Switch from Medicine to Law

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
062914123
Posts: 1846
Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 2:11 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby 062914123 » Fri Jun 07, 2013 5:03 pm

.
Last edited by 062914123 on Mon Jun 30, 2014 3:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
unclepete
Posts: 308
Joined: Wed Mar 27, 2013 12:54 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby unclepete » Fri Jun 07, 2013 5:04 pm

bee wrote:
ManoftheHour wrote:
unclepete wrote:Don't go to med school unless you can't imagine yourself being anything but a doctor. I can't stress this enough.

My sister started med school last August, took a leave of absence within a month, and is now pursuing something completely different and couldn't be happier. Sure, it's a well-respected career, but realize that you will have NO life (seriously....zero) for about 8-10 years, have zero say in where you live for 4-5. If you're having any doubts AT ALL, do not go.


This. So much this. So many people don't know. Med school is no joke. You have to be okay with giving up your 20s and early 30s, be in quarter million + debt BEFORE interest, not knowing where you will end up for residency, and all the work and stress that comes with it. Forget about dating and social life.

You don't just get into med school, waltz through, and become rich. Going to med school is one of the dumbest things to do if all you want to be is rich.

Seriously. This. If you guys knew any med students/interns/residents, you would not be telling OP to go to med school when they obviously have no passion for it.

One of the few lifestyles worse than BigLaw.


My brother-in-law is a 3rd year resident now. Ended up in one of the worst cities in the country, and has not made a SINGLE family holiday since he started because he can't get a day off. Not a single day. We now pick up the entire family and go to him for holidays.

Dbate
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 6:48 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby Dbate » Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:26 pm

jkay wrote:There's a third career path here: Biology related Ph.D.


I worked in a lab for two years and it was terrible. Also, the economic prospects of a PhD are atrocious.

Dbate
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 6:48 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby Dbate » Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:30 pm

ManoftheHour wrote:
unclepete wrote:Don't go to med school unless you can't imagine yourself being anything but a doctor. I can't stress this enough.

My sister started med school last August, took a leave of absence within a month, and is now pursuing something completely different and couldn't be happier. Sure, it's a well-respected career, but realize that you will have NO life (seriously....zero) for about 8-10 years, have zero say in where you live for 4-5. If you're having any doubts AT ALL, do not go.


This. So much this. So many people don't know. Med school is no joke. You have to be okay with giving up your 20s and early 30s, be in quarter million + debt BEFORE interest, not knowing where you will end up for residency, and all the work and stress that comes with it. Forget about dating and social life.

You don't just get into med school, waltz through, and become rich. Going to med school is one of the dumbest things to do if all you want to be is rich.



That is part of the issue. Medicine is all consuming.

When I sat down to think about it, I wouldn't have my first real job until I was 32. I am a 22 year old. Ten years is almost half of my life.

Medicine requires:

22-26 Med School, will put me in about $200K debt
26-30 (or 31) Residency, where you make about $55K a year while interest accrues on your loans.

When I got my first real job, I would be in debt by almost $250-270K at the age of 31 or 32. I wouldn't even be able to pay off my loans until I was 42.

The economic aspects make medicine a poor career choice. I couldn't imagine piling my general dislike for the actual practice of medicine on top of that financial stress.

User avatar
sinfiery
Posts: 3308
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 2:55 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby sinfiery » Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:33 pm

Curious, what do doctors make? I hear anything from 150-800k.

Dbate
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 6:48 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby Dbate » Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:38 pm

sinfiery wrote:
Dbate wrote:
Nova wrote:they show you what schools you can likely get into with your GPA and hypothetical LSAT



Oh that's really helpful then!

Do people tend to increase alot from their practice LSAT scores? Would I be able to improve from the 159 I initially scored as a sophomore?

My very first cold PT ( not even knowing if the test was multiple choice going in) was a 157. 176 this last October.

It's possible but not guaranteed but it is guaranteed to require some effort.

I believe you should not go to med school if you don't want to be a doctor but financially speaking, med school kills law schools.

