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aviator

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Hi all, just wanting to get some direction here. I had two dreams when I was a kid. One was to be a pilot and the other was to be a doctor. I am a pilot now and wishing I chose the other dream. Anyway, I have a BS in professional aeronautics (aviation GS degree) so I plan to either go back to get another degree more suiting to the profession or take the pre-reqs. Any advice on which way to go with that?

Also, I realize that getting into med school is half the battle. Are there med schools which are "easier" to get into? Will the school I attend affect my career? What is (are) a good resource for applying (i.e. school listings by state, cost, admission reqs, etc)? How do i determine whether the school is good, better, best (besides tuition expense)?

Thanks for your help.
 

LabMonster

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aviator said:
Hi all, just wanting to get some direction here. I had two dreams when I was a kid. One was to be a pilot and the other was to be a doctor. I am a pilot now and wishing I chose the other dream. Anyway, I have a BS in professional aeronautics (aviation GS degree) so I plan to either go back to get another degree more suiting to the profession or take the pre-reqs. Any advice on which way to go with that?

Also, I realize that getting into med school is half the battle. Are there med schools which are "easier" to get into? Will the school I attend affect my career? What is (are) a good resource for applying (i.e. school listings by state, cost, admission reqs, etc)? How do i determine whether the school is good, better, best (besides tuition expense)?

Thanks for your help.

Good Lord - where to begin? First, search this site for specific tidbits of information. Most questions have been answered at LEAST once ;)

Second - Get yourself a copy of the MSAR. It will be invaluable in planning then who, what, when and why. MSAR

The MSAR will answer 98% of your questions.
 

aviator

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Thanks for the info. I honestly tried searching through the FAQs and am STILL searching through the forums. Unfortunetly, I am still trying to decipher the lingo so it is taking time to get the info I need.
 

MoosePilot

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What kind of flying have you done?

I was pre-med and graduated with a degree in Zoology. Joined the Air Force and learned to fly. Eight and a half later, I'm flying C-17s all over the world, while applying to medical school.

Do you know what kind of doctor you want to be? Do you want to do research or mainly see patients?

Today there are two kinds of physicians in the U.S. that have equal practice rights and get paid the same - M.D.s (allopathic) and D.O.s (osteopathic). There are minor differences in education and, depending on which doc you talk to, perhaps in philosophy, but otherwise they're the same. Osteopathic schools are probably slightly easier to get into and generally appreciate non-traditional students.

Continued.
 

MoosePilot

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You can either go back for another B.S. or look in the post-bacc forum and find out how to get into a program and just take the pre-reqs. Study hard, it's a very competitive process. Admissions mostly comes down to GPA, MCAT score, extracurricular activities, and then just the impression you can make with your essays and interviews.

Be sure to get some good extracurricular experience shadowing or volunteering in a hospital (or both). It will help you get in and more importantly it will help you decide if you really want to shake up your life like this. It would suck to discover neither dream was really for you...

I've done a good amount of research, so I might be able to help or refer you to someone who can.
 

aviator

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Moose:

Those C17s rock! I wish I would have joined the AF. Instead I joined the Army as a controller (actually my third career choice). I worked for the FAA as a controller and now I am a freight dog flying a BE99. It's fun, don't get me wrong, but in light of the industry the only job security is hauling boxes- and that's not even a sure bet.

I would rather go into surgery than research. Although research would be interesting, I like the people interaction.

I appreciate the info, now I have some better direction. When you say shadowing (I have seen that term used quite a bit), what exactly is it?

Once you get out of med school, how do you get a job? Is it as competitive as getting into med school? Does the school you attend/your performance through med school help/hinder your job prospects?

Thanks again.
 

DrBowtie

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Shadowing is job shadowing. I.E. you contact a doctor and you follow him around during the day and observe the "behind the scenes" of being a doctor. If you find a surgeon to shadow you would most likely be observing surgeries from inside the OR. It's pretty cool.
 

aviator

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That would be great. Is it something that you have to "know somebody" to do? Or, are most Docs shadow friendly?
 

DrBowtie

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It really depends.
Obviously if you know someone then they are easier to contact and seemingly would be more open to it. Other people contact the volunteer department at a local hospital where some have shadowing programs that will help you get in contact. Others just cold call / email docs from the phone book or website.

Some docs will be very shadow friendly while others will not due to HIPAA (patient privacy act).
 

MoosePilot

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aviator said:
Moose:

Those C17s rock! I wish I would have joined the AF. Instead I joined the Army as a controller (actually my third career choice). I worked for the FAA as a controller and now I am a freight dog flying a BE99. It's fun, don't get me wrong, but in light of the industry the only job security is hauling boxes- and that's not even a sure bet.

I would rather go into surgery than research. Although research would be interesting, I like the people interaction.

I appreciate the info, now I have some better direction. When you say shadowing (I have seen that term used quite a bit), what exactly is it?

Once you get out of med school, how do you get a job? Is it as competitive as getting into med school? Does the school you attend/your performance through med school help/hinder your job prospects?

Thanks again.

Getting into medical school is tough. Finding a job sounds fairly easy. One follows the other... the number of med students is kept artificially low which makes that end more competitive, but as a result, finding a job is easy. I'm sure how you do determines your employability. It definitely determines your chances of getting the residency you want (surgery, family practice, internal medicine, etc.)
 

aviator

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MoosePilot said:
Getting into medical school is tough. Finding a job sounds fairly easy. One follows the other... the number of med students is kept artificially low which makes that end more competitive, but as a result, finding a job is easy. I'm sure how you do determines your employability. It definitely determines your chances of getting the residency you want (surgery, family practice, internal medicine, etc.)

I did not realize that. Can you change your field of practice from your residency? E.G. if I did a residency in FP, can I still go into surgery?
 

MoosePilot

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aviator said:
I did not realize that. Can you change your field of practice from your residency? E.G. if I did a residency in FP, can I still go into surgery?

Hmmmmm.... I don't know. I know there is some flexibility and I believe your med school diploma says something about medicine and surgery, but you can't bill yourself as a board certified surgeon without being one. FPs can do procedures, but not to the extent that a residency trained board certified surgeon can. I don't think you'd get privileges in a hospital to do more serious surgeries as an FP.
 

aviator

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MoosePilot said:
Hmmmmm.... I don't know. I know there is some flexibility and I believe your med school diploma says something about medicine and surgery, but you can't bill yourself as a board certified surgeon without being one. FPs can do procedures, but not to the extent that a residency trained board certified surgeon can. I don't think you'd get privileges in a hospital to do more serious surgeries as an FP.

So I guess the only thing to do is study like my career depended on it.

A little off topic, but have you had the opportunity to fly into Baghdad? If so, what's the decent/landing profile like? I heard it's pretty wild.
 

MoosePilot

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aviator said:
So I guess the only thing to do is study like my career depended on it.

A little off topic, but have you had the opportunity to fly into Baghdad? If so, what's the decent/landing profile like? I heard it's pretty wild.

It depends on the aircraft. We vary it to be unpredictable and posting it is counter to that, but it generally is wild.
 

LabMonster

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aviator said:
I did not realize that. Can you change your field of practice from your residency? E.G. if I did a residency in FP, can I still go into surgery?

Yep - but I think you need to do another residency in the new field. I knew a couple of FP's who hung it up after awhile for pathology. I'm not sure if the residencies are abbreviated...
 
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