Jul 19, 2009
12
0
Florida
Status
Pre-Medical
I'm a fresh high school graduate about to go into my first college freshman year at a 2-year transfer school (majoring in biology) this fall, and I've had a lot of trouble deciding what I want to do as a career, but I narrowed it down to medicine, specifically Pathology, Radiology and Pharmacology being my top 3 most interesting areas of study.

I took a look at the typical pre-requisites for medical school and I can't help but get an overwhelming feeling of discouragement. All those types of chemistry, biology, physics, basically all the sciences and I feel a sense of dread, since in high school, science and math were undoubtedly my worst subjects. It worries me because I don't want to build up a "I can do this, I can just study hard and it'll be fine" attitude just to be setting myself up for eventual failure. And that's just the tip of the ice burg, the classes IN medical school is where the real difficulty begins, or so I've heard.

And it kind of saddens me because I've tried to consider every other type of career but nothing really calls to me like medicine. I mean, sure, I've always wanted to be in a heavy metal rock band, but in all practicality I want a REAL profession that I can count on to not only cover my family financially, but to give me the satisfaction of seeing the rewards of a challenging profession.

That said, I don't want to try something that is way out of my league, or to be one of those people who enter medicine for the wrong reasons. When I take a look at something like this: http://photos-f-1.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc1/hs148.snc1/5520_233049390071_820430071_8022421_4176417_n.jpg
It feels as though I graduated from middle school, not high school! The sense of hopelessness is almost unbearable. And I'm not exactly a "good" student, I'm the type that scrapes the bottom of the barrell and does enough to get by. I don't even know how I managed to get a 3.09 GPA entering college.


I guess all I want is just some of your perspectives and opinions...can a guy like me with no natural calling for any science, a pessimistic outlook on life, and a not-so-extravagant academic history really pursue medicine? I already have a hard enough time paying for class now, so if i were to take all these classes and fail them or worse...drop OUT of medical school (should I get into it) to go back to school for something else, it would just be devastating. But then again, nothing catches my eye like medicine. To help, in any way possible, to save and/or treat lives is precious to me, more so than pursuing something in business, legal (politics), agriculture, engineering, or performing arts. (though i do love to play guitar) What do you think?



Sorry for this novel!
thanks in advance for reading!
EA


(On a side note, microbiology is my one favorite area of biology. :p)
 

DrYoda

Space Cowboy
10+ Year Member
Jun 22, 2008
13,817
109
Dagobah System
Status
Attending Physician
I took a look at the typical pre-requisites for medical school and I can't help but get an overwhelming feeling of discouragement. All those types of chemistry, biology, physics, basically all the sciences and I feel a sense of dread, since in high school, science and math were undoubtedly my worst subjects. It worries me because I don't want to build up a "I can do this, I can just study hard and it'll be fine" attitude just to be setting myself up for eventual failure. And that's just the tip of the ice burg, the classes IN medical school is where the real difficulty begins, or so I've heard.)
I can't offer you anything other than anecdotal evidence (being myself), but your highschool performance won't necessarily be an indicator of college performance. I just barely got out of highschool chem with a "C-" but I got A's in all my college chem classes.

The great thing about where you are now is that you're not boxed in at all. You don't need to commit to med school anytime soon, so keep it on the table as a possible career path, explore it some more, try taking the pre-reqs, but don't let it psyche you out.


That said, I don't want to try something that is way out of my league, or to be one of those people who enter medicine for the wrong reasons. When I take a look at something like this: http://photos-f-1.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc1/hs148.snc1/5520_233049390071_820430071_8022421_4176417_n.jpg
It feels as though I graduated from middle school, not high school! The sense of hopelessness is almost unbearable.
It only looks intimidating because you haven't learned the subject matter. Same as algebra can look intimidating if you don't know anything about it.

I'll be starting med school a month from today and I have the same "I know nothing" feeling. It's perfectly normal to feel that way.

And I'm not exactly a "good" student, I'm the type that scrapes the bottom of the barrell and does enough to get by. I don't even know how I managed to get a 3.09 GPA entering college.
Recognizing that's how you are is the first step of changing it. If a lack of effort is what held you back in HS, then make sure it doesn't hold you back in college. You start with a clean academic slate in college, take advantage of it.

I guess all I want is just some of your perspectives and opinions...can a guy like me with no natural calling for any science, a pessimistic outlook on life, and a not-so-extravagant academic history really pursue medicine? I already have a hard enough time paying for class now, so if i were to take all these classes and fail them or worse...drop OUT of medical school (should I get into it) to go back to school for something else, it would just be devastating. But then again, nothing catches my eye like medicine. To help, in any way possible, to save and/or treat lives is precious to me, more so than pursuing something in business, legal (politics), agriculture, engineering, or performing arts. (though i do love to play guitar) What do you think?
My advice is to not let yourself be overwhelmed. Becoming a doctor has a crazy amount of steps to it, just take it one step at a time and things will feel a lot less intimidating.

Also remember that you have alot of options open to you right now. There are many great careers out there, you may end up liking a different one more after some time at college.

