in debt from undergrad?

I was wondering if anyone here is in the same boat as me: I know med school is $$$$$, but I also have a substantial amount of loans from undergrad and a master’s program! (not to mention for my postbac!) Anyone else? Right now, that figure is way over 50K It would be great to know I’m not alone.Thanks.

You are DEFINITELY not alone! Welcome to the “debt-ful” club of over-achievers!

Uh dood ur not alone!! I have 65K debt right now! 40K alone from my first year of law school. and 25K from undergrad. I have no clue how I am supposed to go back and do a post bacc. I feel trapped!!! Maybe i should just spend another two years in law school and do something I hate the rest of my life in order to make money!
I guess my plan is to just take next year off, and hopefully at least pay 15K of my debt back! So don’t worry to much ur not alone…

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I was wondering if anyone here is in the same boat as me: I know med school is $$$$$, but I also have a substantial amount of loans from undergrad and a master’s program! (not to mention for my postbac!) Anyone else? Right now, that figure is way over 50K It would be great to know I’m not alone.Thanks.


Hi there,
It is not uncommon for medical students to have debt loads in the six figures. I have a couple of colleagues who have more than $250,000 from both undergraduate and medical school. Carrying this much debt is problematic if you plan on doing a residency that is five or more years (such as surgery or the surgery specialties). You can easily end up owing more than $300,000 by the time the interest accrues.
Now the average salary for a physician is in the neighborhood of $130,000 with the average salary for a surgeon being in the neighborhood of $260,000 so paying off loans in the six figures is not generally a problem. You should try to get through medical school with a little debt as possible(scholarships,military,Public Health Service) but even having debt in the six figures can be overcome on a physician’s salary. You also have to remember that you will be out of the workforce for four years while you are attending medical school. This can place severe hardships on students with families and mortgages so these things have to be taken into consideration in addition to the debt load.
Applying to and attending medical school is an expensive proposition and getting more expensive by the year. In addition to textbooks and living expenses, there are heafty fees for your Board exams too. In some ways, traditional students have an easier time but don’t let debt scare you out of applying if medicine is your goal. Just learn as much about the financial aid availability and keep your grades as high as possible so that you can qualify for scholarship money. If you are within the age range, military service is a viable option too.
Good luck!
Natalie

I’m not in debt from undergrad. I’m in debt from law school though. A friend of mine advised me to work in law until I pay off those loans and then pursue the med school thing. I just don’t think that’s a realistic goal. Work for 5 years in a profession I hate, that saps the life and energy out of me, age some, then head to med school and rack up a similar amount of debt as the one I just toiled away to bring down. Frankly, if I could just stay in my job for 5 years, I’d probably do it…but the point is, that I can’t…my heart won’t let me. I’ll pay it off one day. I’m going to try to get into a state school and reduce my amount of debt from medical school, but…I don’t want to pick my career moves and what I will spend 1/3 of my life doing by my law school loans. A lot of doctors enjoy toys such as a second home, boats, etc…mine will be my educational debt…that’s my second mortgage. I’ll pay it over a 30 year period consolidated at this low, low rate. People say that real estate is a great investment, but I think an education is too. I may never be rich. I may never win any awards for financial responsibility…but I will be happy with what I did with my life…and, more importnatly, I won’t be going to debtor’s prison unless they change the laws…If I made my decisions according to money, then I’d stick with law, but I make them for happiness and personal fulfillment.

My turn!
For the gazillionth time you are not alone. I owe about $20K on my undergrad loans, and was concerned about paying that off if I get into med school.
Luckily I’m a medical technician now, and the Federal Govt grants some cancellation/reductions for people who work in the medical tech/nursing field.
Think about it this way. If you are going to be in debt its much better to have “good debt” that is tax deductible and low interest like student loans than say credit card debt. From my experience student loans are handled much less aggressively than credit cards loans.

Honestly, my student loans from law school alone are so high evne without accounting for future medical school loans, I’m embarassed to think about the number, and much less, say it out loud. Sometimes it seems really daunting and I don’t know how I’ll ever pay it off, and maybe I never will. This was a big issue for me in choosing my post-bacc program. I chose an expensive. I figured that it would be worse for me to stop working/commit career suicide, and then not even get into medical school. I know countless people have gotten into medical through less expensive post-bacc studies, but I just now myself and in order to increase my chances and really, really master the material I couldn’t take my chances on the local state university (where I went for undergrad and recall first-hand what a poor learning environment it was). Sometimes I think it’s crazy to rack up this kind of debt, and it probably is. This will probably stand out as one of the all-time worst financial decisions of my life. Donald Trump would disapprove, I’m sure. But I only have one life and I would miserable if I stayed in law to pay off my loans and when I finally did, I think I would be so spent I wouldn’t have the energy/drive to continue onto medical school…not to mention, that I would just rack up the debt I just finished paying off. I believe that life works itself out and I’m hoping that I will find a way to live a meaningful life and pay off my loans somehow, someway.