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Thread: premed process

  1. #1
    Noelle008 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    premed process

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    Hi. I am new to this forum and wondering if someone can please redirect me if I am lost. My son is interested in becoming an MD (surgery specifically). He is a sophomre in HS now with excellent grades.
    The university hospital where I am currently employed as an RN offers college tuition for spouses and dependents, but not for MD or PhD degrees.
    Can he still benefit from any of the following undergrad programs they offer?
    College of Arts & Sciences
    School of Bus ADM
    School of Education
    School of Social work
    School of Nursing

    What is the process for premed and then med school and should he be doing anything to prepare while still in HS?
    Thanks for ANY and ALL advice.
    noelle

  2. #2
    Tyson's Avatar
    Tyson is offline Member 511 points
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    Yes, but you'll need to give us more information about the school in order to help you. Put up a link to the schools web site and several of us will probably look at it and give you our opinions.

    I am sure you have access to a lot of this information by talking to some of the doctors you work with. They are your best resource and could help get your son some volunteer time which is really helpful.

    Just to give you a quick run down on what your son needs:

    1) He needs a bachelor’s degree in something. It does not have to be a science degree. In fact his GPA will probably be higher if he majors in something other than science. The GPA is a big deal. He needs really good grades and Liberal Arts classes are much easier to get 'A's in than science. My undergraduate degree is in Business in case you are wondering. I took lots of sculpture classes to keep my grades high and to keep myself sane.

    2) He needs one academic year (2 semesters) of each of the following with labs:

    -General Chemistry
    -Organic Chemistry
    -First year Biology
    -General Physics
    -a Calculus class is recommended, but not always required.

    A few other courses that may help, but are not required are Biochemistry, and microbiology. However, they only help if his grades in them are good.

    I personally think Statistics is a good idea, but I will get a lot of flack for saying so.

    3) He needs to get some kind of experience within the health industry. He could probably shadow a doctor for a few weeks at the hospital where you work and that would give him a better idea about what being a doctor is all about. He could also get a part time job in a hospital doing something... anything...

    4) He needs some community service. Any volunteer time will help.

    5) MCAT...OK, once he has done all of the required science courses he can take the MCAT. If he finishes those sciences by the end of his jounior year he can take the MCAT in the summer before his sinior year.

    I can not stress enough the need to major in something that he enjoys and can get really good grades in. Had I known what I know now I would have majored in fine art and spent all my time sculpting. I have met people who had almost a 4.0 GPA because they majored in Trumpet performance and spent their undergraduate years playing music with their friends. It really really does not matter what he majors in. Underwater basket weaving is fine as long as he gets 'A's.

    Good luck.
    Last edited by Tyson; 04-28-2006 at 03:28 PM.

  3. #3
    Noelle008 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Thanks so much for the advice. The school is Loyola University Medical Center (Stritch Med School) in Maywood, Illinois. Yes, one of the ER docs I work with suggested having him come on in to observe one day, and get him some volunteer work. I'm afraid the ER might be too much for him, but, then again, maybe not!
    Thanks again.
    noelle

  4. #4
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    RavenFighter04 is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    If ER is too much for him, it'll be good for him to find that out early. That way he can look for whatever interests him.

    What Tyson said is correct. He can major in whatever he wants as long as he enjoys the classes and works hard (trust me, enjoying a class makes it a lot easier to go to).

    Best of luck to you and your son.

    By the way, I think it's awesome that you're so supportive of his decision. I wish my parents were half as supportive of mine. Cheers to you.
    "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
    -- Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759

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  5. #5
    Tyson's Avatar
    Tyson is offline Member 511 points
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    Loyola undergrad is great. Any degree they offer will be fine for a premed student, and they offer all of the premed science courses as well.

    The med school is great too, but just because he gets a degree from their undergrad school doesn’t mean he will get into the medical school. He should apply to more than 1 medical school and he should use the opportunities he has through you as a way to build relationships with Loyola doctors so he can get reference letters from Doctors at Loyola when he applies to medical school there.

    The community service work and hospital experience can start any time. He can start that now while he is in High school, but he will need to keep it up while he is in college.

    Summer programs volunteering with kids or the elderly can help because they don't interfere with studies. He should try to do as much at Loyola as possible it is a serious inroad that many of us wish we had.



  6. #6
    Noelle008 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by RavenFighter04
    If ER is too much for him, it'll be good for him to find that out early. That way he can look for whatever interests him.

    What Tyson said is correct. He can major in whatever he wants as long as he enjoys the classes and works hard (trust me, enjoying a class makes it a lot easier to go to).

    Best of luck to you and your son.

    By the way, I think it's awesome that you're so supportive of his decision. I wish my parents were half as supportive of mine. Cheers to you.
    yeah, he just turned 16. He says he wants to be a surgeon but of course he will probably change his mind more than a few times. I'm hoping he will love the ER as much as I do . He's very much like me, and has always been fascinated with medicine and the human body.
    I'm curious--did your parents have other plans for you? Perhaps a family business or something? I can't understand why any parent wouldn't be supportive of their kid wanting to become an MD, if that's truly what they wanted to do. I think being an MD is the most noble profession there is, but if my son wanted to be a ballet dancer instead, I would support him 100%.
    Anyway, thanks for the advice, and good luck to you too! Your parents should be very proud of you
    noelle

  7. #7
    Noelle008 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tyson
    Loyola undergrad is great. Any degree they offer will be fine for a premed student, and they offer all of the premed science courses as well.

    The med school is great too, but just because he gets a degree from their undergrad school doesn’t mean he will get into the medical school. He should apply to more than 1 medical school and he should use the opportunities he has through you as a way to build relationships with Loyola doctors so he can get reference letters from Doctors at Loyola when he applies to medical school there.

    The community service work and hospital experience can start any time. He can start that now while he is in High school, but he will need to keep it up while he is in college.

    Summer programs volunteering with kids or the elderly can help because they don't interfere with studies. He should try to do as much at Loyola as possible it is a serious inroad that many of us wish we had.

    Thank you Tyson. You've really helped. I feel fortunate that my son will have this opportunity, and I think he feels the same. You would not believe how many RN's I work with whose kids don't take the opportunity to use the tuition! It's crazy! I wish I had the chance when I was his age, altho I plan to do the NP thing (nurse practioner) in the next year or two.
    Anyway, I know it's a long road ahead, but I will do what I can to help him realize his goals.
    Loyola has been good to me, hopefully things will work out for my son also.
    I really do appreciate your taking time to reply to me. Thanks again, and best of luck to you!
    noelle

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