Med school motivation

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    I was wondering how many of you had some sort of event (or events) that pushed you along in your decision to go to med school…especially those of you who haven’t always wanted to be a physician.

    For me, my grandfather was very ill when I was in college and his physician was nearly incompetent. I was so angry that I nearly changed to premed midway through college (I was already a Bio major, so it wouldn’t have been too different…but I had not even considered premed before). At the time, I decided that I was considering med school for the wrong reasons (mainly anger) so I didn’t go for it.

    Once I was a teacher, I had some students with significant health issues. In dealing with them I decided that I really liked medicine and took steps to complete my prereqs.

    What about everyone else?


    The birth of my second child did it for me.

    I had never considered being a doctor before. My exposure to medicine when I was young and deciding what I wanted to do w/ my life was almost non-existent…a good thing I’m sure.

    Because it was so out of the blue, it took me close to six months before I even recognized the desire for what it was and another six months for me to believe it made any kind of sense to be considering this path at this stage of my life. I was 35 then and almost 38 now.

    I started off slow and then had a bit of a delay w/ #3 came along, but am back on track now to take the MCAT in April ’03.

    desert scholardesert scholar

    For me it was going back to college and realizing that I just might be able to do this. Sometimes because of lifes curves you lose sight of your dreams. And for me it was one of those epiphanies, when while walking to class and reflecting on life I realized I could do it. That the dreams of my childhood if I worked hard were within my grasp. Since then, I have checked out every book I could get my hands on, contacted local unverisities, haunted the internet searching for information on how to become a physician.

    CaLiGirL :)CaLiGirL:)

    hi melissa,

    complications and a high-risk pregancy did it for me. i never had a clue that medicine was what i wanted to go into…but my munchkin of a daughter gave me a hard enough time to keep me in the hospital 4 days a week, admitted for 2wks, etc :rolleyes: .

    i saw the doctors at work and i saw how hard they worked at it. it wasn’t so much that i was intrigued (but believe me i was!), i had gained an immense amount of respect for these physicians working their tails off to make sure my unborn daughter was going to be ok…

    so, that was what pretty much made me want to become a physician…only i don’t just *want* it anymore. its a passion…and soon, i will have a white coat and dangling stethoscope of my own. 😉

    good luck,



    Hi Peeps,

    Here in England entering medical school has up till recently been almost a military operation in the planning and the achieving. I was intrigued to meet some American elective students a while back – one of whom was studying medicine despite a successful career on a New York stage as well as having children to boot!

    As they say trends seem to cross the pond eventually and my medical school St Georges’Hospital – Tooting has a graduate entry programme; students get an MBBS in four years not five dependant on a lot of hard work and passing an incredibly rigorous entry exam.

    KEEP Smiling Everybodeeee

    Hennah Bashir


    Hey Melissa!

    I’ve always believed that I’ve wanted to become a doctor ever since I was a little girl (6 yrs. old to be exact) but come to think of it, I have to admit that being around obnoxious doctors probably did it for me.

    My father is a diabetic and he was initially diagnosed by my aunt (Yep, the obnoxious MD)a couple of years back. I didn’t know a thing about diabetes before so I asked her “what kind” of diabetes my dad had. She just let out an exasperated sigh and answered me in a “I-know- everything-so-don’t-question-me” tone that “There is only one kind of diabetes”!

    Anyway, she also gave my dad beta-blockers for his hypertension (which she shouldn’t have)! Now that I’ve graduated from med school and am waiting for the results of my boards, my father comes to me for his health problems!


    Originally posted by neurodoc:
    “I-know- everything-so-don’t-question-me”

    I’ve run into those Drs. I once went to one who was describing something in *medicalese.* Trying to be a *good* patient, I repeated things back to him (in plain english) so that he and I could be sure that I understood (at least that was my reasoning). Being a bio major (this was in college) I could understand his terms just fine. he got visibly flustered and tried some other terms on me. When I clearly understood those he got quite exasperated and ended the exam!! 😮 That dinosaur of a Dr retired a few months later. :rolleyes:


    Hi Melissa,

    I haven’t posted in a while, and realize you posted this long ago, but thought I’d respond…

    My decision to pursue medicine was a little bit funny (to me). I was stuck in a dead-end job in a field I’d worked in since I was 17, one day I read a job posting for an ER Unit Secretary and thought “Hey, I think I’d like that!” The job required Medical Terminology, so I literally went to the local CC and signed up for a class THAT DAY.

    I excitedly bought my med term books and entered the classroom. Within two days I realized that the instructor (long-time RN) could not spell, much less pronounce, most of the words. I also realized that about 99% of my classmates were nursing or medical assistant students, and they too were “not the sharpest scalpels on the trays”.

    Anyway, maybe it was vanity or puffed-up self esteem, but I just couldn’t see myself as part of that group. Within a week I decided that what I really wanted to do was be a doc.

    Two years later, struggling through 3rd quarter O-Chem, staying at #3 in the class (1 and 2 were young boys who were dang close to geniuses, so they don’t count! 🙂 ) I realized that I had been right…I needed and wanted so much more than to just be an MA or even an RN.

    Certainly there are times that I question my sanity, but I am just putting one foot in front of the other and plodding down the road……



    Oh Geez,

    I just re-read that and it sounds horrible! Please Please Please, nurses out there don’t be offended!!! I have met many wonderful, caring, INTELLIGENT nurses…I know you’re out there, I just didn’t happen to have any in my Medical Terminology class. Actually, I am thankful for that because it showed me which direction I really wanted to go.



    Heehee….I thought I was the only one walking around with a tennis shoe hanging out of my mouth.

    Val, you goof! Don’t feel too bad. Medical terminology is a notoriously mind-numbing course, marked by rote memorization and zero anlytical skill. As you saw, everyone from aspiring, teenage unit clerks to bored registered nurses and premedical students pass throught that god-awful class. Probably the only person they could get to teach it was a recovering narcotic addict on clinical suspension.

    At least here I’ve narrowed the scope of possibly offended people down to previous and current Medical Terminology Instructors (and potentially recovering narcotic addicts, I suppose).

    If worse comes to worst, you know you can always delete (and edit) your own posts.



    LOL Womansurgeon!

    Thanks for the lift 🙂 Actually, if worse comes to worst, I can give up my med-school hopes and become….
    you guessed it….
    a medical terminology instructor!


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