Am I being realistic?

Hello all,

I desperately need some advice on how to make my dream to become a physician come true. I am 38yo soon to be 39yo with no science background. I’ve recently applied for Drexel’s PMED (Fall 09) program geared towards working adults. The problem I have now is that I have recently been laid off from an accounting job so my plan to pay tuition out of pocket is now squashed. To date, I can not find a job that will keep me afloat so I’ve been contemplating joining the Navy OCS to help with bills & mortgage. This option would delay my goal for at least 3/4 years.

I do have children but no supportive partner or family. The kids will live with their mother but I hate to give up on this dream due to my circumstances. The HPSP scholarship seems promising but I wouldn’t finish Med school until I was 44/45 at which time I would still need to complete residency along with a military obligation at 47/48 yrs old. This is starting to feel like I missed the boat. Can anyone provide any advice or plan on how I can still achieve this dream?

What about student loans for the undergrad portion then looking into rural medicine tuition reimbursement programs for med school? You’d still have loans to repay but they would not be as substantial and you’d be working in an area that needs physicians.

May I suggest that you might consider an informal postbac at a public school, which may lessen your financial burden greatly

Have you talked with a Navy recruiter yet? If you’re not prior service, you may be too old for OCS. If you are prior service, you will need to apply for an age waiver.

I really relate to your situation. I am 41, married with two young kids. I don’t even think I can begin to take prereqs for at least another year or two, and even when I do take them, I’ll probably start off with just one or two courses. Can you afford to pay for one class? I know it feels like it’s at a turtle’s pace, but I don’t think your dreams are dashed or it’s too late. I’m older than you, and I still have dreams of going to medical school. My goal is to graduate from medical school by the time I’m 50. So yes, it’s a set-back but it’s temporary and it’s not big enough for anyone to say that it’s too late. It can still be done! If you can’t afford a class, just hold steady and reassess in a year.