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clinic21

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Calling all Nontraditional Students!!

If you have a moment, and you are willing, please answer the following questions:

At what age did you matriculate?
What was your background going in?
What motivated you to make a switch into medicine?
Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)? How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?

Thanks! :)
 

Tipsy McStagger

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I matriculated at 30

Military

Got my exposure to medicine in the military. Learned and applied basic trauma management on battlefields and fell in love with the idea of medicine. I didn't want to be a shooter for the rest of my life so I got out and went to med school.

MD. The reason I went to med school was that I wanted to be the leader of a healthcare team. I certainly respect and admire all rolls in the team, I just wanted to know 'why' and have the responsibility of making the decisions. Even though it's becoming clear that we frequently don't know why ;)
 
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QofQuimica

Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting....
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At what age did you matriculate?
31

What was your background going in?
Pharmaceutical chemistry (PhD-to-MD)

What motivated you to make a switch into medicine?
I wanted to do clinical research.

Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)? How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?
MD. Age and finances didn't play a huge role in my decision process compared to ultimate goal. I knew I wanted to do academic medicine. While it's possible to be a midlevel academician (especially with a PhD also), people with combined degrees like BSN/PhD are primarily teachers as opposed to researchers. I was actually considering PharmD instead of MD, and in retrospect, I would have gone to pharmacy school instead of med school, since I could have gotten to my end goal much more quickly as an academic pharmacist. But it all worked out ok in the (very) long run.

My suggestion is that you spend as much time doing due diligence (shadowing HCPs in different specialties, volunteering, etc.) as possible. The big problem in my case is that I had a limited understanding of what the possible roles for a pharmacist were. And while most pharmacists work in retail, which is not a job that interests me in the slightest, there is a significant group of highly specialized academic pharmacists who teach, do research, and help with patient care. I should have spent more time exploring those possibilities, especially given that we have a top ten pharmacy school right here in my home state.
 
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DrMikeP

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Calling all Nontraditional Students!!

If you have a moment, and you are willing, please answer the following questions:

At what age did you matriculate?
What was your background going in?
What motivated you to make a switch into medicine?
Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)? How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?

Thanks! :)

49
Engineering, Management, Elementary Special Ed/Americorps, (Psychology, Hospital Management, Professor, Practice owner...all in one)
Medicine rocks and I want to be a physician. It took me a while to figure out what I should be and now I know.
DO because anything less doesn't get me where I want to be. Mid-level is great for some and a better choice for many. Money is money and you can't take it with you. If I can afford a car, home, and pay my bills I don't need more.
 
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CajunMedic

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EMS/911 Operator/Emergency Management

I realized that once I topped out at supervision in EMS, any further progress would take me out of patient care and stick me in an office. I also realized I wanted to do more for my patients.

DO. I was originally considering PA but where I live, they weren't making much more than I already was as a paramedic. The pre-reqs aren't that different anymore either. I really felt I would do better as a physician.
 
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gyrfalcon

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Will be 41 when I start this summer.

Research/software development/trainer for the military, then neuroscience PhD.

What motivated me? Lots of intertwined reasons: boredom with software development, growing interest in science, desire to patch people up rather than figuring out ways to efficiently kill them, enjoyment of learning new things, challenge, giving back to the community. Shadowing sealed the deal for me.

MD. I didn't consider midlevel. I tend to gravitate towards leadership roles in organizations that I am a part of and I knew it would chafe to have a ceiling on leadership/decision-making in a medical career. I made a spreadsheet calculation before starting down this path to look at financials and it turned out to make no difference whether I stayed in research or went for the MD, considering my age and the cost of med school.
 
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bumblebee611

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Calling all Nontraditional Students!!

If you have a moment, and you are willing, please answer the following questions:

At what age did you matriculate?
What was your background going in?
What motivated you to make a switch into medicine?
Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)? How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?

Thanks! :)
It looks like other folks who have not yet matriculated have answered, so I'll join, too.

I will be 44 when I start my M.D. program in August.
I am an attorney, though I'm not practicing full time right now.
I had two significant caregiving experiences (with family members) that sparked my interest.
I did explore D.O. programs but I made no serious inquiry into NP/PA because (1) the credentials I already had were much more useful for going to medical school than to nursing school [I was a bio major at a well-regarded research university], (2) I would have had to accumulate a zillion clinical hours to apply to PA school -- it was actually faster to get to the point where I could apply to med school, (3) I am really interested in the science underlying medicine and not so much in the stuff one studies in nursing, and (4) I have had a number of leadership roles and I just don't think I would be happy in a field in which I couldn't someday achieve at that level again.
 
