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June 20, 2013

On Campus with Medical Student & Music Blogger Shawn

Next up in our series of profiling some of our awesome Surface users is Shawn from Toronto, Canada. Shawn is a medical student, and uses Surface for both work and play. We spent some time on campus with him so we could learn how he’s using his Surface to study for med school exams and keep up with the music blog he writes. We understand being busy, we remember being students, and we worked hard to make Surface great for students at any level. It’s incredibly satisfying to see people like Shawn use Surface to reach their goals and achieve their dreams. Here is a look at our visit with Shawn.

Can you tell us a little bit about you, why you wanted to go into medicine and what you hope to achieve being a doctor?

I think a part of me always knew that I wanted to be a doctor. Even before high school, I had a love for the sciences and found human physiology fascinating. I particularly enjoy the human brain and the way the mind works. A physician’s ability to make a positive impact on the lives of others, and society as a whole, is incredible. Going to work and feeling like you made a difference can make the long, intensive hours worthwhile.

What would you say are some of the things that Surface has really helped you do while at school?

Having something portable and convenient to type notes and read textbooks with is important when you’re always on the go. The screen is beautiful and really helps when looking at complicated diagrams for hours.

How has using Surface helped increase your productivity and efficiency in school?

I think that the Surface’s multitasking ability allows me to do a lot at once, whether it’s look up terms I’m unfamiliar with while reading a lecture, or taking a photo of something brought up in class.

How are you using Surface to study for exams? 

It allows me to have all my notes in one place, which is important for studying. Like I mentioned, having the ability to read textbooks and type notes (with a keyboard!) is great to have in one device. It also integrates with my other Windows PC’s, which is really convenient.

What are your top 3 most used and favorite apps on your Surface?

I would say that having the Microsoft Office suite on my Surface is vital. PowerPoint, Excel and Word are all essentials that I use often.

Do you know what field of medicine you’d like to go into?

I have decided that Psychiatry is the field of medicine that I’m most passionate about. Learning about people’s stories, developing strong therapeutic relationships, being in a dynamic field that is currently in a state of evolution, it’s got a lot of aspects that appeal to me.

When you’re not studying, how are you using Surface?

In my spare time, I run a music blog out of Toronto ( and use my Surface to post concert reviews or interviews that I, or my writers, do with bands. I perform spoken word poetry and love having something portable with a keyboard that I can use when something worth writing about happens in my environment. Using social media sites like Facebook and Twitter (@Katuwapitiya) is also how I connect with people about medicine, music, poetry and everything else.

Can you share with us one great study tip for students?

If you’re liking what you’re doing, you’ll find it’s a lot easier to stay focused and do well. After that, find a technique of studying that works for you and be confident in yourself. For some people that’s big study groups, for others it’s more independent. Don’t get too caught up in what everyone else is trying to do.

In one sentence can you describe why Surface has been so helpful for you as a medical student?

It’s portable, fast, and lets me do a lot at once.

Lily Durwood
Manager, Microsoft Surface