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    I can't think of a more suitable forum for this query, so apologies that it lowers the optimistic tone.

    I'm currently a 4th year medical student at a great University in the UK. Ever since rotations began last year I have begun to loathe the course and have realised that I really, never want to work in clinical medicine. In fact, I don't want to work in healthcare full stop. This was a decision made age 16/17 when I didn't know myself and I can not see this as my future.

    I am not struggling on the course - I am managing to pass all exams and get by with a smile plastered on my face without anyone noticing that anything is wrong. However, I feel completely trapped in such a vocational degree that leads down such a specific pathway.
    Of those who I have told (Uni therapist, Uni careers advisor, 2 close friends) they have all mentioned a variety of options that would still utilise my degree without patient contact, such as public health work, IT/management stuff, even investment banking, but I don't want to go into any of these fields.
    I would ideally like to do a second degree in Philosophy or Fine Art, and if you can't already tell, the reasoning behind this is not for improved job security. I just don't know where to go from here. I am of current thought that I will complete the degree but I really struggle with the thought of completing F1. I would love some advice, words of reassurance and especially to hear of anyone completely switching career pathways.

    Now that I have made this decision the overwhelming feeling has been one of relief. I just need a plan.
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    There's a marked difference between the optimism of the "Medicine [applicants]" forum and the creeping cynicism of the "Current Medical Students and Doctors" forum!

    Putting aside the second degree question for a moment, what do you actually want to do, i.e. in the next 5-15 years? What is it that makes you say "philosophy" and "fine art"?

    Have you thought about a law conversion course (Graduate Diploma in Law) followed by a career as a solicitor/barrister/ethicist? Or an MA in Philosophy with a view to a PhD and working in medical ethics? You shouldn't feel trapped into using your medical degree but it's worth thinking about ways in which you could make it "count" as well.
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    philosophy - not as interesting as you might think!

    you need to think about where you're going to end up professionally, assuming you do have to work for a living. from what you're saying it sounds like you are not really keen on any career, which is understandable but something you're going to have to get over.
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    (Original post by MonteCristo)
    There's a marked difference between the optimism of the "Medicine [applicants]" forum and the creeping cynicism of the "Current Medical Students and Doctors" forum!

    Putting aside the second degree question for a moment, what do you actually want to do, i.e. in the next 5-15 years? What is it that makes you say "philosophy" and "fine art"?

    Have you thought about a law conversion course (Graduate Diploma in Law) followed by a career as a solicitor/barrister/ethicist? Or an MA in Philosophy with a view to a PhD and working in medical ethics? You shouldn't feel trapped into using your medical degree but it's worth thinking about ways in which you could make it "count" as well.
    I'm not exactly sure what I want to do in the next 5-15 years. And that is the thing keeping me from jumping ship too soon, I think. Philosophy and Fine Art are two subjects that I find interesting, and probably appealing as the complete opposite to how I feel with medicine at the moment in terms of feeling like I'm rote-learning, jumping through hoops, not thinking creatively.
    Law doesn't particularly interest me at the moment, but I agree with you - it's going to be hard finding a way to make this degree count when I want to distance myself! Do you have anymore information about the MA Philosophy, any Unis in particular where this transition from medicine to a humanities isn't unheard of?

    (Original post by endzone123)
    philosophy - not as interesting as you might think!

    you need to think about where you're going to end up professionally, assuming you do have to work for a living. from what you're saying it sounds like you are not really keen on any career, which is understandable but something you're going to have to get over.
    What makes you say that about Philosophy? Interested to hear of any previous experience.

    That is definitely a point brought up with the careers service, and I agree with you. I hope I am not trying to stave off a career, but I can't help feeling that is definitely isn't that, or not just that aspect anyway. I would love a career in writing, or as a fine art curator, so I can still see myself having a career... just not in Medicine.
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    (Original post by Horaxic)
    I can't think of a more suitable forum for this query, so apologies that it lowers the optimistic tone.

    I'm currently a 4th year medical student at a great University in the UK. Ever since rotations began last year I have begun to loathe the course and have realised that I really, never want to work in clinical medicine. In fact, I don't want to work in healthcare full stop. This was a decision made age 16/17 when I didn't know myself and I can not see this as my future.

