MPH MPH gap year

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5+ Year Member
Jan 13, 2018
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After finally getting an acceptance to medical school, I asked to have my admission to be deferred to next year. I know some people can pick up and move in a short span but I was waitlisted at 2 schools at 2 different parts of the country and heard from really late ( in less 4 days from school starting). I basically gave up on the cycle and was going to consider re-applying. So now I get a free year. However I want to do my MPH as well during medical school.

I’m in a dilemma whether I should start my MPH in the next year I have free so I would be doing Fall and Spring semester but I won’t be able to finish it because my med school would start next summer. I would have to wait to finish my MPH until a later time. I could just wait to start my MPH after my 3rd year and do it between my 3rd and 4th year or I could just start it now and finish it up between my 3rd and 4th year. I know people say to relax which I would be doing because I would not be doing anything after spring semester ends next year and would only be doing a light workload (3-4 classes) for the MPH. The reasons I’m considering starting it because 1) I have a free year where I can start and 2) I know I’ll have to finish the MPH later so at that time my workload wouldn’t be as bad.

I’d appreciate anyone’s input or advice please.

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Based on the information you shared, I personally would opt for doing it between 3rd and 4th year. For this gap year, I would focus on gaining work experience in areas of interest (and also enjoy doing things I wouldn't have time for the next 4+ years). This work experience is to gain an appreciation for what happens in these settings and inform your future decisions as a physician (e.g., maybe you find yourself passionate about serving a certain patient population or community).

Again, this is just what I'd do if I were in your situation. I don't think you could go wrong either way.