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Med Student Gift Guide

Ben_3Ben Bryner -- It can be difficult to find a good holiday present for someone when you're a medical student. Money is very tight, and so is free time to do shopping. But the pressure is on, since the holidays represent a key opportunity to rebuild the personal relationships that you've let crumble because you've been so busy studying or interviewing.

Medical students can be especially tricky to buy for. Before you object, I agree with you that the winter holidays have become way too commercialized and we should just scale it all back a little bit. I'm not trying to encourage shopping at all, but if you're already going to shop, some of these suggestions might make it a little easier.

So, here are some gifts for the med student in your life:

* U.S. Senate seat (OK, you probably guessed this was coming. Seriously, though, I've been fascinated by the recent news about the attempt by the governor of Illinois to sell a Senate seat. There are so many amazing aspects of this story, but most of all are the various harebrained schemes that he [allegedly] thought of to sell the seat. Incredible.)

* Germ stuffed animals (from Giant Microbes). You can buy a plush treponeme (the agent causing syphilis) here. The jokes kind of write themselves with that one.

* Nerdy pun/slogan shirts (from Threadless). Medical students are huge nerds and the sooner you admit that, the more successful your shopping will be. The "Nerds 2^2 Ever" one is obviously perfect.

* "Avocado's Number" guacamole from Trader Joe's. Again, huge nerd points for naming a line of premixed guacamole after a pun on the constant named for Italian chemist Amedeo Avogadro. Well done, Trader Joe.

* Board review books (from multiple publishers). This gift says, "Study more, I want to see you less often."

* A sticky hook and some sheet protectors (from any office store). For someone with boards coming up, give them some plastic hooks they can stick to their shower wall. Then give them a bunch of sheet protectors, so they can stick pages of notes in the sheet protectors and hang them on the hook so it’s easy to study in the shower. No more wasting valuable study time by only getting clean!

* Arrested Development DVDs (from any entertainment store). Every medical student needs a study break every so often, and an episode of this series, twenty minutes of sheer comedic gold, is perfect. (Or you can just send them this link and say, “click, watch, thank me later.”)

* Homemade gifts (from you). The best gifts are always ones that show you were thinking about the recipient, and often a handmade gift is the easiest way to convey that. Obviously, whatever you give depends on your talents and your time. If all you can do is write a nice letter or email to someone you don't talk to enough, that's better than almost anything that people are out there fighting over in store aisles.

Good luck and happy holidays.

December 14, 2008 in Ben Bryner | Permalink


Those Germ stuffed animals are hilarious...i once bought a bunch for my emt friends. Thanks for the great ideas.

Posted by: tfb | Dec 16, 2008 10:14:02 AM

The Giantmicrobes are great. I wish they came in a more real-life version, so that I could hand them out to attendings.

Posted by: Max | Dec 16, 2008 2:34:58 PM

By the way, the Illinois governor got so low that he actually tried to shake-down the local children's hospital. Even bacteria aren't that low.

Posted by: Max | Dec 16, 2008 2:53:03 PM

You all should check out www.iheartguts.com too! Super cute plush body organs! My favorite is the uterus.

Posted by: Megan | Dec 16, 2008 3:05:54 PM

How about a nicer stethoscope or an iphone/ipod touch?

Posted by: Ty | Dec 16, 2008 8:55:35 PM

Ty ... dare to dream boy!!! I have only seen one med student with an iphone and he only had it to run pdf versions of his text books on - an idea that has now been hijacked but on the much cheaper palm's.

Posted by: Amy | Dec 17, 2008 3:32:02 AM

Don't be timid. Let them show how much they love you.
Ask for:

- keychain pulse oximeter ($400)
Because the nurses won't let you use theirs.

- CardioIII stethescope ($300)
The only thing better than one of those, is two of those.

- internet phone ($500)
To wiki for... I mean research for medical facts.

- Ultramini Laptop ($1000)
So you can update your facebook during call.

Posted by: | Dec 17, 2008 9:08:24 AM

Baaahaha, I love this post!

Posted by: | Dec 18, 2008 11:36:34 AM

rolling on floor laughing my head off! "wiki for... I mean research for medical facts!" that is just great! made me laugh there Amy.

Posted by: luis barillas schwank | Dec 18, 2008 9:26:29 PM

I like the idea about germs most of all))

Posted by: Clenbuterol | Feb 16, 2011 7:34:57 AM

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