Dear Career Doctor;
I was 24 years old when I left school into the NFL football draft. I didn’t graduate and I am currently 22 credit hours short of a Criminal Justice degree. I will be returning back to school this summer to finish my degree.
I no longer want to pursue Criminal Justice. My mind has been made up for the past few years to become a doctor. What advice can you give me? My GPA is 2.5 and I haven’t taken any pre-med courses. Should I change my major to something in science, or complete my major and begin my masters with something in science. Please point me into the right direction. Thank you.
Your dream of becoming a physician is challenged by these facts: It is extremely difficult to get into medical school, and almost everyone who is admitted has not just taken pre-med science courses, but has aced them.
People understand that athletes have to spend excessive hours away from the class room and it often takes a toll on grades. But since you were unable to complete your undergraduate degree by age 24 (when most are finished by 21 or 22) and you were only able to get a 2.5 average, you will have to get great grades in science to convince a medical school that you can handle the course work.
Take biology this summer. If you ace it and love it, take the rest of the pre-med courses. If you do not get an A, get some career counseling — either through your college or privately. You know the typical fields that ex-NFL players go into: sales or business. Many also become teachers and coaches. But if you are still intent on being in the medical field, there are plenty of jobs that are equally rewarding, but far less academically demanding than physician.