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futuremdforme

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- On the younger end of the spectrum listed here.
- Worked in an unrelated field in business, pretty successful career
- I didn't really feel like I was benefiting the world in any way, and medicine was a good way to be less tied down to a few large hubs like NYC.
- MD, never considered anything else. Being able to take responsibility for the patient was really important to me, and those are never there to the same extent in any mid-level career.
 
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pageantry

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Calling all Nontraditional Students!!

If you have a moment, and you are willing, please answer the following questions:

At what age did you matriculate?

Will be 34 when I matriculate in August.

What was your background going in?

Small alt-health business owner. Poetry major.

What motivated you to make a switch into medicine?

I really loved working with my clients, but it was a total dead end. Then my dad died and I saw hospice in action. I knew, whatever I did, I needed to be a part of that work for the rest of my life. It took me a couple years after making that choice to pick MD/DO over PA/NP (hell, I even looked into naturopathy, herbalism, acupuncture, and chiropractic.) I feel your pain!

Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)? How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?

I am ending up with MD. Like others have said, I had to admit that I genuinely do tend to pursue leadership--even when it hurts (and it often hurts.) And I really wanted the full education, so no one could ever accuse me of half-azzing. Some nurse friends convinced me that going into an aBSN just to go NP would make me no friends in the RN/BSN world. They said, if you want to be a doctor and not a nurse, then do that and don't try to take shortcuts.

I do sometimes think I'm making a mistake, and have backpedaled on this process several times. I like the nursing model better than the medical, for one thing. It's intuitive for me. But I want to be a part of people making choices about how they die, and I don't want to be outranked in those moments, frankly. And I want to be a part of leading research and talking about these things publicly, and an MD on my name will help.

In the end, I decided the money side would work out well enough that I might as well get the best training I could. Having since heard about terrible medical schools and residencies, I know that might be delusional. And I think great nurses are doing God's work. But, in the end, what I wanted to be was a doctor. That was the dream. And at least this way I know I'm not trying to take short cuts.

Great thread to start, btw. Hope it continues for a long time.
 
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tnshapo

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spent more time exploring those possibilities, especially given that we have a top ten pharmacy school right here in my home state.
48.gif
 

pageantry

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@pageantry how have schools have reacted to your alternative health background? What were you practicing?
I ran a yoga and massage group. I received good advice to talk (but not dwell) in my PS about how--as much as I enjoyed working with the clients--the lack of scientific rigor left me unsatisfied.

I have had either no comments or positive comments in interviews.
 

esob

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Calling all Nontraditional Students!!
At what age did you matriculate?

I'll be 43 when I start (assuming I get accepted)

What was your background going in?
~ 10K hrs as an Army medic and lab tech. After the military I've been self employed predominantly in various facets of the tech industry (hardware, software, consulting)

What motivated you to make a switch into medicine?

Really a confluence of many factors, though the dominant one is probably the birth of my 2nd son, which was itself multi faceted in the decision. My wife's OB was a career changer and I never really thought of the path to being a physician as a second career. The other is that both of my older children (who are special needs) will be graduated from school by the time I matriculate, so they will either live independently or with their biological mother. Caring for both has been a full time job in and of itself for the past 17 years.

Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)? How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?

Ironically, I joined the Army under a specific MOS b/c of its high placement into the Army's PA program. In my impetuous youth, the idea of slogging through years of medical school seemed unreasonable and being a PA seemed a way to achieve a career I was interested in without the delayed gratification. Now I have no doubt that I want to pursue MD/DO because of the ability to lead a care team. My current goal is to eventually work at a VA hospital or an Army hospital (as a civilian) providing care for other veterans. Financial wasn't really an issue as I won't have any student debt when I graduate medical school.
 
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RalnaAp

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Calling all Nontraditional Students!!

If you have a moment, and you are willing, please answer the following questions:

At what age did you matriculate? I'll be 36 or 37.

