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Medicine in the UK? Is it too late for the 18 year old me? watch

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    My situation is very, VERY complicated. Please, bare with me.

    I'm a female first-year undergrad in Newcastle University. I'm currently studying Bio-computing in a 4 year course and unfortunately, since last year I've been having this worrying feeling in the pit of my stomach that the academic route I've chosen is not right for me. My unfulfilled dreams of studying Medicine are haunting me continuously, during my lectures, during my walks outside the Medical School of Newcastle, whenever I try to focus on my studies.

    My dreams of going to Medical School were left behind very soon, since I've never been very confident as a teenager. My grades throughout my student years have always been maintained to be on the top tiers of grading, however my parents always perceived it as something normal, something they were expecting from me. For better or for worse, I was almost never awarded for my continuous work in school. Of course, for the biggest part I studied for myself, but the encouragement from my parents was never there.

    Two years before finishing high school I started considering Medicine as a field of study I could pursue and go towards. My parents however where not extremely keen for several reasons. My dad believed that I didn't have the determination to study that much for such a demanding course and also that it would not be worth it in the long run, since it was an extremely expensive and long course. And he was right of course, since I was still 16. Medicine sounded like fun but even I didn't believe in myself, how would I make my parents believe in me? Also I used to be very self conscious, extremely socially awkward as a person. The chances of even going into Medical School with the kind of mentality I had and with the competition there is in Greece for Medicine were very thin. And in the end, studying Medicine in Greece wasn't even worth it in my eyes, since the situation in the universities back there is simply indescribable (the economical crisis has really affected academic institutions in Greece since the majority of them are public, funded by the government.) Also the structure of the medical course the Greek universities offer was and is in my opinion severely flawed. But that's a whole other story. What I really wanted was to study in the UK. That was what I always dreamed of. The high level teaching, the multiculturalism, the numerous clinical cases I would get the chance to study and observe.

    Then there was money.

    I would like to mention that since I come from Greece, and that my parents live and work in Greece, so if you are informed about the current situation down there, I think you can understand our economical situation as a family. I have to admit, in comparison with other households in Greece, my parents make quite a lot of money. We don't owe any money to any banks however we're still paying off my A level fees in Math and Computing.

    Due to certain circumstances, I changed quite a lot as a person this last year. I spent a lot of time alone, studying, reading, spending time for myself, which led me to mature as a person. I was already mature as a teenager but school assessments and my friends and some teenage drama from here and there never let me fully understand how this world works, what is really going on around me. I had to leave home, my friends and my country and live abroad in Cyprus for a year to complete my A Levels in Math and AS in Computing in order to get in an UK Computer Science course. CS was our final decision as a family, since that was what I've been spending all my free time with the past 2 years while i was still in Greece, motherboards, routers and programming. I knew that I had skills on this and in the mind of my parents, that was more than enough. Also the job opportunities in the sector of technology are countless (if you're good at it ) .So it seemed as a great choice for everyone. And so I forgot to remember that I maybe I shouldn't have chosen something to make everyone happy, but something to make myself happy most importantly.. If I was happy with what I would do, everyone would be happy in the long run. Our decision was rushed and like that I spent a whole year abroad regretting everything. But there was no turning back. I tried ignoring my fears in the though of making a fuss later on during uni and the chance of going through and existential crisis because I was too afraid back there of saying what I really wanted and making everyone sad and disappointed in me. I was afraid of being judged by my old friends who I Ieft back in Greece because they seemed (and still do) so determined and happy with the life choices they made.

    It's only my first month in uni and to be honest, I've never experienced such a horrible period in my life. Sleeping at night seems impossible, I sweat profusely in my sleep and fear for the next day to come. The next day that I will have to get up from my bed and do something that will lead me to somewhere where I won't be the least happy.. I felt as this CS course would be my £27.000 mistake that would haunt me for the rest of my life.

