thelampking

No IP Address Found
5+ Year Member
Aug 2, 2013
36
29
Status
Pre-Medical
Hey hey hey!

I'm interested in wilderness medicine. Dream job: trekking up mountains while being able to practice medicine. It combines my 3 passions: medicine, fitness, and travel. Close 2nd dream job: Doctors Without Borders or another international health aid company. 3rd: FEMA (or something similar). I've explored ways to try to satisfy these dream jobs without going to medical school (EMT, Ski patrol, Pharmacy Technician, Fitness Instructor, various traveling jobs) and I keep coming up empty handed - it's just not fulfilling enough for me. So I think I'm ready to take the plunge of medical school. All the threads on this are extremely outdated and Google tends to give me a lot of UK info on this subject, so I thought I'd start anew.

My questions are (and please be frank with me):

1. Is this a pipe dream to go into medicine with this specific goal in mind? (I know my goals could change, but if they don't - is this really feasible?)
2. Is there an alternate path I haven't thought of? (My research shows paramedic is the only other route, and most companies only look for doctors now because it's so competitive and malpractice.)
3. How do I do achieve this? Can I be this forthcoming in interviews? Suggestions on schools? It's September now, so it looks like I'll be applying June 2018 - almost 2 full years until I would start med school... What should I do to gain experience/acceptance?

Thank you so much! <3


Other details: 26, MCAT: 506, GPA: 3.42, Biochemistry BSc (premed), applied MD twice (too late applying 1st time, incorrect residency f*ed up the 2nd time), currently living and working in Thailand as conservation field staff for a voluntourism company (glorified unpaid adventure guide).
 
About the Ads
Feb 25, 2017
33
14
Status
Medical Student
1. Definitely not a pipe dream! There are actually a few summer programs that offer to give you this exact experience. A couple of my classmates did this over the summer and loved it since they have the same goal in mind.
2. Not sure about any other alternate paths.
3. Getting lots of experience and making connections! After you become a licensed physician, you can apply to different groups that do expedition medicine. I think it's like a regular job application (you give them your resume, interview, etc). Most wildness docs are emergency med docs, but there are family medicine doctors who do this as well. This information was provided by classmates who are pursuing this, so please forgive the level of depth.

For interviews with DO schools, you can definitely be straightforward with your goals. DO puts so much emphasis on serving the underserved in rural populations. Doesn't get more rural or underserved than the wilderness. You're pretty much solid for most DO schools.
 
  • Like
Reactions: thelampking

AnatomyGrey12

2+ Year Member
Sep 8, 2015
9,498
19,525
Midwest
Status
Medical Student
1. Is this a pipe dream to go into medicine with this specific goal in mind? (I know my goals could change, but if they don't - is this really feasible?)
Not a pipe dream, the wilderness medicine club at my school is very popular. You could get into wilderness medicine in more than one route (i.e. FM, EM, etc).
 
  • Like
Reactions: thelampking
OP
thelampking

thelampking

No IP Address Found
5+ Year Member
Aug 2, 2013
36
29
Status
Pre-Medical
Thank you guys so much! I am actually going to submit my application for RVU next week, they sparked my interest right away! The application will be late, I know - but figured I'd give it a shot! There's always next year too.

Thanks again!
 
Sep 19, 2017
11
18
Status
Medical Student (Accepted)
Apply to WVSOM! I recently interviewed there and was accepted and they told me there is a mandatory wilderness medicine section that is incorporated in the curriculum. They have one military grade mannequin that is placed in the mountains or coal mines and student practice techniques to rescue and escort the patient to safety!
 
Sep 11, 2017
26
12
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
I have absolutely no advice for you as I am many steps behind you but cannot resist contributing to this thread with shout out that I am from Thailand! Where in Thailand are you located and how is the country treating you? Woot woot!
 

sb247

Doer of things
7+ Year Member
Jul 5, 2012
20,577
31,533
Galt's Gulch
forums.studentdoctor.net
It depends on your definition of job. An occasional expenses paid gig to be the trip doc for a group on an expedition? Yep

Getting paid a full sweet doc salary to do nothing but play in the woods with hikers while somehow also keeping up on all that hospital grade medicine you paid 300k for? No, not really.

Trips and fun weekend retreats in med school are a thing though, you will be able to afford the crazy trips as a doc and can go without having to work on them
 
  • Like
Reactions: thelampking
Nov 17, 2017
21
11
Status
Medical Student
Hey hey hey!

I'm interested in wilderness medicine. Dream job: trekking up mountains while being able to practice medicine. It combines my 3 passions: medicine, fitness, and travel. Close 2nd dream job: Doctors Without Borders or another international health aid company. 3rd: FEMA (or something similar). I've explored ways to try to satisfy these dream jobs without going to medical school (EMT, Ski patrol, Pharmacy Technician, Fitness Instructor, various traveling jobs) and I keep coming up empty handed - it's just not fulfilling enough for me. So I think I'm ready to take the plunge of medical school. All the threads on this are extremely outdated and Google tends to give me a lot of UK info on this subject, so I thought I'd start anew.

My questions are (and please be frank with me):

1. Is this a pipe dream to go into medicine with this specific goal in mind? (I know my goals could change, but if they don't - is this really feasible?)
2. Is there an alternate path I haven't thought of? (My research shows paramedic is the only other route, and most companies only look for doctors now because it's so competitive and malpractice.)
3. How do I do achieve this? Can I be this forthcoming in interviews? Suggestions on schools? It's September now, so it looks like I'll be applying June 2018 - almost 2 full years until I would start med school... What should I do to gain experience/acceptance?

Thank you so much! <3


Other details: 26, MCAT: 506, GPA: 3.42, Biochemistry BSc (premed), applied MD twice (too late applying 1st time, incorrect residency f*ed up the 2nd time), currently living and working in Thailand as conservation field staff for a voluntourism company (glorified unpaid adventure guide).
Hey premed bud,
MS3 here. Give up on your dreams now. Just become a tour guide in the mountain; you don't need to be a doctor too moron. Med school is way to long, arduous along with residency/fellowship training to fulfill your "Dream". Trust me; bypass med school and just do outdoor ****
 

It's lupus!

SDN Gold Donor
Gold Donor
2+ Year Member
Mar 26, 2017
446
400
Texas
Status
Medical Student
You can definitely do wilderness medicine however what motivates you primarily should be what informs your decision. If your main drive is the wilderness then I doubt medical school and residency will go well for you. Consider doing wilderness EMT/Paramedic instead. If medicine is your primary drive then I say you've got a solid route. Understand wilderness medicine doesn't amount to a physicians salary so much as it allows for free trips to cool places. You still got loans to pay and the wild ain't gon' pay for it.

Sent from my Pixel XL using SDN mobile
 
  • Like
Reactions: thelampking
Jan 22, 2018
339
234
Status
Pre-Medical
You can definitely do wilderness medicine however what motivates you primarily should be what informs your decision. If your main drive is the wilderness then I doubt medical school and residency will go well for you. Consider doing wilderness EMT/Paramedic instead. If medicine is your primary drive then I say you've got a solid route. Understand wilderness medicine doesn't amount to a physicians salary so much as it allows for free trips to cool places. You still got loans to pay and the wild ain't gon' pay for it.
Ya hit it right on the head. The OP loves the outdoors and that's great, but it's not like every national park is hiring a full-time doc to walk the mountain trails to treat hikers with sprained ankles and bee stings LOL.
 
About the Ads