Data Engineer Pivoting to Medicine will taking prereqs at CC hurt my chances?

Hey All,

I have a Bachelors of Engineering and graduated with a ~3.4 in 2014. I originally started as a Biomed Eng, with the overall thought I’d be applying to medical school after 4 years, rather than work as an engineer. However, I quickly switched to an engineering discipline that would allow me to do an math minor, when I realized how much I enjoyed engineering and higher level math courses. This was also influenced by a negative association I had with chemistry.

Most recently, I became the primary caretaker for my mom after a major surgery. In preparing her and myself for her post-op, at-home care I realized that I’ve been running away from the prospect of medical school for the entirety of my 20s. There were multiple points in my short career that I considered preparing for the MCAT and taking prerequisite courses. Yet, I was holding myself back through the limiting beliefs I held with regards to my abilities as a chemistry student. And through a some soul-searching and really visualizing what I wanted my life to look like, I decided to end the internal saga and embark on the road to becoming a physician.

I’m giving myself 2 years to get the prerequisites such as Orgo, Biochem, Psych, A&P, and Bio (general, micro). I took several physics courses and Calc + upper level math courses in my undergrad and so am studying those on my own as a review for the MCAT.

A few issues I wanted to touch on to get some advice around:

  • I’m worried that seeing a cc in my applications will hurt my chances when it comes to applying to med school.

  • I feel a bit isolated in my pursuits and I’m not sure where to seek support. Is paying for an advisement service helpful?

  • I want to get more clinical exposure as well, but due to the pandemic there are no volunteer opportunities in my area and I haven’t heard back from those I contacted around shadowing opportunities. Are “e-shadowing” sites legit? Is becoming an EMT a good idea? I just have so many questions.

Just wanted to see if anyone had similar experiences and what resources are out there!

  1. no taking your pre-reqs at CC won’t particularly hurt you, but if you can take it at a university, it would be better (eg. UCLA Extension)
  2. No. There are tons of good free information on forums (reddit, sdn, here.)
  3. You still have 2 years to get experience. eshadowing is legit but you’re going to need real shadowing if youre applying 2 years out. COVID wont last for 2 more whole years. EMT is good CEs, Scribe is good CEs, etc.

A lot of your questions can be answered if you do a little digging on forums.

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Use the MSAR to see what schools’ policies on CC credit is. There are a few who are still stubbornly pointing their nose down at CC credits. I had to do a handful of my postbacc at CCs, too, due to cost. Just know where not to apply to save on application costs and your time/sanity.

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