How to major in a non-science for pre-med?

<p>I'm interested in majoring in Business Administration while fulfilling pre-medicine course requirements. These requirements alone make up two semesters of classes (five classes). I would have to take courses required for my business major and also take the pre-med prereq classes. If I took five classes per semester, it would take my five years to graduate. It is possible to take six classes per semester or take summer classes. </p>

<p>My questions are:</p>

<ol>
<li>Do medical schools care if I graduated in five years?</li>
<li>What would be the best way to fit all of my classes in to graduate in four years? (taking summer classes and/or taking six classes a semester are options)</li>
<li>Would you recommend trying to graduate in four years?</li>
<li>How do other pre-med non-science majors handle this?</li>
</ol>

<p>Thanks in advance</p>

<ol>
<li><p>No.</p></li>
<li><p>This depends on what works best for you. Would you prefer to take a more intense class load over the school year and then have the summers off, or would you rather spread it out but not have a summer break? The only person that can answer this is you. You also need to think about employment (if at all, work a lot over the summer, work while you're taking classes, etc). You also need to consider how you want to make yourself "well-rounded" for med school applications. Volunteering, leadership, work experience, "life" experiences, research, KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE IN THE MEDICAL FIELD incorporated into aforementioned activities if possible, etc... when do you want to fit those in? A lot in the summer with less/no classes, or spread throughout the year?</p></li>
<li><p>If you can, yes just because of tuition and debt. What a lot of people don't consider it that the earlier you get done with your BA/BS, the earlier you can potentially get into med school, and the earlier you can actually get done and start making a salary. One more year of school is one more year of tuition plus one year lost in making money. However, you don't want to overwork yourself just to graduate in four years. You'll be in school for a long time and you don't want to get too burnt out. Plus, college is a time to work hard but still enjoy life and get meaningful experiences. Study abroad, take some classes that aren't science related (you won't have time to in med school, so if you want to do it do it in college). Med schools look for maturity and having done more than stuck your nose in a book over your life, so make time to do other things. I've also heard that they like it if you "take a year off" of education before med school to strengthen your application and just have time to mature and relax, but I don't know if that's necessarily true. I know some of these things I've said contradict each other, but they are all things that you should consider.</p></li>
<li><p>Complete your major (I hear business and foreign languages are good non-science majors for med school if you want to go non-science) and take the prerequisite courses for med school. It's as simple as that. It doesn't matter what order you do it in or if you mix it all together, other than that you'll want to have completed certain courses before taking the MCAT. That being said, major in something you enjoy. The more you enjoy it, the harder you'll work at it and the better GPA you'll have. Also think of how you could use that major as a back-up plan if you don't get in to med school.</p></li>
</ol>

<p>Good luck!</p>

<p>Disagree with the above poster.</p>

<p>1) Yes, they do care. One must have a good personal reason for taking extra a 5th year. (Personal reason is working to support your family.) Think about it this way...the vast majority of your competition will graduate in 4 years. Do you really want to be an outlier?</p>

<p>2) Sure you can, but do not take premed prereqs over the summer. Also, the downside is that for both biz ad and for premed, you should be working on internships/volunteering in the summer, not taking classes. If you don't have any volunteering or medical shadowing, your med application will not be successful. (Hint: take Gen Chem as a Soph.)</p>

<p>3) Yes.</p>

<p>4) They find a non-science major without a lot of other prereqs. (A Lit/hume major only requires 10 courses beyond prereqs, for example.) Besides English (which every college student must take/fulfill), and math (which every business major must take), the premed prereqs comprise only 8 additional courses. The typical college requires more than 30 courses to graduate. It just requires some schedule juggling.</p>

<p>I agree with everything bluebayou said</p>

<p>Can you do business minor? Business classes are much easier than pre-med required.<br>
I have MBA, business is pretty much walk in a park in comparison. I obtained most of my Business education while working full time and taking care of family and my H. also was working full (traveling a lot too) and going to school for his MBA and traveled a lot for his job, no on-line classes in our time, all are lectures at school. We had very high college GPAs also.</p>

