FutureM.D.

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I really want to be a dr, so every chance I get I'll talk to drs and ask them about med school and things like that. Well, one day I had a drs appointment with my pediatrician(actually I have several because there are a lot of drs in one office) and it turned out to be one I'd never had before. it was a female so i thought,"I'll ask her some questions, she's a women she can tell me what it was like for her". i got a TOTALLY different response. Okay, I'm younger then your traditional college student, so when she finds out I'm starting college she says,"If I were you I would not go into medicine, you probably won't be able to handle it, your too young". I was inwardly appauled but kindly asked why she would give me that advice.it turned out she was 21 when she went to school and she barely handeled it herself. I think that Just because she barely got through doesn't mean I will. Plus she has a daughter my age(you know how that goes)Anyways she was extremely insistent about this the entire visit. I couldn't believe it!! When she first came in she mentioned how intelligent and thoughtful I seemed, then when she hears college she's like no way! It's people like that who make me even MORE determined to keep going. I'll meet a lot of negative people along the way(to med school), but I'm not going to let their opinions affect me. i like my usual ped. a lot better. He went to UF's COM and undergrad and has only been practicing for 6yrs. He was always really nice and gave me a lot of good advice, never anything negative.Anyone else ever been treated like this?? Anyone ever thought you were crazy? :eek:
 

Street Philosopher

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you should think about what she said.

it's not a good thing to ignore anything that's contrary to your goals/views. consider it, analyze it, and if it's bad advice, then discard it. you might be surprised; it might refocus your motivations.
 

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I have heard a lot of negative things from doctors recently. My gyn (and best friend's aunt) is really excited for me, but she said she really doesn't know if she would do it again. She didn't give a lot of details -- I think there's definitely some personal family stuff going on -- but it made me think. Even though she loves her job and working with women.

Also, an orthopedist I did come work for was pretty insistent that unless I had a God complex and HAD to be in charge and have to final say on everything, it would do just as well to be a good NP or PA.

I really makes you think...are we too idealistic?
 
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Street Philosopher

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the only way to overcome idealism/pessimism to do actually do it and find out for yourself.
 

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Just wanted to comment about her opinion:

I think she wasn't rdy for the responsibilities that followed her into Medical School. I joined the military after high School and let me tell you it was a lot harder for me, the whole experience then compared to someone who was older when they joined the service. She was right about saying that some people may not be ready, but her advice wasn't the one that is correct for everyone. Some people are more tolerable in facing life then others. Whenever I give advice to people who want to join the military I always tell em positive with negative then thats the best way to prepare somone for the experience. Good Luck
 

CANES2006

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I've had the same experiences with a female doctor. She always tries to discourage me from going into medicine by saying that it would be too difficult for me to handle. Then, I point out to her that SHE was able to do it. She either remains silent or says that it was under different circumstances.:confused: If I tell her I want to go into General Surgery, she says that I can't do it because I am a woman! I swear I have been so close to kicking her a$$ and wiping the floor with her face on many occasions.:mad: +pissed+ The funny thing is that the male doctors I have talked to (many of which are surgeons) have told me that I should go for it and that I will be able to be successful in medicine if I continue to excel academically. Needless to say, I no longer talk to the female doctor. She can just kiss my butt and watch me make it into a surgical residency. :D
 
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FutureM.D.

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yes, I did consider her advice. I'm the type of person that considers everything, not just throw out things I don't agree on right away. But I have done that and I think the lady's crazy.
Canes- you know what I'm talking about. Maybe I should go be a neurosurgeon!!! Ha!! :laugh: You know,the guys are so much more supportive than women. Why is that? I'm serious, I want to know.
 

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I agree with SP that you should consider what she told you before disregarding it.
however
someone on sdn recently said, that if you have some med student/doctor trying to convince you not to go into med school, just let the student know it's never too late to change professions. :) :)
 
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FutureM.D.

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Originally posted by marleybfour
I'm losing something here....Are you seeing a pediatrician as a patient or were you bringing a child in?
I was a patient.
 

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Pediatricians very often see patients until they are 21 and sometimes much longer...
 

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Originally posted by FutureM.D.
You know,the guys are so much more supportive than women. Why is that? I'm serious, I want to know.
Because we want to sleep with you.



haha, just kidding! Please don't hit me.
 
