to attend lecture halls and learn, which can be time-consuming in terms of transport and such. Therefore, time management was a struggle, but was overcome in a short time with better planning. Naturally, as someone who’s studying in a foreign country, Yun Zhi has left her friends and family in Malaysia to go to a new place – Ireland. During her time there, she felt homesick as Ireland food wasn’t suitable to her liking, due to her having an Asian palette. As a result of her homesickness, Yun Zhi tended to cook her dishes and would always take a handful of nostalgic childhood meals back whenever she visited Penang, such as her favourite instant noodles.
Despite Yun Zhi’s struggles, she has managed to accomplish many achievements through her hard work and determination, including getting 4 A-stars in A-levels and being awarded as one of the high achievers in INTI College Penang. Although they weren’t big feats to boast about, she still takes pride in them. Moreover, especially in university, Yun Zhi got distinctions in quite a few modules like anatomy, physiology, biochemistry and more. During her first and second years in university, she attained many awards and got the highest marks in anatomy and biochemistry.
Thoughts and Appreciation
Expressing her gratitude, she stated that she is nothing but grateful for her parents loving support no matter what she strives for; with their requirements for her as long as she’s passionate about it. Yun Zhi’s parents supported her physically, emotionally, as well as financially, which played a big part in getting her to where she is now. She was always thankful for her parents as they helped her through hard times, thus she put in the effort to repay her parents. Apart from that, she would like to thank Han Chiang High School teachers who instilled her passion for learning. Yun Zhi’s biology teacher inspired her to become a doctor through several dissection lectures where she had to dissect organs, for example, the heart of an animal, which fascinated her and sparked her to pursue medicine. She was also very thankful for her friends who gave her a life outside of academics and a comfortable high school life.
Visits and Future
Yun Zhi returns to Penang once every year, She will visit Han Chiang High School to see its current condition while feeling that kind of nostalgia during her high school times. Yun Zhi particularly likes meeting her teachers who had taught her with utmost passion in the past to thank them and reminisce about those times. Due to Yun Zhi’s teachers’ teachings, in 5 years, She sees herself finishing her internship and progressing on to a medical officer and specialising in and working towards her goal in life – being a specialist doctor by then. She wishes to contribute to society with a heart of gratitude and determination, which is what Han Chiang High School has taught their students since the start.
Aside from that, to motivate the current Han Chiang High School students, Yun Zhi advised them that time prevails and hard work will never fail anyone. No matter what challenges or obstacles we are facing, it’s never going to be permanent, and there’s always a solution to it. In addition, students could request help from the people around them: family, friends and teachers, so we should be appreciative of them as “No man is an island, entire of itself.”
To make students the best version of themselves, Yun Zhi is a respectable role model to be inspired by students of Han Chiang, showing that hard work never fails. As long as anyone puts in the effort, they will achieve greatness.
韩江中学的杰出毕业生，谢枟谘同学，已经迈出了她令人瞩目的学术征程的第一步，成功获得英国都柏林圣三一学院(Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin)的录取资格。她将攻读内外全科医学士学位(Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, M.B.B.S)。这也标志着她即将踏入世界一流的医学教育领域。她解释了在医学课程中学习需要大约5年的时间，还要参加为期1至2年的实习。然后晋升为SHO就读两年，再进入住院医师培训，开始专攻特定领域，并成为专科医生。
近期，她刚刚从新加坡国立大学的实习回到槟城，她的实习经验主要集中在儿科学会，同时也关注一些重要的公共健康议题。她提到，她目前担任了去年的MMII主席(Malaysia Medics International Ireland)，是马来西亚医学国际组织在爱尔兰的分支机构。在这个组织中，一群医学生汇聚一堂，共同学习医学知识，并积极参与各种医疗方面的交流与合作，为医学界的发展贡献了自己的力量。她说，她比较喜欢挑战自我，在紧急情况下可以快速运用所学过的知识、临床技能和领导技能，这样就可以将技能投入到测试中。追求杰出的学业成就和积极的社会参与，标志着谢枟谘同学在医学道路上光辉未来的开端。 她说道，麻醉学和急诊医学是她目前非常感兴趣的专业，虽然没有在儿科科系进行轮换，但她喜欢与儿童和婴儿互动，所以这是她期待并可能感兴趣的科系。