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What are you going to do if/when you don't get in?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by pathdr2b, Nov 7, 2002.

  1. pathdr2b

    pathdr2b Membership Revoked
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    Given that 50% of applicants will not be accepted, I think this is a good subject to discuss.

    If I'm not admitted, I plan to continue working in Epidemiology full-time while continuing to take courses toward an MPH. At my age (thirty something), I plan to only try one additional time. If not successful at that point, I'll continue on for a PhD in either Pathology (with an Epi focus) or Cancer Epidemiology. Getting a PhD won't be much of a stretch for me since I'll be applying to MD/PhD programs anyway.
     
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  3. klp14

    klp14 Member in Flipflops
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    I've heard that a couple med schools ask this question in their interviews, though haven't experienced it first hand (yet?). What do schools think about people saying they want to go to PA school if they don't get in?
     
  4. poloace

    poloace Senior Member
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    klp..
    i think you'd be selling yourself short. don't sweat this med school thing- you all will be just fine. p.s.- check out the new official panty raid thread in the lounge.
    p
     
  5. DW

    DW Fix me some sandwiches
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    i was gonna work full time at CDC hopefully. with my MPH and good experience I could I have landed a pretty solid job, 45-50K for a while, and re-evaluated my career plans. But, I'm glad I got in :D

    as an aside, my buddy now a ms2 at aecom, had already gotten in to one school before his NYU interview. According to him, when asked this dreaded question, he blurted out flatly without thinking: "You dont need to ask that one, i've already gotten in", and the interviewer stared in appalled shock for about 20 seconds before continuing. needless to say, he didn't get in post interview :laugh:

    my question for you path, just asking, is why do MD/PhD? Can you not achieve your professional goals with only a PhD? (take this as a warmup, cause I guarantee you'll be getting this question on interviews in the future :) )
     
  6. Green912

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    When asked during interviews my unqualified answer will be "keep improving until I get accepted". I do plan on trying again, if needed, but the thought of going through all this again makes me cringe. The upside would be that the process would be much more efficient a second time around. Absolute "worst case", I either keep my job as a fireman/paramedic, or use my shiny new MS in Biology and ***** myself to the highest bidder.;)
     
  7. pathdr2b

    pathdr2b Membership Revoked
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    DW,

    I get this question ALL THE TIME especially considering I'll be ~45 before I complete my training (assuming all goes well).


    My short answer is that I think I'll need MD/PhD training to truly understand on a conceptual level how disease manifests itself clinically. I'm leaning strongly toward a career in Pathlogy with an emphasis on breast cancer pathology. From where I stand, a cancer research career can really compliment one in pathology and I've got plenty of role models here at NCI to illustrate this point although most MD/PhD's are internist/oncologist with PhD's in a variety of areas.

    Besides, in the 3 years I've spent trying to decide between the MD or the PhD, I could have been half-way through the combined program! :rolleyes: Sometimes, you just got to do what you gotta do;) !
     
  8. opus03

    opus03 Senior Member
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    I would have to say possibly a post-bacc program to find out how I can improve my application and if I am still unsuccessful, grad school...that way I will at least be able to get a decent job!
     
  9. marakah2

    marakah2 Member
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    I have heard from members of adcoms that the answer to the question is

    I WILL TRY AGAIN....
     
  10. pocwana

    pocwana MD/MBA candidate c/o 2008
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    at my wake forest interview (3 interviewers, 15 minutes each - timed) one of them asked me this question. without hesitation, i replied, i will apply again next year. right there, he told me "that's the right answer." i was surprised he told me that and i said i thought there weren't any right answers to these questions. he said there was for this one and that it's nice to give some positive feedback to interviewees.
     
  11. pathdr2b

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    This may be the "right answer" but I know someone who has tried 5 times to get in with no luck. I'd imagine after the 3rd time at the same school, the old "I'll try again" answer gets old pretty quickly.

    I started this thread because in the short time since I've joined SDN, very rarely do I see anyone talk about their plan "B". There's nothing wrong with optimism, but reality dictates that having a back-up plan is extremely prudent.
     
  12. Zoobaby

    Zoobaby Monkey Wrench
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    I'll figure out what was wrong with my app, improve it, and try one more time. If twice I don't succeed I think I'll become a chef and open a B&B. Either that or I'll buy old houses, fix them up, and sell them for a profit.

