Introduction/Request For Advice

Howdy all!

I’m very happy to have stumbled upon this gem of a community. Although I don’t quite do the bill of “old” pre-med I definitely fall in to the camp of non-traditional (actually done by choice).

I am 22 years old, been married for about nine months, and the both of us have been working full time saving up money for pre-med schooling. I graduated May 2015 from a rigorous classical liberal arts college with a BA in Liberal Arts and Culture (overall GPA 3.36). The curriculum was primarily classical-philosophy, western thought, ethics, philosophy of math, four years of advanced Latin, reading, writing, speaking, with the occasional fun elective (Jewish Exegesis, Aesthetic Gastronomy, Marine Biology, Herpetology, and a handful of MA level classes). I knew before going out to this college I wanted to go in to medicine; I was initially thinking the PA route but through a few turns of events and mulling it over I am aiming to become a DO (again specifically because I much prefer the philosophy behind the education). I’ve shadowed a number of physicians, ~60 hours in clinic or in the OR. I am just finishing up a Pre-Calc course (first math course since high school) and am looking to get an A+.

Apart from that pre-calc course I have none of the science or math pre-read for medical school admissions. Possibly complicating my position is the fact that my bachelors degree is from a notionally credited college (through the U.S. Dept. of Ed. and CHEA); am I wrong in thinking that most Post-bacc/DO programs require a regionally accredited degree? I’ve seen a few colleges that specifically mention it, but not all of them. I have a couple options that I would love some advice on:

  • Post-bacc pre-med program that would take about a year and a half to get a BS in Biomedical Sciences (Dominican University in Chicago)
  • Complete a second bachelors degree in something like Biomedical Sciences; there are two colleges I’m currently working with that this is an option for but it would take two solid years to complete (including the fact that the schools are $30k/year before scholarships)
  • Structured Post-Bacc Pre Med programs such as Goucher, Bennington, etc. depending on whether I could get in to those competitive programs.
  • After putting a lot of thought in to it my wife and I have decided against trying to just work on the pre read through some university (I can expand on our reasons for that if you would like).

    We really aren’t certain what the best of those options would be. Part of me doesn’t want to spend two years doing pre-reqs (perhaps I’m just young and impatient?), but am not certain whether I could get in to those structured post bacc programs due to my nationally accredited bachelors degree.

    I would love any and all advice! Thanks for taking the time to read!

Hello there! Just remember that medical schoiol is a marathon, not a sprint. It’s better for you to take a little longer and make your application the best it can be, as opposed to going for expediency. You’re young, you have the time to get all your ducks in a row. I know people are nervous to call schools, but thats the best way to get the info you need to find out if your degree is accepted or not. It also gives you the opportunity to start forging relationships with people in these schools. Don’t underestimate the power of networks! Also, having a liberal arts degree is not a drawback. As long as you do well in the pre reqs you have demonstrated the ability to handle the course load. My Attendings are always excited and interested to learn that I have a humanities degree, and it has lead to many enlightning conversations. Financillay, you’re the only one that can determine what you can do with the resources that are available. If you have any DO specific questions I’ll be happy to answer them, as will any of the other DO’s on this board, many who are farther along in their traning and careers. If you haven’t already (and if your school has one) contact a pre med advisor. They can really help you through the whole process. Good luck to you on your journey!


Thanks for getting back to me! I appreciate it.

I think it’s always good to hear that I should approach this as a marathon(being young I always feel like I need to jump on to the next thing). I’m currently working on setting up more shadowing opportunities and seeing if I can do some grunt work in researching for physicians.

I’ll also start calling DO schools to check on the accreditation; I was feeling nervous about calling them with such a “small” question, but I love the idea of networking.

Are you currently in residency for general surgery? How did the matching process go for you being a DO? Which school did you attend and would you recommend it?

I appreciate your time!

All the best,


Hi Josiah,

Yes, I’m currently in the intern year of a categorical General Surgery Residency. Using ERAS to apply was similar to applying to medical school, but the interviewing process was much different. There is some bias against DO’s in ACGME programs, It’s not anything that surprised me considering I had encountered it before. But once you match, it pretty much goes away, and with the merger it’s going to disappear eventually. I don’t really know much about the newer schools, but any of the established programs will get you where you want to be. Don’t be scared to ask about match rates and board pass rates. You’ll be paying for your education so you deserve to get your money’s worth. If you’d like to talk more shoot me a PM. Good luck and keep us updated on your progress!


I spent the fall applying to various formal Post-Bacc premed programs for the Summer/Fall of 2017:

Bryn Mawr



Montana State University (Bozeman)

University of Colorado (Boulder)

Lewis University

Northwestern University

As of mid-January 2017, I have heard back from three programs (Bryn Mawr, Lewis, and Northwestern). Bryn Mawr declined to extend a seat (no real shocker there), Lewis University accepted me almost immediately (brand new program…worth looking in to as far as 1) ease of entrance, 2) cost), and Northwestern University accepted me as well looking to get an answer within a week of acceptance. I haven’t heard back from the others yet, but am tentatively planning on going to Northwestern’s premed program for various reasons. I would love to hear back from the others (especially Goucher) before making a decision but I don’t foresee that happening.

I’m very excited about getting in to a program and looking forward to starting the long journey into medicine. My wife is excited, albeit nervous about everything it takes. Having a wife that supports your decisions is the best thing I could ever wish for. I’m currently in the decision phase/working out how to pay for the program. My wife and I both saved up over the past two years and could front the costs from savings, but are looking to cut the cost on the program any way we can before even considering taking loans for a premed education.

Looking forward to following up!