(For what it’s worth, I’m an MD, in Texas.) So an employee of mine has a daughter who’s going into the 9th grade this coming fall. FYI she is from an underprivileged background and is an under-represented minority. She’s a very high achiever, a straight A student, in “advanced classes” at her below average public middle school. She’s also a very outgoing, friendly type with leadership qualities, and quite an athlete as well, competing in every sport she can, and cheerleading too! And her mom is telling me about her and how she wants to be a doctor like me.
But she’s signed up for a vocational program in high school, sort of a pre-healthcare track, that’s actually a great program which would get her a CNA and knock out some of the pre-reqs for an Associates Degree in Nursing, setting the stage for taking the NCCLEX and getting her RN.
But I’m telling mom, if daughter really wants to be a doctor, she needs to be taking a college prep track full of AP’s, really as many as she can get but at least AP Bio, and AP Chem, so she can handle the pre-med curriculum when she hits college. And additionally I’m telling her to transfer high schools, to the best public high school in town, so she’ll get better instruction, a larger college bound peer group, and perhaps more AP classes to choose from.
I’m saying if she later decides she wants to be a nurse, it will be a lot easier to back off of the premed track and redirect, than it will be to enter and be successful in the premed track in college after a pre-healthcare vocational track in HS.
I see her as a good candidate for Texas’ JAMP program, really what it was designed for, but my visit to the JAMP website didn’t yield a lot of resources for high school curriculum choice.
Do y’all agree? Is there anything you would add to, or subtract from this? I’m concerned also that there’s a chance that I could be encouraging her to overextend herself, setting the stage for failure/disappointment, and maybe RN would be great for her. But how can I really know? Your thoughts?