    I figure if I can't be a doctor I'm going to want to have a decently stress free life.
     
  13. siempre595

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    I'd go with "i'll try again, and in the meantime I'll.....{fill in blank with something similar to achieve world peace}.
    ;)
     
  14. Adcadet

    Adcadet Long way from Gate 27
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    At my Wake interview, and at my GW interview they phrased the question as "what would you do if you couldn't go into medicine." In fact, at the Wake interview the guy threw out my top two choices, saying they were too close to medicine! So I had to admit...I'd be a naval aviator, go to US Naval Special Weapons School (or whatever it's technically called) and date a really hot instructor.
     
  15. TeinVI

    TeinVI Membership Revoked
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    if i don't get in...i'll go to alaska. hang with the bears.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. UCLAstudent

    UCLAstudent I'm a luck dragon!
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    If I don't get in, I will probably do something with marine biology or animal training. I would rather not think about that, though. :)
     
  17. Smoke This

    Smoke This Sweet cuppin' cakes!
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    Join the military. :cool: Reevaluate my career goals later, or never if I enjoyed what I was doing.
     
  18. holler79

    holler79 Senior Member
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    I was also asked this last year by an interviewer. My answer " I will definitely reapply." What am I doing right now you ask, REAPPLYING!!!:mad: :mad: :mad:

    If I don't get in after a 3rd time (if needed) I would go to law school or get a PHd in psychology, i think:confused: :confused:
     
  19. LoveDoc

    LoveDoc Respect the Rhesus Monkey
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    TeinVI....

    THAT WAS HILARIOUS!!!

    :D :D :D :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
     
  20. 2badr

    2badr **Switch**
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    I plan to continue until I get in- I hope we're not talking more than applying twice.... In the meantime I would probably continue my studies in my major.Maybe go for a Masters.I hope I don't need that plan B,tho.
    For pathdr2b,would you be able to do what you wanted to do if you did not go to med school? In other words,do you need the MD for your studies in pathology? Or do you feel that you will limited with the PhD?
    I am interested in pathology as well.Just curious.
     
  21. Random Access

    Random Access 1K Member
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    "Well, I've always thought about breaking into the porn business..."
     
  22. lotanna

    lotanna Child of God
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    Continue in my epidemiology field, work for State Health dept. or CDC, make $50k-$80k and try again later :) It pays to be young u know, even though I was the butt of all my friends, 21 and over ,jokes in undergrad :mad:
     
  23. STi555

    STi555 Senior Member
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    I thought that most schools discouraged applying more than twice. I like the idea of I will apply again (assuming this isn't your 13th try) and in the meantime I will . . .
     
  24. Zardoz

    Zardoz Junior Member
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    Zardoz is going to take a nice vacation prior to working full time in research and/or teaching. I'll try again as well. Could they possibly deny us after suffering through this pain more than once?
     
  25. NatureGirl

    NatureGirl Junior Member
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    If I don't get in, I will try at least one more time and then do something completely different such as starting a restaurant or becoming an interior design consultant or maybe a professional traveler or a full-time philanthropist (don't know where the money's coming from, but...). My sister and I have always wanted to start a really awesome home for "unwanted" children, too, but I don't know if that would be possible...but I can always dream can't I? Yes, come to think of it, definitely the latter.
     
  26. dalewren

    dalewren Junior Member
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    This is my second time applying - it definitely doesn't get any easier. In fact, it's a bigger pain in the ass because you have to go around getting fresh LOR and they say - didn't I do this last year?

    If I don't get in this time, it is either try at the DO schools or go to the Caribbean. I am currently a software developer, but I don't plan on falling back on that!
     
  27. pillowhead

    pillowhead Senior Member
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    I'll go to law school and sue doctors for malpractice.

    Not really, but I always thought it would be funny to say. Now that I've been accepted, I think it would be so much fun to go to an interview and just totally screw it up and just see how the interviewers react. Of course, I wouldn't, but think of all the fun it could be...
     
  28. dph201

    dph201 Senior Member
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    That sounds like a good idea pillowhead. Sue them for not giving us a chance.

    My plan B is to get my nursing degree and re-apply after a couple of years in the field. I know some of you may think that becoming a nurse is a step down, but to me it isn't. I want to provide healthcare in anyway possible. And if being a nurse is the way for me to go then that is what I will do.