    Last week I talked with a career counselor in my uni's student center and told her what I was carrying this last year all by myself. Needless to say, after some minutes of talking I couldn't help it but tear up. All this have been building up inside me for so long that it was almost eating me inside out.

    After making a longer appointment with the career counselor for next week, and also an appointment with a person from finance and from student well being( the counselor kinda freaked out when she saw me in the verge of crying and describing her what I've been through the past month and made me have an appointment in order to get mental support... ) . I've been seriously thinking of dropping out as soon as possible.

    I need to finally believe in myself and do things the right way. I must turn myself into someone who I will be proud of. What I really need now is to pursue what I always wanted, the dream i wrongfully left behind. I need to study medicine, I need to learn as much as I can and gain as much experience as possible to do what I really want in life.

    Save people. As much as I can at least. Saving everyone is unfortunately not an option in real life.

    People who don't have the opportunity to access normal health support.

    I want, after I'm finally ready as a person to be a part of Doctors without Borders. That's what I need to walk towards. That's only what will let me sleep a little better during the night.

    Studying Medicine in the UK. Is it still possible for me?

    What choices do I have in terms of preparation for medical school?

    If you read through all this melodrama of mine, thank you.

    Any kind of advice would be immensely appreciated.
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    (Original post by lonelyAvocado)
    My situation is very, VERY complicated. Please, bare with me.

    I'm a female first-year undergrad in Newcastle University. I'm currently studying Bio-computing in a 4 year course and unfortunately, since last year I've been having this worrying feeling in the pit of my stomach that the academic route I've chosen is not right for me. My unfulfilled dreams of studying Medicine are haunting me continuously, during my lectures, during my walks outside the Medical School of Newcastle, whenever I try to focus on my studies.

    My dreams of going to Medical School were left behind very soon, since I've never been very confident as a teenager. My grades throughout my student years have always been maintained to be on the top tiers of grading, however my parents always perceived it as something normal, something they were expecting from me. For better or for worse, I was almost never awarded for my continuous work in school. Of course, for the biggest part I studied for myself, but the encouragement from my parents was never there.

    Two years before finishing high school I started considering Medicine as a field of study I could pursue and go towards. My parents however where not extremely keen for several reasons. My dad believed that I didn't have the determination to study that much for such a demanding course and also that it would not be worth it in the long run, since it was an extremely expensive and long course. And he was right of course, since I was still 16. Medicine sounded like fun but even I didn't believe in myself, how would I make my parents believe in me? Also I used to be very self conscious, extremely socially awkward as a person. The chances of even going into Medical School with the kind of mentality I had and with the competition there is in Greece for Medicine were very thin. And in the end, studying Medicine in Greece wasn't even worth it in my eyes, since the situation in the universities back there is simply indescribable (the economical crisis has really affected academic institutions in Greece since the majority of them are public, funded by the government.) Also the structure of the medical course the Greek universities offer was and is in my opinion severely flawed. But that's a whole other story. What I really wanted was to study in the UK. That was what I always dreamed of. The high level teaching, the multiculturalism, the numerous clinical cases I would get the chance to study and observe.

    Then there was money.

    I would like to mention that since I come from Greece, and that my parents live and work in Greece, so if you are informed about the current situation down there, I think you can understand our economical situation as a family. I have to admit, in comparison with other households in Greece, my parents make quite a lot of money. We don't owe any money to any banks however we're still paying off my A level fees in Math and Computing.

