Major Decisions

Discussion in 'hSDN' started by mcally12, Aug 13, 2015.

  1. mcally12

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    Hi, just seeking some opinions regarding what to major in. I'm a high school senior and I am not entirely sure of where in healthcare I want to be. I am stuck deciding between becoming an NP, PA, or MD. I can double major at because of my AP credits, but I don't know what to major in. I like the idea of majoring in nursing and another science (biology, chemistry, biomedical science), but what if I decide to become a PA or an MD? I have heard that admissions departments avoid nursing majors like the plague, and I don't want one small thing to be the end of my medical career. However, if I chose my Plan B (Majoring in Biomedical Sciences and English), reject the idea of becoming an NP, and don't get accepted into any graduate programs, I don't know that I would find a job that could sustain me until the next application cycle. I'd be wanting that nursing degree then. So my question is, what did you/will you major in? Looking for some advice. Thanks in advance, it was kind of a long post.
     
  2. efle

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    Went in strongly interested in neuroscience, ended up as a first major in neuroscience and a second major in a blend of cognitive psych and philosophy of mind. There's a good chance you will discover things you love to study in college and would like to minor or 2nd major in that you simply haven't been exposed to yet - for me it was philosophy, some other common ones are film/music/art, gender studies, anthropology/archaeology, political science, classics, etc. Go in ready to explore, no need to pick this stuff out now! You usually don't even get to declare your major until you are 3 or 4 semesters in.
     
  3. raindropx

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    I'm like you--needed to have everything planned out before starting! Don't decide the profession right now; major in what most interests you as long as it offers a practical option in case you don't go into health care at all. So if you decide art or something make sure you have a career plan in that. Choosing to not go into health care happens very often (most of my friends went in premed and came out something totally different).
     
  4. JustintheDoctor

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    Tbh the nursing degree isn't a problem. You can become a nurse, work in a hospital for x amount of time while taking the other classes to get into med school and study for the MCAT. While other plebs only shadowed doctors, you would have worked with them and had actual duties to take care of. You'd have more of a shot than some bio major who only shadowed doctors.
     
  5. ComputerGuy365

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    Why would you spend the time to become a nurse only to give it up to be a physician? Instead of working at a hospital, you could be doing volunteering, shadowing, pre-req's or MCAT prep during that time. It's a waste of time if you ultimately want to be a physician. I highly doubt being a nurse will give you a big edge on your application.
     
  6. JustintheDoctor

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    Well, considering a lot of people need back up plans, it would be good to have a Nursing degree/license if you were pursuing that in the first place. And like I said,
    100+ hours of "shadowing" and "volunteering" doesn't look better than hundreds of hours ACTUALLY working in a hospital, taking care of patients, knowing what it's like to work in that type of situation instead of just being a sweaty gunner. Also, MCAT prep isn't until what, like the end of junior/senior year? Most nurses work 3-12 hour shifts. You can get experience in the health care field, make great money, and study on your 4 days off. So... next? You only see the small picture, take a bigger look. But hey, this is only my two cents and who I am? I'm just you're average dude that grew up in the field of health care and practically lives in the hospital.
     
  7. raindropx

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    Actually jumping ship is discouraged as adcoms would suspect you would change your mind a couple years into med school like you did in the previous health profession school. OP, do not do nursing if your aim is medical. Figure out what you want (and take your time) before committing to any prehealth path
     
  8. gothicfoxes

    gothicfoxes MD & MPH goals
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    You make it sound like it's a waste of time. Don't forget that nurses get paid; shadows & volunteers don't! ;)
     
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  9. JustintheDoctor

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    No.. no.. I get that, but if you WANT to be a nurse and work as one for a few years but then realize it isn't your thing since you want to "insert generic why you want to be a doctor statement" it wouldn't look as bad. I mean if you literally get a nursing degree, don't work, apply to medschool, then I can see that looking bad.
     
  10. ComputerGuy365

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    OP would first need to get an ADN or BSN before being eligible to take the NCLEX-RN. That could take up to four years. That is delaying the pre-reqs and other work. While it's true that the experience would be a lot of help, it just doesn't seem worth it to earn that degree if you are just going to give it up to be a physician. Also, a job that demanding will interfere with your study time. From what I've heard, to efficiently study, you will need no distractions. The MCAT is an incredibly comprehensive exam. It's a tool to weed out people who can't sit tests. An entry level nurse will not make much money, you're probably looking at less than 50k a year. Depends if its LPN or RN. The bottom line is, I don't see why someone would get a nursing degree if they know that they want to be a physician.

