It’s been a while since I was able to post on here. I was so ahead with my posts and then finals hit and I had to change my focus. Being in school full time and having assignments come due all at the same time takes up a lot of time. Then I took Christmas break to spend time with my family who I don’t see often, but I’m going back to regular posts.
Finally, here is the second post of my Unqualified Advice series (here is post 1 if you missed it; http://thedanadiary.ca/2016/11/unqualified-advi…l-post-1-my-path/ ),
Here are what I consider the important things to know as you begin the process of applying to medical school:
First, and one of the most important things I have learned, if medical school is what you want then just go for it. It doesn’t matter how many times someone may doubt you or question you, if it is what you want then ignore them and work hard to get it.
Second, you don’t have to be a science major to get in to medical school. It is not the only degree stream they take, and in fact they are trying to train more non-science majors as doctors since they can add a diversity to the field that it could benefit from. Non-science majors struggle with some of the science classes at the beginning but I’ve read that eventually (typically by the 3rd year) everyone is struggling the same and you can’t tell the major streams apart from one another. So do an undergrad that interests you and you can excel in!
Third, inform yourself. I’ve spent so much time looking at all of the medical schools in Canada (and some in the states) and looking into what they require for courses and GPA, and any other admission requirements they might have. I found this website, https://afmc.ca/publications/admission-requirements-canadian-faculties-medicine and its super helpful and straight forward for anyone interested in a Canadian Medical schools.
Fourth, give yourself time to study for the Medical School Admission Test (MCAT). I only realized lately that I couldn’t do it all. Full time school and 2 jobs doesn’t allow for the proper studying the test like the MCAT deserves, so I’m waiting to study till I can dedicate the time and really focus on it.
Fifth, school is important but so is life. I’ve heard (and read) from many creditable sources that school is not the only thing that medical school admission boards are looking at. It is important to do things other than school, not only for a resume, but also for yourself. I teach dance, I spend time with friends, and I work at summer camps. School isn’t the only thing I do. I also got the change to volunteer at the Alberta Children’s Hospital which was an incredible experience and I loved it! If you are in a place that has a volunteer program in the hospitals and medicine is where you want to go, getting into that kind of volunteering is really rewarding and a great experience. My favorite part was snuggling with babies!
Finally, enjoy yourself! If you think of applying as stressful that’s what it will become, and if you get in you will have enough stress to deal with. I personally love being informed and research what I am interested in. So find out as much as you can so you feel prepared and so you aren’t stressed about the things you don’t know.
These are just some of the things that I believe to be important and it is by no means the only things to know. So decide what you want and find out as much as you can. More information is never bad! I’m a research expert now, so let me know any questions that might come up! Good Luck!
(Post three in this series will be coming soon!!)
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Talk to you soon!