mj1988

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Hi everyone. I am considering my options for both paying for medical school and possibly service to my country. As such, I have done some forum reading and other research on branch specific websites on HPSP and FAP in the navy or air force. I am a female late 20s person with recent acceptance to DO school and while I have no problems with deployments right now but might not want longer deployments (short is ok) or constant relocating in my future I also am thinking I may want an EM specialty but as with many things in life that decision may change and I would prefer civilian residency...I am coming in with 60K in grad plus loans already and tuition is 46K/yr + living expenses/COA quoted as 70Kish/yr and the school is a new school that is currently ineligible for federal loans and title iv funds until graduating first class. i will be using primarily scholarships and/or loans for school and will not expect any assistance from my parents (in fact I've paid my own way through college/grad school and the last few yrs I've been helping them out financially). I am not primarily motivated by money rather I am seriously considering my desire to serve and weighing it against other unknown factors that have bearing on my future career and life and am indeed looking at private loans to cover the cost of medical school. In my research I came across the Army National Guard/Reserve - MDSSP and STRAP programs, I wanted to get some clarification and updated information. I apologize if my questions are redundant or silly/easier to find than I think.

1. am i correct in thinking that there is no air force equivalent for MDSSP and STRAP? if so, would i come out of medical school and apply to the air force reserves/national guard for residency to qualify for the stipend program and what is the time commitment for this - ARNG is 8 yrs if you do MDSSP + STAP consecutively right...so air force reserve stipends...is a bit confusing..please compare army guard/reserve MDSSP and STRAP to taking stipend in air force reserve during residency if possible

2. keeping the above information in mind what would you feel is the better option - waiting for FAP or doing a reserve type deal? I also have not eliminated HPSP (awaiting new mcat test scores to determine competitiveness/doing more research to inform my decision and whether the positives of hpsp outweigh the negatives)

taking some time to evaluate what i want and considering all my options before making decisions. thanks in advance
 

notdeadyet

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If you do MDSSP + STRAP consecutively, you will be drilling for every year of medical school and residency. Once you finish residency, you will begin paying back your obligation. If you did a four year residency, you would owe 8 years to start after finishing residency. So you are looking at a total of a 16 year obligation here. That's a long time.

I know nothing about the Air Force-comparable programs at this point. They tend to have fewer and lower figure reimbursements than the Army on the Reserve Corps side. I doubt this has changed.

I would check with the HPSP whizzes as to whether or not HPSP will cover medical schools so new they are ineligible for government loans. I would be surprised, but the military has surprised me many times.

And keep in mind that when they start talking about loan reimbursement (one of the big perks of the National Guard is $240K in loan reimbursement), private loans and pre-medical school loans are ineligible.
 

jonb12997

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On another note, I'm a bit concerned about such a new school that doesn't let you take federal student loans. :( but i guess that might start another discussion that is better served in a different forum....

I'd pick one or the other for strap or mdssp. If you do both, @notdeadyet is correct that you're in for a long payback. And the new way is that payback doesn't start till after residency. When I did my 2 years of mdssp I was able to pay back during residency. ;)
The loan repayment is great deal!! However it's true that it's only for federal student loans (private loans don't count - see my above point). Might be better to wait till you get into school and then talk to a recruiter.
 
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mj1988

mj1988

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thanks for response. i overlooked the only federal loan repayment part...but i dont have an issue with a long repayment of service time..maybe not most ideal but not that big an issue

HPSP will cover it. they did the same for RVUCOM a few years back and the federal loans thing vs private is a concern of mine but i otherwise loved the school and it looks like I may end up there but Im still awaiting news from a few other schools...the good thing is i have 1 acceptance early on so Im not tearing my hair out over thinking on another year of applications ..but i might need to go back to the original FAP vs HPSP vs waiting til residency to join NG/reserves and/or take mdssp or strap

thanks for the help :rofl:
 

backrow

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HPSP will cover it. they did the same for RVUCOM a few years back
Unless you already have that in writing I wouldn't assume the Services will be quite as generous this time around. The general consensus on the quality of student produced by some of the very new schools was not good and some people were rethinking allowing scholarships to go that way again.
 
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68PGunner

Unless you already have that in writing I wouldn't assume the Services will be quite as generous this time around. The general consensus on the quality of student produced by some of the very new schools was not good and some people were rethinking allowing scholarships to go that way again.
How strong is that consideration? Granted that my military service has been very short thus far, my impression of the military is that it's more interested in filling up seats with applicants that meet the cutoff marks than caring about the quality of docs from certain schools.
 

backrow

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How strong is that consideration? Granted that my military service has been very short thus far, my impression of the military is that it's more interested in filling up seats with applicants that meet the cutoff marks than caring about the quality of docs from certain schools.
For the Navy they are very interested in the quality of the product. They can always fill a class of 4 year applicants the next year with new people who decide to apply for a 3 year scholarship.

Over the last several years now the prior difficulties in recruiting applicants seems to have subsided and quality is again important.

I can't speak for other services.
 

Brh1002

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If you do MDSSP + STRAP consecutively, you will be drilling for every year of medical school and residency. Once you finish residency, you will begin paying back your obligation. If you did a four year residency, you would owe 8 years to start after finishing residency. So you are looking at a total of a 16 year obligation here. That's a long time..
So what I've been reading on here states that if I choose to do MDSSP through the NG, I can start payback after medschool... Right? Or is that part of the "New" MDSSP rules that even the NG has to wait until after residency to begin payback?
 

sb247

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So what I've been reading on here states that if I choose to do MDSSP through the NG, I can start payback after medschool... Right? Or is that part of the "New" MDSSP rules that even the NG has to wait until after residency to begin payback?
mdssp is only a guard program, payback begins after residency because that's when you become deployable