    I am not struggling on the course - I am managing to pass all exams and get by with a smile plastered on my face without anyone noticing that anything is wrong. However, I feel completely trapped in such a vocational degree that leads down such a specific pathway.
    Of those who I have told (Uni therapist, Uni careers advisor, 2 close friends) they have all mentioned a variety of options that would still utilise my degree without patient contact, such as public health work, IT/management stuff, even investment banking, but I don't want to go into any of these fields.
    I would ideally like to do a second degree in Philosophy or Fine Art, and if you can't already tell, the reasoning behind this is not for improved job security. I just don't know where to go from here. I am of current thought that I will complete the degree but I really struggle with the thought of completing F1. I would love some advice, words of reassurance and especially to hear of anyone completely switching career pathways.

    Now that I have made this decision the overwhelming feeling has been one of relief. I just need a plan.

    I'm sorry to hear how you've been feeling. I can't help but think that I'm in a similar but slightly worse position than you. But you've made it this far into a 5-year course and you're so close to finishing, so I would encourage you not to give up now. Even though you don't enjoy clinical medicine, you've been able to pass all the exams so far and keep yourself motivated, which is amazing. Your end goal is the same regardless of whether you finish Medicine or do another degree, so isn't it worth spending just one more year at medical school rather than 2-3 years on another course?

    I made it to 3rd year of medical school before I had to resit the whole year. Despite how immensely hard I worked and how I much I (suprisingly) enjoyed everything a lot more the second time round, I failed the 3rd year OSCE and got kicked out. I'm at rock bottom right now with applying to finish Medicine abroad where it will probably be 100 times harder for me to pass than it was here. I'm constantly questioning whether or not I'm good enough to pass medical school even though I'm only doing it now so I can finish what I started. Believe me, it might be difficult for you but you're in an enviable position. I would have loved to have made it to 4th year and passed all the exams, as would every other aspiring medic. Like you, I don't want to be doctor any more, nor do I want to work in healthcare but I'm sticking it out to the end of medical school just so I can get a degree and apply for a normal job like every other graduate. It's probably a stupid decision and one I might live to regret when I remember how many years I've wasted pursuing this path, but I enjoy this course even though I want no part of the job afterwards (at least not in the NHS). IMO a degree in Medicine is a more logical stopping point than giving up half-way and settling for a science degree. I think your employment prospects would be much better with Medicine than anything else as you've done vocational study for longer than most other students, as well as gaining all the same transferable skills as people on other courses. You've made it to 4th year so you must be doing something right, and your feelings about the course/content obviously haven't affected your motivation or ability to study. All the more reason to stick with something you're used to and that you're good at.

    Also, I think you should change your mindset about medical school only leading into one profession. There's millions of jobs and a whole world out there - plenty of people decide they don't want to become doctors any more but a degree in Medicine is too valuable to give up. Google "alternative careers for doctors" or something along those lines and you'll find entire websites dedicated to helping medically-trained people find other career paths that utilise their skills. Here's one article I found really useful:

    http://careers.bmj.com/careers/advic...nical_practice

    With a degree in Medicine you could always do an MPhil instead of going back and starting something from scratch. I've learned the hard way that having a degree opens up so many more doors for you (I can't even find a minimum wage job with A-Levels as my highest qualifications). So I would encourage you to keep going, get some recognition for all your hard work at medical school so you can move on - I left with nothing after 4 years and that was heart-breaking. At least you've recognised now that you don't want to be a doctor instead of half-way through F1. You're in a good position to finish your degree and then move on to whatever you want. I would advise making a list in priority order for everything you want to achieve - Plan A, Plan B etc. I'm sure that will help you find some direction quickly.

    Good Luck, I hope everything goes well for you.
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    (Original post by Horaxic)
    I can't think of a more suitable forum for this query, so apologies that it lowers the optimistic tone.

    I'm currently a 4th year medical student at a great University in the UK. Ever since rotations began last year I have begun to loathe the course and have realised that I really, never want to work in clinical medicine. In fact, I don't want to work in healthcare full stop. This was a decision made age 16/17 when I didn't know myself and I can not see this as my future.

