Medical School Application Timeline w/ HPSP & MCAT

I am a non-traditional Army Reserve student starting a post bacc program in the fall. I am 36 years old and when I finish my Post Bacc I will be 38. My post bacc is an evening program that will allow me to continue to work while I finish up my prereqs. I want to apply for the HPSP as well and I am concerned that I am going to be pushed against the upper age limit timeline in terms of qualifying for the HPSP which is 42. The AMEDD recruiter wants me to take the MCAT early when I start getting ready to apply to med school as well as the HPSP. I just don’t think that I will be ready for the MCAT after 1 year of taking Prereqs. I feel as though I will only know half of the information on the test. I want to start Med School immediately after Post Bacc to ensure that my timeline isn’t stretched out too far that would potentially disqualify me from the HPSP. I would appreciate any advice to help me stay on course.

Hi there! Just wanted to let you know that Dr. Gray responded to your question on episode 192 of OldPreMeds on 8/21! head over to to listen!

mviaud -

Take a listen to Dr. Gray’s episode on your question. A lot of useful advice. For what it’s worth, I have spoken to just two students who have taken the MCAT before they finished the bulk of the standard pre-reqs. Both seemed to say they spent the equivalent of a 4-5 credit hour class (plus studying) preparing for the MCAT alongside coursework to make up for the time. That said, I’d also recommend listening to Dr. Gray’s MCAT Podcast with NextStep, especially because there are several overview episodes about what content is tested and in what percentages. I also was on a NextStep webinar where one of their tutors reviewed the content (it was called “Intro to the MCAT” and you can find it recorded on their blog). That was very helpful and may help you understand what you should focus on if you plan to take the MCAT early. Good luck!