3 answers

While in high school, how do you know if medical school is the right decision / path?

Updated Lakewood, Colorado

I'm currently a junior in high school, and just wondering how I can know whether or not I really want to go into medicine. I've heard that shadowing is a good way to find out, but I don't know any doctors and its really hard to find opportunities for people under 18. Suggestions?
#medicine #physician #medical-school #highschool #healthcare

3 answers

Juliana’s Answer

Updated Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

As life changes, so will your goals and aspirations. You have to be okay with that possibility and follow your heart as best as you can at this moment in time. Life is a journey and your passions are what will guide you through the experience. On the other hand, medical school is a big commitment and is not a decision to make lightly. Talk to people who are in the field you wish to be in and who are in school for what you plan to go to school for. Understand what they're life looks like getting their degree under their belt and then decide if the sacrifice is A) worth it and B) if you are willing to commit to it. You will make the right choice. Best wishes - you have your whole life ahead of you!

Hwal’s Answer

Updated Roanoke, Virginia


How about starting with asking yourself "why"? Take some time aside to think of all the reasons you want to go to medical school, as compared to other career choices you may have considered in the past or you think you might be interested in. And remember that you will have plenty of time and opportunities to plan and prepare for any career choice you make, so take a step back and take your time. If you're absolutely convinced that medical school is what you want, seeing a careers counselor or getting a referral through your school counselor could be an option for resources.

Good luck!


Hwal recommends the following next steps:

  • Think about why you want to go to medical school, and make a list if you can

Rita’s Answer

Updated Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

You should definitely check with your school guidance counselors to see what programs you have available to you through school. You can ask your current primary care physician if you could spend the day at his/her office to observe since you are interested in a career in medicine. You could do the same with your parent(s) doctors too. You might also be able to talk with some local colleges to see what they have available to high schools students.

There are ways to do this: 1. Approach universities which have medical research programs affiliated with clinical departments. There are usually summer programs for high school students. 2. Check with the colleges about the programs offered to high school students. 3. There are volunteer opportunities in hospitals. e.g., one of my high school students worked as a volunteer in a children's garden in the hospital. There is some official paperwork you have to do to get approved to serve as a volunteer in the hospital. Start early so that you can start to work early during the summer. 3. Email the physician directly. My summer student emailed a dermatologist and got a summer intern job. Education is a big part of medicine and I encourage you to go and try.
Ask a question