Some questions

Okay so I have a weird history which brought me to becoming a pre-med and this may be slightly long winded so if you make it to the end thanks. To start though I am going to go back to 2008 when I graduated high school earlier that year I got my acceptance letter to University of Pittsburgh for a Psychology/pre-med path all excited to start my path to becoming a pediatric psychologist. Then my girlfriend now wife got diagnosed with pretty progressed melanoma and Ithe bills started to add up fast. Scared as to how we were going to pay for treatment as the bills after only a year was teetering around 130k and we were newly wedding I did the only thing I could do I stopped going to school and joined the Navy to get her great healthcare. Fast forward a few years and now my wife is in remission and I am going to separate soon from the service and hoping to apply to medical school. Now my passion is pediatric oncology (for obvious reasons) but I am wondering is it appropriate, to tell the truth, if medical admissions boards ask why it took me so long to apply to medical school. Or should I come up with something else to say when asked that question so I don’t go on this topic?


Why would you not tell them the truth about this one? It’s a pretty powerful experience that a) delayed you from going into medicine and b) is driving you into a career path goal. Keep in mind that you may want to be something now, and that opinion may change once you see what that field is all about from the provider end. You may want to think up other reasons to discuss for joining the navy aside from healthcare benefits alone, if there are any.

I don’t want to come across like I am looking for pitty points or being unprofessional by talking about someone else’s medical. Also not sure if they would look poorly on someone because they have baggage.

I think if you go about it as a matter-of-fact, it wouldn’t detract from your purpose. Having a “pity” story about why you want to get into medicine isn’t going to be anything new to the adcom, and for you it is way more personal than “my grandpa that I never knew died of cancer, now I want to cure cancer so kids will be able to meet their grandpas.” And it’s not really unprofessional for you to discuss your wife’s medical history as it pertains to the general story, as she will probably give you permission and you are not bound by HIPAA. I think you’ll be okay with it. It would be stronger for your application to bring up other drivers about “why medicine, why now,” and anything that you have learned while researching/pursuing medicine that has strengthened your resolve that this is the course for you.

Medical school interviews are essentially job interviews. It’s important for them to get to know you and for you to get to know the school culture and what they have to offer. You’re more likely to succeed in a place that values you for you, though probably at this point you’re at the “i just want to get in somewhere” mindset (which is normal).

For future planning, don’t discount anything the navy has taught you that also increases your potential as a future applicant and physician. As a vet myself, most of my application was about my “former life,” what I learned, how I grew, and why I think those experiences will make me a good physician. Reflect back on what you’ve done and apply those lessons to things you observe in the healthcare environment while working/volunteering/shadowing/other exposure. My class has like 6% former military people and roughly about the same planning on military after graduation.

Thank you for your opinion I am a nuke if you know anything of the program I was wondering if you knew any of my kind in class wth you.

No nukes in my class. The nukes I knew had to do some crazy schools for training, so that would probably look good on a resume. (You actually have to submit your military “academic” record of courses you took that may qualify for college credit) We have some aviators, intel folks, army guard, and a green beret.