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Im only 17 but i need help chosing a field...

Discussion in 'Women in Healthcare' started by JMarf, May 27, 2008.

  1. JMarf


    May 27, 2008
    Ok so I have always dreamed of becoming a surgeon, specifically a neuro, but lately because I am looking at colleges I have been thinking about my future. I have read hundreds of blogs about women in surgery and it sounds hard. I love kids and want to have a max of 3 but i dont want to do that when i start my career at like 35ish. By then i will be too tired to play with them and etc, also i want to be there for my kids and not always at the hospital. So i guess my question is, is there a specialty that is not so demanding yet still interesting and suitable for women? I have heard oral and maxillofacial surgery isn't so demanding but it sound sooo boring, I mean most of the patient probably come in for the same thing. Or should i just become a physician assistant and still do surgery, just for a lesser pay and some restrictions? Or just lower my goals to becoming a doctor, who has more free time than a surgeon? Please help me :( And also are there any scholarships out there for women in healthcare? I am an African American ranked 33 out of a class of 357 with a GPA of 4.21.
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  3. Pemberley

    Pemberley Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jul 30, 2005
    You're liable to get ignored when you come posting on a board saying that you're 17 and know exactly which subspecialty you want to go into because -- well, we've all been 17. Those of us who knew exactly what we wanted to do (I was going to be a theoretical physicist) generally ended up being wrong. We start thinking maybe you're just a troll -- playing with us -- because it's so obvious from this side of the question that you're not quite asking the right questions.

    However, having checked your other 4 posts, I've decided that there's a least a small chance you're on the up-and-up, and I'll answer. If you're not, you get a small laugh out of making me say what's already been said hundreds of times on these boards. One feels a little silly sounding like a high-school-commencement speech, but it's tough to avoid in these situations.

    I know it's frustrating to be told "you're jumping the gun here" when you talk about your dreams for the future, but... you're jumping the gun here.

    Dreaming is good. Envision yourself a surgeon, an immunologist, a mother, a theoretical physicist, a computer programmer, a fighter pilot, and whatever else crosses your mind. Keep your mind open.

    This is NOT, however, the time for stressing out about which dream to pick and how to combine them. Dream, but don't worry unless your conclusions will affect your immediate decision-making -- and if you remain interested in medicine, your decision-making for THE NEXT EIGHT YEARS will be exactly the same for any specialty you choose.

    Study hard. Play hard. Build and understand your own character and values before you pick a man to marry and spend your life with and have children with. Read widely. Play a sport and an instrument. Don't do any of the dumb things that college kids do (get pregnant by a boyfriend, do drugs, fail out, become alcoholic, marry unwisely) that would derail you from whichever dream it is you end up pursuing.

    Start capitalizing "I" and writing in complete (non-run-on) sentences.

    About medical school scholarships: they are few and far between. Being a female URM raises your chances slightly, but you still ought to plan for the most likely scenario: that you will have to pay for school like 99.99% of the other medical students in the country.

    About combining specialties and children: if you find an easy answer out there, come back and tell us what it is. The only real decision to make now is: don't close off any options now based on hypothetical family situations later. Surgical residencies generally end at (I could be a little off here) 31. More than one 31-year-old out there hasn't even found the father of her children yet, and some (sadly) never will.
    ivm likes this.
  4. JMarf


    May 27, 2008
    Ouch! A bit harsh don't you think? Capitalizing "I"s and writing non-run-on sentences, I did not know this was an English Class. I only asked the question because I don't want to go to a college based on their number of kids that get into med school and at then end of the road, realize I should have done something else. So I came here thinking: well these people are med school kids so they could help me out. If you had nothing nice/worthy of saying then you shouldn't have replied like the others who ignored the post. Thanks though.
  5. Visceral

    Visceral 5+ Year Member

    Dec 15, 2006
    You do know that if you want to become an oral and maxillofacial surgeon you'd have to attend dental school, right? And even then, you'd have to be in the top 10% of your dental school class to have a chance to attend that residency. So do not go for that career unless you would be happy being a general dentist providing things do not work out as planned.

