A Conversation for Advice on How to Become a Doctor in the USA

Becoming a doctor may not be all roses

Post 1


I once thought that I wanted to be a doctor and it gradually dawned, as I studied for 5 years at a British medical school, that I did not. It is a good idea to be very careful about such a decision and it is certainly a good idea to find out whether you feel comfortable in a medical setting through some kind of paid or voluntary work.

Medicine still has a very high status, and does turn out to be a satisfying career for many people. It can seem an obvious career path for someone who is good at sciences at A Level and wants to help people. At the age of 18 when I applied to medical school I did not have much idea of what other courses or careers I might like instead. Maybe I should have followed my head-teacher's advice which was to study something that interested me and not to worry until later about a career. Perhaps I chose medical school to satisfy others rather than to please myself.

Much of the course was an exercise more in memory than in thinking or creativity. In the first two years (pre-clinical) there was a lot of Anatomy, Biochemistry and other sciences. It was tedious but we thought that things would get better. After that there was a mixture of lectures and clinical experience, much of it on the wards and in out-patient clinics and to my mind not enough in the community.

I found talking to and examining sick people difficult emotionally so that the idea of becoming a junior doctor (house officer) was very daunting and I bottled out; after getting through the finals (after having to re-take some of the clinical exams) I went into health education and later I moved into other aspects of education.

Let my experience be a warning that medicine is not necessarily the right thing to do, just because you are bright enough to have a good chance of getting into medical school.

Becoming a doctor may not be all roses

Post 2


I agree with you. I was lucky that I figured out that I did not want to be a doctor early in my college career. I switched majors to nursing. I love it so much. I can't imagine myself doing anything else.

I still get people calling me "Doctor" just because I am a male nurse and people get confused sometimes smiley - smiley I promptly correct them smiley - laugh.



Becoming a doctor may not be all roses

Post 3


There's a program at theapprenticedoctor.com that claims to give you clirity on whether you REALLY want to become a doctor.

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