Who is this OldManDave guy and why has he created this organization and web site? Well, let me just tell you…a story ‘bout a man named Jed, poor mountain man who barely kept his family fed…WHOOPS! Wrong story!!
Seriously, if you’d asked me at age 6, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I would have quickly returned: Doctor, astronaut or a truck-driver. Well, at 6’ & 275# I am waaaay too big to fit in those tiny space ships, long distance driving is BORING; so I had no choice but to become a physician. That was the intent when I hit college.
However, to be straight - I majored in partying and minored in fraternity and ended up having to withdraw from school in the fall of '87 to avoid academic expulsion – 93 hours w/ a cumGPA ~ 1.25. I knew then that there was no way on God’s green Earth I was ever getting into med school.
So, I chose to work in allied health as a cardiac monitor tech. There I met a Ph.D. (still teaches at the U of Ark med school - cardiophysiology) who told me if I wanted it badly enough, the BEST chance he could see for me is to get a clinical degree/license, meaning nursing or respiratory therapy, & work a few years to demonstrate perserverance and dedication. Then, go back & re-do a complete BS and kick some major @$$ with the grades.
That journey started in ~'88. After ~10 years as a resp terrorist, at 33 years of age (in 99) & armed with my new magna cum laude BS in neuroscience from UTDallas, I entered med school in the fall of '99 at the Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine. I have never worked harder, been so academically abused nor loved any challenge more than this. I cannot envision how empty I would feel had I not done this. Living my life’s dream with my soulmate at my side, Wendy - my wife, I know that one day I will die a contented man safe in the knowledge that I led a charmed & full life.
Now, I am starting the second half of my 3rd year…I am 18 mos from my residency. I still have to occasionally pinch myself to make certain that I am awake. It has been a very long and, at times, very difficult journey.
Would I do it again? Absolutely!
Do I regret how my course was plotted? Not really…wish I were younger, but I truly am content & comfortable with “who” I am and most likely would not have that luxury if I had taken a more traditional route.
Would I receommend this route to someone else? No
Most common question I am asked: I have (insert deficit/problem/commitment of choice) in my background, can I get into med school? Yes you can, if you are willing to make the sacrifices, do the work and put in the long hours required to do it.
Next most common: Is it worth it? For me, undoubtably YES – for you, ONLY YOU can answer that…and I strongly recommend a lot of very deep introspection and earnest communication with yourself & those who’ll be undertaking the journey with you before you make your decision.
I wish you all the best of luck and success in your journey through life.
“Nothing Risked; Nothing Gained!”
– OldManDave, year uncertain