    Due to certain circumstances, I changed quite a lot as a person this last year. I spent a lot of time alone, studying, reading, spending time for myself, which led me to mature as a person. I was already mature as a teenager but school assessments and my friends and some teenage drama from here and there never let me fully understand how this world works, what is really going on around me. I had to leave home, my friends and my country and live abroad in Cyprus for a year to complete my A Levels in Math and AS in Computing in order to get in an UK Computer Science course. CS was our final decision as a family, since that was what I've been spending all my free time with the past 2 years while i was still in Greece, motherboards, routers and programming. I knew that I had skills on this and in the mind of my parents, that was more than enough. Also the job opportunities in the sector of technology are countless (if you're good at it ) .So it seemed as a great choice for everyone. And so I forgot to remember that I maybe I shouldn't have chosen something to make everyone happy, but something to make myself happy most importantly.. If I was happy with what I would do, everyone would be happy in the long run. Our decision was rushed and like that I spent a whole year abroad regretting everything. But there was no turning back. I tried ignoring my fears in the though of making a fuss later on during uni and the chance of going through and existential crisis because I was too afraid back there of saying what I really wanted and making everyone sad and disappointed in me. I was afraid of being judged by my old friends who I Ieft back in Greece because they seemed (and still do) so determined and happy with the life choices they made.

    It's only my first month in uni and to be honest, I've never experienced such a horrible period in my life. Sleeping at night seems impossible, I sweat profusely in my sleep and fear for the next day to come. The next day that I will have to get up from my bed and do something that will lead me to somewhere where I won't be the least happy.. I felt as this CS course would be my £27.000 mistake that would haunt me for the rest of my life.

    Last week I talked with a career counselor in my uni's student center and told her what I was carrying this last year all by myself. Needless to say, after some minutes of talking I couldn't help it but tear up. All this have been building up inside me for so long that it was almost eating me inside out.

    After making a longer appointment with the career counselor for next week, and also an appointment with a person from finance and from student well being( the counselor kinda freaked out when she saw me in the verge of crying and describing her what I've been through the past month and made me have an appointment in order to get mental support... ) . I've been seriously thinking of dropping out as soon as possible.

    I need to finally believe in myself and do things the right way. I must turn myself into someone who I will be proud of. What I really need now is to pursue what I always wanted, the dream i wrongfully left behind. I need to study medicine, I need to learn as much as I can and gain as much experience as possible to do what I really want in life.

    Save people. As much as I can at least. Saving everyone is unfortunately not an option in real life.

    People who don't have the opportunity to access normal health support.

    I want, after I'm finally ready as a person to be a part of Doctors without Borders. That's what I need to walk towards. That's only what will let me sleep a little better during the night.

    Studying Medicine in the UK. Is it still possible for me?

    What choices do I have in terms of preparation for medical school?

    If you read through all this melodrama of mine, thank you.

    Any kind of advice would be immensely appreciated.
    Have you considered studying Medicine elsewhere other than UK or Greece? UK is also really competitive

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    Only read half way through but it seems your an international student and I don't think you will be able to afford the price if they offer no loans to you because they are much higher for intentional than home students.
    If they do, it's still gonna be very hard but it's possible no doubt.
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    I'm sorry about your current situation Before you think about dropping out, I think you should clear your head and think about whether or not dropping out would be a good idea. This time, you should think more about how your decision will affect you and not your family and friends because ultimately what you study is your choice.

    Btw, what are your A-level and GCSE grades/or equivalents? Depending on how good they are, you could potentially reapply however I would advise against that for the time being.
    You also have the option of staying on your current degree and applying for graduate entry medicine which is a 4 year accelerated program for graduates. However grad medicine is a LOT more competitive than undergraduate medicine and you'll need to be predicted (and achieve) at least a 2:1 on your current degree. I think there's also some uncertainty with future funding but idk myself.

    Short answer: Yes
    Long answer: Lots of work and very risky.

    Best of luck to you OP

    EDIT: Newcastle uni has grad entry medicine. Perhaps you could stop by the med school an get some proper advice and information?
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    (Original post by Abz1901)
    Have you considered studying Medicine elsewhere other than UK or Greece? UK is also really competitive

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    As I mentioned before, UK would be my undoubtedly first choice. I feel as I am going to be extremely disappointed with myself if I give up again and go for the alternative and simpler choice, just because what I really wanted seemed almost impossible to reach.

