At Johns Hopkins University (and I suspect a great many others), the pre-med is an undergrad whose mother wants him to be a doctor, and who is sufficiently good at memorizing long lists for tests, and doesn't care much for ethics. Also the name of the JHU Mental Notes' first Hopkins satire song, making fun of the aforementioned overly-zealous undergrad.

Sung to the tune of The Gambler, it is a near carbon copy of Kenny Rogers' greatest hit--with a few notable exceptions. The Mental Notes have made sure to relearn this one every year, but don't often perform it as part of their semester's set, preferring to save it for an alumni participation encore or a great sing-along for guest groups at a post-show party.


On a warm summer's evening, on a train bound for Hopkins,
I met up with a pre-med; he was too damned tired to sleep.
So he just sat there starin' at the textbook I was readin'
'til I got pissed and glared at him, and he began to speak:

He said, "Son, I've lived my life, just to get myself in med school,
doing what I had to do to make sure I got in.
And if you don't mind me sayin', I can see you're havin' problems.
But for a look at your homework, I'll tell you how to win.

So I handed him my Orgo, he looked at all my answers,
then he asked me for a pen, and copied every one.
Then the night got deathly quiet, as his face lost all expression--
"Well, if you're gonna be a pre-med, you've gotta be number one.

...You've got to know how to beat 'em,
know how to cheat 'em--
know how to throat your friends to get ahead.
You've got to guard your homework,
give your friends the wrong assignments,
and be the terror of your Chem lab if you're
gonna be pre-med."


{key change!}

"Now every pre-med knows that the secret to surviving
is knowing your reactions and bribing your TA.
'Cause every throat's a winner--and all nice guys are losers,
but if you ride the curve, you'll get that Four-Oh GPA."

So when he finished speakin', he turned back towards my Orgo.
I asked him for my work back--bastard shot me full of lead!
Now late that very spring, the pre-med aced his MCATs,
and now he's throating all his 'friends', up at Harvard Med!

...You've got to know how to beat 'em,
know how to cheat 'em--
know how to throat your friends to get ahead.
You've got to guard your homework,
give your friends the wrong assignments,
and be the terror of your Chem lab if you're
gonna be pre-med."



{break into 4-part unison, no backing vocals):
You've got to know how to beat 'em, (in place of the lovely and famous country descant, a senior screams: "BEAT 'EMMMMM!")
know how to cheat 'em--
(and again: "CHEAT 'EMMMMM!" )
know how to throat your friends to get ahead.
You've got to guard your homework,
give your friends the wrong assignments,
and be the terror of your Chem lab if you're
gonna be pre-med."


Chorus once more, ending with "...Chem lab, and you'll
go to Harvard Med."

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