There is some concern that there may not be enough physicians to care for patients as our society moves forward; thus, it is important that we continue to encourage high-achieving young people to enter the medical profession.
However, many students who might be interested in this field of study don’t have any idea how to go about getting there. Associations like the National Academy of Physicians and Medical Scientists may be able to help. Here are some important facts that aspiring high school students should keep in mind to enter the medical field.
Manage Your Grades
High school is a time of growth and experimentation; however, one thing you should not experiment with is your grades. To start on your path to a medical career, you need to make high marks in high school – especially science and math courses.
Classes like physics, chemistry, and biology are very important for students interested in becoming a medical leader. These grades demonstrate to colleges and medical schools that you can handle rigorous course work in difficult subjects. While other things may be beneficial to your application, your grades are probably the most important.
Participate in Extracurricular Activities
Even if you make straight-As in all of your classes, you may not get into the college of your choice or a top medical school if you don’t have anything else on your transcript. You have to demonstrate your interest and commitment to medicine.
Summer internships in a clinic or a medical lab can show that you are dedicated to the field. However, don’t limit your extracurricular activities to only medical-related projects. Join a language club or join a band; as long as you keep up your excellent grades, participating in other activities goes further in demonstrating your ability to manage multiple tasks at the same time at a high level.
Compare Accelerated Versus Traditional Route for Medical School
The traditional route of medicine is through four years of college and four years of medical school. During this path, the student has more time to explore career options and live with the undergraduate experience.
However, there are some programs that allow you to combine college and medical school into a shorter program meaning you would apply for college and medical school together. This option is very competitive and it only works for students who are 100% convinced that medicine is their lifelong passion.
If you decide to try for a combined program, you have to make that decision early in your high school career. This comes back to getting exposure early to the medical sciences. If high-achieving students do not learn about their options, they can’t make the necessary plans to apply for a combined program or even to apply to a traditional medical school.