    That's what I did before applying to my current course. Everyone did their best discouraging me on applying for medicine in an UK university because the course was VERY competitive and it would take a lot of time, money and work to actually be accepted.

    Italy was and still is an alternative for me to study medicine, be it in English or in Italian (I already have a C1 language qualification in Italian). However the conditions you study under there are different. The laws concerning the dissection of cadavers are quite restrictive there, so the practice the students have during their anatomy classes are close to zero (with several exceptions). Also, if I end up studying in Italy my first choice would be to take the course in English, since I'm not interested in staying after my studies in Italy or in Greece (they are both majorly affected by the current economic crisis the EU). Hence any contact with patients there would be rather complex since I would have to communicate with Italian people about something I learnt in English (since curing a patient is not as simple as checking his symptoms etc. Also the communication with the doctors in a local hospital would be another problem). My personal opinion is that there is simply no comparison between the academic level of studies that UK medical schools offer and the rest in Europe (Czech Republic, Italy, Bulgaria, Romania etc).
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    (Original post by RiskVsReward)
    Only read half way through but it seems your an international student and I don't think you will be able to afford the price if they offer no loans to you because they are much higher for intentional than home students.
    If they do, it's still gonna be very hard but it's possible no doubt.

    What I learnt these last days while I was researching on the web about what choices do I have on getting the A levels I need without leaving from England is that the educational system here is much, MUCH more complicated that it is in Greece. Here you have academies, colleges, grammar schools and a bunch of other institutions.Some ask for tuition fees, others don't. Some consider students coming from the EU as home students, while some others consider everyone outside of the UK as overseas. Then there's the age....

    In Greece we only have public schools (which are totally free to attend for anyone, no matter your nationality or age etc) and some private ones which offer different qualifications, such as IB.

    My current situation is like an angsty teenage Facebook relationship; complicated.
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    (Original post by melanin101)
    I'm sorry about your current situation Before you think about dropping out, I think you should clear your head and think about whether or not dropping out would be a good idea. This time, you should think more about how your decision will affect you and not your family and friends because ultimately what you study is your choice.

    Btw, what are your A-level and GCSE grades/or equivalents? Depending on how good they are, you could potentially reapply however I would advise against that for the time being.
    You also have the option of staying on your current degree and applying for graduate entry medicine which is a 4 year accelerated program for graduates. However grad medicine is a LOT more competitive than undergraduate medicine and you'll need to be predicted (and achieve) at least a 2:1 on your current degree. I think there's also some uncertainty with future funding but idk myself.

    Short answer: Yes
    Long answer: Lots of work and very risky.

    Best of luck to you OP

    EDIT: Newcastle uni has grad entry medicine. Perhaps you could stop by the med school an get some proper advice and information?
    Thank you so much for posting your opinion on my ridiculous existential crisis!

    Concerning me withdrawing from my course; I already had 2 long appointments with a very friendly careers adviser from my uni's Careers Service. Analyzing my current situation and writing down the reasons I came to searching ways to leave my course and follow another one were very helpful. It made me understand that my current course will cause me problems in the long run (lack of motivational factors, constant desire to study something totally different, feeling of wasting time, periods of depression -which unfortunately I'm already experiencing-).

    Graduate entry. Not really considering to be honest. It will be a waste of money since the degree I'll have acquired by that time will surely not worth £27000, and also what I'm studying is in a whole different department. Also there's a money issue. A big issue.

    We also talked about the reasons I want to join the sector of Health Care and what is my idea of being not only a medical student but also a doctor in real life. These 2 appointments clarified my doubts of withdrawing from my course, but will still have more meeting ahead.

    She also helped me getting in touch with graduates from Newcastle University's medical faculty, as well as gaining some volunteering experience in the Health Care sector (even though I've already applied recently for a volunteering program in hospital support here in Newcastle) which I believe will be a great experience for making at least a start in what I'm hoping to achieve in the future.