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I have talked with many doctors while working in hospitals. The average doctor will ususually tell me to find another profession (especially when I was working in a city hospital). The main reason I think they tried to dissuade me from medicine are many of the problems that can arrise from this profession. In today's medical world we have to Deal with managed care and insurance. Sometimes they will refuse to cover something that we feel would be good for the patient. It is also a hard lifestyle leading to tough family life. Malpractice premiums are also going through the roof.

As far as the billiing issues go, I think that they will have to change them for the better. At this rate the healthcare of this country would end up in the toilet. Obviously that can't sustain itself for long. Thus I'm hoping that it will be much better by the time we jump out into the medical field.

The hard lifestyle I accept as part of the privelege of being a doctor. It's a sacrifice we make for our craft. You can find a balance, but with any compromise neither side is always perfectly happy.

One major issue now is malpractice premiums. With the cost of being a doctor rising and incomes going down, it is almost becoming difficult to actually just practice medicine (think 20/20 special on 200K malpractice premiums on OB/GYN docs).

Sometimes I wonder what I am getting myself into. I then go in and help a patient during my evenings. When I do a good job with them and see how relieved the procedure was painless, I see how precious health is. We give health back to people or die trying.
 

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Here's the thing...sure the physician's life may not be what it was 100 years ago, few jobs are. That's not really important. What is important is the EXTREME variety of jobs available to physicians. You can go into teaching, research, a hundred areas of business, or just work clinically like the people the OP has been quoting are. If you aren't happy in one, you go elsewhere and yet you always know there will be a financially rewarding job out there for you. The vast majority of other professions do not have these abilities and they really make the extra education worth it. I think all too often professionals think that the way they're doing things is the only way possible.
 
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FutureM.D.

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Originally posted by oldman

Sometimes I wonder what I am getting myself into. I then go in and help a patient during my evenings. When I do a good job with them and see how relieved the procedure was painless, I see how precious health is. We give health back to people or die trying.
I feel the same way sometimes. I have my mom and an uncle that keep telling me that by the time I'm a doctor it'll be miserable. I hope I'm not being crazy and just jumping into a profession that's going downhill(in a sense, you know what I mean). I love medicine though and am going to keep going until I'm finally called, "doctor". ;)
 

relatively prime

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Originally posted by Street Philosopher
you should think about what she said.

it's not a good thing to ignore anything that's contrary to your goals/views. consider it, analyze it, and if it's bad advice, then discard it. you might be surprised; it might refocus your motivations.
Once again, I second SP!


I don't know how young you are... but if you're 2-3 years ahead of everyone else, I'd suggest you take a break. Have you ever heard of the book "The Hurried Child" it's a really famous book about how our society is pressuring young people into too many things too fast... I'm not saying this is the case with you... but it might be. Our young years are very important to our emotional and intellectual developement.

I'm not being negative... I'm just suggesting you think about taking a little time off.... don't forget your goals... NO! DON'T DO THAT... just take a step back, sit down and look around... take a breather... do some thinking.

Once again... I'm not saying don't be a doctor! I'm not being negative... I'm just suggestion you take some time off... maybe a year or two... to do some soul-searchering or just some exploring. I think if you do that first, and then go back to your medical school track... you won't regret it.
 

Blitzkrieg

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RP,

many people say "take time off, and explore". I find this to be foolhardy.

Many people, including myself, are hella poor. We don't have the luxury of "taking time off" to explore. If someone has a dream to be a doc, then all the better to do it while young, and full of strength..allowing for many years of practice.

I find it more naive for people to say "go explore for 1-2 years" than to hear people want to relentlessly pursue a dream.

my 10 cents, cos my 2 cents is free...
 
C

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I've never had a doc tell me anything discouraging. Although I had a few um interesting disscusions when I was highschool. I had an "adivsor" tell me that it takes a certain type of person to be a premed. For instance Timmy here plays the Tuba. OK there was no Timmy the Tuba player but you get the point. I thought it was kind of harsh of her to stomp on a 17 year olds dreams.
 

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Ever wonder about the qualifications of these "advisors"? I mean...they tend to be middle aged men and women who...haven't...done...anything...with...lives... What kind of advice, wisdom, or experience do they really have to offer? I guess its along the same lines of the business professor who begins teaching right out of his masters program. Unless you are doing AND advising, or advising after doing, what good are you? Maybe this is overly critical and a hundred people can tell me what an ass I am, but oh well.