<p>@ bluebayou - </p>

<p>Regarding point "1" - I have heard from many med students and med preceptors (I spend a lot of time with them at an inter-professional student-run volunteer clinic) that the schools really don't care that much about getting in and out in four years. Most of the people I volunteer with did not do the traditional four years of undergrad and then go straight into med school, and according to them they are all very happy that they made that decision and said it did not give them any troubles getting into med school. They're all from the same school though and this is just my experience with them, so maybe different schools have different perspectives on this. I do agree with you in that if you take the extra time to complete your degree you should have a good reason for doing so.</p>

<p>ranza,</p>

<p>Apologies if I am confusing thing, but just to be clear, we (bluebayou and I) are not talking about 4 years of undergrad straight to med school, but 4 years of undergrad, in a row, is definitely preferred. I'm not sure ANYONE in my class took more than 4 years in undergrad while yes, half of my class did not come straight from undergrad and that is definitely ok.</p>

<p>I really appreciate the replies from you all (ranza, Brown, bluebayou, miami, etc). </p>

<p>Now, regarding my first question:
I think I'll be able to fit all of my classes into four years; it'll just mean that I'll have to work a little harder. Since it's perfectly possible, I wouldn't want to stay back one extra year if I don't need to.</p>

<p>@bluebayou: I definitely agree to not take pre-med classes over the summer. I'm also aware of the volunteering/shadowing/extracurriculars; I've already started doing them. I know time might be an issue, but since I won't be working I think I'll have enough time to fit those activities into my schedule. One question: why take chemistry sophomore year?</p>

<p>@MiamiDAP: Thanks for your input. I was thinking about doing a business minor, but I didn't think it was worth it. Here are a few reasons why I want to major in business instead of doing the typical science major:
1. I'm interested in learning about business, so I figured I should major in it during my undergrad while I have the chance. In medical school, I would only be stuffing myself with science courses.
2. It would make a decent backup plan in case I don't get into medical school. I think a business degree can give more job prospects than say a biology degree can. I'm also interested in pursuing an MBA as well, so it only seemed natural.
3. Learning about business could be beneficial to me if I end up starting a private practice. I read that medical students don't take any classes that teach them about anything business-like.</p>

<p>A business major at the college I'm going to is not too challenging compared to a biology major. Taking an extra course each semester shouldn't be too much of a problem...</p>

<p>Please correct me if anything I said is wrong. Any other advice or input is greatly appreciated.</p>

<p>
[quote]
if you take the extra time to complete your degree you should have a good reason for doing so.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>And majoring in business is not one of them. :)</p>

<p>
[quote]
Taking an extra course each semester shouldn't be too much of a problem...

[/quote]
</p>

<p>It is if it means that you earn B's or worse in the premed prereqs.</p>

<p>@bluebayou</p>

<p>Of course I don't want Bs or worse on premed prereqs. If taking an extra course might affect my grades, I'll take the risk and work a little harder.</p>

<p>I heard adcoms l0ok at GPA, sGPA, MCAT, course load and course rigor per year, etc. The number of years to B.A. may be indirectly reflected in the course load/rigor part. As long as you maintain normal course load while delivering a good GPA in 5 years, I think you will be fine. A kid I knew took 5 years for B.S. deliberately (to raise his GPA) even while taking Summer courses. And he had a pretty good result in admissions. For him, I think if he had applied after four years (by hurrying to graduate) his GPA probably would have suffered and not as good results in application.</p>

<p>cottoncube,
I fully support your desire to learn business. I believe that some sciency type miss undertanding of business side which is very important as medical organization (big or small) cannot exist without general regard to business side of it.
I believe that you should pursue your goal. Make sure that your grades in ALL your classes are at the top, that means that you will have to be one of the top students in all your business classes as your GPA requirment as future Med. School applicant is more stringent than general business majors. Also, be careful in choosing Business specialty as some of them are more time consuming than others. Research at your UG, but as far as I can tell from my own previous experience, Information Systems or Accounting would be more time consuming than Finance (just as an example, which may not be correct at your UG). I am not sure if 5 years will hurt, I heard about cases of 7 years in UG, but people had valid reasons for taking that long. Would be nice to discuss it with pre-med advisor at your UG, who has experience with similar cases. Do not take any Med. School requirements in a summer, while any business classes are OK. I have taken business classes every summer, studying by the pool, nice, they are usually a bit easier than during school year with much smaller classes.
Wish you best!</p>