Dr. Librarian

Hi! I’m very happy to have found this site. Currently I am an academic and public librarian and want to become a physician. I had always wanted to become a doctor but when I started college my family had some difficulties. As the oldest of five kids I had to help my mother out who was struggling with the end of a 20 year marriage. At the time the youngest was three years old, so on top of taking care of the kids I was a full-time undergraduate, and I was working two part-time jobs.

A science major would not have worked so I became a history major, one of my part-time jobs was in a library, so I accidentally fell into that field. The college I attended offered the MLIS so I went ahead and completed a Masters in Library and Information Science. This career helped me help my family and it allowed me to survive financially. I enjoy being a librarian but I can’t see myself doing this for the rest of my life.

A year and a half ago I started thinking about the medical field, and figured why not volunteer at a hospital. I was lucky and was given the volunteer position of surgical apprentice in a women’s hospital. I loved every moment of it, the next step was trying to find a post-bacc program. I found three, one was way to expensive, but two were decently priced. I have applied and am waiting on an admissions response. Currently I am taking the General Biology course at another school. I wanted to get a head start. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you. Muchas Gracias!

Hello, and welcome to OPM! This site has been a wonderful resource for me in the past several years, and I hope it to be the same for you.

I also did a formal post-bac program. Having been out of school for several years, I found the structure (specific advising for post-bac students, being around others in the same situation as I was, a committee letter in the end, etc.) to be quite helpful. Good luck as you await your admissions decision!

As for the volunteer work, it is wonderful that you have already started doing that. Keep it up! Volunteering is important in terms of helping you decide whether medicine is really right for you (and it sounds like it has helped sway you in that direction). It is also a “must” on your medical school application.

A few pieces of advice for you, as you begin this journey:

First, in addition to volunteering, I would also recommend shadowing some physicians, in multiple specialties/fields if possible. You get a different flavor and perspective on medicine when you are going around with a physician. I shadowed a couple of different people. Not only did I see and experience amazing things, but I also developed a close relationship with one of them, which led to a research opportunity, a very strong letter of recommendation, and having someone I can go to for advice/questions.

Second, as you make your way into your pre-med coursework, be sure to cultivate relationships with some of your professors. You will be asking some of them for letters of recommendation as you approach your time to apply, and you NEED them to be able to say very specific and very positive things about you.

Hope that helps!


One of members,Denise who goes under the screen name of samenewme, was a librarian prior to going to medical school. She in fact finished her training in Family Practice last June and is now a practicing physician in California.

I did this myself. I was an academic librarian. I took the pre-reqs on campus instead of taking a formal post-bacc, about two courses at a time, and worked a deal with my boss so I could keep my job, even though almost all the pre-reqs were daytime classes. You generally DO NOT have to go to an official post-bacc. Just take all the prereqs, do well, try to get to know the professors to get letters, and, oh, get super grades.

See if you can work such a deal. It meant a lot less debt at the end of the process, and that’s a nice thing. And it let me dip my toe in the water without quitting my job.