You will need to break a 170 for law school to not be a giant waste of money


This is really encouraging to hear. I got my 159 my sophomore year, so I am not sure how I would do now. But I have always done well on verbal tests (790 SAT CR, 36 ACT Reading, 12 MCAT verbal). So I should hopefully be able to do well on the LSAT.

From looking on Law School Numbers if I scored a 173, I would be able to get into some top law schools (T14) caliber. The only thing that would hold me back is my GPA, but I majored in a biological science (which is somewhat different from most law school applicants) and I did my undergrad at a respectable school (HYP).

Hopefully, all together I could get into a decent law school.

Dbate
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 6:48 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby Dbate » Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:39 pm

sinfiery wrote:Curious, what do doctors make? I hear anything from 150-800k.


It varies based on specialty.

For primary care physicians: 170K is about the norm.
For non-surgical specialists: 220K
For surgical specialists: 250-350K on average

User avatar
ManoftheHour
Posts: 3486
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2013 6:03 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby ManoftheHour » Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:39 pm

sinfiery wrote:Curious, what do doctors make? I hear anything from 150-800k.


Yeah. But to make more than that 150k, you have to specialize. Specialization can take up and ADDITIONAL 5-9 years, depending on the type of practice. That 800k is probably for stuff like neurosurgery, which takes the longest to complete.

However, as a doctor, you will have a job. But it's not worth doing unless you have a passion for it. It'll be the only thing that will keep you sane throughout the process.

User avatar
sinfiery
Posts: 3308
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 2:55 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby sinfiery » Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:43 pm

Dbate wrote:
sinfiery wrote:Curious, what do doctors make? I hear anything from 150-800k.


It varies based on specialty.

For primary care physicians: 170K is about the norm.
For non-surgical specialists: 220K
For surgical specialists: 250-350K on average

Ah, thanks. I see, yeah always wondered how that worked.



Yeah, that's a good cold score. Buy a bible for LG and your score should shoot up from there. At that point, it will take some real work to improve but is very possible and there are great guides and tips in the LSAT forum. Goodluck!


ManoftheHour wrote:
sinfiery wrote:Curious, what do doctors make? I hear anything from 150-800k.


Yeah. But to make more than that 150k, you have to specialize. Specialization can take up and ADDITIONAL 5-9 years, depending on the type of practice. That 800k is probably for stuff like neurosurgery, which takes the longest to complete.

However, as a doctor, you will have a job. But it's not worth doing unless you have a passion for it. It'll be the only thing that will keep you sane throughout the process.

Ah. Yeah, its definitely a great gig (if you want to be a doctor) once you get past the schooling but some numbers I've heard were, as I thought, largely embellished.

User avatar
ManoftheHour
Posts: 3486
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2013 6:03 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby ManoftheHour » Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:45 pm

Good luck OP. I hope this all works out for you. Worst comes to worst, you can still take that 35 to med school and make some good money (if you can tolerate med school). I know people that would kill for a 30.

User avatar
Lexaholik
Posts: 234
Joined: Fri May 31, 2013 10:44 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby Lexaholik » Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:49 pm

Dbate wrote:Hello,

I recently graduated from college and I was set on the premed pathway. I got a degree in Molecular Biology from a quality university (HYP) with a an okay gpa (3.57). I took the MCAT and scored fairly well with a 35 (the average at Harvard Med is a 36), so i am intellectually capable of pursuing a medical career.

My only problem is that I think I don't want to be a doctor anymore. Since my freshman year of college, I had wanted to be a political science major and pursue law school, but I decided against that because I didn't want to take the "easy" way out. But now that I think of it, that is what I should have pursued.

With my low GPA I will probably not get into a good law school, so do you think it would be worth it to switch to a legal career?


the answer to this question is vastly different than the answer to "can i get into a top school?" the answer to the second question is probably yes, since you're smart, have good grades, and probably will get a decent LSAT score.

as to whether it would be worth it, that depends on your strengths, skills and personality. try to find out more about what lawyers do, and whether that sounds like something you want to do. if, for example, your true interest in political science is politics or government, there are other ways to break into those fields. but without knowing more, it's hard for anyone to tell you whether it's "worth it."

