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aspirationalaf

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  1. Hi! This fall I will commence my undergraduate studies at SUNY Cortland and I'm pretty concerned with being prepared for applying to PA programs, especially in regards to obtaining direct patient care hours. I was doing research and there are programs in which their accepted candidates average or will have even have more than 4,000 hours. This is quite the daunting task considering I plan to be a full-time student over the next four years. As of now, I plan on being involved in the campus EMS squad where I will receive training and will be required to serve a minimum of two 12-hour shifts per semester. However, I will aim to serve at least 1 of these shifts every week. Do these volunteer hours count as direct patient care hours? Additionally, the squad will pay for my EMT-B training throughout this upcoming year's spring semester if I agree to volunteer for them for the two semesters of my sophomore year. Thus, I will be able to at least volunteer as an EMT-B over the next few summers as well. Cortland Regional Medical Center is also a five-minute drive from the university, so I will most likely be able to shadow and volunteer here, but they are not a teaching hospital so they do not often have training experiences. So my overarching question is how am I supposed to get the hours I need by the fall of my senior year when application season begins? Will I most likely have to accumulate hours for another year after my undergrad? Furthermore, are there any other positions I can seek to display diversity within the hours I accumulate, and are there any other pieces of advice you can offer me as I begin to plan? Thanks for all the help!
  2. Before I begin, yes I am still just a senior in high school, and yes I know that my goals can change. However, this is what I want as of now, and because it's extremely important to prepare for what I want my future to be, even though it may change, I need to make plans. So PLEASE don't advise me on going to med school or doing something else, it's not what I'm asking for. Now, I've been doing my own research, but I would also love different personal perspectives. As of now, I plan to stay within five hours (maybe more if necessary) away from southern-ish New York because I don't have the money to fly myself and my belongings every time I have to go home and because my parents have very busy work schedules. Ideally, to save money, I would love to go to a more inexpensive school to save money because financial aid is iffy for me. However, if you come from a similar background and you got financial aid, please tell me because I'm not too sure how the financial aid process works yet lol. So, my dad makes 125K+ a year, but due to the very high taxes, a high mortgage, and other expenses that my family has to pay, money is becoming more and more of a worry now that college applications are coming up fast. Additionally, my dad works for Verizon and they went on strike for about 6 weeks last year, and I know it doesn't sound like a long time, but this really set us back because my mom doesn't make much. I will also be taking 5 AP exams in May ($470), there will be yearbook and senior picture fees to take care of, etc., and my family has only saved up a little over $10,000 dollars in my college fund. So my question is, other than financial aid, do you know of any scholarships/organizations/etc. that I could look into to help out with this? Or more importantly, good inexpensive/moderately expensive schools? Btw my mom was born in Dominican Republic so I'm 50% hispanic (my father is white), so that could be relevant information regarding scholarships. To get to the main point, what schools would be good for me knowing this, that I want to become a PA, and that I need to build a strong foundation in what I'll need to know by that time? I will probably major in a biological science - if not biology - unless someone recommends something else. Feel free to input any other relevant information. Thank you to all who respond!
  3. hahaha!! Now I'll go post in a business field forum and post something and people will send me in all different directions there too lolol
  4. Ugh thank you so much for this support. It's has honestly been so overwhelming just looking at all the discouraging messages. It's true, right now I'm on the PA path, but if that will change, so be it. But if that's my path for now, I have to prepare myself for it! Hence my questions. Thank you for your feedback and understanding.
  5. I understand this, but I also don't envision myself working in a hospital. I would rather love to belong to a private practice.
  6. Ugh thank you, this is exactly what I keep telling EVERYBODY. the benefits of being a PA really do balance out the benefits of being a physician, not only financially and time-wise, but on so many other levels as well.
  7. (yes, this is the same response I gave to someone else, I copied and pasted it bc my message remains the same) I understand that, but being a physician is not what I want out of life, nor is it all that society makes it out to be. There are at least 3 years of residency (most commonly 4) even after I would graduate med school, so though I would be a practicing physician by that time, I would be making really crappy pay while going through the hell of residency, there are infinite loans to pay off and I wouldn't make a decent salary until I'm 30, there's the issue of paying for malpractice insurance, switching specialties is a hard no unless you're willing to go through your residency again, there are so many hours, etc. I want to have a life outside of my career, I want options, and I don't care about the money or the title I'd get being a physician because I'm going into the medical profession to help and connect with others in a way where I wouldn't have to worry about money and I would be able to take care of my future family. Really, the choice is obvious for me. PA's have a balanced work and personal life, they can switch specialties with little to no training, they still make great pay, it costs half the amount that med school costs, etc. The only people becoming doctor's nowadays are the ones uneducated about the PA field or the ones who love to workworkwork (not me at all).
  8. I understand that, but being a physician is not what I want out of life. There are at least 3 years of residency even after I would graduate med school, there are infinite loans to pay off and I wouldn't make a decent salary until I'm 30, there's the issue of paying for malpractice insurance, switching specialties is a hard no unless you're willing to go through your residency again, there are so many hours, etc. I want to have a life outside of my career, I want options, and I don't care about the money or the title I'd get being a physician because I'm going into the medical profession to help and connect with others in a way where I wouldn't have to worry about money and I would be able to take care of my future family. Really, the choice is obvious for me. The only people becoming doctor's nowadays are the ones uneducated about the PA field or the ones who love to workworkwork (not me at all).
  9. I'm in my senior year of high school and I will soon be applying to colleges/universities, but I have a lot of questions: I know (or at least I've been told, so correct me if I'm wrong) that if someone is planning to become a physician and go to medical school, that medical schools essentially view their undergrad years in a similar manner as colleges/universities view high school years. Is this the same for those on track to become a PA? To confirm, my question is: Does where I go for undergrad matter to physician assistant master's programs/PA schools as long as I have a good GPA? Is it better to enter a physician assistant program right out of high school, or does it not really matter too much? I ask this because I worry about competitiveness in the future when trying to find a job, and I want to be able to get a good job when I graduate and not be scared that I won't. So, the bottomline of what I'm asking is: What do employers specifically look for when selecting employees in this field and how could I make myself stand out? Financial aid is iffy for my family's financial situation because my dad makes 125K+ a year. However, due to the very high taxes, a high mortgage, and other expenses that my family has to pay, money is becoming more and more of a worry now that college applications are coming up fast. Additionally, I will be taking 5 AP exams in May ($470), there will be yearbook and senior picture fees to take care of, etc., and my family has only saved up a little over $10,000 dollars in my college fund. So do any of you know a way to save money in college and on physician assistant programs? This kind of adds onto #1 because if I can go to a less expensive undergrad to save money that would be really great. Other than GPA what are the requirements (or anything else that they look for but don't necessarily require) for applying to a physician assistant master's program after getting my bachelor's? Do you know of any specific schools that are good for this field? What should I major in? Those are really all the questions I can think of for now. Thank you to anybody that takes out the time to help me with this, because it really is a nerve-wracking time right now and I need to figure out my plans. Any other related information is gladly appreciated as well!!!
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