    I have an A level in Maths with grade B (unfortunately I didn't get a higher grade because well, there was no motivational factor from my part. My first choice (Newcastle) was asking me only for a B in Maths and my Cypriot High School Diploma with a grade higher than 18 out of 20. So long story short, I didn't even study for it. Not even for the exams. Sounds like I want to make myself look smart or something but that's not the case.Actually it makes me sound immature and stupid. Which I swear I'm not. I was simply extremely unmotivated because I had applied in a course I wasn't very interested in and well, let's be honest, the A level in Maths is at most of average difficulty. Nothing challenging.)

    My Cypriot High School Diploma was graded 19.2 out of 20. I had a wide range of subjects in my curriculum but my main ones were Biology, Economics, Business and management and English. Unfortunately I couldn't take Physics, Maths or Chemistry because my application for changing school from Greece to Cyprus was late due to several circumstances, such as my parents being little brats and not wanting me leaving from home while I was still 17 and because of the wonderful bureaucracy in the Greek system.

    However while I was still in Greece, in the school I was attending I had completed Maths, Physics Biology and Chemistry as main subjects(which are an equivalent of AS) with high grades (18 out of 20).

    I feel like this is the lowest point in my life so far. I've always been so high and mighty considering the choices I had made in my life, until now.
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    (Original post by lonelyAvocado)
    Thank you so much for posting your opinion on my ridiculous existential crisis!

    Concerning me withdrawing from my course; I already had 2 long appointments with a very friendly careers adviser from my uni's Careers Service. Analyzing my current situation and writing down the reasons I came to searching ways to leave my course and follow another one were very helpful. It made me understand that my current course will cause me problems in the long run (lack of motivational factors, constant desire to study something totally different, feeling of wasting time, periods of depression -which unfortunately I'm already experiencing-).

    Graduate entry. Not really considering to be honest. It will be a waste of money since the degree I'll have acquired by that time will surely not worth £27000, and also what I'm studying is in a whole different department. Also there's a money issue. A big issue.

    We also talked about the reasons I want to join the sector of Health Care and what is my idea of being not only a medical student but also a doctor in real life. These 2 appointments clarified my doubts of withdrawing from my course, but will still have more meeting ahead.

    She also helped me getting in touch with graduates from Newcastle University's medical faculty, as well as gaining some volunteering experience in the Health Care sector (even though I've already applied recently for a volunteering program in hospital support here in Newcastle) which I believe will be a great experience for making at least a start in what I'm hoping to achieve in the future.


    I have an A level in Maths with grade B (unfortunately I didn't get a higher grade because well, there was no motivational factor from my part. My first choice (Newcastle) was asking me only for a B in Maths and my Cypriot High School Diploma with a grade higher than 18 out of 20. So long story short, I didn't even study for it. Not even for the exams. Sounds like I want to make myself look smart or something but that's not the case.Actually it makes me sound immature and stupid. Which I swear I'm not. I was simply extremely unmotivated because I had applied in a course I wasn't very interested in and well, let's be honest, the A level in Maths is at most of average difficulty. Nothing challenging.)

    My Cypriot High School Diploma was graded 19.2 out of 20. I had a wide range of subjects in my curriculum but my main ones were Biology, Economics, Business and management and English. Unfortunately I couldn't take Physics, Maths or Chemistry because my application for changing school from Greece to Cyprus was late due to several circumstances, such as my parents being little brats and not wanting me leaving from home while I was still 17 and because of the wonderful bureaucracy in the Greek system.

    However while I was still in Greece, in the school I was attending I had completed Maths, Physics Biology and Chemistry as main subjects(which are an equivalent of AS) with high grades (18 out of 20).