Dbate
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 6:48 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby Dbate » Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:13 pm

Lol, I just stumbled across this thread via google searching and I realized I wrote this in 2013!

Not that anyone cares, but I wanted to provide a followup. I eventually decided to go to medical school and I am in my fourth year of medical school. I have already completed all the requirements for graduation, so I just have to show up and receive my M.D. degree! I ended up attending a fairly good medical school and I am in the process of interviewing for residency.

Long story short, I should have stuck with my gut from ages ago. Although I am finishing up medical school, I really hate medicine and severely regret that I did not pursue the law school path. Looking back on it, my pride got in the way of me pursuing my true passion. I didn't want to be perceived as a premed failure, so I stuck it out and I am about a few months away from being a Doctor.

To any college student who stumbles across this thread, I advise you to avoid medicine like the plaque. The VAST majority of medical students and physicians I know dislike medicine and would never advise someone to pursue this path.

krads153
Posts: 633
Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2015 4:18 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby krads153 » Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:17 am

Geez. Isn't med school supposed to be the fun and easy part of the process? Most residents I know hate actually working as a physician but liked school.

corporatemandaorbust
Posts: 71
Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2017 12:12 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby corporatemandaorbust » Wed Nov 22, 2017 5:28 pm

Dbate wrote:Lol, I just stumbled across this thread via google searching and I realized I wrote this in 2013!

Not that anyone cares, but I wanted to provide a followup. I eventually decided to go to medical school and I am in my fourth year of medical school. I have already completed all the requirements for graduation, so I just have to show up and receive my M.D. degree! I ended up attending a fairly good medical school and I am in the process of interviewing for residency.

Long story short, I should have stuck with my gut from ages ago. Although I am finishing up medical school, I really hate medicine and severely regret that I did not pursue the law school path. Looking back on it, my pride got in the way of me pursuing my true passion. I didn't want to be perceived as a premed failure, so I stuck it out and I am about a few months away from being a Doctor.

To any college student who stumbles across this thread, I advise you to avoid medicine like the plaque. The VAST majority of medical students and physicians I know dislike medicine and would never advise someone to pursue this path.


Isn't this what every professional says about their path?...Doctors, Lawyers, Bankers, etc.
What is it that is so bad about being a physician?

jrmills20
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Nov 23, 2017 10:55 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby jrmills20 » Thu Nov 23, 2017 11:09 am

Dbate wrote:Lol, I just stumbled across this thread via google searching and I realized I wrote this in 2013!

Not that anyone cares, but I wanted to provide a followup. I eventually decided to go to medical school and I am in my fourth year of medical school. I have already completed all the requirements for graduation, so I just have to show up and receive my M.D. degree! I ended up attending a fairly good medical school and I am in the process of interviewing for residency.

Long story short, I should have stuck with my gut from ages ago. Although I am finishing up medical school, I really hate medicine and severely regret that I did not pursue the law school path. Looking back on it, my pride got in the way of me pursuing my true passion. I didn't want to be perceived as a premed failure, so I stuck it out and I am about a few months away from being a Doctor.

To any college student who stumbles across this thread, I advise you to avoid medicine like the plaque. The VAST majority of medical students and physicians I know dislike medicine and would never advise someone to pursue this path.


Sorry to hear, but this was my experience 30 years ago (graduated med school in '87).

I hated med school from the start, but had never thought of anything else and couldn't imagine telling my parents that I didn't want to be a doctor. I even started a residency, but quit after about 2 months. (A close friend committed suicide two weeks into his residency...and I imagined myself being next.) After two+ years of trying to find my passion (medical research - yuck!), I decided to try law school after auditing a Con Law class. Went to Vanderbilt (class of '93), loved it, and have had a very successful and happy career.

The good news - if you are still considering law - is that your MD will get you plenty of attention from top law schools. And - at least in my case - law school seemed easy and fun compared to med school. Maybe it was because I had already been through the rigors of med school, but I think it was mostly because I found something that fit me better and it was such a relief. YMMV.

