sawood

10+ Year Member
Aug 22, 2007
259
4
CA
Status
Medical Student
Hi everyone. I was wondering if there were any current or future med students or current physicians who will be / are in the Natl Guard? I am considering it, and I was hoping to get a sense of what to expect. I'm posting here instead of the military forum because a) I'm hoping to see how some non trads have done with it, and b) this forum tends to give more balanced information.

Some of the more specific questions I have: is it difficult to swing the drill weekends while in med school and residency? I was told you are non-deployable during school and residency, how true is this? Also, any other thoughts and considerations are welcome.......Thanks!
 

omghax

1337
10+ Year Member
May 20, 2008
1
0
las vegas
Status
Pre-Medical
http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=522521

i'm in the NV air guard right meow, and am trying to see about a way to pay for med school while staying in my unit. seems like there are a few med students and physicians here and there that are in the guard, so the topic pops up from time to time. thread above is one that i discovered that provides some useful info :)
 

notdeadyet

Still in California
Moderator
10+ Year Member
Jul 23, 2004
11,720
1,883
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Attending Physician
Check the Military Medicine forum on this site. Lots of good info, including several active threads on the national guard.
 

Jersey28

10+ Year Member
May 26, 2008
1
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Hi everyone. I was wondering if there were any current or future med students or current physicians who will be / are in the Natl Guard? I am considering it, and I was hoping to get a sense of what to expect. I'm posting here instead of the military forum because a) I'm hoping to see how some non trads have done with it, and b) this forum tends to give more balanced information.

Some of the more specific questions I have: is it difficult to swing the drill weekends while in med school and residency? I was told you are non-deployable during school and residency, how true is this? Also, any other thoughts and considerations are welcome.......Thanks!


-Well I believe I can be of enormous help to you:

I am a current 2LT in the Massachusetts Army Natty G, and will be attending BU GMS next year, so heres what I know, this is specific towards Army NG, so be weary if you're considering Air NG.

1) Drill weekends vary state to state, unit to unit, etc. It really depends on what unit your in. Most likely, as a medical student, you would be attached to medical command for your state unless you have some glorious aspirations of being an Armor/Infantry/Signal/ anything else officer on the weekends and a doctor/student during the week. MEDCOM then is where you would be attached, and for the most part is rather easy to manage. Most saturdays would be spent with military physicians and Sundays are considered to be "study" days. Take that how you will. Be weary though, although drill weekends may be particularly lax, they are still time away from home/apartment/studying for the most part. Speaking from experience, I always tended to have drill weekends as an undergrad when I had a big test coming up, which was anything but fun. However, I am not a medical student so I have not experienced MEDCOM as a med student but I do know that they understand you are in medical student and try to accomodate you as much as possible.

2) Tricky part about being deployable: That pertains to the type of unit you are in and whether or not you are on an Army scholarship. Ex: If you are a med student during the week and an Infantry officer on the weekend, if your unit gets deployed, so will you. If you're attached to MEDCOM and are a medical student, you are theoretically not in a "unit" so to speak, and would not be deployed as only individual physicians, dentists, optometrists, etc. are deployed. Heres one thing to note: If you sign an HPSP scholarship for medical school, you are non-deployable while in medical school. However, during your residency, it depends on the service: Army is non-deployable until you are done with school and residency, Navy can deploy you during your residency for a GMO tour, and I believe the Air Force is the same as Navy, but I am not 100%. For the most part, if you are on an Army scholarship for med school you will most likely be attached to MEDCOM and are non-deployable while in school and residency.

3) I think that answers your two questions, if you have any other questions let me know, but remember this as you entertain the possibility of joining the Army, whether it be active/reserve/NG. The Army loves to throw these beautiful lump sums of money at you, promise you a pipe dream to heaven, yadda yadda yadda. Take anything you hear with reserve, from me, a recruiter, anyone else. The Army has great opportunities to be taken advantage of, but remember that as soon as you sign that contract, you are ultimately their property for however long.
 

llp

10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Dec 18, 2007
13
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Hi Everyone,
I'm also interested in joining the army national guard. I'm 29 w/ a master's degree and HUGE student loans so I'm primarily interested in the ANG b/c of its college loan repayment program. I have visited several military forums for advice and all the military professionals have advised me not to join b/c I plan on applying to medical school next year and the ANG will most likely deploy me as opposed to me being able to attend medical school. I know there's an age limit to joining (as an officer) and I think I'm close to that limit. Also, if I join now, I know there is extensive schooling and training to become an officer and I don't know if I could do that while studying for the MCAT right now. If any one has any advice or know anyone that is currently in the NG and medical school that they could refer me to for advise I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you :)
 
OP
sawood

sawood

10+ Year Member
Aug 22, 2007
259
4
CA
Status
Medical Student
Hi everyone. I was wondering if there were any current or future med students or current physicians who will be / are in the Natl Guard? I am considering it, and I was hoping to get a sense of what to expect. I'm posting here instead of the military forum because a) I'm hoping to see how some non trads have done with it, and b) this forum tends to give more balanced information.

