Today, we have a great question from a law student who wants to now go to medical school because he realized law school was not for him. Will he be making the same mistake twice?
Questions answered here on the podcast are taken directly from the Nontrad Premed Forum over at premedforums.com. Please go ahead and register for an account, ask your question, and have fun with the community.
Also, please be sure to check out all our other podcasts on Meded Media as we try to bring you as many resources as you need on this journey.
Listen to this podcast episode with the player above, or keep reading for the highlights and takeaway points.
[00:58] The MCAT Minute
The MCAT Minute is brought to you by Blueprint MCAT.
One of the hardest things to do is try to figure out when to take the MCAT. The ideal situation is to work backward. If you want to start medical school in 2025, you should apply in 2024. Then take the MCAT anywhere from January to April 2024. And so, plan to start prepping for the MCAT about two years before you’re starting medical.
Sign up for a free account on Blueprint MCAT if you need any help in preparing today!
[01:51] OldPreMeds Question of the Week
“I am currently in my second year of law school and I will graduate next year, at the age of 24. I am in the top 5% of my class. However, I do not want to practice law, because I genuinely hate reading/writing and I derive no satisfaction from the work. (I was young/dumb when I applied and entered law school).
I was a biology major as an undergrad and graduated with a 3.95 GPA. If I take my MCAT right after law school (study for like 4-5 months) and do really well (515+) (I am a good test taker, and I understand science), what are my chances of getting accepted into a medical school without any clinical experience?
Also, what are my chances of receiving a merit-based scholarship if I do get accepted? Any advice would help, I am currently enduring a lot of stress since I am considering this career change while still in law school.”
[02:44] Don’t Make the Same Mistake Twice
The best thing any student in this situation can do is to step back and do some self-reflection. You have clearly done it having realized that applying to law school didn’t work for you.'Make sure that you understand what medical school is about.”Click To Tweet
Medical school is not about having a 395 GPA, a 515 plus on the MCAT, or being a good test taker. It’s about wanting to take care of patients.
It’s possible to get accepted without clinical experience, but it’s not probable. Make sure you get some clinical experience for yourself. You’ve made mistake number one, don’t make mistake number two, and go into this process unaware of what your future looks like. Don’t make the same mistake twice.
[03:59] Other Things to Consider
Perhaps the first thing you should also think about is whether to pause law school or not. Do you need to pay another year’s tuition to finish law school if that’s not what you want to do?
You don’t have to quit as you’re still trying to figure things out. Just pause. You could go to your school and ask them if you could take a leave of absence. Tell them you’re having second doubts so you wanted to make sure you’re doing the right thing.
While you don’t have any responsibilities outside of potentially working to pay bills and stuff, you can then go get some clinical experience and shadow. Go around physicians to make sure that this is the life that you want.
Then if this is not the life that you want, great. Then you’ve made that decision before going down this path of getting into medical school and getting more into debt and making some wrong decisions.'See what you can do immediately. Press pause on this career that you don't want to do. And then see about testing this hypothesis for a career that maybe you do want to do.'Click To Tweet
[05:43] Receiving Scholarship
Now, let’s say you’ve done your part in knowing if this is something you really want to do. You really love everything about clinical experience, shadowing,and being in a clinical setting.
The grades are there already. You’ve done well in law school as well as in undergrad. You’re a good test taker. And let’s say you do well on the MCAT. You’ve got the clinical experience to test the hypothesis. And so, getting into medical school shouldn’t be that hard of a problem.
If you’ve explored this, if you’ve reflected on it enough, and if you write a “good enough” personal statement, extracurricular activities, etc. – all of those things are important.
In terms of scholarships, that is going to be highly variable, depending on the schools that you get into the financial aid that they are able to offer.'Don't play the game of, I'll only go to med school, if it's paid for. I'll only apply to schools that will pay for my medical school – that will severely limit you.'Click To Tweet
Think about finances but also don’t put as much weight into it that it prevents you from doing this thing that you’re going to love. It’s going to be life-changing in terms of just who you are and what you do in this world and the impact that you make on those people around you.
www.premedhangout.com (Use #OPMquestion)