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Good Way to Spend a Year Off

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by NE_Cornhusker1, Mar 16, 2002.

  1. NE_Cornhusker1

    NE_Cornhusker1 12" Member 7+ Year Member

    Aug 6, 2001
    The Cornhusker State
    Since it is looking like I will not be getting into MD school in 2002 I need to figure out what I want to do with my life for a year while I reapply.
    My best options it seems so far are to go work as a lab tech and take advantage of the six free credits I can earn from the school (Creighton) a semester or finish up a degree in Chemistry at U of Nebraska.

    Arguments for working at Creighton; make $, by taking 6 credits/semester I don't have to pay back student loans, have the chance to kiss AdCom butt easily enough. Against: Grades for those courses won't come in until December so MD schools will barely even know if I did well in the classes or not.

    And for Chemistry; I've heard MD schools cut a little slack with respect to GPA to people with tough majors (like chemistry), my AMCAS app would indicate I am a Chem major right away when they see it and I would avoid paying back loans. Against: I would be paying $, not making it.

    Give me your thoughts.
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  3. MUN2005

    MUN2005 Miner? 7+ Year Member

    Aug 19, 2001
    Get emt certification.
  4. barb

    barb Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Nov 19, 2001
    Los Angeles
    You should pick something that you think you will enjoy (as well as help you when you apply again). This might be the last "year off" you have for awhile once you start med school so take advantage of it.
    I actually took 2 years off but here's what I did:
    First year off: I did the research thing, doing very interesting stuff that intellectually was great, but emotionally not very satisfying. Although I learned a lot, I was pretty unhappy and if I had started med school in that frame of mind, I probably would have quit the first semester. However, this research came up in a few of my interviews this year and it really helped having this background.
    This year off: I decided to do something that I really wanted to do, rather than something that would help my career. I am teaching 7th grade math to inner-city kids. This experience has been so amazing and has even gotten me thinking that I want to go into adolescent psychiatry. This has been far more rewarding than any research I could have done. And although it is not related to medicine, it is something I feel so passionately (and genuinely) about, that it turned out to be a great conversational piece in my interviews.
    Just listen to yourself (deep down you know what you want to do).
  5. reesie0726

    reesie0726 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Dec 23, 2001
    arlington, tx
    Do something you want to do that will make yourself stand out.Like the previous poster mention.
  6. Cerberus

    Cerberus Heroic Necromancer Physician 10+ Year Member

    Dec 13, 2001
    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Good Way to Spend a Year Off? </font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">drunk <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
  7. liesie59

    liesie59 Member 7+ Year Member

    Feb 7, 2002
    I know this wasn't one of your options, but what I've done this year is join a volunteer organization (similar to Americorps). It's been nice not to be in an academic environment, and I've gained a lot of experience for next year. I am placed in a health clinic dealing primarily with low-income individuals. I work with clients constantly and have learned so much in this placement. Even though it's been great for me, I know this isn't the choice for everyone. Just do what you will enjoy the most and will prepare you (in some way) for your future--good luck deciding! :)
  8. Doctora Foxy

    Doctora Foxy Meow 7+ Year Member

    Jan 28, 2002
    Try volunteering in a clinic. Clinical exposure is a great thing to talk about during interviews to prove that you KNOW you want to be a doctor. And it's fun! :)
  9. rajneel1

    rajneel1 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 29, 2001
    so why wouldn't you finish up your chemistry degree? do that, and do some cool extracurriculars like the above posters said. and sleep alot...because you will miss it.
  10. NE_Cornhusker1

    NE_Cornhusker1 12" Member 7+ Year Member

    Aug 6, 2001
    The Cornhusker State
    Because I will have graduated in August with a BioChem degree.
  11. Lab Tech? I worked in a lab for over a year. Most dreaded work ever. Unless you like lab work, do something else. If you are apply to the top 10 schools in the nation, then become a lab rat and live it. Not many people get into the top 10 school w/o lab experience. good luck

    My advice... playstation is a good way to spend one year...take all your anger out w/ the hockey games
  12. pipper

    pipper Member 7+ Year Member

    Mar 12, 2002
    I am not sure what would be best for you, but I can relate my personal experience and see if that helps ya out at all. I've taken two years off. I came out of college thinking I wanted to be a chemist and thus got a lab job. Although the work is interesting and I have gained a lot of experience, I found the work not all that rewarding. I had a hard time getting excited about finding a cure for cancer if I never got to see any of the first hand benefits. So, I got my EMT and I LOVE it. I really feel like I am making a difference in people's lives and I have learned so much about working with patients and how to lead others during emergencies. If you already have a Biochem degree, spend your year during something you really would love. Having some experience that really gets you jazzed during an interview will be much more impressive I think than some just doing a tech job to pay the bills. Just my two cents! <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
  13. oldman

    oldman Senior Citizen 10+ Year Member

    Feb 3, 2002
    I am taking a year off. I am volunteering as an EMT and working as a phlebotomist. I think I have learned a lot. I lost a patient as an EMT, so I have had to deal with the memory of someone dying in front of me. I have also seen people who have tried to kill themselves. I have seen parents bring in sick kids. I think I'd rather do something that touches me and teaches me how to be a better person. I am also volunteering in an elementary school and a rehab facility. Enjoy your year off.

    One quick hint is to contact some of the admissions committees and find out what part of your application was lacking and perhaps focus on that area.

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