Paying For Medical School In The Us Military
The first thing to keep in mind when considering military options to pay for medical school and medical training is that in exchange for paying for your training, your branch of military service will require a time commitment from youyou must agree to serve a minimum time in uniform as a trained medical professional.
In general, your military commitment will depend greatly on the amount of commitment the military gives youevery year you receive military educational assistance toward a medical degree you are required to commit the same amount of time to serving. If you enter a four-year medical program and get four years of full-time coverage for it, you will be expected to commit to four years of service in uniform.
It should be pointed out that many such programs require your military commitment to begin after residency requirements are met and not before. Resident work may coincide with or conflict with Guard or Reserve commitments. You will need to ask questions of your school and recruiter to learn how to reconcile such schedules where needed.
Guard And Reserve Programs
The Health Care Professional Loan Repayment Program may be eligible to apply for student loan repayment assistance in exchange for a seven-year service commitment with the Army Guard.
To qualify, Army National Guard officers must serve in the Selected Reserve. Other specialties including physician assistants, social workers and veterinarians may qualify for loan repayments but you may be required to contact a specialty recruiter assigned to your state.
A set of similar Air Guard options exist. The official site advises there are several Air National Guard programs to assist health professionals interested in joining the Air Guard, including the Student Loan Repayment Program, a stipend program, and the Montgomery GI Bill.
There are also options to earn Continuing Medical Education credit for training courses offered by the Air Guard.
Other options for members of the Guard and Reserve may include specialized training assistance for those unconditionally accepted into a medical program or residency that requires a full year of military service obligation for every six months of access to this program. Your obligation begins immediately following completion of your residency, according to the U.S. Army official site.
Joe Wallace is a 13-year veteran of the United States Air Force and a former reporter for Air Force Television News
Navy And Marine Corps Medical School Programs
A search for Marine Corps-specific medical school programs may frustrate some users the Marines have not participated in the types of medical school programs . However, the Navy has participated in the past including programs such as the Navy Health Professions Scholarship program featuring:
- 100% tuition coverage during medical school for qualified applicants
- Monthly stipends for living expenses
- Significant signing bonus
- Reimbursement for books, supplies, insurance, etc.
Another program known as the Navy Health Services Collegiate Program offers assistance up to roughly $250 thousand for qualifying applicants that includes:
- Monthly military pay
- Housing allowance
- Health-care benefits package
These programs may require you to speak to a Navy Medical recruiter, not a regular recruiter. When calling your local recruiting office, be sure to mention that you need to speak to a medical recruiter about student loan incentive programs.
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Health Professional Scholarship Program
The Health Professional Scholarship Program allows students to be on track to becoming military doctors while attending civilian allopathic or osteopathic medical schools in the United States or Puerto Rico. For your application, you must complete all the medical school requirements and prerequisites outlined by the program of your choice.
If you become an HPSP student, your medical school experience will not be much different from that of civilians. Firstly, you will attend a civilian school along with other civilian students and you will not wear your uniform. Unlike your civilian peers, you will need to attend officer training for your specific service . You are also expected to participate in one annual training period per year of the HPSP scholarship that you receive. These 45-day training periods also allow you to study for exams at your medical school, participate in research, or complete clinical rotations at military hospitals, not civilian hospitals. You must wear your uniform during your officer training and the annual training periods.
The HPSP students are commissioned as officers in the Individual Ready Reserve while they attend civilian allopathic or osteopathic medical school.
Throughout your medical training, the administrative staff of the HPSP scholarship program will stay in touch with you and keep you informed about any requirements, deadlines, and other information you may need about your scholarship.
How to apply:
Medical School For Reserve And Guard Students
To join the Reserve and Guard program, you must apply to the incentive-based Medical and Dental Student Stipend Program . This scholarship program will allow you to attend medical school as a commissioned officer. You will be required to drill one weekend a month and for two full weeks during the year. Drilling consists of training in your military medical responsibilities as a physician. You will participate in the civilian Match Day and train at a civilian institution.
How you get the money: When you drill, you will be paid as a second lieutenant in the Army or Air Force or an ensign in the Navy. When not drilling, you will receive a stipend of over US$2,000/month as a participant in the MDSSP.
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Pursuing A Career In The Medical Field Can Be One Of The Smartest Most Fulfilling And Financially Sound Choices A Veteran Can Make
From medical technicians to nurses and physical therapists, there are hundreds of well-paying and satisfying jobs to choose from. For a select few who are willing and able to undertake the journey, medical school can provide career opportunities that are unparalleled in the healthcare industry.
Of course, the road to becoming a doctor isnt easy. Though veterans are tough, determined and resourceful, there are unique challenges they face along the way. Veterans are often older than their medical school peers, and going to medical school later in life can be a unique challenge by itself. The choice to take on that challenge can be daunting.
