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    I applied to both 4 year and 5 year medicine courses for 2017 entry. I was concerned about not getting any interviews on the four year course so applied to 5 year ones so that I had a higher chance of getting some interview practise. I managed to get interviews from two 4 year courses and two 5 year courses. However, I have received post-interview rejections from both GEM options. I have received an offer from a 5 year course. I really want to do medicine and I feel so disappointed at myself for not getting into GEM this year. A 5 year course comes with massive financial burden. I think I would just about be able to do it through a mixture of savings, maintenance loans, part-time jobs/maybe small grants, and help from friends but I know this will put a massive stress on me, having to always worry about money for 5 years. My question is what do I do? Do i decline the 5 year offer and try again? If I do try again, I will have to top up my work experience and I'm not sure how much time I will have for that between finishing up my PhD and finding some sort of job that pays. Any advice would be much appreciated....
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    (Original post by GEMdreams)
    I applied to both 4 year and 5 year medicine courses for 2017 entry. I was concerned about not getting any interviews on the four year course so applied to 5 year ones so that I had a higher chance of getting some interview practise. I managed to get interviews from two 4 year courses and two 5 year courses. However, I have received post-interview rejections from both GEM options. I have received an offer from a 5 year course. I really want to do medicine and I feel so disappointed at myself for not getting into GEM this year. A 5 year course comes with massive financial burden. I think I would just about be able to do it through a mixture of savings, maintenance loans, part-time jobs/maybe small grants, and help from friends but I know this will put a massive stress on me, having to always worry about money for 5 years. My question is what do I do? Do i decline the 5 year offer and try again? If I do try again, I will have to top up my work experience and I'm not sure how much time I will have for that between finishing up my PhD and finding some sort of job that pays. Any advice would be much appreciated....
    I suggest you accept the offer and not feel like a disappointment - 4 or 5 year course; medicine is still medicine and it is a massive achievement to get 4/4 interviews, let alone an offer! I am on a wonderful dream school rejection streak myself and would do anything for an offer and I know a lot of Medicine applicants who would agree.

    As for the cost, I know it is expensive but it would probably be worth it, assuming you might not find a well paying part time job and do internships at the same time.
    Plus there is the risk of not getting offers from 4 year courses next year.

    Furthermore, a 5 year course will give you more space to complete your PhD as it's not as intense and demanding as an accelerated one.

    Good luck!
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    (Original post by GEMdreams)
    I applied to both 4 year and 5 year medicine courses for 2017 entry. I was concerned about not getting any interviews on the four year course so applied to 5 year ones so that I had a higher chance of getting some interview practise. I managed to get interviews from two 4 year courses and two 5 year courses. However, I have received post-interview rejections from both GEM options. I have received an offer from a 5 year course. I really want to do medicine and I feel so disappointed at myself for not getting into GEM this year. A 5 year course comes with massive financial burden. I think I would just about be able to do it through a mixture of savings, maintenance loans, part-time jobs/maybe small grants, and help from friends but I know this will put a massive stress on me, having to always worry about money for 5 years. My question is what do I do? Do i decline the 5 year offer and try again? If I do try again, I will have to top up my work experience and I'm not sure how much time I will have for that between finishing up my PhD and finding some sort of job that pays. Any advice would be much appreciated....
    I was in a similar position to yourself last year. Except I did not get interviews on the 4 year options but got a place at Exeter for the 5 year course. I had the same concern about cost but had to tell myself I would be mad to turn down a place at medical school in the hope that I would get a place on a 4 year course the next year.

    You have to accept the fact that the competition rates for GEM is huge. Even with great grades and interviews, just out of sheer numbers there is always a chance you would not be given a place. I couldn't see myself coping with that happening.

    I am working part time to pay my fees, money is tight I won't lie, and it is always a concern. But it doesn't half focus the mind and make you buckle down and study. The 5 year course is also a lot less intense and has longer holidays to allow you to earn money.

