Switching my state of residency from CA to NM...


2+ Year Member
Dec 6, 2017
  1. Pre-Medical
I've been living in California for 4 years, and am completing my undergraduate degree at a UC. However, I genuinely detest living here, and intend to leave the state as soon as I finish my degree. I'm thinking about doing a NIH post-bacc in New Mexico because I've done a REU there, love Albuquerque and have some strong connections to UNM's SOM (I am currently conducting research with a PI there.)

I've just learned that doing this would enable me to legally switch my state of residency from CA to NM before I apply to medical school. Obviously, this would be a relatively sizable advantage, given that I do not intend to apply to any medical schools in CA (regardless of my residency classification.)

My question is: would I be able to apply to New Mexico's state medical schools (and OOS schools) as a NM resident? Or would adcoms still view me as a CA resident because I got my degree in CA?
Aug 20, 2019
  1. Non-Student
This is school and state specific and would need to be addressed to the school(s) of interest.
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2+ Year Member
May 26, 2018
  1. Non-Student
Check with school and also what NM state requirements are to be cinsidered in state for tuition. Why do you hate CA that much?


5+ Year Member
Mar 30, 2014
  1. Medical Student
You’ll meet the technical admissions standard for consideration but how you’ll be evaluated from there is anyone’s guess. NM has one of the most restrictive admissions policies in terms of only accepting in state residents. UNM has a significant interest in training folks who want to live and practice in NM as there are many significant underserved populations in that state. Personally, doing an NIH program wouldn’t convince me that that is your interest. Significant service to underserved groups in NM as well as additional time in the state would.
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Rule One: Take a Breath
10+ Year Member
Jul 26, 2009
The Big Bad Apple
  1. Non-Student
SOM Admissions Policy Statement :: School of Medicine | The University of New Mexico
(emphasis added)

The primary goal of The University of New Mexico School of Medicine (UNM SOM) is to produce outstanding, skilled and humanistic physicians to serve the broad healthcare needs of New Mexico....

It is recognized that New Mexico has unique problems in the access to and delivery of health care, particularly in the distribution of health care personnel. UNM SOM has an obligation to help meet the physician workforce needs of the state by selection of students who are likely to train in specialty areas of need and to remain in or return to the areas in New Mexico needing physicians. Cognizance is also taken of attributes of applicants that indicate a strong motivation to practice in medically underserved areas of the state.

PS 97% of NM SOM students are IS and I wouldnt be surprised if most of the small number of OOS have strong ties ties to the state
Last edited:


7+ Year Member
Jan 6, 2013
  1. Resident [Any Field]
From UNM's website,

"21. If I have just moved to New Mexico, how can I qualify for consideration as a state resident?"

" To be considered a resident for purposes of admission to medical school, you must have physically resided in New Mexico for at least one year prior to the date of application to the medical school. Other evidence of residency such as automobile, or voter registration is also required. The university sets residency requirements for tuition purposes. Please note that you may be defined as a non-resident of New Mexico for tuition purposes if you are listed as a dependent on a parental tax return and your parents are residents in another state. "

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