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Is medical school worth it?

After college I plan to go to medical school.

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Subject: Career question for you

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Michel’s Answer

Currently in medical school and just about to start year three. It depends on what you value. Medical school is extremely difficult there are days where I study for 12 hours. This is not extremely uncommon for most students. It is hard, but when you are doing something that you are enjoying its not that bad. I enjoy learning all of these new things and understand how these things are going to be applicable to my career in the future. It is a huge commitment to become a doctor. Four years of undergrad. Four years of medical school, three to seven years of residency. Some people take gaps in between to study and research between these. If this is something you are passionate about then it will be worth it. If you are still not sure it can be really helpful to shadow a physician and see what they do throughout the day. It can be really helpful to see people already in the field and how they are doing things and how they enjoy their free time. It is a hard field, but it also has some of the most rewarding aspects of any field that I looked into. If you enjoy a life of learning then I think medicine can be a really good field for you.
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Maria’s Answer

Is attending any professional school worth it? Answer: that depends on you and a lot of other things. Any postgraduate decisions (postgraduate is attending professional school after earning your Bachelor's of Arts and/or Bachelor's of Science degrees) depends on a lot of factors: cost, motivation, interests, career goals, support network, and a variety of others. The first phase before making a major decision is to gather information: researching medical school tuition, watching YouTube vids of the life of medical school students which may be insightful and authentic nuggets of information, job shadowing/observing a doctor in a field you're interested in and asking them questions about how they got their start, self-reflection on why you want to eventually go to medical school, etc... I would recommend starting there--"the gathering information phase"-- before applying to medical school.
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Bella’s Answer

Hi Iris,

First off, I cannot speak from experience because I did not go to med school and I am not a doctor, however, I do work in the medical field as a medical assistant and I plan to continue my education to become a physician assistant. People go to med school for many different reasons: (1) to help/heal/save people (2) for more medical authority/responsibility (3) for the money, and many many other reasons. Obviously, medical school is going to be very long and rigorous, but what comes after is also tough. Being a doctor is a demanding career, demanding of your time and energy, but a simple moment of hearing good news about a patient's health can make it all worth it. What's most important is knowing your own personal reasons for going to med school and becoming a doctor.

First, are you absolutely sure you want to be a medical doctor? Have you thought of other medical careers? Physician assistant? Nurse Practitioner? Registered Nurse? Do some additional research.

Second, if you are sent on being a doctor then ask yourself: Why does it interest you? Make a pros and cons list to get a picture of your reasoning. Do you have a specific medical specialty you're interested in?

If you are interested in the medical field at all, I suggest you shadow different medical professionals. Shadowing provides you with an up-close idea of how real professionals work in their job. It's also a great opportunity to network, get professional contacts, and most importantly, ask specific questions. Do research on the differences between medical professions. Shadow doctors in different specialties, shadow a physician assistant, a nurse practitioner, and when you shadow them, ask them if med school was worth it for them. I know nurses and physician assistants that say sometimes they wish they had become a doctor instead, and I know doctors that say sometimes they wish they had not gone to med school at all. Every one is different. What's most important is that you don't let someone else make your decision on whether or not to go to med school, and don't let someone's bad experience in med school hinder you from achieving your goals if that is truly what you want to do.

Thanks for reading. Blessings to you and all you accomplish!
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