    I feel like this is the lowest point in my life so far. I've always been so high and mighty considering the choices I had made in my life, until now.
    Hi, in my view you are very very sure that to study medicine is the only option for you. You have got a great motivation for studying medicine and I think that is the foundation of what makes somebody a good medical student. I agree with you that UK medical schools are supreme and much better than medical schools in other countries (That is one of the reasons why I apply there as well). However, as it has been written here before, UK medical schools are highly competitive and I am not sure wether you reach the minimum entry requirements with your greek qualifications, but it might be a problem that you did not take Chemistry as a main subject as this is required usually.

    I would not ignore abroad medical schools too fast... Medical schools in Poland, Czechs Republic etc are often renewed and their international programs run for several years now. In addition to that, the graduation at a medical school in a eu country leeds to the license to practice medicine in every country of the eu. Of course you should at least try to get a place at a UK medical school, but if you really want to become a doctor (and looks like that) you should consider to study abroad. Because at the end, the only important thing is to get the approbation and by todays lack of doctors you will get hired everywhere regardless of where you have graduated...

    I hope I could help you a bit
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    (Original post by spymatiak)
    Hi, in my view you are very very sure that to study medicine is the only option for you. You have got a great motivation for studying medicine and I think that is the foundation of what makes somebody a good medical student. I agree with you that UK medical schools are supreme and much better than medical schools in other countries (That is one of the reasons why I apply there as well). However, as it has been written here before, UK medical schools are highly competitive and I am not sure wether you reach the minimum entry requirements with your greek qualifications, but it might be a problem that you did not take Chemistry as a main subject as this is required usually.

    I would not ignore abroad medical schools too fast... Medical schools in Poland, Czechs Republic etc are often renewed and their international programs run for several years now. In addition to that, the graduation at a medical school in a eu country leeds to the license to practice medicine in every country of the eu. Of course you should at least try to get a place at a UK medical school, but if you really want to become a doctor (and looks like that) you should consider to study abroad. Because at the end, the only important thing is to get the approbation and by todays lack of doctors you will get hired everywhere regardless of where you have graduated...

    I hope I could help you a bit
    The mess I got myself into is very complicated to say at least.

    I'm seriously thinking of starting all over. Applying for sixth form and taking A levels in Chemistry, Biology and a 3rd subject I haven't yet decided on (I'm between Physics, Psychology ..well, depends on which medical schools I'm going to apply so..) and maybe even retaking my Mechanics modules that brought my Maths grade down (my C12 and C34 modules were A & A*, while my mechanics exams were... a disaster.) But I'm still debating on that since some medical schools don't want their prospective students retaking modules.

    I'll have to go through interviews for the sixth form colleges (since I've already acquired a secondary education degree equal to sixth form but from another country and also because this January I'll be turning 19, which I guess is very VERY OLD) and a lot of other stuff that may not be that pleasant. Maybe it will get very hectic due to the mountain of assessments I'll have to give in at the same time for the half term that is coming. But I'm sure it's all worth it. I'm finally walking towards something that actually motivates me to get out of bed and work, not to procrastinate and do everything at the last minute.

    If I don't find an affordable way to attend a preparation program, then I guess I must start looking for alternatives. But I'm not giving up yet. I'll do my best searching for every possible solution that will keep me here.

    *her whole body is lit up from flames of motivation*
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    Why not applying for a foundation year for medical schools in the UK?
    If money is the problem, you're from Greece which means that you are a European student, you'll pay just as much as the UK students will, and during your foundation year maybe you should get a part time job and save money for the next years? I really think you should apply for a foundation year, that's what I did, I'm french but I'm going to graduate from an american school, the UK universities don't accept my qualifications for a direct entry to a medical school,
    And i honestly am not confident about my level, so going into a foundation year is definitely going to help me be at the same level first year medical students have.
    There are many courses that could help you get into a medical school, but if you still can't get it, you should still go to a medical school, I heard of Cluj-napoca University in Romania gives (I'm applying there as well) a really good medicine program in English french and Romanian, it might not be as good as UK universities because it doesn't have that much of supplies, but the level is high and the students graduating from there get to work wherever they like.
    My dad is a doctor currently working in a very big hospital, he has a colleague from Romania, he said that his work is just as good as the other colleagues.
    Don't let your dream just because of your qualifications!

