I'm squeamish around blood and I'm not very good with sick people. Are there health careers that don't involve direct patient care?
To name a few: healthcare administration, teaching (nurse educators are in especially high demand), health education and research.
Will a job in a healthcare field provide me with a decent standard of living?
In general, the more specialized or advanced training you receive, the greater your earning potential. This training doesn't have to be completed before you start working. You can continue to learn and increase your earnings throughout your career. Professionals and managers in health fields also tend to earn more than other workers.
Is there a preferred major for pre-med?
There is no "official" pre-med major. In addition to science aptitude, medical schools today expect good communication skills and a well-rounded undergraduate experience.. The most common undergraduate majors of students seeking to become a physician are biology, chemistry, and biochemistry, admission committees consider applicants from a wide variety of academic backgrounds, as long as they have completed the required coursework and achieved a competitive score on the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT). The point to realize is that demonstrated ability in the sciences is of greater importance to admissions committees than the number of science courses taken.
Do I need a 4.0 GPA to get accepted to medical school?
The short answer to this question is no. Good grades are generally required to gain acceptance to medical school; the average GPA of matriculants is usually around a 3.6 or 3.7 (www.aamc.org/data/facts/applicantmatriculant/), but there is no GPA that guarantees admission.
I've heard that I have a better chance of getting accepted to medial school if I don't major in science. Is that true?
The overall message is that students should major in a discipline they enjoy. Admissions committees are interested in a demonstrated ability in the sciences. This means that a non-science major must also show science aptitude. Comparisons of science GPAs, total GPAs, and MCAT scores of all matriculants into medical school show similar numbers, regardless of undergraduate major (www.aamc.org/data/facts/applicantmatriculant/).
What are the course requirements for medical school?
The courses required for application to medical school vary from school to school but most usually include the following:
Medical school requirement
1 year General Biology, with lab
1 year General Chemistry, with lab
1 year Organic Chemistry, with lab
1 year General Physics, with lab
Math* – 1 or 2 courses
English – 1 or 2 coursesHumanities and Social Sciences - variable
*Calculus/Math requirements vary from one year of Calculus at research-oriented schools to no calculus requirements at other schools. Some schools require a statistics course.