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5+ Year Member
Dec 17, 2017
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Hello, I am a senior in college with a bit of an unusual story that got me where I am today. I started college at one of the top liberal arts schools as a poli sci major intending to go into politics. After my freshman year, one of my parents was diagnosed with a terminal illness and that's where things start getting funky. I took a year off of school to work at a veterinary hospital because I thought that I wanted to completely switch tracks and be a veterinarian. I'm so glad that I tried it out however because I quickly learned it was not for me (upset pomeranian parents are not my cup of tea...). When I returned to school I transferred to another top liberal arts school that was closer to home so that I could commute (5 hrs instead of 10) if an emergency came up. Within a semester, my parent's illness progressed to stage iv and we were given a grave prognosis of a month so I took a semester off, took a class at home and got certified as an exercise instructor. My parent ended up being okay and actually improving significantly. The next semester, I transferred back to my original institution because I thought I wanted to pursue nursing and it was not available at the new school I was attending. I was very inspired by the nurses I was encountering during my parent's tx. Additionally, I missed my friends. Then, my parent's illness progressed significantly again and we were given a grave prognosis so I made my final transfer to my home state institution where I took a full load and took care of my parent full time when not in class/doing hw. Since returning to my home state and taking classes here I have not been thinking of pursuing medicine as much.... I have seen some of the darker sides of it while dealing with my parent's illness. I have become a bit disheartened/disillusioned. Part of me is disappointed with the system while another part wants to make a positive contribution. Regardless of what I choose to pursue, I know I will need a post-bacc (I am a sociology major, so no MD-required coursework yet).
I know that my decision-making was pretty bizarre in my undergrad... I was 17 when my parent was diagnosed and definitely didn't handle it elegantly.... But that aside, I have a high GPA and I conduct research in a lab at school. If I pursued a post-bacc to get the required classes and kept my GPA up, do you think that I still have a chance at med school? I am becoming increasingly interested in psychosomatic processes and would love to research this one day but I wonder if this is a pipe dream after all that I've done....

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Most people would totally understand your need to step away from school to be there for your parents and as long as you have a competitive GPA and MCAT I don't see anything holding you back. In fact, going through such troubling times and staying persistent in pursuit of an education will look good to most adcoms.