    To make it short your options are:

    -1 Year of foundation year in the UK before starting a medical school.
    -Studying in a good university in countries like Romania and Bulgaria and Greece, the competition is high, the prices are low, the future will be good.

    Don't give up! And remember, no matter where you're gonna go, its medical school, you'll have to work super hard, and enjoy your time.
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    Greece is EU and you are a "home" student in UK . You pay domestic tuition, and you can get a loan from EU for tuition (although not bursary). You must know that if you are already studying in UK. Do you have a loan?

    If you have grades and you meet other requirements, there is no reason whatsoever to not to study in UK. You should contact Admissions individually rather than relying on general information as there are different academic requirements for people from different countries. You'll most likely need chemistry and biology but here again, different schools want different things. If you don't have the required prerequisites, then foundation year is the way to go. Your grade situation is somehow unclear from your description but once you know the requirements, you can judge whether you meet them or not (e.g. mechanics? nothing to do with medicine unless it spoils your average). Another important question to ask Admissions is whether they consider you after dropping out from another course in UK.

    It is too late to apply in this cycle, so you would have to continue your 2nd year or drop out and take a gap year. Prepare for UKCAT/BMAT. You would have to choose your schools carefully to maximize your chances. Most importantly, get some work experience to make sure medicine is what you really want to do.

    You can also consider finishing your degree and applying for 5 year med course after graduation - not GEP because GEP is very competitive and some schools don't even take international students. However, you'd probably not get a loan for 5 year med course if you already took one.

    You seem determined and surely you can leave your earlier hesitations, disappointments and unease behind you. You have every reason to believe in yourself, even if your parents are not very supportive. Age doesn't matter - there are students much older than you in 5-year med courses.

    Follow your dream, don't give up, and good luck.
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    (Original post by lonelyAvocado)
    My situation is very, VERY complicated. Please, bare with me.

    I'm a female first-year undergrad in Newcastle University. I'm currently studying Bio-computing in a 4 year course and unfortunately, since last year I've been having this worrying feeling in the pit of my stomach that the academic route I've chosen is not right for me. My unfulfilled dreams of studying Medicine are haunting me continuously, during my lectures, during my walks outside the Medical School of Newcastle, whenever I try to focus on my studies.

    My dreams of going to Medical School were left behind very soon, since I've never been very confident as a teenager. My grades throughout my student years have always been maintained to be on the top tiers of grading, however my parents always perceived it as something normal, something they were expecting from me. For better or for worse, I was almost never awarded for my continuous work in school. Of course, for the biggest part I studied for myself, but the encouragement from my parents was never there.

    Two years before finishing high school I started considering Medicine as a field of study I could pursue and go towards. My parents however where not extremely keen for several reasons. My dad believed that I didn't have the determination to study that much for such a demanding course and also that it would not be worth it in the long run, since it was an extremely expensive and long course. And he was right of course, since I was still 16. Medicine sounded like fun but even I didn't believe in myself, how would I make my parents believe in me? Also I used to be very self conscious, extremely socially awkward as a person. The chances of even going into Medical School with the kind of mentality I had and with the competition there is in Greece for Medicine were very thin. And in the end, studying Medicine in Greece wasn't even worth it in my eyes, since the situation in the universities back there is simply indescribable (the economical crisis has really affected academic institutions in Greece since the majority of them are public, funded by the government.) Also the structure of the medical course the Greek universities offer was and is in my opinion severely flawed. But that's a whole other story. What I really wanted was to study in the UK. That was what I always dreamed of. The high level teaching, the multiculturalism, the numerous clinical cases I would get the chance to study and observe.

    Then there was money.

