A year off, worked as a chemist, limited medical activities... help!

Nov 8, 2010
54
0
in my Toyota
Status
Pre-Medical
I've come across questions on secondaries that ask: “what will you be doing for the year off in between Undergrad graduation and Medical school.”

Here's why this question is hard for me to answer:


  1. I have been out of school of a year and I have worked full time as a chemist. That's all.
  2. I work this job which is really stressful, 50+ hours a week, and an hour commute because I simply need to. I couldn't afford to live if I didn't. My parent's are lovely, but I am completely on my own when it comes to $ and have always had to work.
  3. I did volunteer shortly at a clinic by because of my job I had to stop.
  4. I have applied to many, many jobs that center on health care but I have not been hired.
  5. I also have applied for many medically focused health care abroad programs and have not been able to go because of money.
I am nervous that medical schools will see my lack of medical experiences as being lazy or uninterested in health care. Can someone please provide insight in how to handle this question?



Please and thank you! I appreciate your time!
 

Richardh

10+ Year Member
Jul 3, 2008
345
1
Status
during the year off between your undergrad graduation and med school, you don't necessary have to be involved in health related field. some students simply study and take the mcat during that year. other students just continue retaking courses at a community/junior college.

so for you to have worked as a chemist during the year off is nothing to worry about :) honesty is the key and it's best for you to state as it is that you've been working diligently to support yourself while applying to med school.

the reasons for you continuing to work as a chemist might be that you have been holding the job since your undergrad (consistency is perceived high by med school), the pay from working as a chemist is generous and allows you to save up quite a lot for med school (for you to be financially cautious is taken into consideration by med school), etc. so there are many reasons for you to back up why working as a chemist was a good choice :thumbup:
 

Isoprop

Fascinating, tell me more
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Oct 15, 2007
4,197
34
Status
Medical Student
As long as you have some clinical experience from undergrad, you should be fine.
 
OP
A
Nov 8, 2010
54
0
in my Toyota
Status
Pre-Medical
Thank you very much for your input!

I do have clinical experiences from undergrad:
40+ of shadowing various MDs/DOs
3 months of shadowing one OB/GYN (4 hours/wk)
Volunteer work at a clinic
5 months in a West African clinic.


.... but I think I should try VERY hard to get back to volunteering.


thank you soo much!
 
OP
A
Nov 8, 2010
54
0
in my Toyota
Status
Pre-Medical
during the year off between your undergrad graduation and med school, you don't necessary have to be involved in health related field. some students simply study and take the mcat during that year. other students just continue retaking courses at a community/junior college.

so for you to have worked as a chemist during the year off is nothing to worry about :) honesty is the key and it's best for you to state as it is that you've been working diligently to support yourself while applying to med school.

the reasons for you continuing to work as a chemist might be that you have been holding the job since your undergrad (consistency is perceived high by med school), the pay from working as a chemist is generous and allows you to save up quite a lot for med school (for you to be financially cautious is taken into consideration by med school), etc. so there are many reasons for you to back up why working as a chemist was a good choice :thumbup:


thank you! I do not like my job too much so sometimes it's hard to find the positives in it! I appreciate your input, it helped me write a secondary today! =)
 

Ditto1114

5+ Year Member
Oct 13, 2009
403
0
Where the skies are so blue
Status
Medical Student
I've come across questions on secondaries that ask: “what will you be doing for the year off in between Undergrad graduation and Medical school.”

Here's why this question is hard for me to answer:

  1. I have been out of school of a year and I have worked full time as a chemist. That's all.
  2. I work this job which is really stressful, 50+ hours a week, and an hour commute because I simply need to. I couldn't afford to live if I didn't. My parent's are lovely, but I am completely on my own when it comes to $ and have always had to work.
  3. I did volunteer shortly at a clinic by because of my job I had to stop.
  4. I have applied to many, many jobs that center on health care but I have not been hired.
  5. I also have applied for many medically focused health care abroad programs and have not been able to go because of money.
I am nervous that medical schools will see my lack of medical experiences as being lazy or uninterested in health care. Can someone please provide insight in how to handle this question?



Please and thank you! I appreciate your time!
I graduated back in 2007 and have been working in a research lab ever since. I answered that question by focusing on critical thinking, time management, and building a stronger science foundation. In every interview I've gone to everyone has seemed excited about my experience, and it's a great lead in to the question "what makes you different?" Just make sure you know what you've been doing in lab because they will ask you.

I would suggest looking into volunteering even if it's only for an hour or so on the weekends or at night. Good Luck!!