    Anyways, at 17 I didn't want to become a dentist, but after a couple years of undergrad, growth and shadowing experiences I found my desired career.

    I'd personally just go to university and do a general sciences for a couple years and just shadow or speak to people in various professions. The concern about family and lifestyle is certainly valid so speaking to women in a given field would be great.

    Family and more free time were definitely two important things for me that led me to my field. I am a male by the way.

    You might be offended when people say that you don't really know what you want to do at 17, but they are right. Out of 7 my friends who expressed interest in medicine at age 17 - 3 went into law, 1 optometry, 2 masters. The only person who is in medicine is my current girlfriend.
  6. TheBee

    TheBee Scholl 2012, baby! 2+ Year Member

    Dec 17, 2007
    North Chicago, IL
    Agreed. JMarf, no need to get defensive. Pemberley was just trying to give you some sound advice (not using run-ons and capitalizing 'I's included). :)

    As far as your dreams of a career in medicine goes, a lot of your opportunities will be determined by how well you do in college and medical school. You won't be able to get into medical school unless you have mostly As and score high on your MCATs, and you won't get coveted residency positions in desirable fields without doing well in medical school. Take it one step at a time. Get into a college that you like and do really well in all your classes. After all, if you don't have the scores to even get into medical school, these concerns will be for nothing. And if that happens, it's not the end of the world. You'll learn that there are hundreds of career options in medicine, not all of which require going to med school.

    On another note, pretty much ALL fields in medicine are hard, not just surgery! They demand a high attention to detail, many years of schooling, lots of money to pay for all those years in school, can be high stress, and can require many sacrifices along the way.

    It's great you're dreaming big, but take your time. Do well in college to start with and you'll have all sorts of opportunities open up to you!
  7. Luxian

    Luxian 5+ Year Member

    Dec 13, 2006
    You are a little ahead of the game here! It's like saying "I want to be President. Which congressional internship program should I do."

    There are a lot of steps along the way: get into a good college, get good grades in the pre-reqs, do some research, do some volunteering and shadowing, take the MCAT, get into med school, do well in your first two years, ace your first board exam, THEN choose a specialty. I'd say you are about seven years ahead of the game!! Surgeons come from all colleges. Just pick one that has a good science program, and you should be fine.

    As for specialties in general... many people aim for neuro and end up somewhere else. You don't have a lot of control over what specialty you go into. It depends on the program, and your academic abilities, and your competition, and your luck. Make sure that even if you aim for neuro, you would be okay with "just being a doctor". You can't know where your life will be in seven years, so its best to keep an open mind. Then if you don't get into your favorite med school, or if you don't get that prized neuro residency, or if you fall in love, or if you get sick, or if anything else gets in the way of your dreams, you will have a backup plan. Always have a backup plan!
  8. mededu

    mededu Banned

    Feb 26, 2009
    if you are sure you can do it, then may be first you can try to accomplish your career goals,
    abd when you feel you are doing good in your profession, you can hire some good staff and delegate responsibilities, and manage them effectively

    at this stage you can start with expanding your family.

    basically if u have the aptitude for acquiring a well paid skill then try manage yourself and you can enjoy rest of ur life.
    considering if u settle urself as an physician assistant, then the money will come only as long as you will work actively, moreover you could be replaced anytime.
    so if u r smart and intelligent then why not build your own empire -- give it a thought!
  9. SmKN808

    SmKN808 ♥...6102 o/ɔ doɔlʇs Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 2+ Year Member

    WOW... :claps:
  10. SmKN808

    SmKN808 ♥...6102 o/ɔ doɔlʇs Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 2+ Year Member

    well, that said it best for me ;) ESPECIALLY the bolded :D

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