Decision to make

Dear fellows, first of all, Happy 2009!

I hold a bachelors´degree from an international university (Adverstising & Journalism). I am already a resident(greencard holder).

As I live in Miami with my family (hubby and 2 kids 3 and 4 y.old), my chances of relocating are minimal. My goal is to apply for the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, which doesn´t transfer or accept any credits earned in accredited intitutions outside US.

Because of that, UM wasn´t my first option for the Pre-Med program ( As I would have to spent 4 years there to get my degree).

Having said that, I enrolled in the Biology - Pre-Med program (2nd degree) in a small catholic university which transferred many credits of classes I was not willing to retake (Humanities).

That would allow me to finish everything in 2 1/2 years, despite the fact that is really close to my house. Well, I have sucessfully finished my first year there. However, while researching about UM Miller School of Medicine, I discovered that almost 90% of the students accepted come from their own Undergraduate program.

That really made me think of transferring to UM.

I applied, I was admitted and I don´t know what to do because I would have to spend almost 2 years more there, although I believe it is a better program than the one I am enrolled right now.

I know I should be so concerned about time and I shouldn´t be in a hurry. However, my husband is very worrid about it.

What should I do?

Thanks a lot!



Right off, let me be the first to welcome you to OPM, also I would like to be the first to give you a little encouragement and perhaps a bit of advice!

My initial assessment is that you have impressed me with your self assessment skills and honestly your “EGO” is correctly positioned, using new data you seem to be willing to scrap the present plan, make a better one and then start out with a palpable sense of determination.

On your own you have appreciated that “big school” is the best place to prepare for medical school.

However, I do not think you have fully appreciated that the path to medical school is very straight and long path; point A to point B, there are NO shortcuts. The pre-requisites are sufficiently rigorous to justify spreading them out for as long as it takes; sufficiently to guarantee that you will do well and consistently receive stellar marks (ANYTHING less and the game is OVER).

Further, there are NO guarantees from start to finish and hundreds of places to trip so carefully and cautiously but deliberately take each step.

Your husbands assessment is spot on regarding the time spent in consideration of the time required.

It is already too late to make such “worries” go away like nothing ever happened, but perhaps this emotion can be modified to more helpful to you pehaps a “vested interest” in assisting you forward and a protection on his evelopment instead of worrying you to turn back. Unfortunately this is the way it goes, it might help (or frighten him further) if you explain that the risks will get worse before they get better, the only way to obtain a full and total return on your familys investment is to GO THE DISTANCE and succeed!

The “thing”, based on your post that I believe you have already but your husband needs some education to come to the same is a committment! You seem to understand that, you are “all in” this endeavor or your are “all out”. To quote Yoda, “either DO or DO NOT; there is no try”

Sadly…or come to think of it maybe not, the process weans out or culls all of those who do not possess a “pure and total committment” that is required as an undergrade. Because like it or not an even higher level in needed in medical school just to stay in and keep up.

I can certify the oft heart posit frequently banterd about by undergraduates that goes something like, “the hardest part of medical school is getting in”, is patently false and undoubtedly started by someone who came up short!

Please check out my masterpiece “Richards rules”…

And remember we are all in this together! Fell free to drop me a note should you have the need


Hi Richard,

Thank you very much for your response and your kind words.

I was always very determined and I was always called crazy because of that, haha. I think I will transfer to UM and take one thing at a time.

Last semester was really tough since I have kids and I was working part-time, studying full time. This semester I may need to work a little bit more. =( Still, I could keep my GPA up.



I would like to ask a couple slightly less philosophic comments –

You seem focused on Miller school of medicine. Are you locked into the local area such that Miller is your only practical choice? If so… I guess I would think strongly about going the route of transferring in spite of the longer road. It will be a long road no matter which way you do it and taking a bit more time up front may be a good idea if it means a successful completion.

It is perfectly understandable if geography forces you to limit your med school choices. I was fortunate to have several schools not too far away, but packing up and moving across country was NOT and option, so I was pretty much forced to put all my eggs in a small basket. If that is likewise true for you than you pretty much have to do everything you can to make that one choice work for you.