Need Help of Wise Guys/Gals

In a few days I will be hitting 54. My life has been very interesting so far. I started working full time at age 21. Went back to school to get Master’s at age 25. Left that job at age 31 to get my Ph.D (in Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology) and has been working as a scientist since age 37 in this field. My carrier as a scientist has been better then average and I am happy with it.

I always wanted to give back something to the society and the folks who helped me become what I am (and did my best to accomplish this goal while working by generous donations). With that thought in mind I planned to retire at age 56 and do volunteer work for the rest of my life. As I am nearing that goal I am looking into what is that I can do. After considering many things I have concluded that being a health care provided may be a best choice for me. So that is what brought me to this board.

The choices to get into this ares are to become a MD or Physician Assistant. Due to my age I am passing on the MD and going for the PA path. Please share your thoughts/views on this. Also advise me how to become a better candidate for a PA school since I have been out of school for such a long time. Thanks.

I would assume it is similiar to someone trying to get into medical school.

You need to contact the school admissions dept and talk to them about what you need to do.

I would then start shadowing a PA or even a doctor.

Good luck,

Rachel Yealy, DO

Pittsburgh, PA

My good friend is in a PA school. From what I remember from her application process, most PA schools accept either MCAT or GRE (I’m not sure which one specifically). I know that my friend did significantly better on GRE than MCAT - something to consider;

the best resource would be to follow RWankum’s advice and check the websites of the schools you’re interested in, or call their admission offices.

Goood luck your path and welcome to OPM.


deleted duplicate post

Well, something strange happened in the last few weeks. Now at the young age of 54, I have been declared retired by my employer. So this has given me additional 2 years, and now I very much like to go for MD. If I go to a Caribbean school I will be 55 before I can start and 59 when I am ready for a residency. I am ready to take this plunge- have conviction, physical strength,and intellectual ability (? being modest). The school I would like to go to will have hybrid training- basic in Island, clinical in US. I am passing a US med school as this would add two more years of premed thus residency at 61

Help me guess how easy/difficult it would be to fetch a residency in family practice at this age with a foreign degree. In addition, I would like to hear what other thoughts you may have to pursue this dream.

On a side note would my experience in research in biomedical Sciences, which spanned 23 years(a rather successful career, author of 35 publication, had a GPA of 3.9 during the Ph. D) be of any help t attract attention.


Help please, any body?

I know of an individual who is currently enrolled in the Caribbean at one of the schools who does exactly what you are speaking of: 2 years courses on the island, clinicals in US. (To protect the identity of the individual I’m leaving it purposefully vague.)

The student’s father is a doctor in the US, graduated top of his class at a prestigious university, and is paying for the medical school costs.

Knowing him as I do, he would not do so if he thought it a complete waste of time, moreover, money. He has continually stated he is proud of his child for taking this path as the other paths available might have taken much longer for the individual to matriculate. Further, the school which is being attended is continually adding more US hospitals to their list of clinicals.

I do not know of what the match would look like, it appears there are others on this board with must broader experience than I have. My experience is from sideline watching his child and considering that path for me as well if all others are blocked.

Keep us posted. I’m 44 and do not nearly have the credentials you have but am giving this my all.


edited: Sorry to hear about your employer!

Thanks. This is really helpful. Any thoughts on age factor for finding a residency with a FM degree (I will be 59 by the time I can apply for one)?

Note: you get an MD degree, without any kind of concentration. The residency gives you your specialty credentials…

As to FM, many FM residencies do not fill their slots; in other words, it’s pretty easy to match into an FM residency. However, you’ll want to do some serious self-promoting to get into a residency. During your fourth year of med school, you should have some elective time. I suggest using that elective time to do “guest rotations” at FM residencies where you’d be interested in going for residency. That way they can get to know you and you have a chance to reassure them about your age and abilities.

You’ll want to look into residencies well in advance, so that you can pick some that appeal to you and that you think would be interested in you - this is homework that should be done during your third year of med school.

Good luck! Mary