From IT to MD?

I’m 29 years old with a Bachelor of Science, Information Systems and a Master of Science in Business Administration (Information Systems). I’ve been seriously considering med school and have just started the information gathering stage.

What I’m finding out right out of the gate is that there is hardly any relevant coursework from my undergraduate and graduate work that applies to prerequisite knowledge for most med school applications. I’m insufficient in chemistry, organic chemistry, biology/etc because they weren’t (unfortunately) part of my curriculum for

my degrees. Sciences in all fields have been fascinating to me, so I’m positive that I won’t struggle (too bad) with any of the material.

From a strictly logistical standpoint, I’d have to clear most of those prerequisites before the application process even started, which just extends the timeline of this process that much farther.

Coming from an area where I’ve acquired an incredible amount of knowledge and then transitioning into something where I feel like I’m starting from square one is daunting enough, but doing it at the age of 29 feels even like I may need to get my skull examined.

Are there any other people out there that have changed disciplines this late in the game and been successful? Any stories/ideas or otherwise insight into what it was like?

I feel like I’ve always had a passion for medicine, but was steered towards IT because I had a “knack” for it. Hindsight is always 20/20 I suppose.


I know exactly how you feel. I’m 40 and already have two degrees - undergrad in History and Masters in Intl Affairs. I’m having to take all the science classes so it’s at least two years before I can apply.

Ah. . .if only I were 29 again!!

Good luck,



It doesn’t really matter where you come from, what matters is your happiness.

I have been a scientist up to now, also went and got an MBA, started a few companies (failed most of the time, not everytime though). Still not happy. So like you I have to retake my pre-reqs. Icequeen is 40 and you are 29. For sure, Icequeen will never be 29 again, but you will hit 40 anyway (no matter what you do). So you may as well try and be happy.

As for you Icequeen, I understand. But this applies to you. You will hit 50 one day so, better be as an MD.

Good luck to you all.

Part of being older isn’t necessarily the age factor as much as it is the context that surrounds it. In my case, I have a full time job (my current career), a wife, and a 10 month old child. I would suspect that most others are in a similar situation. This context is what makes this difficult for me. I have hope but it seems the more I understand about the process, the more unreasonable it becomes (within my given context). Finding the appropriate balance is difficult in this case if not impossible. Regardless, I’m going to start coursework this summer to get my feet wet. It won’t hurt anything and it may steer me in the right direction, whatever that may be.

I agree with your statement regarding age. I am a 33 year old IT guy pursuing career in medicine. My situation is similar to yours (full time job/1 infant & 1 toddler/both me and wife work) but unlike you, I do not have BS/MS (still working toward my undergrad degree). In addition, I’m working with an extremely poor GPA from my early college years. This leaves little to no room for error in my current undergraduate GPA, my premed GPA and MCAT score. I take every class knowing that my dream may end here if I screw up. I’m not telling you this to one up you…but so that you can see that anybody can dream and work toward achieving it. I don’t know what the future holds for me but I hope to be free of any regrets.

If I may….one thing I’d suggest is that before you commit to your goal…you should understand and accept the sacrifices (social life/time with family/hobbies/etc) that may accompany your goal. So far, time with family/kids has been the biggest challenge for me and I’d suspect that it’d only get worse. I’ve become pretty good at time management as a result of it, however.

Whatever you decide to do…I wish you the best of luck!

Thanks for the words of encouragement and advice. FYI, my GPA after my first semester in undergraduate was a 0.96. That’s right, less than zero, and I was eventually dismissed from the university after failing to get my cumulative GPA over a 2.0. I decided what I wanted to do and eventually got readmitted and completed my undergrad degree with a 3.2 GPA. I wish the best of luck for you and it sounds like you have the right attitude to pull it off.

The family/kids is definitely the hardest part of this decision, still not finding anything to help sway me in one direction or the other. It’s just a difficult decision.