RSolano
Posts: 135
Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2017 1:06 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby RSolano » Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:01 pm

Dbate wrote:Lol, I just stumbled across this thread via google searching and I realized I wrote this in 2013!

Not that anyone cares, but I wanted to provide a followup. I eventually decided to go to medical school and I am in my fourth year of medical school. I have already completed all the requirements for graduation, so I just have to show up and receive my M.D. degree! I ended up attending a fairly good medical school and I am in the process of interviewing for residency.

Long story short, I should have stuck with my gut from ages ago. Although I am finishing up medical school, I really hate medicine and severely regret that I did not pursue the law school path. Looking back on it, my pride got in the way of me pursuing my true passion. I didn't want to be perceived as a premed failure, so I stuck it out and I am about a few months away from being a Doctor.

To any college student who stumbles across this thread, I advise you to avoid medicine like the plaque. The VAST majority of medical students and physicians I know dislike medicine and would never advise someone to pursue this path.



I'm so sorry that things turned out poorly! :( Thank you for updating, I hope you find a way now to do what makes you happy- don't let your life pass you by, time goes by so quickly! I really believe that we can help others the most when we're happy in our lives so do what you've gotta do!

User avatar
pancakes3
Posts: 6488
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2014 2:49 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby pancakes3 » Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:05 pm

i'm surprised we've got boomer JD-MD lurkers.

CPA-->JD
Posts: 190
Joined: Tue May 24, 2016 12:30 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby CPA-->JD » Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:43 pm

I have a relative that dropped out of med school after 3 years to attend a t-6 law school. Ending up being an extremely successful patent attorney for the last 30 years.

jrmills20
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Nov 23, 2017 10:55 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby jrmills20 » Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:02 pm

pancakes3 wrote:i'm surprised we've got boomer JD-MD lurkers.


Only because my daughter is applying to law schools for this fall...

dabigchina
Posts: 1199
Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:22 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby dabigchina » Thu Nov 23, 2017 11:24 pm

Dbate wrote:Lol, I just stumbled across this thread via google searching and I realized I wrote this in 2013!

Not that anyone cares, but I wanted to provide a followup. I eventually decided to go to medical school and I am in my fourth year of medical school. I have already completed all the requirements for graduation, so I just have to show up and receive my M.D. degree! I ended up attending a fairly good medical school and I am in the process of interviewing for residency.

Long story short, I should have stuck with my gut from ages ago. Although I am finishing up medical school, I really hate medicine and severely regret that I did not pursue the law school path. Looking back on it, my pride got in the way of me pursuing my true passion. I didn't want to be perceived as a premed failure, so I stuck it out and I am about a few months away from being a Doctor.

To any college student who stumbles across this thread, I advise you to avoid medicine like the plaque. The VAST majority of medical students and physicians I know dislike medicine and would never advise someone to pursue this path.

Law sounds sexy, but it's just as bullshit as medicine, if not more so. You have a long residency period, but you can make a decent amount of money in lower cost of living locations. That in and of itself makes medicine infinitely better than law.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse
Posts: 29172
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Fri Nov 24, 2017 12:14 am

Eh, you can make a decent amount of money in law in lower COL locations, too. That’s such a broad statement though that it doesn’t really say anything about whether a given person should pick one or the other.

dabigchina
Posts: 1199
Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:22 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby dabigchina » Fri Nov 24, 2017 12:21 am

I'm sure you could point to anecdotes where some lawyer makes a ridiculous amount of money in flyover states, but the broad trends support what I am pointing out.

Doctors tend to make more in low CoL cities because the demand for medical services are high while the supply of doctors who are willing to go there is low.

https://www.verywell.com/how-does-town- ... ry-1735990

The trend is absolutely not the same for law. Unless you are one of the fortunate few who can swing Texas biglaw, it's pretty hard to find a job that pays anywhere near what a biglawyer could make in NY, SF, LA, Chi. In house positions also pay less in lower CoL locations.

corporatemandaorbust
Posts: 71
Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2017 12:12 pm

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby corporatemandaorbust » Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:08 am

dabigchina wrote:
Dbate wrote:Lol, I just stumbled across this thread via google searching and I realized I wrote this in 2013!

