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Avery Nolen

Program M.D.

Hometown Memphis, TN

Undergraduate School and Major University of Tennessee at Knoxville, Psychology


Specialty / Career Plans Surgery (possibly)


Extracurricular Activities Art/ Tattooing, relaxing, and spending time with friends and family; Student National Medical Association, Minority Association of Pre-Health Students- Coordinator, QCOM Ambassador


Marital Status In a relationship

Avery Nolen
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Why Quillen

I chose Quillen as my No.1 choice for several different reasons.   In addition to being nationally recognized in family medicine, Quillen has a history of having successful graduates that place in a plethora of different residencies every year!   Quillen also offers an environment where the teacher to student ratio is exceptional, a place that I would be more than just a number and well acquainted with all of my classmates, teachers, and faculty.   Also, I believe that each stage of one’s education toward their dream should be a new experience in its own right, and Quillen offered an opportunity for me to continue to become a well cultured individual, and the welcoming family like environment is like none other.


Being a Quillen Student


A typical day at Quillen is an experience to say the least.   My day begins around 6:30 am.   I typically attend Anatomy lecture from 8:00 to 10:00 and lab from 10:00 to noon. From 12:00 to 1:00, I typically grab lunch from one of the surrounding restaurants and arrive back at Stanton-Gerber for Physical Exam by 1:00.   Physical Exam lecture is from approximately 1:00 to 3:00, and we work with standardized patients from either 3:00 to 4:00 or 4:00 to 5:00, which gives us the opportunity to “play doctor” on a much higher level, and use “club words” as our professor, Dr. Eason, would say.   After this extensive day, I usually take a short break, eat, and workout depending on the amount of studying that I have to do.   And then I usually study from 7:00 or 8:00 p.m. to about 1:00 or 2:00 a.m. in the morning.   Then wash and repeat.   You get into your routine pretty quickly and this seems to work for me, but there are different strokes for different folks.


Juggling School and Family


Balancing school and family can be a challenge, but can be done.   I feel like my situation is different from some others because one of the reasons I chose Quillen as my first choice was so that I could be in a place where I could focus without many distractions including family and friends.   With that being said, I make sure I talk to my family at least once every other day to make sure everything is okay back home and update them on my situation as well.   I think it is very important to not neglect those who are close to you in life, even though you are on a journey most of them will not have a chance to experience, you have to remember that they are the ones who will be there to support you no matter what the situation.


Prior Life


I grew up in the inner city of Memphis, where I was self-employed as a portrait and tattoo artist, rather than succumbing to the “street enterprise” like so many of my peers were involved in, before college at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.   While in college, I continued tattooing to supply myself with a source of income, while being a Psychology major, having a concentration in Pre-Med, and being involved in several organizations which included being a student mentor to those from a similar background.


Words of Wisdom


I think one of the best pieces of advice I believe I’ve ever been told was that you should never be afraid to seek advice or ask for help.   This can be extremely important in getting to where you desire to be in life.   Take others advice who have already done what you are trying to do and apply it.   Even though it may not work for you, you never know if you do not try it, and if what you are doing is not working then what do you have to lose.

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