~AS1~
 

Blitzkrieg

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alt,


haha..so true. As the saying goes, "those that cannot do..teach!". This doesnt only apply to advisors, but also older people, some doctors, in this case, or others, who are jealous of one's age. It happens..
 

Squidaronimous J

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Originally posted by Blitzkrieg
RP,

many people say "take time off, and explore". I find this to be foolhardy.

Many people, including myself, are hella poor. We don't have the luxury of "taking time off" to explore. If someone has a dream to be a doc, then all the better to do it while young, and full of strength..allowing for many years of practice.

I find it more naive for people to say "go explore for 1-2 years" than to hear people want to relentlessly pursue a dream.

my 10 cents, cos my 2 cents is free...
Here's my 2 cents. You think you're poor now? Wait until you've gone head-long into your dream, then hit a point where you (may)realize it wasn't exactly what you wanted. But you got so caught up in doing it that you never took the time to think about 'why' or 'is this still right XX years into it?'.

Then take all the money you are making, maybe all the money you've made and try and buy back the time you lost. And try and buy back the time you will spend figuring out what you actually want to do.

I think there's a reason many doctors are unhappy. The pursuit of being a doctor (just like the pursuit of enlightenment) can often become it's own goal in itself. Nice, but destructive.

Trust me. You may not think you can afford to 'take a year off' from pursuing your dream, but you really cannot afford NOT to either.

Squid J
 
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FutureM.D.

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Originally posted by AlternateSome1
Ever wonder about the qualifications of these "advisors"?
~AS1~
These 'advisors' are just members of faculty at the college that take a special interest in pre-med. This may not be true for ALL colleges, but in most it is. I just recently skimmed through a really good book at the bookstore about pre-med, admissions, things like that, and it said you really need to do a lot of the research yourself. You can't trust these 'advisors' because most are not professionals or anything, you need to make sure of things before you go do what the advisor says. So far, my pre-med advisor seems okay besides the fact that she's rude, but the regular academic advisors? i'm not so sure about.:eek:
 
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relatively prime

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Originally posted by Blitzkrieg
RP,

many people say "take time off, and explore". I find this to be foolhardy.

Many people, including myself, are hella poor. We don't have the luxury of "taking time off" to explore. If someone has a dream to be a doc, then all the better to do it while young, and full of strength..allowing for many years of practice.

I find it more naive for people to say "go explore for 1-2 years" than to hear people want to relentlessly pursue a dream.

my 10 cents, cos my 2 cents is free...

Hmmm... well... last time I checked it didn't cost anything to join the peace corp. But I suppose she might be too young for that. However, I believe there are other such organizations that you can join that give you the chance to explore the world on a very tight budget.

And, even if you can't do something like that... when I said "explore" I didn't mean go backbacking across Africa... I meant, "try new things" like getting a job...
 

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How much younger are you?
 

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Originally posted by AlternateSome1
Ever wonder about the qualifications of these "advisors"? I mean...they tend to be middle aged men and women who...haven't...done...anything...with...lives... What kind of advice, wisdom, or experience do they really have to offer? I guess its along the same lines of the business professor who begins teaching right out of his masters program. Unless you are doing AND advising, or advising after doing, what good are you? Maybe this is overly critical and a hundred people can tell me what an ass I am, but oh well.

~AS1~
Yeah man I totally agree with you. I could advise better than some of the advisors I've met with...
 

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My experiences with doctors have been 50/50. Half of the doctors I know say "Do something else!" Others are happy and excited for me. My cousin is about 28, and I believe she totally hates her job as an General IM doc. She tries her best to tell me to go into nursing, but I try my best to say that what a nurse does is not what I want to do. Also she says "There's not as many rewards in medicine as there once were." Since she's 28 though, I don't know if she even knows what it was like in the "old days". She does come from the philippines and being a doctor over there is much different from being a doctor in the states. And often times people go into medicine because they have money and brains, but haven't had much exposure (this is a generaliztion though). I also think that the responsibility she has as a doc stresses her out. It has made me look at my desire to become a doctor with more scrutiny which is good. However, it can be discouraging on a bad day, like the day I got my april mcat scores.... ;)
 
C

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Originally posted by AlternateSome1
Ever wonder about the qualifications of these "advisors"? I mean...they tend to be middle aged men and women who...haven't...done...anything...with...lives... What kind of advice, wisdom, or experience do they really have to offer? I guess its along the same lines of the business professor who begins teaching right out of his masters program. Unless you are doing AND advising, or advising after doing, what good are you? Maybe this is overly critical and a hundred people can tell me what an ass I am, but oh well.

