While I obviously haven't applied for residency, I've never in almost 27 years of observing/being a part of the medical school admissions process, every heard anyone see having multiple degrees in a negative light.
Now perhaps this subject is close to my heart beacuse I have 4 degrees myself (2 Master's and 2 Bachelor's), however given that medicine is a field which REQUIRES constant, lifelong learning/relearning, it probably makes sense that my commitment to education has been and is very favorably received by adcoms from tier 1 to 3. I can also think of a ton of other examples too but better yet, take a look at the NIH website or those of places like Hopkins and Harvard for numerous examples of "career students" who are not only highly regarded in their fields, but at the top of their "games" too.
Signed Pathdr2b, who will be working on a Certification in Bio/Pathology Informatics this fall!!!
Thanks to everyone for sharing your thoughts!
That was definitely useful/helpful.
It was surprising to read that having multiple degrees might be considered a negative, considering that the career in Medicine requires 10 (or more) yrs of education. So, I'd assume this career is not for those who don't like continuing education
(1) If I drop from the PhD program, I'll get a Masters in Statistics (which will be my 2nd MS). Potentially I can take some Bio courses to transform Stats into Biostats degree. What you think, would it be better than pure Stats Masters?
(2) As for volunteering/shadowing experience, should I just cold call physicians as SW to MD did, or there is another way? I was thinking to first ask my physician to shadow for her.
(3) Prereqs. I need all of the courses accept for math/stats (I took much more than required for Med S, i.e. linear algebra, differential equations, real analysis, etc). It's a pity I won't be needing any of that, but at the same time it's a relief
Btw, with respect to prereqs, would formal postbac be a better option than taking courses at a community college? I read a bunch of discussion threads on studentdoctor forum and couldn't deduce what's best, so your opinion would help.
p.s. Btw, I'm fluent in Greek, is that at all helpful in mastering any of the prereqs (if yes, which course/s)?
I took some prereqs at community college, although some people say not to do it. It probably depends on the individual application and what else you have going for you. Maybe someone who has been on admissions committees can say. My guess is that it would probably be worrisome if you took the first semester of biology at a university, got a C, then took the second term at community college and got an A. That could raise suspicions. On the other hand, if you ace general chem at community college, then ace organic chem at the university, you've demonstrated that you can do it. Just my opinion.
In my case, I didn't live anywhere near a university and due to my husband's obligations, couldn't move when I first decided to go back to school. I looked at everything I needed and what I could reasonably take at CC (like general chem and a few other fill-in classes), and then planned to take everything else after I could move. It worked out fine for me.
The multiple degrees thing really only came up when I was interviewing people for residency... of course we are in favor of continuing education, it's the apparent inability to stick with one field that tends to worry people... they don't want to train you in medicine and have you quit before you practice. I wouldn't think of your prior education as a detriment at all, I would just be prepared to spin the fact that you realized medicine is the best thing sinced sliced bread, and look at the interesting path you took, and yadda yadda. Also I think the shadowing will be vital to emphasize that you know what you're getting into, and you have seen it and love it. Some volunteer experience in a hospital or clinic setting will help, too. Good luck!
ResidentMom<br /><br />"If you bungle raising your children, I don't think whatever else you do well matters very much." --Jackie O.
Like you I am in the same situation; but I a week shy of 36. I have worked for Ob/Gyns and in Family Practice for many years as an MOA so I know the life of an MD well. I also am not sure if I am too late to start this life. I recently read an an acticle that said there are a good number of people in their 30s in med school and how their life experience is a great contribution. I think it always comes down to having your priorities in order first; and this should include yourself. Good Luck with your decision.
No intention to start a debate, but from economic point of view, I feel ppl who decide on career in Medicine later on in life, are extremely committed (although it might not be the case for all), b/c of large opportunity cost (i.e. loss of wages/retirement contributions/etc).