Jan 26, 2017
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  1. Pre-Physical Therapy
I am a sophomore and have recently switched from Biology to Pre-Physical Therapy. Despite my decent grades (As-B+s), I feared my upper level Biology classes, as I thought I didn't have much interest in most of them, and didn't want a bad GPA. I was especially affected by my Genetics lecture and Organic Chem lab... I switched to Pre-PT because I like the idea of rehab; although I'd prefer the idea of OT more, PT pays better. I don't have any close personal connection to PT, and while I try to stay healthy, I'm no bodybuilder or major athlete. I'm fine with hard classes and I work hard, but if I don't like the material I stress out way too much (what happened last semester). I did find Organic Lecture to be very interesting, and while I only got a B+, it was likely because of the stress associated with the other classes.

Should I have made the switch? I felt so stressed out and overwhelmed between Organic Lab and Genetics lecture. I'm rarely a fan of laboratory work, and I'm not too fond of research, so I've leaned towards healthcare. I originally had Optometry in mind when I majored in Biology, and had started to look around for Optometry shadowing opportunities. I still very much like Optometry, but I fear a bad GPA will ruin me. The overall went down to a 3.687, but should I continue with Pre-PT, I believe it will go up to a 3.8+. It's possible for me to go back to Biology, but only after this semester (and a bunch of paperwork). Although I might fall a little farther behind, I was already a semester ahead with transfer credits.

I'm also a Pharmacy Tech for a better-than average CVS, and I like the stability and real-time knowledge the Pharmacists use. This has been my biggest working exposure to a health care professional, and while I don't think I'll go for it (the school stress level is over the roof, especially for the other pharm-techs), if the schooling wasn't so bad I'd go for it.

I've also always been more of an arts/social science person, and I tend to do best in those classes. However, I enjoy healthcare, and I believe healthcare has the greatest stability and job satisfaction down the road.

My apologies for the long post; trying to give as many details as needed. I like anatomy and I'm taking intro A&P courses now, so those courses should be fine. However, I'm not exactly the "typical" Pre-PT/Exercise Science/Kinesiology person, and I don't think I'll fit in very well with my peers/look forward to my Exercise Science (basically gym) courses.

In the end, I just want to be happy, and I don't know which health care profession will get me there.
 

starrsgirl

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Oct 5, 2010
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  1. Physical Therapist
My sister is a pharmacist and I'm almost done with PT school. Just a quick thought for you, I would rate both PT and pharm school as equally stressful. In some ways, I think I was more stressed with PT school than my sister because they didn't have very many lab classes. She had classes just in the morning and was done most afternoons (4 year program). PT is a 3 year program, but mine was ALL day. My sister's work was hard but generally her studying didn't spill into her evening hours like mine did. So i'm not sure the PT schooling is any "better" than pharmacy...seems similar level in my experience.
 
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Jan 26, 2017
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  1. Pre-Physical Therapy
My sister is a pharmacist and I'm almost done with PT school. Just a quick thought for you, I would rate both PT and pharm school as equally stressful. In some ways, I think I was more stressed with PT school than my sister because they didn't have very many lab classes. She had classes just in the morning and was done most afternoons (4 year program). PT is a 3 year program, but mine was ALL day. My sister's work was hard but generally her studying didn't spill into her evening hours like mine did. So i'm not sure the PT schooling is any "better" than pharmacy...seems similar level in my experience.
By no means should I think PT school is "easier" than Pharmacy school; it's just different :). I have no experience with either of course, but I have cousins in both PT and Pharmacy. Both are hard workers, but very capable. From what I've gathered on SDN, major itself doesn't matter as much as academic and extra-curricular performance. What was your undergrad major/were you a direct program?
 
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astarblaze

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Dec 12, 2014
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I switched to Pre-PT because I like the idea of rehab; although I'd prefer the idea of OT more, PT pays better.

My understanding is that this might be less true than you think, and that in the same setting, PTs and OTs generally make a very similar salary. If you're interested in OT, definitely check it out as well.

My general advice is to go shadow folks in these professions- PT, OT, Optometry, Nursing... Then you can get a better sense of what you would really enjoy doing.

In terms of major, as you've gathered, for PT school admissions, it really doesn't matter what you major in, as long as you fulfill required prerequisites. I majored in anthropology, and I've gotten 6 acceptances so far to PT programs. If you'd rather major in arts/social sciences instead of pre-PT/exercise science or biology, then go for it!
 
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