Is Changing Careers Concerning to ADCOMS

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Session 163

Our student today is currently in a DPT program, but realized he wanted to do more for his patients. Will his 4th career change be concerning to ADCOMs?

Questions are taken directly from the Nontrad Premed Forum. If you haven’t yet, register for a free account so you can join our community and be able to start asking your questions!

[01:00] OldPreMeds Question of the Week:

“I’ve been doing my best to catch up over the last month or so since I’ve decided to make a go for it.

I was wondering if anyone has heard of frequent or recent career changes being a concern for ADCOMs. I hate to post my life story and ask what do you think my chances are. There have been several similar topics, but I feel like my situation might be a fresh new take.

I’m halfway through Physical Therapy School now. I didn’t think I could get into Medical School when I applied to go to PT school, and I thought I would be content and happy being a therapist. After doing a acute care clinical rotation in a CT ICU, I won’t be happy unless I’m leading rounds and doing more for my patients than what I can do as a PT. And after doing some listening to the Old Premed Podcast I think I have a shot with the right MCAT score.

Recently a coworker I confided in said he would be concerned that I’m halfway through a doctorate and I’m already trying to change careers and that might look bad to the ADCOM. It’ll be my 4th career change in 10 years, Undergrad Mechanical Engineering, 4 Years as an Infantry Officer, and now half way through PT school.

I plan to finish my DPT and take the licensure exam. I’ve got a solid study plan from Next Step for the MCAT and will apply in this oncoming cycle if I meet my criteria for the MCAT score. I just had not considered to this point that finishing my DPT might not look great.”

[02:45] Tell Your Story

This is a common realization among career changers. There are probably concerns. At the end of the day, it’s all about telling your story. What is it that brought you to where you are now and why do you want to drop everything and go to medical school?

You need to be able to write about this in your personal statement and talk about it in your interviews if you can get to that point. You just need to be able to tell your story of why you went the path of a physical therapist and now, why do you want to be a physician. Not necessarily, why don’t you want to be a physical therapist, but why is it that you want to be a physician at this point.

'You really need to make sure that your story is solid.'Click To Tweet

[04:50] Career Changes Over the Years

I wouldn’t consider those previous two things as “careers”. Undergrad mechanical engineering is undergrad. And our education system is screwed up to make students choose what they want to do so early in life. So I wouldn’t consider that as a career path. And the infantry officer is a great service to the country. And I wouldn’t consider that as a career choice but you just needed some exploration and you got it. And when you finally decided on what you want to do, you went to PT school. Again, just tell that story,s showing the admissions committee why it is that you want to do this. So you do this in your personal statement, extracurricular activities, secondary essays, and ultimately, in your interview.

Your story has to really focus on why it is you want to do this and make it clear to whoever you’re writing to, that maybe you shouldn’t have gone to PT school.

Depending on your schools right now. If you’re halfway through, don’t waste the tuition. It’s a lot of money you’re wasting on something you don’t want or need. So consider just dropping at a PT school so you can focus on everything you need to focus on to get to medical school.


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