As the parent of an aspiring professional, you should be proud. Your child is smart, hardworking, ambitious, and capable and as each year passes your son or daughter becoming more and more independent. It’s at this crucial juncture that they may need your love and support the most.
Getting accepted to graduate school is a long and complicated process, especially if your child is a full time student. The stakes are high — their future is dramatically affected by acceptance or rejection to a school, so the whole process might feel like one big emotional struggle.
I’ve been there too — I struggled to achieve my own career dreams, and now I have dedicated myself to helping students like your child to discover how to navigate the admissions process and improve their chances of acceptance.
I’m here to help — both you, and your son or daughther. The online courses I offer give you the information and structure you and your son or daughter needs to move through the process with success and ease.
My son/daughter wants to take a year off. Isn’t this just a waste of time?
Absolutely not! Taking a year off is an excellent opportunity for your son/daughter to grow as a person. In fact, more premeds are taking a year off after finishing undergrad than ever before — it gives premeds ample time to improve their grades if need be, increase their volunteering/clinical work, work on their application, and better prepare for medical school. Therefore, far from being a waste of time, sometimes a year off might be necessary. [link to Should You Take an Extra Year between the End of College and the Beginning of Medical School? article]
My child seems reluctant to take the MCAT. I want him/her to just try it and see what happens.
I advise against this. Your son/daughter should not take the MCAT until they feel completely comfortable and qualified. They have no reason to take the MCAT “just to try it” — this is what practice exams are for.
I always tell my students to give their first MCAT exam their absolute best. If you take the exam with the mentality that you can “take it again if you mess up” than you are setting yourself up for failure. The entire process is too much work to be taken lightly.
Is there a way to skip college and go straight to Medical School from high school?
Not in the United States’ health care educational system. Although medical schools do not officially say they require a bachelor’s degree, none will accept you without one, and, unlike other countries, the United States does not have a vocational track in its educational system, meaning that you can’t take a test and go straight to medical school from high school. Other countries, including China, Korea and Germany, have a much different system for medical education.
The smartest thing to do is to have your child proceed through the regular U.S. education system, attend a four-year college program, and then apply and enroll in a medical school. This is far better for your child’s training, and reduces a lot of early stress and psychological pressure that a teenager is likely unprepared to handle.
I’m so worried that my son/daughter isn’t going to get into medical school. What advice do you have that will improve his/her chances?
If you are worried, chances are there’s one specific weakness that is the focus. For example, your child took the MCAT and his/her score was sub-par.
Of course, the best advice is to strengthen whatever weakness is the issue. However, if your son/daughter is generally unprepared for medical school, I suggest taking a gap year. This will give them time to improve their chances during which they can boost their GPA, gain more clinical experience, or work on their application. You shouldn’t let your son/daughter apply if they are not ready; they should be prepared as best they can.
I don’t think my son/daughter is very happy at their present college. What should we do?
First, I suggest talking to them about it and finding out why. If s/he is not yet a junior, a transfer to another college is possible and probably a very good idea, even if it means having to add a fifth year of college. If not, finding an organization or club(s) that suits your son/daughter would go a long way in making them feel happier while at college.