Can You Go to Med School and Support Your Family Too?

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Session 191

Today, our poster asks about what he can do as a medical student as far as family and having life are concerned.

We take questions directly from the Nontrad Premed Forum. If you haven’t yet, sign up for a free account and feel free to ask a question.

Listen to this podcast episode with the player above, or keep reading for the highlights and takeaway points.

[00:54] OldPreMeds Question of the Week

“Hello fellow nontrads. My name is Collin I am concerned about life in medical school. Yeah, I know the workload will be grueling and I will spend a lot of time studying but I am really wondering about how families are living during medical school. 

Are most of you non traditional students families being solely supported by your significant other financially through the whole process? 

Are the schools giving out housing opportunities to families so that the student doesn’t have to worry about keeping a roof over their children’s and wife’s head? 

I am going to go through this process eventually and just would like to know if I need to wait a couple more years to just get way more financially stable. 

My wife and I are currently both working part time so we can go to the community college for undergrad. We also have a daughter and another little one coming soon. I am 24 but I am questioning if I should wait till my kids are a lot older or maybe even adults to even start medical school.”

[Related episode: How To Provide For Your Family As A Premed]

[01:55] Family-Oriented Resources

Ultimately, think about what’s the right decision for you and your family? Everyone is going to tolerate different risks, different stresses, and different lifestyles.

Based on my personal experience, I went to New York Medical College. We had lots of families in our medical school class. It’s one of the few medical schools in the country that have student housing right there at the campus. They had specific family housing for students with families.

'Every medical school will have different resources available to you.'Click To Tweet

Every medical school is going to be different in terms of how much they want to or how much they can accommodate families. 

But as you go through this process, part of the loans that you take out for medical school cover the cost of living as well.

Every year, medical schools will set a budget. And the budget for your class will include tuition, other fees and books, supplies, insurance, transportation, and housing in your specific area.

So if you go to a medical school in New York City, your overall budget is going to be pretty big even if tuition is not that much because the housing cost is going to be huge.

[Related episode: Can You Have Kids and Be a Good Medical Student?]

[04:15] Housing Cost When You Have a Family

The housing cost is based on typically single people. So when you have a family, you may have to appeal to them or submit something to have your specific budget changed because you have a family. Maybe you’ll have to work in daycare for your kids or an increased cost of living calculation because you need a bigger place.

Every medical school will hopefully accommodate you in some way based on what you’re asking for. So be sure to ask. 

This is important because your loans from the federal government are based on that budget from the school. So you can only take out a maximum budget they set. If you need housing cost of $1,500 a month but they only budgeted $1,000, you’re going to be short with your student loans.

Obviously, if you can take out less loans than you need, that would be awesome. Try to save up now so you can pay for that potential cost difference with your savings. But if you need to have your loans increased or your budget increased so you can take more out from the government, then do what you can according to the process set by the school.

[06:28] Final Thoughts

'Everyone's risk tolerances, everyone's lifestyle, abilities are going to be different. What is right for you is potentially not going to be right for someone else.'Click To Tweet

If you think you’re only comfortable going to medical school when your kids are older, that’s okay. But know that there are plenty of people who are going to medical school now so they’re out and working as their kids get older. So this is a personal decision.


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