    Ultimately the decision is yours. I still think you would be mad to turn it down.
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    As you see above, the consensus of opinion is "Don't decline offer" - I would strongly reiterate that.

    Actually, I understand fully that money is a major issue; my suggestion would be to take it step by step - one major step you can take is to approach your bank for a loan - I do appreciate that this would put you in a debt by the time you become a doctor, but you will find out as you get older, that, to be frank, an extra 10-15 thousand pounds in today's terms is "peanuts"!

    As a young student some years ago, I had no true perspective about money and the value of certain amounts of it. OK, doctors are not paid very well, but you do not go into medicine if money is your prime objective.

    As you will be a postgraduate, you will not get a student loan - however, the economy is improving lately (in spite of Brexit), and it is slightly easier to get loans that a couple of years ago. Banks will look at your long-term prospects, and they know that very very few doctors are ever unemployed, so they wil be willing to invest in you.

    Also, interest rates are, as we all know, historically the lowest ever, so you will not pay much more than the 1.5% odd that undergraduate students (and now MSc students) pay for student loans.

    Your problem is more a short-term cash flow one, for which the longer-term outlook is good.

    I did a degree while running a shop as a mature sudent, and another one as an extra mature student with a bank loan.

    If it improves your view of the attitude of banks, I helped a friend v recently to get a £11000 loan although he had a terrible credit record.

    Don't just click click online to apply - make a physical appointment with your bank manager.

    BEST OF LUCK!

    M (ex-medic)
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    (Original post by silver001)
    I suggest you accept the offer and not feel like a disappointment - 4 or 5 year course; medicine is still medicine and it is a massive achievement to get 4/4 interviews, let alone an offer! I am on a wonderful dream school rejection streak myself and would do anything for an offer and I know a lot of Medicine applicants who would agree.

    As for the cost, I know it is expensive but it would probably be worth it, assuming you might not find a well paying part time job and do internships at the same time.
    Plus there is the risk of not getting offers from 4 year courses next year.

    Furthermore, a 5 year course will give you more space to complete your PhD as it's not as intense and demanding as an accelerated one.

    Good luck!
    Thank you so much for taking the time to reply. You've given me a lot to think about. Yes, this might be my only shot at medicine and I would be silly to let it go. I will try my best with my finance to make it work. I hope you get the offer you want soon
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    (Original post by lyra1987)
    I was in a similar position to yourself last year. Except I did not get interviews on the 4 year options but got a place at Exeter for the 5 year course. I had the same concern about cost but had to tell myself I would be mad to turn down a place at medical school in the hope that I would get a place on a 4 year course the next year.

    You have to accept the fact that the competition rates for GEM is huge. Even with great grades and interviews, just out of sheer numbers there is always a chance you would not be given a place. I couldn't see myself coping with that happening.

    I am working part time to pay my fees, money is tight I won't lie, and it is always a concern. But it doesn't half focus the mind and make you buckle down and study. The 5 year course is also a lot less intense and has longer holidays to allow you to earn money.

    Ultimately the decision is yours. I still think you would be mad to turn it down.
    So good to hear from someone who is actually out there doing what I want to do but so scared of taking the leap! How do you manage to pay the tuition fees if you don't mind me asking? Does your uni give you any grants? How many hours a week are you able to work? If I am lucky, i could potentially get a teaching assistant/ research assistant job in a uni lab, which would pay maybe £14/h.. If not, it would have to be HCA work which would pay less, and fit it around my studies.. I don't have a lot of savings at all. I was planning on taking a maintenance loan and using that to pay tuition fees. Living costs would be though savings, odd jobs and help from family/partner.
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    (Original post by macpatelgh)
    As you see above, the consensus of opinion is "Don't decline offer" - I would strongly reiterate that.

    Actually, I understand fully that money is a major issue; my suggestion would be to take it step by step - one major step you can take is to approach your bank for a loan - I do appreciate that this would put you in a debt by the time you become a doctor, but you will find out as you get older, that, to be frank, an extra 10-15 thousand pounds in today's terms is "peanuts"!

