Admissions Advisor From a Med School Discouraged Me

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OPM 320: Admissions Advisor From a Med School Discouraged Me

Session 320

This career changer works full-time as a nurse while taking classes, but an admissions advisor told her she needs to be in school full-time. What now?

Questions answered here on the podcast are taken directly from Go ask your questions there and use #OPMquestion.

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

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[01:35] OldPreMeds Question of the Week

“I’m a nurse looking to become a physician. I am also 39 years old. I had spoken with admissions advisors at a few different universities. Some of whom were super encouraging, but some of whom were really not. 

Today, it was one that did not go well with a smile and a perky attitude. She said the words, “You know we obviously do not take age into consideration with our applicants. But a lot of potential applicants over 30 decide that it’s not worth their time to go through all this training.” I didn’t ask that. I didn’t even allude to that. I just wanted to know if they had support systems in place for nontrads.

She also said that while I’m working full-time, I have to take a full-time load of prereqs to get a 4.0, shadow physicians, and volunteer. I realized that is normal for traditional medical students minus the working full-time part. But it’s not doable for me. 

Other admissions counselors I’ve spoken with have said that taking one class at a time as long as I do well, while I’m working full-time as a nurse who sees and interacts with physicians all the time is sufficient. But now I’m discouraged and doubting my decision yet again, I’m just so tired.”

[02:49] Attracting People Who Encourage You

There are going to be three different types of people on your journey. There are going to be the ones that are encouraging you and the ones that are discouraging you. And then there are going to be the ones that couldn’t care less. And so, you need to stay attracted to the ones who are actively encouraging you.

Students who have struggled at any point in their journey have a chance. They have the ability to get in front of the right person at the right time. They can get into medical school and prove to themselves that they can be amazing physicians. You don’t need to prove anything other than the people who are willing to listen to you.

As soon as you realize that this one person gave you the attitude that they gave you, say thank you very much and move on. That person’s not interested so you should not be interested as well.

'One answer is not the answer to all the schools. You have to be willing to separate the no's from the never can's for all the schools.'Click To Tweet

[04:29] Ignoring Schools That Discourage You

There will always be schools that tell you no, even for the perfect traditional applicant. But there are 200+ schools in this country, and many others outside of this country, that you could potentially go to. One school, or a handful of schools, giving you discouraging feedback is just that.

'Rejection hurts – and that's always the hardest part of this process.'Click To Tweet

It’s human nature to feel upset and disappointed. It’s human psychology. We don’t want to feel rejected. But you can’t make that mean that you can’t do this path or that you’re not destined to be a doctor if that’s what you want to do.

One school does not speak for all schools, in both directions. The positive attitude school doesn’t speak for all the other schools. The negative attitude school does not speak for all of the other schools either. They only speak for one school.

And so, don’t make it mean anything more than that. Stop talking to the schools. And just do what you need to do to prove your academic capability. Do what you need to do to prove that this is what you want to do. That’s why shadowing is a very important part of this process.

There are plenty of people on this path who are getting in at much older ages than you. You may have found a school or several schools that will discriminate against you because of that and that’s okay. At the end of the day, one voice does not speak for everyone.


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