What was your background going in?
Nursing. Radiology tech. Veteran (air force/army national guard)

What motivated you to make a switch into medicine? I haven't. Honestly, I like pharmacology, but who knows? I'm one of those people who could never decide what they wanted to be when they grew up. I bore easily, too. I keep going back to school for a bigger challenge.
My biggest fear is that I'll do all of this work, get into pharm school and then, after a year as a pharmacist say, "Yknow - I think I want to be a physician...?" (Laugh)
Dentistry is interesting. If I decided to go that route, I'd be a dentist.
Medicine is challenging, but there's no specialty that interests me. Frankly, I don't love any subject or career enough to devote 8-12 years of study to it. I wish that I were different. I have a friend who is an MD. Always wanted to be a doc. I wish that I were like this....

Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)?
I would be a PA.
- PAs earn more than NPs.
- I don't want to be a CRNA
- NP is out because it's too closely tied to nursing. Plenty of nursing tasks are delegated to unlicensed staff so I don't see the big deal about the whole NP/PA thing. But, I do know that some are bothered by the whole thing. I want to be accepted as a member of the healthcare team. I want my MDs to accept me and don't think that'll happen as easily unless I were a PA.

How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?
I have no loans. I used GI bill and paid my way through nursing school.
Money still isn't an issue. Im paying OOP for my pre reqs. I plan to pay a portiob of my uni tuition oop, as well.
So, no, money isnt an issue. Childbearing is. Somewhere between now and 40, I've gotta pencil in a time to make a baby. (laugh) When I was considering a RN to BSN to MSN, my fiance and I were going to start trying this summer. Nursing school is a cakewalk and the BSN's just "a bunch of writing". It's not as though I'll earn more than those RNs with a diploma or ADN. A BSN is completely worthless, to me. It's like an ACLS or PALs certification: just something you obtain in order to remain "marketable".
But, now? I don't know. I'll probably start trying when i near completion of my pre reqs.
 
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Eccesignum

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Calling all Nontraditional Students!!

If you have a moment, and you are willing, please answer the following questions:

At what age did you matriculate?

I'll be 36 at matriculation this summer.

What was your background going in?

I started off in professional theatre as an actor and later the co-director of my own company. Twist of fate got me into teaching English language and adult literacy, which I did for 6 years both in the U.S. and abroad. Another twist of fate (my life's rather full of these) then brought me to nursing and now, almost seven years later, to medicine.

People who knew me in my arts days have been quite surprised at how my life's gone, but I don't think it's as much of a total and complete break as people make it out to be. Theatre at its heart was realizing that seven billion people are experiencing today differently than I am. It's an exploration of our deepest vulnerabilities, and an attempt to understand them through others' eyes. I've brought that with me as I've gone along, certainly into teaching and nursing -- and I hope into medicine too.

I'm not suddenly becoming a new person by going to medical school; I am the sum of all my experience. I always will be.

What motivated you to make a switch into medicine?

It wasn't one single moment of clarity. My time as a nurse showed me aspects of healthcare I'd never known about before, having no other healthcare workers in the family. I came to this slowly, over may experiences with many patients and with co-workers, particularly doctors I met who had gone to school later in life after other careers.

Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)? How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?

I saw no justifiable trade-off in my personal situation. I'm single, have no kids nor the desire for them, no personal debt other than recent undergrad loans. I'm going to turn 40 one day regardless; I saw no reason not to pursue what I wanted to pursue. Everyone's mileage may vary.
 
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Mad Jack

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5 years of respiratory therapy, 1 year of ED teching
I wanted to move up the command chain and be able to run my own business
DO- the extra opportunities and independence were worth it for me. It's put off my retirement by 10-15 years, however (I was set to retire at 42 previously, now I'm working until I'm in my early-to-mid 50s). Worth it to do what I love though.
 
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sandstone

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Fourth year DO student here with two kids (4 & 2 years old), matched #1 choice orthopedic surgery residency in DO match, currenly enjoying a bunch of free time off before I begin residency.

At what age did you matriculate?


30

What was your background going in?


Mountaineering, Rock Climbing, Backpacking guide for 10 years prior to matriculation. Guide and save money during the summers, travel to warm climates and climb all winter.

What motivated you to make a switch into medicine?

