Medicine is one of the most difficult and fulfilling fields that a student can pursue. So, If you find yourself leaving high school and looking to start a career in medicine, then here are a few tips to set yourself on the right track.
Choose the Right School
Choosing the medical school that is right for you can be a daunting task. Everyone wishes they could get into Harvard medical school, but just because a college is considered the best, it does not mean it is the best for everybody.
When looking at courses, try and do a bit of digging into the kind of learning styles they offer. Typically, medical schools have three different styles of courses: traditional, integrated and problem-based learning, and what works for one person might not work for another. So, it is good to know what kind of learner you are and factor this into your decision.
No matter what school you choose, or even if you have yet to choose one, then you may want to get in touch with an admissions consulting group to help with your decision and set yourself up as best as you can, especially if you are aiming to get into Ivy League schools.
Apply to Multiple Schools
It is important to remember just how competitive medical schools are.
If you only apply to top tier schools, you might well be setting yourself up for disappointment. Make sure you have some backup applications to some mid-tier schools just in case your dream college does not work out.
As well as this, you may want to look at other routes into the medical profession, a biomedical science or biochemistry degrees are both fantastic options if you do not make it into medical school, and studying abroad in a related degree is another great option if you want to broaden your horizons.
Finally, don’t take it personally when you get rejections, everybody gets them, and by casting a wide net you will greatly increase the chance that you will get accepted somewhere.
Study Early and Often
Becoming a medical professional is a long and arduous task that is not for the faint-hearted. You will spend a lot of sleepless nights poring over college textbooks and research notes to get where you want to go.
That is why you should get used to studying early on, find out how you work best and ways for you to stick to a study plan. The first real test will come in the form of the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) which alone comes with a recommended study time of between 300 and 350 hours!
So, take a course, buy books, and be prepared to study hard. You may also want to investigate any pre-health professions club or associations at your school. Members help one another get ready for tests and host events to help you gain the knowledge you need.
Spend Time Helping Others
Becoming a great doctor is not just about studying hard and being great at science, however.
Generally, doctors are altruistic people, and medical schools want to see that you are invested in caring for other people and your community.
One of the best ways to show off this side of yourself is with volunteer work. Ideally, volunteer work that is somewhat related to healthcare would be best, but any kind of community service will look great on your application.
You could work at a food bank, help at a blood drive, or travel abroad and build shelters for those in need. If you want healthcare-related work though you can see if there are any opportunities available at nearby hospitals or clinics.