Bye-Bye corporate world, hello medicine!!

Hey everybody. I just got turned on to this site from Dr. Gray’s podcast, Medical School HQ. I figured I would get on here and check it out. I’m almost 32 years old, and am finally coming full circle to my dream of being a doctor. I’m kind of a long winded story teller :slight_smile: Just letting you know, lol.

I joined the military after 9/11, and shortly after joining I became really interested in the medic side of things. I had always had an interest in science and was one of a few high school students granted permission to tour the state cadaver lab. Military medicine intrigued me, so on my first deployment I asked my Chief what it would take to switch jobs, and he basically said it was impossible; with all of the money spent training me on my current job switching was out of the question. On my second deployment, we were able to offer humanitarian aid to Eritrea by providing medical attention, malaria nets, and help resupplying their local “clinic”, which also acted as their school during the week. This was just fuel for the fire inside, but again, I was told no way on making the job switch. So as time went on, I got married, re-enlisted for orders to Hawaii (that’ll get ANYBODY to re-enlist) and became focused on my career.

In hopes of getting selected for officer (for those not military, it is like literally being promoted from a blue collar job to a white collar job), I spent nights and weekends getting my Bachelor’s in Business Administration. It was also an easy degree to obtain due to military credits in “Leadership & Management”. Well, about 3/4 of the way through my degree, I realized business really wasn’t my thing, but it was a means to an end. Then an event occurred that turned me off to being in the military (thats another story), so I made plans to get out. I got accepted to the University of Florida for a Master’s in Public Health and after my military discharge we moved to Gainesville, FL.

While in school, I figured I better get some experience under my belt so I volunteered at the local hospital…and was HOOKED! I was rotated around a bit before I found my niche in the E.R. I told the coordinator to keep me in there, and everyday was just an awesome experience!! The nurses, the doctors, the EMT’s, it seemed like everybody worked in concert with each other and knew what each other was doing before they did it! I constantly went home in awe and told my wife stories of the E.R.

Well as time went on, we got in debt, my wife hated Gainesville, and we decided to make a switch. I moved to Louisiana for a job in the oil field. Initially, the work was good, and the money was great. As bills got paid off, the job and hours got dull really quick. There was no motivation to go to work. The meetings were all about revenues and sales, and nothing about pride or a positive purpose. So I switched to another oilfield job with more stable hours; small step but it was an improvement. Eventually the luster was gone from that job as well. My saving grace came from a Christmas donation letter.

Our small volunteer fire department sent letters every Christmas asking for donations along with a single sentence saying that they are always looking for volunteers: “no experience required”. So I went in the next day during lunch and asked some questions, and a month later I was a “volunteer in training”. My first call was a wreck on our major local highway, and it was AWESOME (I mean that in an impressive kind of way). Once again, I saw these volunteers working to remove a trapped victim from a SUV that had rolled, and the teamwork was the same that I witnessed in the E.R. Our own paramedic was calling the shots and had crawled inside the vehicle to begin patient assessment while we worked on opening up the car for patient extrication. Again, I was hooked!

As time went on, my wife became unhappy with Louisiana, and eventually unhappy with me. I became unhappy with my oilfield job, and threw around the idea of returning to school on my GI Bill for nursing. Since I had gotten firefighter certified over the years, my Fire Chief offered me a paid hourly position during the weekdays and said he could work completely around my school schedule. Upon my return to school, my wife and I filed for divorce. It wasn’t a surprise to anyone, and most say that we are happier individuals because of it. So I focused on my studies in nursing and life was good.

A couple months later, I began talking with one of my professors who was also a pre-med advisor. She asked about my plans for nursing and if my heart was set on “nursing” or healthcare. She then explained that with my degree I would probably have a better chance at getting into medical school, than graduating from nursing school since nursing rotations have a tight bottleneck due to the faculty:student ratio and almost require a 4.0gpa to get into them. So after some research, and hearing from others about the bottleneck, I made the switch…and couldn’t be happier!

My current aspirations are in emergency medicine, but we’ll just see where the road takes me!

Welcome! Volunteer firefighter was actually my first medically-related “job” (started at 18), and my first call was “awesome!” as well. It’s a good way to find out that you have a true interest in medical things.

Sounds like you are well on your way with your prereqs toward medicine. Best of luck!