I always knew I wanted to go back to school and enter a more meaningful profession at some point. Never considered any medical field until my mid-twenties when I was rock climbing in Southern Thailand a few weeks after the 2004 tsunami. I was inspired by orthopedic surgeons and other medical providers who volunteered to help tsunami victims. After that, enrolled in my state university and completed my bachelors in physiology in four years and jumped through all the hoops (volunteering, research, etc). Did very well and opted for DO school in part so I could stay in my home state (the one MD school here is ridiculously hard to get into).

Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)? How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?

For my thoughts on MD/DO vs midlevel, I've written on this extensively in another thread, so I'm just going to copy and paste my two posts from that thread:

http://forums.studentdoctor.net/threads/p-a-vs-m-d-job-satisfaction.1103672/#post-16337689

"I was a climbing guide and have been into wilderness medicine and stuff for a long time. I went through the intense internal debate of med school vs. PA school for a while. I'm now in my mid-30s, have two small kids, and am in my third year of medical school. It definitely sucks sometimes, and having to handle two huge life challenges (med school and parenting) is extremely difficult at times. As said above, it totally sucks to be at the bottom of the totem pole.

However, I am so happy I chose medical school. I want to be an orthopedic surgeon now and I'm SO happy that I have that option! I think being an ortho PA would not cut it for me and I would be quite regretful if I hadn't gone to med school to become an actual surgeon.

Med school doesn't have to be that bad for non-trads. I've done well in school and spent tons of time with my family over these past three years. While having a family can make school harder because of the time commitment, in some ways it's really helped me. I have been forced to become ultra efficient and to not constantly think about and stress about school all the time. This has helped me substantially and I think it's partly why I've been able to do better than most of my younger, single classmates who spend way more time studying than I do.

Even if I don't make it into ortho, I'll still be happy in whatever backup specialty I choose (FM or EM probably). I'll know that I went as far as I could and tried my hardest and didn't limit myself. While the schooling is hard, I find it overall enjoyable to learn so much interesting material, much of which I wouldn't have gotten in PA school. As someone above said, being a non-trad gives you good perspective. While guiding was awesome, I also worked plenty of ****ty manual labor jobs. I'll tell you I think some of my younger classmates are a bunch of whiners and have no idea how much more ****ty than med school it is to work 50 hours/week of landscaping or something like that.

Sure I've met some unhappy docs. However, most of the docs I've worked with so far are super happy in their jobs. It really comes down to personality. Some would be unhappy no matter what they were doing while others appreciate how great their job and pay is compared to what most people in the world have.

Taking the PA path would be awesome in many ways, but I've always kind of been a "go big or go home" type of person and PA school would not have worked for me. For some, it's an excellent option. You'll just have to figure out if you'd be okay being a PA or if you want to have the option to go as far as you can in your training and become the true expert in your field who's calling the shots."

"Someone sent me a PM with some followup questions and I realized that my response may be helpful for others. So here it is.

It is a really tough call that's for sure. As I said, I went through the PA vs med debate for quite a while. In the end, I decided go to med school. It's kind of leap of faith that's for sure, and technically I can't say if it's worth it since I'm not even in residency yet. Med school is really hard and sometimes very stressful. My wife and I both have had our moments where we're not happy with the choice. I've had moments where I wish I chose PA school for the reasons you mentioned. Overall it's gone well though and we are happy that I'm in med school. I've met lots of really happy docs who love their jobs, which makes me pretty confident that I'll continue to love it.

I get the whole entering the workforce sooner thing, I still sometimes consider just doing three years of FM instead of ortho just so I can get working and have a more normal life again sooner. Although, I am definitely still planning on ortho because it's awesome and when I keep the big picture in mind, I think ortho will be better in the long run for job satisfaction and earning potential. I'll be 39 or 40 by the time I finish ortho residency, but I don't at all worry about stamina issues. Most practicing ortho docs I've worked with so far are that age or older and do just fine. At my age now, I feel more energetic, do better, and complain less than many of my younger and single classmates. It's all about taking care of yourself and keeping a good attitude. I go for two big trail runs a week and have a power tower at home to workout on. I try not to worry about my huge $400,000 debt, especially with ortho since I'll make an excellent salary. A lot of docs get themselves in trouble when as soon as they start making an attending salary they buy a mansion and sports car. I'm not worried about this and know my wife and I can continue to live modestly and just pay off the debt within five years.

