Success Stories for “Non-Trads”

“Non-Trads” are short, abbreviated terms for “non-traditional” folks, or people who did not go straight from college to professional or graduate school (for the sake of simplicity, we will be discussing exams like LSAT, GMAT, GRE, and MCAT here only – not counting SAT or USMLE or law school licensing exams).


Image is credited to baejaar.

I plan to give a lot of these because I think, even for people who are considering traditional route, the current trend is to take a year or two off to work and pay off the school loans. The cost of school loans is getting ridiculous to pay back, and there are some good articles that talk about seriousness about this (you can google “cost of school loans New York Times” to see this).

Anyway, I got sidetracked for a little, but a story I have for you today is about medical school. A gentleman at age of 35 was considering medical school. Back when he was in undergrad, he studied biological chemistry, so it wasn’t like his science background was the issue. The problem was his age – going back to school late in his age — was it worth it?

One of the key advices given to him was the freshness of the materials. MCAT, unlike other exams, tests facts and knowledges along with critical reasoning skills, so naturally, the question thrown at him was, did he know all the sciences? And would he be able to study and prepare for MCAT without feeling like referring to encyclopedia every time there was a word that he didn’t know (i.e. scientific long words that we can’t pronounce or spell)?

If you are like this gentleman and wonder whether you are still “fresh” for the content, the best option is to consider Examkrackers Complete Review set. This is probably the most accessible (but you really can’t find this in Barnes and Nobles…I tried) and comprehensive MCAT review book that people use. A lot of people have used EK and done exceptionally well in MCAT.

So, the next thing is, let’s say you got the books and the willingness to succeed. How much time should one invest? The suggested time frame was about 10 weeks with anywhere from 30 to 40 hours per week. Divide 30-40 hours by 6 (give yourself a day off) and you get 5-7ish hours per day. You can divide that by 2 to separate into morning and evening sessions – assuming you work during the day.

It’s definitely do-able, and there are stories on the internet about people going to medical school close to mid-40′s so do not give up hope!

What do you think?

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