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Dilemma: Work, Research at EVMS or Uconn post bacc?

Discussion in 'Nontraditional Students' started by annacruz, Mar 25, 2007.

  1. annacruz


    Nov 24, 2006
    I'm in a dilemma. I have a couple options and I don't know what to do. I have about 50,000 in loans I need to pay off from undergrad and my master's in public health, but I am planning to go to medical school by 26 (I am 25 right now). Here are my options:

    1) Work (research at EVMS) Fall 2007-Summer 2008 and then start EVMS post bacc fall 2008. but I'll be a year behind in my plan. Pros: I'll be able to pay for my loans and my job will pay for some of my tuition for the following year...Near family. Cons: A year behind in plan.

    2) Enter UConn's post bacc program for the Fall 2007, work my a$$ off, and get into med school for fall 2008. Cons: away from family. Pros: more opportunities at UConn than EVMS, thinking about getting a PhD or MBA. I'll get out my va beach bubble...its so slow in va beach!!!

    What do you think?
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  3. Critical Mass

    Critical Mass Guest

    Feb 23, 2007
    Don't sweat the 50K. It's peanuts compared to med school debt. I had more than 50K before med school.

    What kind of research job at a medical school pays well enough to dent those loans? Maybe I just live in the wrong place, but the best I could hope for as a research assistant was close to starting pay for an elementary school teacher which is dismal in my state.

    Also keep in mind that most people have to be pretty much ready (MCAT, most prereq's, etc.) for med school by the time they apply. If you want to start med school in fall 2008, you should be gearing up to have your application materials complete within a few months from now.

    2 Q's...

    Do you have all of your pre-req's complete? Your use of the term "post-bacc" makes it sound like you have pre-req's to finish.

    By "family" are you talking about a breeding partner that you are legally expected to live with and/or offspring? Or are you talking about your mom and dad?
  4. annacruz


    Nov 24, 2006
    To answer your questions...

    I've finished my pre-req's but I need to increase my science GPA a bit. And I am taking my MCAT this May. Yes I am working on my application right now.

    By "family" I mean my mom, dad, friends. I grew up near EVMS.

    If I do research at EVMS, I'd be getting a pretty good recommendation and paying off SOME of my loans haha. So you don't think 50,000 is a lot because my parents are freaking out that I'll be in debt forever...
  5. TheGalvaniFrog

    TheGalvaniFrog Dissected & Electrocuted 7+ Year Member

    Jan 24, 2007
    Unless you are planning to live in the family home and keep your expenses to a bare minimum, it's not really possible to make a dent on the loans on a starting RA's salary.

    Have you thought about EVMS's SMP program? If you prefer to stay near family for med school, this maybe an good option for your glide year.
  6. Critical Mass

    Critical Mass Guest

    Feb 23, 2007
    If EVMS has an SMP, that gets my nod. :thumbup:

    Your parents are correct about the debt, but most people would agree that a doc who owes 200K will be able to pay off the loans more comfortably than someone with a biological science Bachelor's (or Master's in my case) and a 50K load.

    Focus full fire power on the MCAT, young padawan.
  7. njbmd

    njbmd Guest Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

    May 30, 2001
    Gone Walkabout!

    Being 25 versus being 26, 27 or even 30 at the time of matriculation is not particularly significant. Being able to significantly reduce your total debt load (undergrad + graduate + medical school) will affect the quality of your life post medical school.

    As others have said, having a RA salary isn't going to put you in a great position to pay off your $50K of student loans over one year or contribute significantly to offsetting your medical school tuition with the exception of your maintaining your Virginia residency if you attend EVMS.

    In this situation, do what make you feel the most comfortable (so that you can perform the best), the happiest and do what will get you closer to the goal that you seek.
  8. annacruz


    Nov 24, 2006
    Thanks so much! I feel like Uconn has more opportunities for me, but I'll take things step by step. 1) Beast MCAT 2) Make decision 3) Get into medical school

    I'll let you guys know what happens.
  9. Faze2

    Faze2 2+ Year Member

    Nov 15, 2006
    Jessica Biel's Closet
    I agree with NJBMD, one year is not that much of a difference. I know it seems like it, and believe me I am just as anxious as you to get into school, but if you feel that this research position will really help you and you are that concerned about your loans, I say do it. Research never looks bad on your application. But I'll say as well that you should look into the SMP.

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