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Some Math
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(Edited since I fucked up the math like an idiot)
10 3-credit university courses and one 6-credit course covering the Faculty of Medicine's prerequisite list: $6,930
18 credits besides, to bring my full complement of credits to 120: $2,882-$3,546 (depending on whether they are 9, 6, or 3-credit courses)
Fee to write the MCAT exam: $210.00
Application to the Faculty of Medicine: $1,000 per application
Undergraduate MD program: $10,598.48 per year, for a combined total of $42,393.92
Postgraduate education, minimum 2 years, I'm wanting to take 5: $852.84 per year, for a combined total of $4,264.20 for five years

Total cost: minimum $58,344.12 in tuition and fees alone, not counting living expenses, books, GST, anything.


Assume 2 years to complete BSc HS: 2
4 years Undergrad medicine: 6
5 years PGME: 11

Age at completion, if I began tomorrow: 35

... Am I motivated enough?

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First... I think your math might be off, for a couple of reasons.

Your pre-req costs are what they are (though remember, lab classes have extra costs), but there's no way those credits, plus 18, add up to 120. (Unless you know for sure what you'd get transfer credit for?)

You can probably either speed up the undergrad, or give yourself time to work through it (and be honest, night shifts are good times to study, it's real quiet), by doing electives over the summer (since I don't think you'll have much luck getting a lot of your pre-reqs then).

Plus, the U of A likes it's Med students, and it's science students. There's scholarships available, even if a Jason Lang only knocks $1,000 off, it's something, and there are plenty more.

You could do it. Think about if it's what you want. If it is, then don't look back. If you want to, but think about 'how long' and 'how much', you'll never get there, and live to regret it.

Re: A few thoughts.

I know the University of Athabasca will give me 60 credits for my Respiratory. The prerequisites add up to 42 more credits, which leaves me 18 credits over and above to take how I wish, which is why the cost varies -- since the classes aren't set in stone.

Also, since I'm doing it through the University of Athabasca (since they're the only place that will literally knock off half my degree free of charge) I'm not sure about what kind of scholarships/bursaries are available. That's step 2. As it stands, I have around four grand to just blow -- which should get me through a couple of semesters.

If you're talking about Athabasca, then you may be able to do it faster, since you can start classes whenever. (i.e. "Right when you finish the last one")

You can, however, get things like the Jason Lang while attending Athabasca, if you're taking enough credits. Perhaps "not much", but still something. Especially since, being Athabasca, you're not tied to particular lecture times and can still work.

I don't know how it works in Canada, but definitely try for Merit Scholarships (based upon your demographic - i.e., residence, grades, ethnicity, extracurricular activities, etc., not income). And here, they have what's called CLEP credits - tests you can take ($65 each) in certain subjects for things you're proficient in that will knock off credits. I knocked off a full year that way, and did a 4-year degree in 3 years. Each college has a different policy on CLEP, though, and how much they will allow you to use.

the equivalency tests I've looked into; there's a possibility the faculty of medicine will say "No" to my admission, citing that my equivalency test wasn't good enough. And if they do that, I'm out $1,000 worth of application fees. So I'm stuck -- spend the $600 on a course that will likely prep me for the MCAT and will boost my GPA, or be out $1,000 in application fees with nothing to show for it?

I think it's obvious which one I'll pick... though I did look into what you're suggesting.

I forgot one more thing: have you asked your HR department at work if they offer any kind of tuition reimbursement program?

A lot of companies do - mostly the larger ones - but they don't advertise it, and you don't know unless you ask. My company paid for my entire college education.

Sometimes there's a catch - where I work, you have to agree to stay employed with them for 2 years afterward, or they can ask you to pay them back. And they reimbursed you on a sliding scale depending on your grades - 100% for an A, 90% for a B, 80% for a C, and nothing for D's and F's. But I went to school with several people who had no restrictions like that where they work. Their employers paid 100%, up front, regardless of grades. So it can vary.

Never hurts to ask. :)

You can do it! If I can do it, alone, having started at the same age you'll be when you estimate you'll graduate, YOU can definitely do it.

For the record, I think you would make an amazing doctor.

That's more cash owed than a whole lot of American undergrads.

And having your shit together by the time you're 35 doesn't sound so bad at all.

And if not motivated, I sure as hell know you're able.

Could be far worse all told. You've found out ways of getting the most of what you know you need and have done. I think you'd be a fabulous doctor all told -- and that's not the impression I have of some med students right off the batt (nor of many pre-med or hopefully-I'll-get-into-med students for that matter).
Follow your dreams! :)

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