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taking time off during/after med school

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by mangos3, Dec 13, 2008.

  1. mangos3

    mangos3 Member
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    Is it feasible to take a year off during or after medical school to do something non-medical and non-research related? My thought is that the best time would be after M4 year and before starting residency, which brings up the question of whether it is possible to defer a residency match for a year. Does anyone have any insight on this?
     
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  3. ACSurgeon

    ACSurgeon Acute Care Surgeon
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    Actually, I hear it is discouraged to take a year off between med school and residency, and might actually harm your chances.

    I also know that many med schools are ok letting you defer before you start or take a year off during med school. One of my classmates took a year off between 1st and 2nd year to spend time with her husband. I know many times "the" solution for when a med student has any problems (depression/family illness or death...etc) is to take a year off to focus and come back the next year and pick up where they left. I guess your best off asking the school you go to/plan to go to.
     
  4. Amy B

    Amy B I miss my son so much
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    No it is really not done. And I havent heard of being able to defer your residency... Is that ever done?

    And keep in mind, if you have student loans, they would be up for repayment starting 6 months after you finish classes. If you are not in a residency, you cant derer your payments.
     
  5. vasca

    vasca En la era postpasambre
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    My university grants a maximum of 3 semesters in which you can leave the career to a pause (you don't even need to tell them why you're doing it) and come back with no problems. I have a friend who paused her career for n entire year because she moved out of the city for x reason for a year and came back with no problems. I know a guy who switched to a different career for a semester and came back to medicine because he liked it more with no probs. I've heard of cases of people that skip a semester due to health issues.

    I was forced to take a semester off between Pre-med and my first semester because I simply couldn't afford intuition at the time (I pay 100% intuition). Things are probably more difficult if you're on a scholarship or you're lending money to pursue your studies. You'd have to check with your university.
     
  6. njbmd

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    If you are applying for residency through ERAS, there's a question that asks if your medical education was longer than 4 years and to explain. You need to have a good explanation for this as generally, taking longer than 4 years is not a positive factor unless there was a good reason.

    You don't want to delay starting residency. There is generally no deferment such as one can do before starting medical school. With residency you end up re-applying the next year with little or no guarantees unless you have a signed contract outside of the MATCH which would be illegal if you are a US MD graduating currently from a school in this country.

    You can take time off during residency (with the consent of your program) to do things like research, perform in some special capacity (such as legislative fellowship) or to obtain a graduate degree but these things are usually done after two years of clinical residency.
     
  7. mangos3

    mangos3 Member
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    Hmm...well, that sounds rather discouraging.

    I'm a female med student (M1 currently) and I was looking to take a bit of time off to start a family and pursue some other interests. I love medicine, but I also have this crazy dream of going to culinary school. I did a short culinary program at Le Cordon Bleu before going to med school and since then, I've been contemplating going back and doing the full culinary degree.

    Doctor by day and chef by night? :)

    But really, is there ANY good time after starting med school in which one can take time off to pursue these kinds of things? What about after residency (if during med school, between med school and residency, or during residency is not possible)? Would that affect one's chances of finding a job or starting a practice?
     
  8. njbmd

    njbmd Guest
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    It isn't likely that you are going to be able to jive this kind of a schedule unless you have a source of income post residency to pay your medical school loans (if you have any) or you are not particularly interested in practice. For example, Michael Creighton always had an interest in writing and essentially was able to support himself with his literary talents and eventually didn't need to practice.

    If you don't have any substantial loan obligations and you can support yourself and pay your loans while you are attending culinary school, you might be able to swing these two careers. I think that you may not have a thoroughly good appreciation for how long it takes to develop the ability to practice medicine with efficiency and to develop your culinary skills. Just graduating from medical school/residency and culinary school does not mean that you don't need years of experience in both of these professions to have any proficiency.

    One of my colleagues in residency had been a chef before attending medical school. He was happy to get off the line and now enjoys his surgical practice. He didn't even cook for fun.
     
  9. sunset823

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    I wanted to piggyback on this forum because I was facing a situation that I am going to (most likely) be attending a state school which is very expensive out of state, and has very tough residency requirements. I would be able to gain in-state residency if I worked full-time for a year in that state, and was wondering if this is a feasible option during school. From what I've seen here, it depends on the school, but has anyone ever done it? I would think of doing it after first year because we end up moving to another campus for years 2-4 anyway, so it isn't a big disruption.
     

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