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Interests and Indecisiveness

primastudentprimastudent Registered User Posts: 1 New Member
I am going into my sophomore year in high school, and I feel more and more stressed about my future as I get older. I know that it is always more beneficial to start planning early, but I am unsure what I really want to for in the future.

Currently, I am a dancer with a well-known ballet school where I dance 20+ hours weekly, and I want to continue my dance training throughout high school. In the perfect world, I would also like to continue dance in college. However, I am still centered around my academic learning, and I want to become a psychiatrist (no, not a clinical psychologist), physiotherapist, or physical therapist.

I see how I continue dance and have it contribute to my future if I were to become a physiotherapist or physical therapist, but I don't see how it can help shall I choose to pursue psychiatry. I know the medical field itself is very demanding, and psychiatry is not exempt from that, making dance seem more like a distraction. Still, I do not want to give up dance any time soon. If anyone has advice or insight to how I could possibly manage majors and minors in college, I would be grateful for your help!

Replies to: Interests and Indecisiveness

  • CheddarcheeseMNCheddarcheeseMN Registered User Posts: 2,966 Senior Member
    I have a friend whose daughter originally planned to completely give up her dance interests when she enrolled in a top public U with plans for pre-med studies. Then she found a local dance company whose practices fit her schedule. She was no longer dancing 15 or more hours a week, but she was able to keep involved with dance. Now she is in medical school and I think she doesn't dance as much or at all, but she kept both of her interests (dance and academics) going for quite a while.
  • aquaptaquapt Registered User Posts: 1,562 Senior Member
    Physical therapy and physiotherapy are the same thing; the latter term is just used more in the UK, Canada, etc.

    It seems to me that your best bet would be to pursue a PT feeder program (ideally with direct-admit or guaranteed-admit) at a school with a strong dance program with an option to minor.

    Chapman University would be a great one to look at:
    https://www.chapman.edu/crean/academic-programs/bridge-linkage-programs/bs-health-doctor-physical-therapy.aspx
    https://www.chapman.edu/copa/dance/academic-programs/index.aspx

    Also University of Hartford
    http://www.hartford.edu/enhp/academics/rehabilitation-sciences/physical-therapy-bsdpt/
    http://www.hartford.edu/hartt/programs/minors/dance.aspx

    and VCU
    https://chp.vcu.edu/departments/pt/prospective-students/dpt-professional-degree/admission-requirements/
    https://arts.vcu.edu/dance/programs/

    There's a lot of overlap between the pre-PT and pre-med science requirements, so if you were to decide to apply to med schools rather than continuing into a the PT grad program, you likely could if you had the grades and MCAT scores.

    Other schools that have DPT programs as well as strong ballet programs include U of Utah, U of Cincinnati, USC, and NYU... but I'm not clear whether/how these programs could be dovetailed.
  • Twoin18Twoin18 Registered User Posts: 935 Member
    Doing a BFA would make it very difficult to pursue a demanding second major due to the constraints on your time. My daughter is doing a BFA in ballet which requires about 80 semester credits in her major (out of 120 for a degree), by the time you've done general ed, there's not much room left in your schedule. AP credits help (she has over 50 credits from those which exempt her from the majority of her general ed) but then it becomes a question of what is available for another major at the times that wouldn't conflict with the fixed ballet commitments.

    She starts at 8am 5 days a week and has an hour and a half of dance classes, then 2 hours available for another gen ed or major course and lunch, then 3 hours of dance, then potentially performance rehearsals in the afternoon. There just isn't much flexibility to fit in other lectures let alone labs into a single 2 hour window each day. Taking summer classes is one option, but most majors don't offer many of their small upper level courses in the summer.

    If you picked a BA in dance (or just did it as a minor or outside school) instead then your course load would be more manageable making a second major more practical.
  • juilletjuillet Super Moderator Posts: 12,618 Super Moderator
    Everything that you do in college - or in life - doesn't have to "help" with your career study. Studying dance in college might not necessarily enhance or seem related to your pre-med studies, but...so what? If it brings you joy, you can always do it at a level that doesn't interfere with your academic schedule. There are lots of students who do theater, sports, music, or other pursuits while in college.
  • Dancer14Dancer14 Registered User Posts: 157 Junior Member
    I think having any kind of idea for your future, at this stage, is great! It's so great that you have something you're considering!
    Also, I danced for a very long time personally and you don't have to give up dance just because it doesn't fit with your college major. You can always continue even if it is not as extensive of a time. :)
    You don't have to give up your amazing hobbies if your college major doesn't sync up with it.
  • Jugulator20Jugulator20 Registered User Posts: 1,463 Senior Member
    edited January 6
    First as a sophomore in hs and besides finishing hs, you are facing 4 years of college, 4 years of med school, 4 years of residency (psychiatry) before you can call yourself a psychiatrist. You will say bye bye to your 20s, part of your 30s in pursuit of your dream of becoming a psychiatrist. I don’t know what dance opportunities you might find at the college/med school/residency program you attend, but you are mistaken if you think premeds, med students, residents do nothing but sleep, study, see patients. If you don’t have time in college, med school, residency for activities (eg dancing) other than academics, you are seriously doing something wrong.
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