Feb 15, 2013
2
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Hello - I am new to the forums here, I am in a sort of unique situation in my life and I am interested to see if there are others who have had a similar experience and how they fared. Currently I am a year away from completing my undergrad, and my major is Computer Science. I decided about a year ago that I am really interested in pursuing medicine. I'm an Air Force veteran, former intelligence analyst and am attending college right now on my GI Bill benefits. Presently I have a 3.76 GPA, I have been taking 5 classes per semester on top of a full time job. Additionally, I'm a single parent to a 3 year old son. My wife left us and left the country several months ago. When she left I nearly gave up on this dream, but I've decided that I still want to move forward. I know it is going to be extremely difficult and I know when/if I start medical school I will need to make that my focus and give up the full time job. I am hoping I can survive that time with student loans and scholarships. Another issue is I have not taken the science courses I need so I'm going to have to do a Post-Bacc premed program. I'm wondering what the most cost effective way of doing these courses is? I feel that even in my unique situation, I am up to the challenge of medical school. I've worked extremely hard over the past few years, and have taken on full course loads with a relatively decent GPA. I am interested on hearing everyone's advice.

Thanks!
Ryan
 

Goro

7+ Year Member
Jun 10, 2010
52,561
76,205
Somewhere west of St. Louis
Status
Non-Student
First, many thanks for serving your country.
Suggest that given your academic success with the responsibilities you have, you take the pre-reqs in a bolus. For example, year 1, Bio + inorganic chem; Year 2, Orgo + physics. You probably have the math requirments (if needs), but if not, probably throw that in for year three, along with a rigorous courlse like physiology, anatomy or cell biology, genetics and or biochem.

That should be enough for any AdCom, provided you do well on the MCAT. Don't forget you'll need the usual ECs. There should be a Pre-Med Club or similar at your college; check them out for further advice.

Hello - I am new to the forums here, I am in a sort of unique situation in my life and I am interested to see if there are others who have had a similar experience and how they fared. Currently I am a year away from completing my undergrad, and my major is Computer Science. I decided about a year ago that I am really interested in pursuing medicine. I'm an Air Force veteran, former intelligence analyst and am attending college right now on my GI Bill benefits. Presently I have a 3.76 GPA, I have been taking 5 classes per semester on top of a full time job. Additionally, I'm a single parent to a 3 year old son. My wife left us and left the country several months ago. When she left I nearly gave up on this dream, but I've decided that I still want to move forward. I know it is going to be extremely difficult and I know when/if I start medical school I will need to make that my focus and give up the full time job. I am hoping I can survive that time with student loans and scholarships. Another issue is I have not taken the science courses I need so I'm going to have to do a Post-Bacc premed program. I'm wondering what the most cost effective way of doing these courses is? I feel that even in my unique situation, I am up to the challenge of medical school. I've worked extremely hard over the past few years, and have taken on full course loads with a relatively decent GPA. I am interested on hearing everyone's advice.

Thanks!
Ryan
 
Jan 9, 2013
1,248
184
Status
Medical Student
Thank you for serving our country.

Since your GI Bill bennies will end once you get your degree, how would you pay for a post-bacc? What pre-reqs can you have completed by May 2014? Will your aid allow you to take any CS or other non-pre-req classes in the summer?

I'm guessing that you must have an adequate support system (parents?) that are helping you with your child while you balance work and school? If so, will they be available if you go to med school?
 
OP
D
Feb 15, 2013
2
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Thank you for serving our country.

Since your GI Bill bennies will end once you get your degree, how would you pay for a post-bacc? What pre-reqs can you have completed by May 2014? Will your aid allow you to take any CS or other non-pre-req classes in the summer?

I'm guessing that you must have an adequate support system (parents?) that are helping you with your child while you balance work and school? If so, will they be available if you go to med school?
Those are good questions, you're correct that my benefits will essentially halt once I graduate - even if I didn't use them all up, my understanding is it will only cover one degree. That being said, in my situation I do qualify for full financial aid. I was debating taking the courses at a community college which would be more affordable. The parents are great, one thing that I think - and correct me if I am wrong. With the exception of the first year, I think I may actually have more time in medical school than I do now. Currently I'm working the full time job and taking on a full load of classes. When/if I make it into medical school I intend to go off of loans and use my CS degree to freelance for extra money, making medical school my job. Hopefully I am not being too naive here, I anticipate spending about 8-10 hours per day working on medical school things, right now my days are anywhere from 13-14 hours long.
 
Jan 9, 2013
1,248
184
Status
Medical Student
Those are good questions, you're correct that my benefits will essentially halt once I graduate - even if I didn't use them all up, my understanding is it will only cover one degree. That being said, in my situation I do qualify for full financial aid. I was debating taking the courses at a community college which would be more affordable. The parents are great, one thing that I think - and correct me if I am wrong. With the exception of the first year, I think I may actually have more time in medical school than I do now. Currently I'm working the full time job and taking on a full load of classes. When/if I make it into medical school I intend to go off of loans and use my CS degree to freelance for extra money, making medical school my job. Hopefully I am not being too naive here, I anticipate spending about 8-10 hours per day working on medical school things, right now my days are anywhere from 13-14 hours long.

Can you take any non-pre-req classes over the summer? Will your GI bennies pay for those?

What state are you in? You may end up with a low EFC, but once you've graduated, you won't qualify for Pell or other gov't grants. Those are for undergrads only, no matter how low your EFC is.

Will you need to go to med school near your parents' home so they can help with your child?

I don't think you'll have time to earn money on the side as a med student. While you might have more free time in med school than you do as an undergrad (not sure about that, I start med school in Aug), since you have a young child, that responsibility will likely take up the extra time that you have. As your child ages, the more you'll be expected to do.

One of my older siblings has children and once they get into school and have sports (soccer, karate, whatever), the child will take more of your time that he does now. That can be a surprise for young parents. Right now, you are more in control of your child's schedule because he's very young. Soon, school, homework, and extra-curriculars will have more of a "say" in your child's schedule. (at least that's the word from my sib and sib-in-law...lol).