I am going to try to keep this short because it is most likely similar to the other posts I’ve read on here. TL:DR at the bottom.
To start things off, I am a 24 year old combat medic in the National Guard (I like to call myself a hobbyist). I have one deployment under my belt where I treated over 300 trauma patients in an ATLS and OR setting. I was an integral part of a Forward Surgical Team, FST, and overall have loved my experience deployed. I have been fortunate enough to have the opportunity to do some really high level procedures compared to my civilian certification, which is a NREMT-B.
My plan out of high school was to go to some business school somewhere in NC. I was in Future Business Leaders of America and was thinking of pursuing something in the finance/entrepreneurship. I didn’t want to drain my parents financially so I decided to join the National Guard to pay for school. My choices at the time were mechanic or medic and I wasn’t the most mechanically inclined. I had a neighbor who was a pharmacist and I consider her my mentor she informed me about the field of pharmacy and I was hooked. Since talking with her after my combat medic training I have been working towards going to pharmacy school.
COVID-19 strikes and I lose my job as a pharmacy technician and my classes (as well as everyone elses) move online. I do get good news during this time as I find out I get into my pharmacy school of choice. I get covid-19 State Active Duty orders for the National Guard and was working full time for the guard during the summer semester. This is where my academics go poorly, I absolutely struggle through the second semester of college physics and have to ultimately drop the class and defer pharmacy school for a year.
During this year I am working towards completing the last two pre-reqs online and work as an anesthesia technician at UNC main hospital and I have been loving it. Working with the CRNAs, Anesthesiologists, and patients have been extremely rewarding, much more so than working as a pharmacy technician. I understand that working as a pharmacy technician and working as a pharmacist are vastly different in roles and responsibilities, but I am starting to have my doubts about the field of pharmacy. This is in part due to things I’ve heard from pharmacists in retail and things I’ve noticed from pharmacy forums on reddit. Watching the doctor of comedy on YouTube (a pharmacist that was fired due to being a comedian) I have also noticed that pharmacist salaries are starting to diminish (not that it was my biggest deciding factor but for the responsibilities and work that a pharmacist is charged with it doesn’t seem worth it).
Overall, speaking with the med students, residents, and attendings, I am starting to have doubts about my passions in pharmacy and am wondering if I would feel more fulfilled doing something that had significantly more direct patient care involved. My road blocks are the fact my grades suffered during the COVID pandemic and the move to online classes which are my weakness. I do not have an undergraduate degree and most of my 100 credits are from a community college. I am just looking for advice to see what my options are before I jump into the deep end.
Apologies for the short book and thanks for reading.
Soon to be pharmacy student had to defer for a year due to COVID and personal circumstances (poor excuse, I know). Starting to feel uncertain about the pharmacy field and wondering if other avenues in medicine would be a better fit. Drop in grades and lack of undergrad degree & no MCAT are barriers I have to overcome. Looking for advice on how I should approach possibly switching to medschool.
Thanks for reading my condensed version.