    I would like to mention that since I come from Greece, and that my parents live and work in Greece, so if you are informed about the current situation down there, I think you can understand our economical situation as a family. I have to admit, in comparison with other households in Greece, my parents make quite a lot of money. We don't owe any money to any banks however we're still paying off my A level fees in Math and Computing.

    Due to certain circumstances, I changed quite a lot as a person this last year. I spent a lot of time alone, studying, reading, spending time for myself, which led me to mature as a person. I was already mature as a teenager but school assessments and my friends and some teenage drama from here and there never let me fully understand how this world works, what is really going on around me. I had to leave home, my friends and my country and live abroad in Cyprus for a year to complete my A Levels in Math and AS in Computing in order to get in an UK Computer Science course. CS was our final decision as a family, since that was what I've been spending all my free time with the past 2 years while i was still in Greece, motherboards, routers and programming. I knew that I had skills on this and in the mind of my parents, that was more than enough. Also the job opportunities in the sector of technology are countless (if you're good at it ) .So it seemed as a great choice for everyone. And so I forgot to remember that I maybe I shouldn't have chosen something to make everyone happy, but something to make myself happy most importantly.. If I was happy with what I would do, everyone would be happy in the long run. Our decision was rushed and like that I spent a whole year abroad regretting everything. But there was no turning back. I tried ignoring my fears in the though of making a fuss later on during uni and the chance of going through and existential crisis because I was too afraid back there of saying what I really wanted and making everyone sad and disappointed in me. I was afraid of being judged by my old friends who I Ieft back in Greece because they seemed (and still do) so determined and happy with the life choices they made.

    It's only my first month in uni and to be honest, I've never experienced such a horrible period in my life. Sleeping at night seems impossible, I sweat profusely in my sleep and fear for the next day to come. The next day that I will have to get up from my bed and do something that will lead me to somewhere where I won't be the least happy.. I felt as this CS course would be my £27.000 mistake that would haunt me for the rest of my life.

    Last week I talked with a career counselor in my uni's student center and told her what I was carrying this last year all by myself. Needless to say, after some minutes of talking I couldn't help it but tear up. All this have been building up inside me for so long that it was almost eating me inside out.

    After making a longer appointment with the career counselor for next week, and also an appointment with a person from finance and from student well being( the counselor kinda freaked out when she saw me in the verge of crying and describing her what I've been through the past month and made me have an appointment in order to get mental support... ) . I've been seriously thinking of dropping out as soon as possible.

    I need to finally believe in myself and do things the right way. I must turn myself into someone who I will be proud of. What I really need now is to pursue what I always wanted, the dream i wrongfully left behind. I need to study medicine, I need to learn as much as I can and gain as much experience as possible to do what I really want in life.

    Save people. As much as I can at least. Saving everyone is unfortunately not an option in real life.

    People who don't have the opportunity to access normal health support.

    I want, after I'm finally ready as a person to be a part of Doctors without Borders. That's what I need to walk towards. That's only what will let me sleep a little better during the night.

    Studying Medicine in the UK. Is it still possible for me?

    What choices do I have in terms of preparation for medical school?

    If you read through all this melodrama of mine, thank you.

    Any kind of advice would be immensely appreciated.
    I think you need to make a choice of what your priority is -studying in the uk or studying medicine because tbh i think youll be disappointed when you get four rejections - you cant just meet minimum standard you have to excel with most of the schools. Doing sixth form may be good but id call the unis to make sure because its retaking years and normally they wont even consider retakes althought ur circumstances may give u the chance to but they are brutal with special circumstances.
    Long story short if medicine is what you want - id say uk not the place to go for it... Try some of the irish ones theyre just as good and like international students but Copenhagen and other european med schools are somtimes even better than some of the med schools here. Life isnt easy and you somtimes cant have everything but follow what your heart says if it says medicine dont let where u study it hold you back! Good luck!


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    If you're European, studying Medicine in Scotland would be free.
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    (Original post by spacepirate-James)
    If you're European, studying Medicine in Scotland would be free.
    Also france


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