Med school is on the minds of many. Mine included.
If I think about it, I can come up with the following reasons right off the bat:
- Personally, morally, and emotionally rewarding. There are very few jobs that offer the same level of “feel-good factor” as a doctor helping a patient regain health. Sure Steve Jobs can make the sexiest computers in the world, but he is helping the affluent get more gadgets. Perhaps working in social services that aim at helping the populations in need – such as alleviating children stricken with poverty and disease – would have the similar “feel-good factor” to helping patients regain joy of health.
- Stable income. Docs aren’t the richest people around, but they do well.
- Family expectation. Many of us grow up under the constant influence of our families who view raising children to be docs to be the ultimate achievement. When the people dearest to you all think that way, it’s quite impossible to put it off completely.
- Social status. It’s not some non-sense pride; it’s very much a real thing: how good do you feel doing what you do? How good do you feel when you tell people what you do? I think feeling good is important for most people.
Why is med school just “on my mind”, and not “all I can see”? Here are some reasons right off the bat again (meaning this post is much open to discussion and expansion):
- Crazy hours. I have lots of wild ideas that I’d love to pursue, and if my job occupies me 7 days a week, then bye-bye my ideas.
- Idealist bubble burst. Perhaps I fear the vision of coming out of med school for all the feel-good factor in the world, and realize I’m just becoming a soldier of a corporation built on exploiting the suffering.
- Somehow being a doc seems less colorful and intellectually exciting than being, say, a Google engineer working on world-domination. Being a doc requires doing the same things over and over, to build up the experience, expertise, and efficiency. Being an innovator requires constant learning, new ideas, and breaking new grounds.