~AS1~
I actually find my college adivors very helpful. The problem I had was with lazy idiotic advisors in high school. For example the advisor I mentioned also "helps" students with financial aid. Earlier in the year she gave some big speach about not selling yourself short and that there are hundreds of scholarships out there. When I went to talk to her about this she took one look at my GPA (3.4 which isn't great but I had a 2.0 freshman year and 3.8 my last two years) and told me that I wouldn't be able to get one. I was like "What happened to having hundreds of scholarships out there?" Now the part that really drove me up the wall was that's all she did. She didn't take a look at my transcript to see that my GPA had sky rocketed over the last few years or that I was taking some of the hardest classes they had to offer. She also didn't ask about my EC's. As a result I got no scholarships freshmen year (save for a private one that I found myself). But then got a full ride my soph more year when I filled out all the apps myself. Apps that my advisor never informed me of when I was in highschool. Even when I asked point blank "What apps do I need to fill out to try and get one" she just kept telling me I wouldn't be able to get one. It was like she was trying to keep my grubby hands away from scholarships that belonged to deserving kids. It didn't help matters much that she had a billboard full of pictures of these deserving kids.

Now I've never liked conspiracy theories. I truly don't think she was trying to keep me away from anything. I think she was just lazy and if I had visited her another day when she actually felt like doing some work then she may have actually of gotten off her ass and helped me. Either that or she is grossly incompetent.

It's nice to vent about this every once in a while:)
 

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I asked a doc friend of my parents the other day why there are (seemingly) so many malcontent doctors. He said those that are unhappy are those that went into medicine for the wrong reasons (money, presige) or too early without knowing what else the world had to offer.

The jist of his comments:

If all you want is money and for people to respect you, don't go into medicne. There are other ways to get those things that are less taxing of life/family.

It is a great honor when someone asks you to take care of them. If taking care of people isn't your PRIMARY reason for wanting to go into medicine, do something else.

If you're not sure after college (even a little bit not sure) go do something else for a while. The schools will be there and you might just save yourself some long misery.
 

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I have taken my kids to the same pediatrican for the past 7 years. I think he is a great doctor. However, I was shocked when I told him of my intentions of going to med school three years ago and his first response was... "Why in the world would you want to do that. Believe me, don't do it."

He has tried to talk me out of it just about every time I have taken my kids in to see him. He always says... "Practicing medicine is not what it used to be like." Keep in mind he is only in his late 30's so he hasn't been practicing for years and years.

I know where you are coming from in questioned why so many doctors are now trying to discourage people from going into medicine.
 

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Originally posted by Blitzkrieg
alt,


haha..so true. As the saying goes, "those that cannot do..teach!". This doesnt only apply to advisors, but also older people, some doctors, in this case, or others, who are jealous of one's age. It happens..
"also older people?" "jealous of one's age?" Here's some advice for you blitzkrieg--don't go into geriatrics.
 

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I am interested in the fact that most of you seem to have had at least one physician tell you not to go into medicine. I have never had one suggest I do something else. Maybe it is because of where I am (TMC and before that, Parkland) and the people actually love what they are doing because they are on the forefront of medicine, but the suggestion has never been made to me to look for another profession. Interesting...

As for the issue of taking some time off, I would also suggest it is one of the best ideas you could ever have. I graduated a year early and worked "in the real world" for a year before starting med school. Working a full-time job while in school and working a full-time job without being in school are two different things. I suggest everyone experience the latter, even if they already have the former. I worked full-time in undergrad because I do not come from a wealthy family and I have always been a responsibe person. That being said, I grew up immensely in that year off. I grew to really know who I was. It kind of freaks me out that some of my classmates' first jobs will be their residency. You can look at my class and tell who those students are because of their immaturity. I suggest taking time off if for no other reason than to get to know yourself.
 

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Originally posted by SocialistMD
It kind of freaks me out that some of my classmates' first jobs will be their residency. You can look at my class and tell who those students are because of their immaturity.
I don't think you can make the conclusion that just because someone's first job will be in residency, that they are somehow immature. Some people are just fortunate in that they come from wealthy families so they choose to focus on school or other aspects of life instead of working just to pay the bills.
 
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Your kinda right papa smurf, however, my family is NOT rich. I'll admit that right now to everyone. I'm just hoping my extended family will help when it comes time for med school.
 

