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Articles / Applying to College / Med School for Older Adults?

Med School for Older Adults?

Sally Rubenstone
Written by Sally Rubenstone | Jan. 6, 2005

Question: Are there any programs out there for older adults to go to medical school?

Yes, there are indeed programs for older aspiring doctors. Try this site for some general information and links to other resources:


One of the pages you can reach from that site is this one:


Scroll to the bottom for a list of institutions cited as being especially non-trad friendly.

If you haven't fulfilled pre-med requirements and are currently not in college (or you are about to graduate without all the typical pre-med prerequisites under your belt), you can visit this site to learn about colleges that offer special pre-med "tune-up" programs:


Here are a few articles you might enjoy reading and find inspirational:




For decades I have been an avid "Dear Abby" reader (a closet habit until recently). One of my all-time favorite columns was about an older student who wanted to attend medical school. I can't recall the particulars (i.e., the exact wording or age noted) but it went something like this:

Dear Abby,

I am 44 years old and have always wanted to be a doctor. Until now, my life circumstances didn't permit it, but if I try to get to medical school, I won't be a doctor for at least six years and by then I will be 50. What should I do?"

Abby sagely replied, "In six years you will be 50 anyway. You might as well be a 50-year-old doctor and fulfill your dream."

Good advice, eh? And good luck to you.

Written by

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone knows the competitive and often convoluted college admission process inside out: From the first time the topic of college comes up at the dinner table until the last duffel bag is unloaded on a dorm room floor. She is the co-author of Panicked Parents' Guide to College Admissions; The Transfer Student's Guide to Changing Colleges and The International Student's Guide to Going to College in America. Sally has appeared on NBC's Today program and has been quoted in countless publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Weekend, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, Newsweek, People and Seventeen. Sally has viewed the admissions world from many angles: As a Smith College admission counselor for 15 years, an independent college counselor serving students from a wide range of backgrounds and the author of College Confidential's "Ask the Dean" column. She also taught language arts, social studies, study skills and test preparation in 10 schools, including American international schools in London, Paris, Geneva, Athens and Tel Aviv. As senior advisor to College Confidential since 2002, Sally has helped hundreds of students and parents navigate the college admissions maze. In 2008, she co-founded College Karma, a private college consulting firm, with her College Confidential colleague Dave Berry, and she continues to serve as a College Confidential advisor. Sally and her husband, Chris Petrides, became first-time parents in 1997 at the ripe-old age of 45. So Sally was nearly an official senior citizen when her son Jack began the college selection process, and when she was finally able to practice what she had preached for more than three decades.

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