You do have to have an understanding and hard-working wife. She will have to step it up a lot in terms of childcare and household responsibilities at times. The difficulty of med school comes in waves. This month on peds GI I worked 9-3 most days and was given a whole week off by my preceptor. Last month on ortho I worked 5-7 most days and sometimes wouldn't see my kids for days (this was at a residency program that was not lifestyle friendly). During the first two years its similar, some days I didn't have that much to do, other days I'd have to study for 15 hours straight. She'll also have to be flexible and willing to handle the lack of routine since the schedule changes so much depending on what year you're in and what rotation you're on.

It really has helped us to have my parents 20 minutes away. Having some support is super important, both for childcare help and finances. We live in an expensive area and have had to borrow some additional money from my folks since the cost of attendance is calculated for single people with roommates. We probably could have made it financially without this if we moved into a much smaller place in a worse part of town and drastically changed our lifetyle. We are thankful to have some extra financial help so that we can maintain a pretty nice life in a nice house in a good neighborhood. My wife worked as a teacher for the first two years, but now she stays at home, which is great. Paying for daycare would be super expensive for two kids (we had our second kid recently) and logistically challenging since my schedule changes drastically each month this year depending on which rotation I'm on.

Overall my wife has been happy and doing well with it all. I think she sees the big picture as well and knows that it will all be worth it in the end.

You have to go to a school that has non-required lectures. This was so important in terms of spending time with my family during the first two years. I only showed up to campus when absolutely required. This opened up lots of time to spend quality time with my wife and kids. You also have to really prioritize your family. I don't really rock climb these days, which is what I used to live for. It's okay though, I'm perfectly happy putting my personal hobbies on hold for now to get to spend time with my family. I know that one day I'll have time for that stuff again. Again, it's all about keeping a good attitude and accepting and enjoying the fact that your life revolves around nothing but kids and studying.

So overall I'm VERY happy I chose med school and not PA school. If you think you may want to do a specialty, especially surgical or other procedural, go for med school since this will keep open the most options. It seems like ortho PA's are stuck forever doing things that 4th year med students do and there's a big difference between PA and ortho physician salaries, even if you start making that bigger number later. I'm so glad I have the option to be a surgeon (hopefully I'll match ortho!)"
 
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doyouhaveaflag

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I'll play!

At what age did you matriculate?

31

What was your background going in?
Don't want to be too specific, but a niche division of Clinical Laboratory Science in a job that was pretty high stress, long hours, lots of call.

What motivated you to make a switch into medicine?
I've wanted to be a doctor since middle school, I just lost the path in college (long story). After a post-bac and several rounds of applying, I am finally back on track.

Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)? How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?
MD. I to be a surgeon, so MD/DO is the only available path. Also, my previous job paid as much as most mid-level jobs and I liked it pretty well, so there was no real motivation to pursue a mid-level option.

I definitely wouldn't do this path if I thought I would be satisfied with anything else. Because of the specialty I want to pursue, I will not be an attending until I am 44. I'm also married and my husband is much older than I am, so losing half our income has been difficult in terms of having to adjust our lifestyle pretty significantly after a long time of being able to spend somewhat indiscriminately. I'm very lucky that hubby has been a saint about it and willing to take that cut and move across the country for me to pursue my goals. I've talked a lot about it in different threads, but my age and specialty of interest complicate starting a family as well.

I would recommend a different path to anyone who didn't feel strongly that MD/DO is what will make them happiest. Med school is hard! Much harder than I expected. I thought that since my job was pretty stressful and long hours that med school would actually be easier. I was completely wrong. That being said, it's been very rewarding so far (only just finished M2 though) and I don't regret my decision even a little.
 
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esob

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I'll play!

Med school is hard! Much harder than I expected. I thought that since my job was pretty stressful and long hours that med school would actually be easier. I was completely wrong.

What exactly about it makes it harder than working full time and going to school full time? I'm working pretty consistent 50 - 60 hr weeks ATM and taking 5 classes plus volunteering 9 hrs per month plus raising 3 kids so I was thinking not working in med school (and having two of those kids graduated) would make it about even with what I'm doing now....
 

jl lin

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Calling all Nontraditional Students!!

If you have a moment, and you are willing, please answer the following questions:

At what age did you matriculate? I'll be 36 or 37.