    As a young student some years ago, I had no true perspective about money and the value of certain amounts of it. OK, doctors are not paid very well, but you do not go into medicine if money is your prime objective.

    As you will be a postgraduate, you will not get a student loan - however, the economy is improving lately (in spite of Brexit), and it is slightly easier to get loans that a couple of years ago. Banks will look at your long-term prospects, and they know that very very few doctors are ever unemployed, so they wil be willing to invest in you.

    Also, interest rates are, as we all know, historically the lowest ever, so you will not pay much more than the 1.5% odd that undergraduate students (and now MSc students) pay for student loans.

    Your problem is more a short-term cash flow one, for which the longer-term outlook is good.

    I did a degree while running a shop as a mature sudent, and another one as an extra mature student with a bank loan.

    If it improves your view of the attitude of banks, I helped a friend v recently to get a £11000 loan although he had a terrible credit record.

    Don't just click click online to apply - make a physical appointment with your bank manager.

    BEST OF LUCK!

    M (ex-medic)
    Hi, Thank you for your advice. I have always been scared of taking bank loans for the reasons you mentioned but I will make some enquiries and see what sort of loan i can get and what interest rate
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    (Original post by GEMdreams)
    So good to hear from someone who is actually out there doing what I want to do but so scared of taking the leap! How do you manage to pay the tuition fees if you don't mind me asking? Does your uni give you any grants? How many hours a week are you able to work? If I am lucky, i could potentially get a teaching assistant/ research assistant job in a uni lab, which would pay maybe £14/h.. If not, it would have to be HCA work which would pay less, and fit it around my studies.. I don't have a lot of savings at all. I was planning on taking a maintenance loan and using that to pay tuition fees. Living costs would be though savings, odd jobs and help from family/partner.
    (Original post by GEMdreams)
    Hi, Thank you for your advice. I have always been scared of taking bank loans for the reasons you mentioned but I will make some enquiries and see what sort of loan i can get and what interest rate
    I am going to play devils advocate and say don't go for the 5 year offer unless you are sure you can pay for it. We all like to think universities have goodwill but if you can't pay their fees they will ask you to leave. I've heard of a few instances where people are desperately trying to crowdsource money because they're close to being kicked out because of money. It doesn't matter if you're three years in to the degree and over halfway there.

    I would also be wary of taking out bank loans. You will have to start payiing them back whilst you're studying, making your financial situation all teh more precarius. Those jobs you've mentioned sound like weekday jobs, which may be difficult to fit in, even around a 5 year undergrad timetable.

    As you don't have any savings, and thus no real back up, I would think long and hard before accepting. Could you defer for a year and save money? If not, I would consider applying again, for me it is far less risky than possibly facing running out of money part way through the course.
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    (Original post by ForestCat)
    I am going to play devils advocate and say don't go for the 5 year offer unless you are sure you can pay for it. We all like to think universities have goodwill but if you can't pay their fees they will ask you to leave. I've heard of a few instances where people are desperately trying to crowdsource money because they're close to being kicked out because of money. It doesn't matter if you're three years in to the degree and over halfway there.

    I would also be wary of taking out bank loans. You will have to start payiing them back whilst you're studying, making your financial situation all teh more precarius. Those jobs you've mentioned sound like weekday jobs, which may be difficult to fit in, even around a 5 year undergrad timetable.