    This is also a good point. Adcoms like commitment. Knowing that you're going to switch careers shows you aren't committed to medicine.
     
  11. raindropx

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    I was under the impression the latter is what you are suggesting to OP.
     
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  12. raindropx

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    the worst logic ever.
     
  13. JustintheDoctor

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    Didn't we discuss this on a different post? It depends where you live, entry level nursing at my local hospital start with 60k+. My cousin literally just got a job there and she was offered 65k. I do agree the MCAT is obviously difficult and time consuming, especially the newest one. Finally, you can take the NCLEX once you graduate the nursing program which for a typical student is once they receive their ADN
     
  14. JustintheDoctor

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    no i wasn't lol sorry if it came off that way.
     
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  15. gothicfoxes

    gothicfoxes MD & MPH goals
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    How so? The point of shadowing and volunteering is to gain clinical experience so you know what the role and daily routine of a doctor is. This is a requirement for med apps so adcoms know you're serious and not disillusioned by fantasies and fictional portrayals of medicine. Nurses get clinical experience, just as hospital volunteer do, and sometimes more because of HIPAA policies in some private clinical settings. Bonus: nurses get a paycheck.

    Does that clear up my failed logic?
     
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  16. ComputerGuy365

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    The salary is besides the point. You do realize it takes time to earn an ADN? It takes at least two years. The classes are not pre-med. If your ultimate goal is to be a doctor, use that time doing something else! Don't waste time on a degree you won't even be using later on.
     
  17. JustintheDoctor

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    I know and I agree. I'm on track for the nursing program at my school but I can always change my mind. All the classes I have been taking too are pre-reqs for med school/ benefit me for the MCAT :p guess I got lucky with that. For example, I have to take physics, chem, psych, etc anyway. Before I actually apply to the nursing program I will personally make up my mind for which career is right for me.
    I guess I should also add, I'm friends with radiologists at my hospital that were all ER nurses before they went to med school, just throwing it out there. Humans have a tendency to change minds a lot
     
  18. ComputerGuy365

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    Well good luck on whatever path you take :)
     
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  19. PREDOCSIMP

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    Being a nursing student and applying to medical school might actually give you an advantage. While, it's definitely not the traditional route,it can have its upside. Mainly the clinical experience that you would receive during your nursing time. I don't think ADCOMs avoid nurses, in fact, given the right properties they might actually endorse one. You must consider the curriculum at your intended school for nursing, I have been advised by a NP to not choose nursing as my major if I want to go to medical school,because, well to put it frank, he called the classes easy.

    Take this outline for instance "
    UPPER DIVISION
    NURS 311 Introduction to Health Assessment 3
    NURS 312 Foundations of Nursing Practice 5
    NURS 313 Nursing Care of the Older Adult 3
    NURS 314 Clinical Reasoning 2
    NURS 324 Chemical Therapeutics 3
    NURS 400 Evidence-based Nursing Practice 3
    NURS 411 Psychiatric/Mental Health Nursing 5
    NURS 412 Acute Care Nursing of Adults I 6
    NURS 422 Acute Care Nursing of Adults II 5
    NURS 424 Maternal/Newborn Nursing 4
    NURS 425 Nursing of Children and Families 4
    NURS 428 Nursing Leadership and Management 4
    NURS 431 Family and Community Health Nursing 3
    NURS 435 Senior Nursing Capstone Practicum 8"


    Not the most advanced courses in the world. I mean, you don't look at it and become nervous, as you might looking at other majors. I am not saying this is a good thing or bad, but you should consider it.
     
  20. raindropx

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    Going into nursing just for the clinical experience and looking "good" for adcoms is stupid. No one will appreciate that. Most premeds do great with the normal hospital volunteering and shadowing. No need to get a freaking nursing degree for med school
     
  21. JustintheDoctor

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    I have heard from some buddies that med surg is hard class. It might be a good prep for med-school, more than Ochem will provide.
     
  22. PREDOCSIMP

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    Yes, they will appreciate that!

    Why would they not ? I think they are looking for qualified applicants (GPA+ MCAT), regardless of the major . I am not saying this approach is for everyone. In addition, read the post before you respond.
     
  23. gothicfoxes

    gothicfoxes MD & MPH goals
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    I don't recommend getting a nursing degree just for the experience, if that's what you inferred from my post. But a nurse who works and decides to switch careers is no different than a practicing lawyer or businessman/woman who decides to switch fields. Career changers are common in the app pool. x
     
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  24. raindropx

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    Feel free to get a nursing degree then. I would rather choose to believe adcoms.
     
