A Non-Traditional Path Into Medical School

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Session 73

Session 73

In today’s episode, Ryan talks with Jordan, a member of the Academy and a nontraditional student starting medical school this Fall. In his undergrad years, he was a student athlete and started as a premed. He tried looking into other career fields yet he kept coming back to medicine. Today, Jordan shares his experiences, why he ultimately decided to pursue medicine, and getting sidetracked after o-Chem. Learn about the thought processes Jordan used which you can also apply to your own situation.

Here are the highlights of the conversation with Jordan:

Jordan’s path prior to medical school:

  • The thrill of dissecting a cat during anatomy class in high school
  • Being a student athlete playing baseball
  • Being exposed to physical therapy
  • Getting a B in o-Chem which caused him to second-guess and consider other options
  • The amount of time needed to commit to premed classes caught him off-guard
  • Having a 5-year plan after he graduated
  • Shadowing a physical therapist and realizing it’s not what he wanted to do
  • Shadowing PA’s, applied in the PA program, and turned it down before taking the MCAT
  • Shadowing different physicians and finally realizing it’s what he wanted to do
  • Listening to this podcast has helped him realize he wanted to go to medical school

The difference between shadowing PA’s and physicians:

  • The level of cases
  • Physicians being in the leadership role

Applying for the AMCAS:

  • The importance of starting early (Ryan recommends waiting a day or two to make sure there are no kinks in the system)
  • Making sure everything is correct (personal statement, etc)
  • Using digital storing solution, Interfolio, for letters of recommendation

Choosing schools to apply to:

  • Download the MSAR to check out the list of schools and their corresponding stats
  • Applying to schools he thought he would fit in
  • In the end, Jordan applied to 23 schools, took 4 interviews, and got 2 acceptances at military medical school (USUHS) and the Medical College of Wisconsin

On getting the HPSP scholarship

  • Understanding the need for flexibility
  • Concerns about giving up your ‘freedom’
  • The possibility of not being able to go to the residency you want to go to

Some pieces of advice for premed students:

  • Be patient.
  • Don’t be afraid to take some time to really explore what you want.
  • Take a year off to get a real world perspective of what’s it’s like to be a non-student.

Links and Other Resources:

If you need any help with the medical school interview, go to medschoolinterviewbook.com. Sign up and you will receive parts of the book so you can help shape the future of the book. This book will include over 500 questions that may be asked during interview day as well as real-life questions, answers, and feedback from all of the mock interviews Ryan has been doing with students.

Are you a nontraditional student? Go check out oldpremeds.org.

For more great content, check out www.mededmedia.com for more of the shows produced by the Medical School Headquarters including the OldPremeds Podcast and watch out for more shows in the future!

Free MCAT Gift: Free 30+ page guide with tips to help you maximize your MCAT score and which includes discount codes for MCAT prep as well.

Hang out with us over at medicalschoolhq.net/group. Click join and we’ll add you up to our private Facebook group. Share your successes and miseries with the rest of us.

Check out our partner magazine, www.premedlife.com to learn more about awesome premed information.

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Email Ryan at ryan@medicalschoolhq.net or connect with him on Twitter @medicalschoolhq

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