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to take a year off?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by dkang, Apr 3, 2004.

  1. dkang

    dkang Junior Member
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    what's the consensus of taking a year off before going to med school? and if so, do you have to do all pre-med kinda stuff or is it okay to just chill/work full-time?
     
  2. bewitched1081

    bewitched1081 Senior Member
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    if you already have excellent ecs, clinical exp, and research then you might not have to do anything medically related in your year off. however, a common interview question is "what have you been doing in your year off?" you might want to cont in something that has to do with med. maybe you could get a job in a clinic or hosp or something. or volunteer in a clinic.
     
  3. Vincristine

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    To me it seemed that if you took a year off, you had better be doing something that seriosuly furthered your application. A MUCH easier option is to defer your acceptance. I did this personally, and have several other classmates who followed the same path. We were all serious about going to medical school, but I sure as hell knew I needed a year off. I went through the normal application process, never speaking a word of my thoughts to defer. Once I was accepted, I promptly contacted them on how to defer. I had to write a "petition" to the dean stating what I would be doing and why I was defering. My letter was very simple, something about how I needed to relax (but in much better language, obviously) and would be continuing to work full time as a chemist (which I had done in undergrad, too). They had no problem with it and said to have fun. About Jan/Feb I had to fill out a new AMCAS application (just formality -- I didn't have to write a new personal statement), and then had to submit a letter with my intent to matriculate. All worked out well.

    Of the other people I know who deferred, one traveled around south america without and aim and another had an unrelated job (like working part time in a book store or something). None of us feel like these are things you can do if you are simply taking a year off, however.

    If you decide to defer, just make sure you continue to do all the things necessary once you are accepted just as if you were actually going to matriculate --- insuraqnce forms, immunizations, FA, etc -- until they infact tell you that your deferral has been granted.
     
  4. missbonnie

    missbonnie floating
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    I think it depends on how you package it. I definately encourage you to take a year "off" from academics, it gives you alot of perspective that you just don't get when in an academic bubble.

    Also, are you taking a year off before you apply or while you apply? Very different.

    If it's just a year, I dont think you need to sweat keeping up the activites you might have done in college.

    -b
     
  5. racystacey07

    racystacey07 Member
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    you will be a doctor for the rest of your life, so why not take advantage of a once in a lifetime opportunity to pursue some of your dreams? i took time off and moved to spain, which was the best decision of my life! obviously, doing something medically related will help your application, while working part time elsewhere may not. i dont think theres any hurry to race through life, though. enjoy!
     
  6. bry2781

    bry2781 Member
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    I have always been curious as to how deferring your acceptance worked. I have already been accepted to a medical school and it has always been in the back of my mind to take a year off and travel around europe/asia. Is this a posibility? Or do they frown that if you put that down as a reason for deferring a year? I have a good friend of mine who is in medical school in Italy and I had always wanted to spend several months over there to pick up the language a little better than I already have and to see/enjoy other cultures. Perhaps getting involved with some sort of program at the hospital there if my communication level is sufficient. What are your thoughts?
     
  7. BOSSofCU

    BOSSofCU Senior Member
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    I took a year off pre-app, and I would definitely recommend it. It gave me time to learn about the different schools I wanted to apply to and to focus on the applications. It was also great not to be worrying about classes when travelling for interviews.

    I travelled in Europe for a month or two after graduation. I didn't get the impression that interviewers frowned upon this. In fact, they were interested in asking me how it went and what I saw and learned. That said, by the time the interview came around I was working in a great lab that both counted as medical related activities, and was really flexible with letting me take time off for interviews and vacations.

    If you've got a good (more or less) medicine-related place to work, I'd recommend it over deferral, and if you really want to go travel and do nothing, you can always do that in the months between acceptance and the beginning of school.
    -Ross
     
  8. dkang

    dkang Junior Member
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    thanks for the advice :p
     

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