Not that anyone cares, but I wanted to provide a followup. I eventually decided to go to medical school and I am in my fourth year of medical school. I have already completed all the requirements for graduation, so I just have to show up and receive my M.D. degree! I ended up attending a fairly good medical school and I am in the process of interviewing for residency.

Long story short, I should have stuck with my gut from ages ago. Although I am finishing up medical school, I really hate medicine and severely regret that I did not pursue the law school path. Looking back on it, my pride got in the way of me pursuing my true passion. I didn't want to be perceived as a premed failure, so I stuck it out and I am about a few months away from being a Doctor.

To any college student who stumbles across this thread, I advise you to avoid medicine like the plaque. The VAST majority of medical students and physicians I know dislike medicine and would never advise someone to pursue this path.

Law sounds sexy, but it's just as bullshit as medicine, if not more so. You have a long residency period, but you can make a decent amount of money in lower cost of living locations. That in and of itself makes medicine infinitely better than law.


One could also see this another way. Some areas are high CoL because they are desirable places to live. As a lawyer, you have a better chance of being able to live and afford those areas than a doc. Most people do NOT want to live in flyover states. If that was your goal, then yes, medicine would probably be a better choice.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse
Posts: 29172
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:55 am

dabigchina wrote:I'm sure you could point to anecdotes where some lawyer makes a ridiculous amount of money in flyover states, but the broad trends support what I am pointing out.

Doctors tend to make more in low CoL cities because the demand for medical services are high while the supply of doctors who are willing to go there is low.

https://www.verywell.com/how-does-town- ... ry-1735990

The trend is absolutely not the same for law. Unless you are one of the fortunate few who can swing Texas biglaw, it's pretty hard to find a job that pays anywhere near what a biglawyer could make in NY, SF, LA, Chi. In house positions also pay less in lower CoL locations.

That’s all fine - it’s just that your original statement said “can make” and “decent amount of money,” which absolutely is true of law, if you don’t qualify it to mean “most” and “ridiculous” amounts of money.

that aside, if the OP’s point is that they hate medicine, making more money in medicine than in law isn’t likely to make them actually like medicine any better.

dabigchina
Posts: 1199
Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:22 am

Re: Switch from Medicine to Law

Postby dabigchina » Fri Nov 24, 2017 2:58 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
dabigchina wrote:I'm sure you could point to anecdotes where some lawyer makes a ridiculous amount of money in flyover states, but the broad trends support what I am pointing out.

Doctors tend to make more in low CoL cities because the demand for medical services are high while the supply of doctors who are willing to go there is low.

https://www.verywell.com/how-does-town- ... ry-1735990

The trend is absolutely not the same for law. Unless you are one of the fortunate few who can swing Texas biglaw, it's pretty hard to find a job that pays anywhere near what a biglawyer could make in NY, SF, LA, Chi. In house positions also pay less in lower CoL locations.

That’s all fine - it’s just that your original statement said “can make” and “decent amount of money,” which absolutely is true of law, if you don’t qualify it to mean “most” and “ridiculous” amounts of money.

that aside, if the OP’s point is that they hate medicine, making more money in medicine than in law isn’t likely to make them actually like medicine any better.

Fair enough, not really interested in litigating the semantics of what a "decent amount of money" is. My point is he's in a position that a lot of working professionals (including myself) would love to be in. It gets real fucking old having the bust your ass to afford a tiny apartment in the city because you're going to be taking a huge paycut to move elsewhere.

Also, OP's love of the law is based on basically not knowing anything about what the actual practice of law is. This is a classic case of the grass being greener on the other side of the fence. I'm not saying nobody should ever go to law school. I'm just saying it's silly for someone who goes to a top med school to daydream about what might have been if they had gone to law school instead.




Return to “Law School Admissions Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: thatcandoromg and 4 guests