Hi! So post grad life has changed my career plans from being a Doctor to a PA and honestly it's such a liberating feeling of not having to deal with the MCAT and residency. On the other hand, I don't know what my next steps should be since I made this decision very recently.
Is there a specific program in the military (AF/Navy/Reserves?) where I can enter as an officer (I have a bachelor's in psychology and minor in sociology), get experience working in the hospital (in the pediatric ward if possible), then apply to PA school using those accrued hours as direct patient contact? And the number of X years I have to do in order to be able to get out of the military to pursue PA training?
I would apply to PA school except I'm short on my PA pre-reqs since I've been doing pre-med pre-reqs all of undergrad, plus I didn't really get out there to work in a paid position that involves direct patient contact....and I haven't taken the GRE to boot. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but will my PA schooling, housing, etc be paid only if I get into a PA program prior to starting? Or is that a whole different program entirely dedicated for med and dental students?
I know there's a lot to unpack here but if anyone could help me on how I should go about this, I would really appreciate it. Thanks in advance!
This is my first post in this forum and im really pumped! I'm currently a junior right now and will hopefully be applying to PA schools here in the coming future.
I was wondering if I could get some insights from the people who are ahead of me in the process with how applying goes, and if i have a shot at some higher tier schools.
So far my cumulative GPA is a 3.77, with a science GPA of about 3.65ish.
Courses I've taken (Sport and Exercise Science Major/Pre-PA track) are as follows:
Molecular and Cellular Bio: B+ Gen Chem I and II w/ Labs: B, B+, A-, A- Bio II: A+, A Animal Physiology w/lab : A-, A- Trigonometry: A Psych Stats: A **Currently in ** Human Gross Anatomy w/ Cadaver Based lab (Hardest course at my university taught by two former MDs, one being from Yale): B+ (Hopefully) and A Organic Chemistry I and II (w/ Ochem 1 Lab): A+, A+, B+ (Do not plan on taking Ochem II lab) Nutrition: A+ Research Methods: A- Intro Psych, Psych of Human Development and Abnormal Psych: all A+'s Currently I still plan to take Biochem, Genetics and Microbiology along with some other sport and exercise science fluff courses. (Biomechanics, Clinical ex. physio, exercise physio, motor learning and development etc.)
I will be planning to do research this coming spring semester with my advisor will hopefully be presenting it at the ACSM National Conference in Harrisburg, PA. Im apart of my schools Honor's Program as well as the national honors society Phi Eta Sigma. I will also planing to be joining the National Honors Society of Biology: Beta Beta Beta. Also, outside of honors programs im apart of the Delta Kappa Epslion Fraternity. (So if any brothers are reading this hello!)
However, i believe my biggest flaw in my application will be my HCE. So far i really dont have any HCE hours besides a couple hours of shadowing and what not. Will this hinder me greatly in applying to PA schools? I plan on taking a CNA course in the summer and hopefully will get a job as a PT tech at a local Sport PT place here in town.
I have a list of schools that i would like to apply to and then i have some of the other schools i consider top tier (Pitt, Penn State, Yale, PCOMM, Cornell etc.)
Also, do you have any tips on how to study for GRE's? Or did you just go in there and wing it?
How do my chances look?
- Thank you, Z.
Hello! I feel blessed to be coming to you guys with such a problem, but it's been weighing on me and need advice from current PA-S's and PA-C's.
I have been accepted to two schools: School A which is 20 minutes away from my current living space and School B which is closer to my parents, but still about an hour away. Schools A and B seem pretty comparable in terms of curriculum, program length (A: 27 mo versus B: 25 mo), PANCE pass rates (A: 97 versus B: 99), tuition (a difference of 3K), and employment rates after graduation. The main differences that I see are that school B is associated with a medical school, so networking opportunities and strength in name and that school B will end up costing almost 40K more due to cost of living expenses. School B was my top choice prior to interviewing but was not the first school to get back to me, therefore, I have not placed my deposit. School B is also where most of my college friends settled and has an opportunity for research, which is important to me. School A has cheaper living costs, and somewhat of a support system from my current workplace friends.
l have seen two basic schools of thought for this quandary, which include:
Go to the cheapest school, you'll thank yourself later. Go to the school that you will regret not going to if you choose otherwise. Do you agree with either of these or have your own idea based on your own experience? Any anecdotes proving either correct or other statements would be helpful. Thanks in advance!
Hello, everyone. I know it may seem like this would be a bit of a biased place to ask for an opinion on this, but this forum seems really open-minded and overall really respectful with people asking these sort of questions compared to *cough* SDN *cough* other websites. I'm in a bit of a dilemma and I know ultimately this is only a choice I can make myself, but I'd like to get some opinions from others who are ahead of me on their medical journies as a little guidance.
I'm 29 years old and a graduate of Arizona State University, where I majored in Biological Sciences with a minor in Psychology. I always wanted to go the PA route, but the closer I am to finishing my undergrad, the more I'm concerned about possibly regretting the decision to not go ahead and commit to becoming a doctor. One of my biggest concerns with med schools is that I completed my degree online, although I did all my science labs in-person by flying out to the ASU campus. Long story short, I still think I have a good chance at med schools that accept online credits, but I'm unsure if it's what I should do. A quick rundown of my stats:
- Non-traditional, white male, 29 years old
- 3.91 GPA, 3.85 sGPA
- 510 MCAT
- 650+ hours volunteering for a suicidal hotline company. 200+ volunteer hours as a phlebotomist (mostly school blood donating events), and donated $2,000+ in crowd-funded scholarships to students throughout the state with a small company I started in 2015.
- 3,000+ hours as a Certified Surgical Technician at an orthopedic surgery center
- Strong LOR's from 2 orthopedic surgeons, a CRNA, a very well-respected professor, and 2 more from my volunteer coaches
- 40 hours shadowing an Anesthesiologist and CRNA
I feel as if I'm a strong candidate for med school and PA programs, but I'm older. I'm 29 now. I used to work in construction, then aviation, and even ended up leaving a Fortune 500 company (that paid extremely well) to pursue a career in medicine. I made a lot of sacrifices, but it was all worth it. I love my patients and couldn't imagine myself doing anything else in life.
I also want to marry my long-time girlfriend. She's 25, so by the time I'm actually a doctor, she would be around 33. I graduated high school with a 2.3 GPA, suffered from depression for years, considered suicide many times, etc. I went through a lot (as I'm sure a lot of people have) and another one of my main goals is to write books about my experiences and to help motivate others. If I can graduate high school with a 2.3 and go on to become a doctor, I think it would be an awesome story in terms of my writings and would help a lot of people, outside from my patients.
With all this being said, I think the career of being a PA will still satisfy my wants to help people in medicine. My biggest concern so far is that I'd regret not going to med school, but I hear a lot of horror stories about divorces, not being able to see your kids as much when they're younger, residency stories, and etc. The debt is also a big concern, because I would be 37-ish before I could really start paying my loans off. I don't know if it's worth it for me and my age, although I'm not that old. I just want to ask openly - if you were in my shoes, what would you do personally? I know everyone is different, but I'm just looking for some insights from different perspectives. Thanks for the read and sorry to type out so much.
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