    As you don't have any savings, and thus no real back up, I would think long and hard before accepting. Could you defer for a year and save money? If not, I would consider applying again, for me it is far less risky than possibly facing running out of money part way through the course.
    Its good to have all perspectives and everything you mentioned in your reply are exactly my worries. A lot of it depends on where my partner can get a job after our PhDs are over as if it is in the same city, I can fund the course. If not then the financial situation is uncertain and I would have to make a decision very carefully after talking to my family. If I did defer, do you know if it is possible for me to still apply to other 4 year courses or would I have to stick with my deferred choose? Thanks for your reply!
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    (Original post by GEMdreams)
    Its good to have all perspectives and everything you mentioned in your reply are exactly my worries. A lot of it depends on where my partner can get a job after our PhDs are over as if it is in the same city, I can fund the course. If not then the financial situation is uncertain and I would have to make a decision very carefully after talking to my family. If I did defer, do you know if it is possible for me to still apply to other 4 year courses or would I have to stick with my deferred choose? Thanks for your reply!
    You can't defer and reapply. You would have to reject that offer and take a chance on getting another offer.
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    (Original post by GEMdreams)
    So good to hear from someone who is actually out there doing what I want to do but so scared of taking the leap! How do you manage to pay the tuition fees if you don't mind me asking? Does your uni give you any grants? How many hours a week are you able to work? If I am lucky, i could potentially get a teaching assistant/ research assistant job in a uni lab, which would pay maybe £14/h.. If not, it would have to be HCA work which would pay less, and fit it around my studies.. I don't have a lot of savings at all. I was planning on taking a maintenance loan and using that to pay tuition fees. Living costs would be though savings, odd jobs and help from family/partner.
    I did a load of overtime and was already a bit of a workaholic prior to applying. I raised my full first years tuition prior to starting.

    I am working as a nurse. So I am getting about £14 per hour at the moment (more if I get a weekend shift), which I am using to pay my cost of living. I am doing 10 - 20 hours a week. I am going to be working full time over the holidays.

    I am getting the full maintenance loan which I am putting away to pay my fees (£8500). My university is giving me a £1000 bursary a year. You can also apply for prizes and grants from organisations but they are few and far between and hard to get.

    My university does not have high contact hours. I have one week day a week where I am able to work. And of course have the weekend. The key is being ultra organised to get your work and study done. You have to be very frugal. I understand Forestcat urging caution. Only you will know if you are able to work and study simultaneously. I don't know which university you have an offer for so you will need to check with them what their contact hours are. It is down to you if you are willing to take the risk of running out of money. And if you are willing to take the risk of turning down an offer this year and potentially not receiving any next year.
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    Just thought i'd chime in here with an opinion - well done on getting an offer. Applying relatively late on in your career is tough but still demonstrates to yourself you want to study medicine. Im in year 2 of my course now. I only applied to undergraduate courses because of the competition and even then I only managed this one offer.

    Like others suggest, see what your immediate funding options are. 5 years at this tuition fee rate is insane to think about it. I was lucky in the first instance I was wholly supported by my Dad, but it did come with a heavy burden and a real fear of not being successful here - that doesnt mean your not successful for not getting a 4 year course, just means you put yourself under a little extra pressure because this is literally on you!

    You mention a phd so at this point I imagine you are well adapted to hard work and managed your time and savings well. I have a titanic worth of student debt but brought savings with me to uni and I also work part time - its easy enough.

    Whether you take the option to go to uni is ultimately up to you - can you afford the time of an extra year and whats the guarantee of getting another offer next cycle anyway?

    Good luck whichever you choose
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    (Original post by GEMdreams)
    I applied to both 4 year and 5 year medicine courses for 2017 entry. I was concerned about not getting any interviews on the four year course so applied to 5 year ones so that I had a higher chance of getting some interview practise. I managed to get interviews from two 4 year courses and two 5 year courses. However, I have received post-interview rejections from both GEM options. I have received an offer from a 5 year course. I really want to do medicine and I feel so disappointed at myself for not getting into GEM this year. A 5 year course comes with massive financial burden. I think I would just about be able to do it through a mixture of savings, maintenance loans, part-time jobs/maybe small grants, and help from friends but I know this will put a massive stress on me, having to always worry about money for 5 years. My question is what do I do? Do i decline the 5 year offer and try again? If I do try again, I will have to top up my work experience and I'm not sure how much time I will have for that between finishing up my PhD and finding some sort of job that pays. Any advice would be much appreciated....
    Bringing this back because I am curious about what you decided. Also where it was you got your offer? Just in case you are coming to play at my end of the pond.
 
 
 
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