What was your background going in?
Nursing. Radiology tech. Veteran (air force/army national guard)

What motivated you to make a switch into medicine? I haven't. Honestly, I like pharmacology, but who knows? I'm one of those people who could never decide what they wanted to be when they grew up. I bore easily, too. I keep going back to school for a bigger challenge.
My biggest fear is that I'll do all of this work, get into pharm school and then, after a year as a pharmacist say, "Yknow - I think I want to be a physician...?" (Laugh)
Dentistry is interesting. If I decided to go that route, I'd be a dentist.
Medicine is challenging, but there's no specialty that interests me. Frankly, I don't love any subject or career enough to devote 8-12 years of study to it. I wish that I were different. I have a friend who is an MD. Always wanted to be a doc. I wish that I were like this....

Did you go for an MD or Mid–Level credential (such as NP, PA, CRNA)?


I would be a PA.
- PAs earn more than NPs.
- I don't want to be a CRNA
- NP is out because it's too closely tied to nursing. Plenty of nursing tasks are delegated to unlicensed staff so I don't see the big deal about the whole NP/PA thing. But, I do know that some are bothered by the whole thing. I want to be accepted as a member of the healthcare team. I want my MDs to accept me and don't think that'll happen as easily unless I were a PA.

How did you weigh the trade-offs for those roles/credentials given age, financial, and other considerations?
I have no loans. I used GI bill and paid my way through nursing school.
Money still isn't an issue. Im paying OOP for my pre reqs. I plan to pay a portiob of my uni tuition oop, as well.
So, no, money isnt an issue. Childbearing is. Somewhere between now and 40, I've gotta pencil in a time to make a baby. (laugh) When I was considering a RN to BSN to MSN, my fiance and I were going to start trying this summer. Nursing school is a cakewalk and the BSN's just "a bunch of writing". It's not as though I'll earn more than those RNs with a diploma or ADN. A BSN is completely worthless, to me. It's like an ACLS or PALs certification: just something you obtain in order to remain "marketable".
But, now? I don't know. I'll probably start trying when i near completion of my pre reqs.

OK, well, as a critical care RN BSN over a long period of time and having worked in many amazing settings and situations, all I can say is Gee, Thanks! Wow
 

doyouhaveaflag

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What exactly about it makes it harder than working full time and going to school full time? I'm working pretty consistent 50 - 60 hr weeks ATM and taking 5 classes plus volunteering 9 hrs per month plus raising 3 kids so I was thinking not working in med school (and having two of those kids graduated) would make it about even with what I'm doing now....
Well I don't have kids, so that makes a difference :) It's probably a few factors, but in all honesty I probably make med school much harder than it needs to be. Despite the fact that good preclinical grades are not of critical importance in getting a good residency, I find myself compelled to shoot for 100% for every exam. In order to make that possible, I study a LOT. Like 8-10 hours after I get home from class (this year that has included putting in an hour or two per day reviewing old material for board prep). I do a whole bunch of extracurricular stuff too, which keeps me sane but is time consuming. I also literally didn't study except the night before exams as an undergrad, so I didn't expect to need to study this much.

Additionally, I would really like to go home for residency because my family is there and my husband has better work opportunities there. Unfortunately for my residency opportunities, home happens to be the SF Bay Area, which is incredibly competitive. I feel the weight of trying to get back there, or at least west coast, for my family kinda constantly. It's a lot of pressure, but again, it's self-inflicted.

Finally, I don't want to sound like a pompous ass, but I was really good at my job. I had a lot of responsibility and people relied on me. I found it very satisfying. Despite its stresses, I actually really enjoyed it. You might then ask why I left. Well, I had reached the top of what I would have been able to do with my education level (supervisor) before age 30. I knew if I had stayed on for the long haul, I would have stagnated and resented the lack of opportunity to go further and learn and take on more. I also think I'll like this doctoring business even better, but I suppose that's a gamble. So, part of what makes med school difficult is the fact that I feel like a useless lump right now. I don't contribute to anything useful. I don't even make a paycheck (quite the opposite). I just sit on my rear end all day long (which I hate, but will hopefully be better next year during rotations). Perhaps it's hubris, but I like feeling like I'm needed or at the very least productive. So, that makes med school difficult as well.

Hope that answers your question!
 
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Eccesignum

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Will be 41 when I start this summer.

Research/software development/trainer for the military, then neuroscience PhD.

At the end of four years, are you going to be Doctor Doctor gyrfalcon?

Will you gimme the news?
 
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