    I am not struggling on the course - I am managing to pass all exams and get by with a smile plastered on my face without anyone noticing that anything is wrong. However, I feel completely trapped in such a vocational degree that leads down such a specific pathway.
    Of those who I have told (Uni therapist, Uni careers advisor, 2 close friends) they have all mentioned a variety of options that would still utilise my degree without patient contact, such as public health work, IT/management stuff, even investment banking, but I don't want to go into any of these fields.
    I would ideally like to do a second degree in Philosophy or Fine Art, and if you can't already tell, the reasoning behind this is not for improved job security. I just don't know where to go from here. I am of current thought that I will complete the degree but I really struggle with the thought of completing F1. I would love some advice, words of reassurance and especially to hear of anyone completely switching career pathways.

    Now that I have made this decision the overwhelming feeling has been one of relief. I just need a plan.
    Read your post with interest. The things you mention are all the reasons I would think about not doing a medical degree. One thing stands out for me though, why do you want a job that doesn't involve any contact with patients.

    Someone I know (not well) is determined to be a museum curator. They have been working for a series of high profile museums and galleries about 20 hours a week for the last 3 years. They have not been paid a penny yet. Art and writing is something you can do as a hobby and if you're actually talented enough to get paid, turn it into a career from there.

    Would you not still like to do something scientific, maybe like programming or sales within the pharmaceutical industry?
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    (Original post by Horaxic)
    Do you have anymore information about the MA Philosophy, any Unis in particular where this transition from medicine to a humanities isn't unheard of?
    I don't know of any particular courses but you could start working through www.findamasters.com.

    There are broadly two types of Masters degrees: (a) the type that develop and add depth to the study undertaken during a BA and (b) that permit graduates in another discipline to transition their skills across to a new subject. I guess you are looking for the latter, which will probably be obvious from their selection requirements.

    I suspect there aren't that many doctors who go straight into philosophy/ethics from medical school but I would have thought that many courses would be open to this as a plan. There is a very obvious niche for a medical doctor in philosophy.
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    Newcastle allows intercalation into humanities subjects at Durham (off the top of my head, MAs in anthropology, history of medicine and also MScs in evolutionary medicine) so it's obviously not unheard of for those with a medical background to be studying on those humanities-like degrees. There are a couple of docs on this forum as well that have intercalated into medical humanities degrees (can't remember who off the top of my head) and said they've enjoyed it. I don't have any info about a philosophy MA generally, but maybe looking at universities that accept intercalators onto their humanities degrees might be a good place to start?
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    How would you finance a second degree? Doesn't student finance only pay for 4 years
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    (Original post by Horaxic)
    I can't think of a more suitable forum for this query, so apologies that it lowers the optimistic tone.

    I'm currently a 4th year medical student at a great University in the UK. Ever since rotations began last year I have begun to loathe the course and have realised that I really, never want to work in clinical medicine. In fact, I don't want to work in healthcare full stop. This was a decision made age 16/17 when I didn't know myself and I can not see this as my future.

    I am not struggling on the course - I am managing to pass all exams and get by with a smile plastered on my face without anyone noticing that anything is wrong. However, I feel completely trapped in such a vocational degree that leads down such a specific pathway.
    Of those who I have told (Uni therapist, Uni careers advisor, 2 close friends) they have all mentioned a variety of options that would still utilise my degree without patient contact, such as public health work, IT/management stuff, even investment banking, but I don't want to go into any of these fields.
    I would ideally like to do a second degree in Philosophy or Fine Art, and if you can't already tell, the reasoning behind this is not for improved job security. I just don't know where to go from here. I am of current thought that I will complete the degree but I really struggle with the thought of completing F1. I would love some advice, words of reassurance and especially to hear of anyone completely switching career pathways.

    Now that I have made this decision the overwhelming feeling has been one of relief. I just need a plan.
    To maximise your outcome I would recommend you finish your medicine degree.
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    (Original post by Horaxic)


    What makes you say that about Philosophy? Interested to hear of any previous experience.

    That is definitely a point brought up with the careers service, and I agree with you. I hope I am not trying to stave off a career, but I can't help feeling that is definitely isn't that, or not just that aspect anyway. I would love a career in writing, or as a fine art curator, so I can still see myself having a career... just not in Medicine.
    i don't know how much philosophy you've read, but it's not a subject that solves the mysteries of life. it's can be rather dry and logical. the only way to find out is to do some serious reading yourself.

    just bear in mind both careers you mention are both ferociously competitive and poorly paid. to put it bluntly, many people go to university with no particular career in mind and then become accountants, or lawyers if they're lucky, largely because these are the only well paid careers open to any degree.
 
 
 
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