Six Tips for the Pre-Med Student: How to Choose the Right Career Path

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  • Choosing the right career path can be a challenge for many students, even those in pre-med. It’s important to study something you have a passion for and would enjoy doing for a living. You may choose to become a general doctor, but you could also venture into a specific field. The following tips can help you choose the right career path:

    Assess Current Interests

    Your interests as a student of medicine are the primary guiding force in your decision. Individuals who enjoy working with children often decide to pursue a career as a pediatrician. However, those who are interested in working with expecting mothers and delivering babies often end up working as an OBGYN or Maternal-Fetal Specialist like Dr. Gilbert Webb on Vitals. Others are particularly interested in the science of the foot and work as podiatrists, and still others want to learn more about the back and become a chiropractor. Your exact goals depend upon what you want to work in and what fields you are interested in.

    Review Your Current Courses

    For those who are at the start of their pre-med tracks, you have a bit more flexibility here. You have not yet started to take classes on the track, so you aren’t bound to any particular discipline. However, if you have already taken a slew of courses in the medical field, you may use those classes to guide your decision. For example, receiving acceptance into school for dermatologists may prove easier if you have already taken a number of classes in that particular field. It can also help to make more advanced classes less difficult to complete.

    Benefit from Your Strengths

    Not only should you consider the classes you like and the classes you have already taken, but you should also look at your grades. Maybe you love the idea of pediatrics, but you find that you do not interact well with young children. Perhaps working as a cardiologist intrigues you, but you have received only average grades in those classes while your scores in other medical classes are all As. Receiving acceptance to medical school requires that your grades are stellar, so you should focus on your strengths.

    Feel Your Sense of Accomplishment

    Deciding which specific medical path to pursue does involve a great deal of conscious thinking and a focus on the hard facts. However, you can allow emotions and personal goals to guide your choices too. For example, perhaps cancer is a disease that many of your loved ones have succumbed to. As a result, you feel a calling to work as an oncologist. If your grades and your course-interests match up with that deep desire, then consider following that path.

    Account for Time and Money

    While following your dreams no matter what the cost is may sound like a fantastic idea, you also need to remain practical and grounded. If your career is the only major goal you have, then investing a tremendous amount of money into it may prove reasonable. However, if you want to marry, purchase a house and have children before the age of 30, you should evaluate how your schooling plans fit in with those plans. You can do it all, you just need a clear sense of what the particular program costs and how much time you need to invest.

    Consider the Demand

    When you are trying to figure out the right medical career for yourself, you should also look into the current demand and the future projected demand. Basing a job solely on demand is not the best idea since fields can change so rapidly. However, the medical field is one that has more permanence in society than some others do. Look to see how your desired field is predicted to be doing in 10 years, and that can give you a sense of whether or not it is right for you.

    While choosing a path can cause some challenges, putting in the effort will help you to find your best match. These tips will help you to choose a career path that will be rewarding.

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