Hello. and a Question or two...


I have been a lurker for some time and have just now decided to join and introduce myself. I am 26 and currently hold a BFA in theatre about a year and a half ago I started to seriously consider going back to school and taking the credits I would need to apply to med school (i am sure that the jump from BFA to med school sounds strange). I have since taken two of the maths I need although what I am really serching for a program of study or at least an advisor who can help me structure this undertaking. I have done research on the post bacs in my area (chicago) there are two but one is very expensive and the other not close to public transport (no car)… I know that CC is not always the best route however I had a meeting yesterday with the a recruitment advisor for the UIC medical school he informed me that some schools including UIC will accept these credits, does anyone on this site know what the other schools are? To be entirely honest I intend to apply somewhere where i may have a chance to work in an underserved area in exchange for tuition but that is years away… I know im younger on this site than some but I suspect that I will be pretty close to 30 before i take the MCAT (at the rate I am going, which is SLOW).

So I have a few questions:

*Has anyone had luck with financial aid or loans for post bac/second degree work? or are you mostly paying for this out of pocket and one class at a time?

*With a full time Job what has been the most sucessful schedule, how many classes per semester?

*If you are not in a Pre Med Post Bac program, have you found a way to structure your course of study and people willing to help you do so?

I am sure I have other questions but getting on a solid path has been the biggest challange and advice and support would be mucha appreciated

If you choose a major for a second bachelor’s you may be able to get financial aid. It is not necessary that you complete that degree.

You can take courses at a university and the pre-health advisor there should be able to help you. You don’t need to enroll in a formal post-bac program to get the classes you need.

I took 2 classes most semesters. It was doable but very challenging. I never ever took three. I tried to pair classes that were easier for me (in my case, physics) with classes that were more challenging (like organic chemistry). Your mileage will vary.

I worked full time at a university and was able to flex my schedule to allow me to take courses on campus, which I realize was very very lucky.

I hope this gets you started.

Mallory, welcome and best of luck with your endeavors. Don’t worry about your undergrad degree. I was an art major and it didn’t enter into anything, except to count as a degree. As for your post-bacc work, I agree it is not necessary to go to a structured post-bacc program. You can do the same or slower schedule at a university that offers the basics. The premed advisors can help you with scheduling. I worked full time (although had help with flexible hours) and took two classes with labs per semester, finished in 6 semesters, i.e. 2 years counting summers. This included preparing for and taking the MCAT. If you intend to work in underserved areas, you might find schools will be more receptive to CC courses. Target the areas you are considering, and contact the schools in those areas to find out their specific requirements. BTW…one of the non-trads in my med school class was a theater major, did some work in film and commercials before medicine. She’s now a surgeon.

Thank you for your welcome and advice.

It is good to hear that there are other artistic types out there who not only started this process but finished. (some of the advisors who have looked at my transcripts think I’m nuts) I have to admit I am disappointed that CC credits are not well received I paid $2,500 for one Algebra class at my alma mater and got a professor who taught the whole class facing the board and half of the 18yr old freshman would walk out after attendance, this summer I took a $300 trig class at a CC and the Prof had a doctorates in Math and delivered the most dynamic and comprehensive math class I have ever taken (I struggle with math so that’s important to me).

Anyway I truly appreciate the advice.

This site has been very helpful to me when doing research and asking questions.

Thank you!!


the CC credits is a never ending debate. It is true that generally you are not as competitive when you go to a CC. However, it also depends heavily on your GPA and your MCAT. A strong MCAT (assuming a good GPA), will probably cancel any CC issues.

Besides, non trads are just that, non trads with responsibility and a life. So the best is to make the best out of what you have and hope for the best.

Good luck, welcome and keep us posted on your progress.

Hi Mallory,

I also live in the Chicago area, and just this semester started a formal post-bac pre-med program … I did quite a bit of research about the other Chicago-area post-bac programs before choosing one (there are actually FOUR in the Chicago area!); I’ll PM you with more info.