Some of the more specific questions I have: is it difficult to swing the drill weekends while in med school and residency? I was told you are non-deployable during school and residency, how true is this? Also, any other thoughts and considerations are welcome.......Thanks!


-Well I believe I can be of enormous help to you:

I am a current 2LT in the Massachusetts Army Natty G, and will be attending BU GMS next year, so heres what I know, this is specific towards Army NG, so be weary if you're considering Air NG.

1) Drill weekends vary state to state, unit to unit, etc. It really depends on what unit your in. Most likely, as a medical student, you would be attached to medical command for your state unless you have some glorious aspirations of being an Armor/Infantry/Signal/ anything else officer on the weekends and a doctor/student during the week. MEDCOM then is where you would be attached, and for the most part is rather easy to manage. Most saturdays would be spent with military physicians and Sundays are considered to be "study" days. Take that how you will. Be weary though, although drill weekends may be particularly lax, they are still time away from home/apartment/studying for the most part. Speaking from experience, I always tended to have drill weekends as an undergrad when I had a big test coming up, which was anything but fun. However, I am not a medical student so I have not experienced MEDCOM as a med student but I do know that they understand you are in medical student and try to accomodate you as much as possible.

2) Tricky part about being deployable: That pertains to the type of unit you are in and whether or not you are on an Army scholarship. Ex: If you are a med student during the week and an Infantry officer on the weekend, if your unit gets deployed, so will you. If you're attached to MEDCOM and are a medical student, you are theoretically not in a "unit" so to speak, and would not be deployed as only individual physicians, dentists, optometrists, etc. are deployed. Heres one thing to note: If you sign an HPSP scholarship for medical school, you are non-deployable while in medical school. However, during your residency, it depends on the service: Army is non-deployable until you are done with school and residency, Navy can deploy you during your residency for a GMO tour, and I believe the Air Force is the same as Navy, but I am not 100%. For the most part, if you are on an Army scholarship for med school you will most likely be attached to MEDCOM and are non-deployable while in school and residency.

3) I think that answers your two questions, if you have any other questions let me know, but remember this as you entertain the possibility of joining the Army, whether it be active/reserve/NG. The Army loves to throw these beautiful lump sums of money at you, promise you a pipe dream to heaven, yadda yadda yadda. Take anything you hear with reserve, from me, a recruiter, anyone else. The Army has great opportunities to be taken advantage of, but remember that as soon as you sign that contract, you are ultimately their property for however long.
Thanks for this post, it was very informative.

I'm leaning towards not joining anything at this current point, mostly because of what you said in #3. I got tired of hearing that if I join i'll have all the free time in the world, get to practically choose where I get stationed, will have no financial concerns ever, will get to work with the most advanced equipment in the whole world, and will be best buds with all my fellow doctors, nurses, and support staff and we skip off into the sunset together. Oh, and, the price for all that wonderful stuff is that they'll pay my tuition. I was okay with there being drawbacks and challenges unique to the military, and I felt there would be unique opportunities as well. I was considering the whole package, but not after getting the sales pitch that's better aimed at an impressionable 18yr old. I'll just revisit the military when I am towards the end of med school, not at the beginning.
 

notdeadyet

Still in California
Moderator
10+ Year Member
Jul 23, 2004
11,720
1,883
Status
Attending Physician
I was okay with there being drawbacks and challenges unique to the military, and I felt there would be unique opportunities as well. I was considering the whole package, but not after getting the sales pitch that's better aimed at an impressionable 18yr old.
The difference between an impressionable 18yo and 21yo is pretty debatable.

The slick and glossy sales pitch from military recruiting is way too rosy for my taste, but it's not all that different from med school admissions brochures. Both use the toughest job you'll every love approach. "Prepare to be challenged and look at all you'll learn". Both are targeted to a demographic that want very much to believe the hype and once they're signed up, can't back out for at least four years.

They ain't all that dissimilar. When reading either, understand you're reading a sales pitch and try not to be swayed by what you want to believe. Make sure you're up for making a lot of sacrifices and that your heart is in it. And if you don't get it in writing, don't be suprised if you find something not to be true.