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Medical Should I do a formal vs DIY post bacc?

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AlteredScale

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Hello, I am a military officer approaching the end of my service academy commitment and am considering my transition options to put me on a medical degree path. My SO is a current M3 and is a major factor in the next chapter of my life so am obviously limited geographically when it comes to different options.

What is the general consensus on best options for non-trad post bacc programs? I am an engineering major (~3.7 gpa) from one of the federal service academies and thus have already taken chem 1/physics/math. I have zero clinical experience but am hoping to begin shadowing and volunteer opportunities as COVID restrictions ease. I see essentially two paths considering SO location with one being a strong career-changer post-bacc pre med program and the other a separate major university where I could complete a DIY option taking the remaining pre-med requirements. Aside from the advising/small group class size/shadowing and volunteer options, how are the two options viewed when it comes to med school applications? Does being 5+ years removed from formal education warrant the full program to bring me back up to speed or can I supplement DIY classes with a heavy dose of online review/MCAT studying myself?

I know this question is asked frequently but have yet to find many discussions regarding military junior officer to med school route. Thank you in advance!
I would say pick the one that gives you enough time to prep for the MCAT as well. That would be my best advice
 

TheBoneDoctah

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I think you would be fine with a DIY post-bac as long as you finished your prereq courses and took some upper-division courses (and do very well) to show you can handle what it takes to be a medical student. The DIY post-bac may give you more flexibility when it comes to scheduling which may be helpful since you do need to gain volunteer hours (both clinical and non-clinical) AND study for the MCAT. I would really try and do at least a year of post-bac with a stellar GPA before diving into the MCAT though.
 
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