And make sure to have fun at college.:)
 

Vicviper

Michael De Coro, DMD - AKA Steve McAwesome
Gold Donor
10+ Year Member
Nov 19, 2008
2,247
250
Visalia, CA
Status
Dentist
Yoda gave some very good advice. Things looks very daunting right now, but everyone does it, and they turn out all right. In Highschool I never "studied" per se - I always planned on going to a community college so I never took the SAT's either. But once I got there and knew what I wanted to do, dentistry, and what I needed to do to get there, it all comes into much better perspective. The pre-reqs aren't difficult at all to complete in 4 years, and hell, if you need a 5th year, take your time, no need to rush. I just graduated as a Super Senior myself. More and more people are doing that nowadays.

College is also very different than high school because most of the time there is little to no busy work. My problem was that I'm lazy, and so I half the time I either wouldn't do the busywork from high school, or I did it half assed, and so I got bad grades in high school.

Also, that chart you posted is actually very easy to understand and read (for an ochem chart), and it's a very helpful study tool. It's simply showing that if you start with a certain organic molecule, what using different solutions on it will do to it. After 3 weeks of Ochem you would be able to read that easily. So don't stress! It's impossible to understand complex things until you've been introduced to them.

Oh, and I got a low 3.0 something High school, and ended up getting into an Ivy League dental school, so take that to show you that what happened in high school has no bearing on your college career or beyond. Good luck, and keep up the hard work!
 

tennisball80

Membership Revoked
Removed
10+ Year Member
Feb 5, 2008
3,434
2
United States
Status
Pre-Medical
Oh, and I got a low 3.0 something High school, and ended up getting into an Ivy League dental school, so take that to show you that what happened in high school has no bearing on your college career or beyond. Good luck, and keep up the hard work!
:thumbup:

Inspiring story. Accepted to Tennisball80's dental school with full scholarship.
 

gotmilklol

High Skooler
10+ Year Member
Feb 22, 2009
174
0
Status
Pre-Pharmacy
I guess all I want is just some of your perspectives and opinions...can a guy like me with no natural calling for any science, a pessimistic outlook on life, and a not-so-extravagant academic history really pursue medicine? I already have a hard enough time paying for class now, so if i were to take all these classes and fail them or worse...drop OUT of medical school (should I get into it) to go back to school for something else, it would just be devastating. But then again, nothing catches my eye like medicine. To help, in any way possible, to save and/or treat lives is precious to me, more so than pursuing something in business, legal (politics), agriculture, engineering, or performing arts. (though i do love to play guitar) What do you think?
I would first "try it out" before actually going into med. I reccommend you shadow a health position such as physician or a pharmacist to gain experience on how a average day of a pharmacist or physician is. This shows how much you really desire to go into med. All you need is determination.
 
OP
Ea84
Jul 19, 2009
12
0
Florida
Status
Pre-Medical
Thanks so much for the reassurance, guys! It really makes me feel better about what I want to get myself into. I really will follow the advice here, I'll take it one step at a time, shadow some doctors/pharmacists and get a feel for what it's like, and hopefully if it really does call to me, I can tackle college classes with determination and patience, knowing that I can learn the material patiently.

Thanks again for your advice and awesome stories! I appreciate it! :D
 

Terpskins99

Fear... The Stig
10+ Year Member
Mar 8, 2005
3,435
7
Status
Resident [Any Field]
I'm a fresh high school graduate about to go into my first college freshman year at a 2-year transfer school (majoring in biology) this fall, and I've had a lot of trouble deciding what I want to do as a career, but I narrowed it down to medicine, specifically Pathology, Radiology and Pharmacology being my top 3 most interesting areas of study.

I took a look at the typical pre-requisites for medical school and I can't help but get an overwhelming feeling of discouragement. All those types of chemistry, biology, physics, basically all the sciences and I feel a sense of dread, since in high school, science and math were undoubtedly my worst subjects. It worries me because I don't want to build up a "I can do this, I can just study hard and it'll be fine" attitude just to be setting myself up for eventual failure. And that's just the tip of the ice burg, the classes IN medical school is where the real difficulty begins, or so I've heard.
My advice: don't worry about the road ahead. Focus on the present. Seek to excel in every class from the beginning, and don't settle for merely "getting the grade". Its a habit that will work wonders for you in the future.

In med school, you have to learn EVERY subject thoroughly. Psych, biochem, physiology, pharm, histology... whatever... confronting a subject you may be weak in is something you'll face regularly. And you have to learn all of it well to pass boards/become a doctor.
 

damienbp

5+ Year Member
Jun 14, 2009
11
0
Status
Pre-Dental
Good advice....I'm feeling a little overwhelmed right now researching what it takes to apply and be admitted to Dental school, and in fact I should probably step away from the computer. But really I just became interested in the possibilty of going to Dental school and becoming a dentist very recently, and I cannot expect to learn and plan everything RIGHT NOW. Many people don't even know they want to go to med/vet/pharm etc. school until later on. I am coming to learn that becoming a doctor will be a long path, but I might need to just live in the moment during the journey, grabbing a hold of opportunities and lessons as they come my way, PACE MYSELF, and remind myself that if so many others can do this, then I most certainly can as well!