    And path I did mention on another thread about becoming a nurse as my plan B. But someone shot me down completely. I think it was you. No hard feelings or offense taken though.
     
  29. dph201

    dph201 Senior Member
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    That sounds like a good idea pillowhead. Sue them for not giving us a chance.

    My plan B is to get my nursing degree and re-apply after a couple of years in the field. I know some of you may think that becoming a nurse is a step down, but to me it isn't. I want to provide healthcare in anyway possible. And if being a nurse is the way for me to go then that is what I will do.

    And path I did mention on another thread about becoming a nurse as my plan B. But someone shot me down completely. I think it was you. No hard feelings or offense taken though.
     
  30. TeinVI

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    all good plans indeed....now if i don't get in on my second try, there's only one option.

    [​IMG]
     
  31. ItNeverEnds

    ItNeverEnds Senior Member
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    PhD in Psychology and JD in Health Law. If time permits, I'll go for a PhD in Psychiatric Epidemiology (already working on the MPH).

    Isn't it great that we have SO many options!?
     
  32. mightymouseal

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    I applied EDP, and frankly, if I didn't get in I didn't have the intention to apply anywhere else. I would have done study/research abroad, taken a year off from school and do mad crazy research full time here at UT, or taken some humanitarian route. Amongst the options, the humanitarian one was definetly my least favorite, and while I wouldn't mind getting away from Austin for a while I wasn't excited with the prospect of having to start some project from the beginning to only put a few months in it, somewhere in Europe no less.

    Good luck to you all, but hopefully nobody will have to use this thread, we'll all get in this time. With the possible exceptions of Longhorn and bubblywatr. Bring it on PUNKS!!!!!
     
  33. pathdr2b

    pathdr2b Membership Revoked
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    DPH, let me assure you that I have plenty other things to do with my time other than shoot anyone down on these boards. What I probably did was give you the facts (per AMCAS)about trying to get into medical school after being a nurse. You obiviously disagreed with what I said which was essentially that you'd have a hard time getting in from nursing. My mother and best friend are nurses so I happen to have a lot of respect for them both personally and from the position of having been a patient far too many times. Nursing is a great field but it is NOTHING like medicine as far as I can tell.

    2badr, my desire to see patients and get clinical training are the main reasons I want the MD. Here at NCI, I've seen a few PhD's with some clinical duties. However, I haven't come across one yet that hasn't wished they would have gone to medical school too. The combined program offers many, many options that having just one of the degrees can't completely provide.
     
  34. ComplexPuzzle

    ComplexPuzzle shakin dat a**
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    Resume my search for a sugar daddy and chastise myself for getting distracted in the first place. A doctor, what a stoopid idea. Just call me the baby-makin, dinner-cookin, husband-makin machine. But really I think I will cry and reapply. I mean really what else am I going to do with my lovely personal statement :p and MCAT score.
     
  35. dph201

    dph201 Senior Member
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    Path, why are we so sensitive? First of all I said I THINK it was you. Nerver said it was actually you. Second, you are not giving me any reality checks about anything. I know many people who have done nursing and became MD's. I never said that you didn't have respect for nurses. And besides I recall saying there was no hard feelings or any offense taken. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. So relax please.
     
  36. tBw

    tBw totally deluded
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    distracted?!?!? I thought the whole point of going to med school was to hang out with specialists and find a suga mamma/pappa??
     
  37. pathdr2b

    pathdr2b Membership Revoked
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    Venting anger on the web over what exactly? Now that's a great quality for a doctor but especially a nurse. No thanks, but I think I'd rather do my own rectal temperatures and insert the "foley" myself!!!!! :laugh: :laugh:
     
  38. dph201

    dph201 Senior Member
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    No venting anger here. Just wanted to make sure we understood each other. Can't get mad or angry at someone I don't even know and will probably never meet.
     
  39. mightymouseal

    mightymouseal Membership Revoked
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    ComplexPuzzle, one question: whats for dinner?
     
  40. Biodude

    Biodude The Biology DUDE
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    Ok, I've got somewhat of a late reply to this thread, but I'd just like to say that if I don't get in, then I'd just try again (despite the long torture that everyone describes the application process as :D )

    Oh, yes, and I do have a plan B if things don't work out. I'd apply to PA school. At least I'll make enough money to raise a family with that salary, right?