  25. ComputerGuy365

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    Because medical schools like commitment. They don't want to see people jumping to different careers. If you do, they may think you aren't committed to medicine.
     
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  26. raindropx

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    I completely understand an honest career switch, but to try and game the system by getting a nursing degree when you are sure about medicine (what others are suggesting above) is ridiculous
     
  27. PREDOCSIMP

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    I am working on a biological science degree. You need to sit down and actually read the posts before you come out with your nonsense. I was clearly leaning against a nursing focus, based on the lack of upper level courses.
     
  28. gothicfoxes

    gothicfoxes MD & MPH goals
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    This is getting unnecessarily heated.
     
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  29. PREDOCSIMP

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    I think you could convince an ADCOM that you are applying for more responsibility. In essence, nurses do the same type of work that physicians do. Serving people, healing and providing a long term commitment to the community.
     
  30. raindropx

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    well, maybe tldr it next time :)
     
  31. ComputerGuy365

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    Agreed, this is supposed to be a logical debate, not a roast. No need to make people defensive.
     
  32. PREDOCSIMP

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    Indeed. But, I was pretty upset that he did not even read my post and called me out for being some sort of "Nurse convert MD applicant".
     
  33. raindropx

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    OP, if you want to go into medicine, do NOT get a nursing degree
     
  34. ComputerGuy365

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    To me, it sounds like you want a nursing degree to add more credibility to your application. While they are similar, they are also very different. An experience as a nurse will be totally different than an experience as a physician.
     
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  35. PREDOCSIMP

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    But OP, that is totally up to you. If you want to go to medicine, and do get a nursing degree(help finance a gap year or whatnot) you can still achieve your dreams with hard work and killer MCAT.
     
  36. JustintheDoctor

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    Let's end it then. OP, if you really want to be a doctor, DON'T just major in nursing to get an "edge"(clinical experience etc) just major in what ever you want and pursue med-school. BUT, if you want to be a nurse or PA etc and have an honest change of mind, it won't kill your chances of getting into med school
     
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  37. PREDOCSIMP

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    I was referring to the comment that " ADcoms would be angry about you switching careers" ..
    Nursing ---------) DOCTOR.
    Which is confusing, considering they are in essence, the same type of profession.
     
  38. raindropx

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    lol you think you can get a nursing degree in a gap year?

    Agreed with everything Justinthedoctor said.
     
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  39. raindropx

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    Please do your research before advising anyone. Getting a degree in another health profession just to look better for med school is NEVER recommended by anyone. Just stop spreading your ignorance for the sake of OP and anyone else viewing this thread who is looking for solid advice.

    Also LOL they are not the same kind of profession.
     
  40. ComputerGuy365

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    Couldn't have said it better myself. Glad you understand everything.
     
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  41. gothicfoxes

    gothicfoxes MD & MPH goals
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    I think we scared off the OP.
     
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  42. ComputerGuy365

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    As a high schooler who has not had much experience in the field of medicine, I can say this is 1000% true. I learned this over time by myself, make sure you know what you are talking about before you give advice. Do your research, whether it be passive or active. You can learn so much by just reading this forum.
     
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  43. PREDOCSIMP

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    Once again, you NEED to read the POST.

    If you have a BSN, what should you do during a GAP year ?
    A) sit at home and watch TV.
    B) Use that degree
    C) Do what Rain would do (which is nothing).


    IGNORE BUTTON HAS SPOKEN
     
  44. raindropx

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    Just stop...your point is based on no logic or reasoning. If you take a look, no one agree with you because they know better. Not trying to be harsh, but you are just plain wrong.
     
  45. ComputerGuy365

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    D) Don't earn a BSN if you want to be a doctor.

    EDIT: Raindropx joined yesterday and has 147 posts. The actual F**K.
     
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  46. JustintheDoctor

    JustintheDoctor High functioning FeelsOpath
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    When the OP comes back to see the advice given while he/she was gone ":wow:"
     
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  47. PREDOCSIMP

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    Instead, try earning a MD or DO.
     
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  48. raindropx

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    I got addicted. Also lying in bed sick. Sdn is too entertaining
     
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  49. ComputerGuy365

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    Vets and podiatrists are doctors too! Don't discriminate.
     
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  50. raindropx

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    and dentists
     

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