Is Medical School Right for You?By Ernest Hamilton, UniversityHerald Reporter
Choosing to go to medical school is a huge decision that will require years of sacrifice and hard work. Not everyone will be able to make it, so you have to be entirely sure that this is the right choice. There are a few questions you need to ask yourself before taking the plunge. Failure to ask these questions could result in you being in hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt, and you might also find yourself without a career.
How Medical School is Different
Medical school differs in that it is many more years of your life on top of getting a regular university degree. Fatigue might play a huge role in whether you are ready and able to complete your medical school training. The other thing is it requires a good foundation and a high GPA from your university. The average GPA is about 3.7, and the average MCAT score is about 511. These are high scores, and you might not be able to get to this level.
Do You Have the Right Work Ethic?
Another question you have the answer is whether you have the work ethic or not. Medical school costs a lot of money. The MCAT is also a huge test that you need to pass before you can get into medical school. To do so, you will need to study diligently for many weeks. The medical school MCAT requirements vary from state to state, but will always be challenging for prospective students. The medical field is also not great for people who don't want to work a lot. You might be on call and work 60 hours a week in the future. However, you make up for this with a substantial salary that is considerably more than other people have.
Can You Afford It?
Going to medical school is a major undertaking. The most important thing you have to look at is whether you can pay for the schooling or not. While your salary as a doctor will be substantial, it will be long into the future, and you might not want to spend that time accruing all that debt. You will pay about $300,000 in tuition if you go to medical school. This can be quite troubling if you've just graduated and you have that already. There is also the risk that you don't end up finishing the full degree, and you still have to keep the debt. There's also the pressure of watching all your friends and other people earn money while you are still struggling at school.
Willing to Be Patient?
Patience is one of the most critical skills you have to have when thinking about going to medical school. You spend so many years of your life that you feel that you will be an older adult before you graduate from medical school. It is a substantial investment that many people won't want to make after going through four years for a bachelor's degree.
Do You Like This Field?
Medical school is for you if you are willing to put in the work, and you like the field. You cannot be successful here if you don't have a passion for this subject. Being a doctor is one of the most rewarding jobs you can have, but it is also not something that everyone can do. You will spend many years of your life working hard, and you might not feel appreciated sometimes. Liking this field will ensure you have a long and successful career in it.