    Hmm, well, if that doesn't work...well, let's just say that my personal motto is "always have a Plan B." I'll figure something out...maybe try for an MPH or an MS in Biology...eventually to a PhD.

    If that doesn't work out, I'll have an additional plan!
     
  41. dph201

    dph201 Senior Member
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    path i pm'd you
     
  42. exigente chica

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    I would pursue my dancer career, do research abraod or at NIH for a year, and reapply!! NEver give up on your dreams..and get a nice Ph.D in Biomedical engineering.:clap:
     
  43. angelic02

    angelic02 Senior Member
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    May I post a reply here, eventhough I am really too young to be thinking about this?

    How about secondary school band/orchestra director? Do that for a while, then go through the application process again, after having taken other courses or whatever else may have been lacking on my original application. I would probably also consider surgery technician school, if I didn't get into med the second time around.
     
  44. pathdr2b

    pathdr2b Membership Revoked
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    Bump.

    OK folks, as much as you probably hate to do it, if you have not been accepted yet it's time to start thinking about what you're going to do next year. Just some ideas since a lot of deadlines for these programs are early 2003:

    1) Enroll in an MS or MPH program

    2) Enroll in a post bacc program

    3) Complete a fellowship year at CDC, NIH, or some other government agency.

    4) Work in a research lab at a University with a medical school

    5) Volunteer in a hospital (if you can afford it, of course)
     
  45. suck it up, all of ye - t'aint so bad.

    arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

    these aren't uncharted waters
     
  46. pathdr2b

    pathdr2b Membership Revoked
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  47. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    I'll probably teach HS biology/chemistry.
     
  48. whatfun

    whatfun Member
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    At my interview at Univ of Wisconsin, I was asked, "If you don't get in to any school this year, what will you do next year?" I answered that I might work and wait to apply again or apply immediately the next year, but it depended on the strength of my application and what I needed to do to improve that application. The woman responded with a nod and said something like "That's interesting...it's good that you know yourself so well...", but I got the distinct feeling that's NOT what she wanted to hear. I think she wanted to hear "I would apply right away next year." Well, I was waitlisted at Wisc, a school that accepts most people they interview.

    I have a feeling some schools use this as a way to determine motivation and determination, but I think that is sort of stupid. Wouldn't you want your applicants to evaluate things carefully and make a decision based upon their circumstances, not just "oh, i'll just run blindly into this again!"

    Anyhow, my interviewer seemed to simply recite questions and wasn't very engaging. I don't think she was really evaluating me, more going through her checklist.
     
  49. pathdr2b

    pathdr2b Membership Revoked
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    I'm going to bump this once a week or so until June!;)
     
  50. UCLAMAN

    UCLAMAN Air Jordan Collector
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    You're right...I think some schools use it as a way to determine how committed one is to medicine. I mean if someone has that true passion for medicine they wouldn't give up on that dream. They would reapply if that was what they wanted to do. Maybe not the following year, but sometime in the future. I think saying that you would reapply usually implies that you aren't doing so "blindly again" because reapplication does indeed force you to reevaluate what went wrong the first time. Most reapplicants have changed some aspect of their application(improved scores/gpa or became a leader or demonstrated maturity, etc.) I mean if you had a mousetrap that didn't work the first time wouldn't you try and build a better mousetrap for the second run?

    I agree that there are some circumstances that can complicate "building a better mousetrap." (perhaps age, maybe having children) However, for the most part, someone who really really wanted to become a physician would do their best to reapply.

    However, sometimes the question is posed in such a way that they are merely trying to find out about your other interests. "If the medical profession did not exist, what would you want to do?"
    I like those questions. But for the most part, I think if they ask you what you would do if you don't get in, the correct answer is to reapply.
     
  51. KBCoch

    KBCoch Senior Member
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    I actually wrote my entire personal statement about how I would be a teacher if I could not be a doctor. At first, I thought it was a risky move. I put a lot of effort into clarifying that I want to be a doctor and how similar I thought teaching was to practicing medicine. I can't speak for all of the schools that I applied to, but my personal statement hasn't seemed to be my kiss of death or anything. I have still interviewed and been accepted. All in all, I wouldn't be afraid to be honest about knowing what you would want to do if you couldn't do medicine. Some may see it as lack of dedication to medicine, but I think more see it as honesty, forethought, and self-knowledge.

    And I've actually never been questioned about the topic of my personal statement on interviews. Geez... I hope they read it.
     

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