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If you are applying to start me dical school before 20, i would be careful. I graduated college at 18. I am taking two years off. Even if you feel you're convinced of medicine, and don't need the time off (consider taking time off, but finally, it's for you to decide), i sortof doubt the admission commitees of ma ny schools are going to be receptive to this. My brother did not have a great experience with it, applying you. But then, some other have.

In some states, it's illegal to pu t anyone under 21 to take care patients.

Sonya
 

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From what I've read, a lot of doctor's advice would be to go into medicine if you like taking care of people. To me, that's practically an empty statement. How can you ever realize if you will like the kind of "taking care of people" that doctors do? You may say, I like baby sitting my little sister or I like talking to patients when I volunteer in the hospital. To me, that is all so different from what a doctor really does. It's hard to really say you would love being a doctor UNTIL you ARE a doctor... then if you realize you hate it, you've already been through a couple of years of med school. *sigh*...

There's also the thing about taking a break and getting a job. I think this can be very misleading. I've seen the "just got out of school" complex in a lot of my older friends. They graduate college and get a pretty decent job. It's a nice life for them--young, single, decent cash on hand. They work 9 to 5 and then hang out with their friends the rest of the time. At the time, they said that they would be happy just to have a job like this and not pursue any graduate degrees, etc. After all, going back to school is NOT fun. And then two years later... when your nice life has become a routine, that's when you start feeling like your 9-5 is pointless... two of them are applying to law school now.

The way I think about it... being a doctor is not a job, it's a career. a VERY involved one that could maybe bump into your family life and social life. but that's that very involved-ness that makes it a good career at times... because no matter how stupid and pointless the rest of your life may be, at least you have your job. (that is, if you truly like what you're doing... which is hard to determine at this stage in time)

sorry for the long post! :oops:
 

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Originally posted by Spidey


Because we want to sleep with you.



haha, just kidding! Please don't hit me.
LOL!
 

kaos

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Originally posted by Blitzkrieg
RP,

many people say "take time off, and explore". I find this to be foolhardy.

Many people, including myself, are hella poor. We don't have the luxury of "taking time off" to explore. If someone has a dream to be a doc, then all the better to do it while young, and full of strength..allowing for many years of practice.

I find it more naive for people to say "go explore for 1-2 years" than to hear people want to relentlessly pursue a dream.

my 10 cents, cos my 2 cents is free...
I know! I'm sick and tired of older people sayin' that. Those 1-2 wasted years can make or break your career!
 

DarkChild

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take time off.
'nuff said. those who did know and those who didnt... well thats what a midlife crisis is all about.
on top of that - almost all the negative things that doctors have said to people (documented in this thread) stem from a mismatch between expectations and reality. I think that real disconnect is not because their reality failed to live up to their expectations - but because their expectations where arbitrary in the first place - they simply didnt know what the wanted.
1) as for the money argument for not taking time off- thats BS a job actually pays you money!!
2) as for the career advancement argument -i.e. wasting valuable time doing something else - more BS, keep driving too hard and you'll burn out - or worse, end up being someone you dont like. (another lesson you would have learned outside of school)
ultimately my real issue with folks who havent done anything else between college and medschool is that going back to school is too much of a safety net. it's easy not to venture out of the cozy little academic world you have surrounded yourself with - where all you have to do is go to class, study for exams and pass the class. think about it, its just like extending the college experience for another 4 years. Ok - you probably study a bit harder, but...
 

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I would say that taking time off is worth your investment. I hadn't planned on spending this much time away from school (it will be three years if I get in next year), but it's been worth it. In the long run, what difference does it make if you graduate med school at 26 vs. 27 or 28? The time that you spent learning about the "real" world more than makes up for it. I know, I worked full time in college and work full time now - it's completely different. This is how your patients will be living - for me, it will be great that I will know what a normal 9-5 job is like (which, for most people, is really like 8-7 but we won't get into that). Not to mention the eye-opening aspects of working you never really knew about (office politics, hiring and firing, dealing with HR, etc.) that can make a HUGE impact on your career.

Many of the doctors i've spoken with (these are young doctors, who are either just finished or finishing residency) really regret not taking time off between college and med school. They didn't because it is easier to just stay on the same track as you've been on for the last 16 years of your life. I think it enriches your life to take risks, but i'm not saying if you don't take time off you won't be a good doctor. it's just an added bonus. Plus, you get to enjoy some of your youth before heading back to school!


:)
 
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