If youre considering medical school for your post-military plans, here are a couple of points to consider.
Think About Your Life Goals
Is it worth going to medical school? That all depends on you. If the idea of becoming a doctor is appealing to you, you probably already know whether or not you like the idea of saving lives and getting your hands a little bit messy, but theres more to it than that. Consider the time required to complete medical school. Even if youve already completed your bachelors degree, medical school requires four additional years of schooling. Tack on three more years learning as a resident and you have more than a decade of commitment before you can practice medicine as a fully qualified doctor.
Start Preparing for Med School Now
Understand the Med School Application Process
How To Pay For Medical School
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You can pay for medical school with traditional financial aid packages, or you can accept a position that will pay for most, if not all of your tuition expenses. Many states, hospitals, and federal programs are available to help repay student debt. Most branches of the United States military also offer full scholarships for a variety of medical professions. With some research and planning, you can figure out the best route to help fund your education while in medical school.
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Military Doctors In Canada
The easiest, and cheapest, way to becoming a military physician in Canada is through the Medical Officer Training Plan offered by the Canadian Armed Forces . Family medicine residents and students applying to or enrolled in a medical school in Canada who successfully pass the selection process are eligible for this program. The program pays for candidates’ tuition, educational expenditures, including books, instruments, supplies, student fees, and registration costs.
While you are a medical student or resident in family medicine, you will get a full-time salary, medical and dental benefits, as well as vacation time with full-pay in exchange for working with the Canadian Armed Forces for a certain period of time, typically around 4 years. Students participating in this program attend medical school on a regular basis during the academic year, while dedicating their summer months to additional military training. If you decide to pursue this scholarship, you must apply to both the CAF and the MD program of your choice. For more information, please visit this page.
Does Joining The Military To Pay For Medical School Make It Worth It
Having learned recently that tuition at my medical school has gone up 150% since my graduation, and that students cannot get loans below 6.8% these days, I was curious how that would change the equation. So I decided to run the numbers again. As with any equation, garbage in equals garbage out, so the inputs and assumptions are key. Here are the inputs I used:
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Do You Have A Medical Degree Already
Some incentives are offered to those who are considering or just starting a medical school program, others are offered to those who have already completed medical degrees. Consider what the Army official site says about this issue, offering separate gateways on the official site for prospective students and for current students:
The U.S. Army offers future health care professionals the chance to complete a bachelors degree with less debt and with more advanced training.
A similar offer states, U.S. Army health care team offers future health care professionals the chance to finish their graduate medical education with the same offers of less debt and more advanced training. But the options and outcomes will vary depending on your status, the program, and other variables.
Q: What Gpa And Mcat Score Do I Need To Get Into Medical School
A: The table below lists the average Grade Point Averages and Medical College Admissions Test Scores for schools that accepted cadets during the last three years.
Q: What additional obligation do I incur for attending medical school?
A: The obligation depends on your school and the length of your residency. In addition to the 5-year West Point obligation, you will incur an additional 4 years if you go to a civilian medical school , or an additional 7 years if you attend USU. Longer residencies add more time. You will not start “paying off” the obligation until you complete your Graduate Medical Education .
Q: When do I have to decide if I want to pursue the medical school option?
A: In the spring of Cow year, cadets apply to the Medical Program Advisory Committee for endorsement to attend medical school. However, most cadets decide when they declare their major and select courses. If you are interested earlier, make that known to Academic Counselors in the Chemistry and Life Science Department and the Office of the Dean.
Q: What is the best major to take if I want to go to medical school? I have read that it may not be best to major in the life sciences because medical schools are looking for students from diverse academic backgrounds.
Q: What is the minimum number of courses beyond the core courses that I need to compete for selection for medical school?
Q: What is the USMA medical school selection process?
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Im A Veteran Where Do I Begin
If youve already signed up for G.I. Bill benefits, you can check them here.
If you havent signed up yet, first make sure youre eligible , then apply for the G.I. Bill itself by going here.
If youre successful in attaining your benefits, youll receive a Certificate of Eligibility . Hold onto this, for a moment, youll need it later
Can I Complete Prerequisite Courses During Deployment
In many cases, medical schools will accept courses completed by active duty military outside of the country while deployed. To find out more information, see the AMCAS Applicant Guide . You also should contact the medical schools you are interested in attending to discuss your specific circumstances and learn more about their policies.
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Why Dr Shaw Chose A Civilian Residency
When he was finishing his military service, Dr. Shaw participated in both the military and AOA matches, landing family medicine residency positions in both. Dr. Shaw ultimately chose a civilian residency through the AOA in part because it was less of a time commitment.
The military considers its residency training to be free education that must be paid back with more active duty service. Because Dr. Shaw had already completed his required service for med school, he would have owed the military additional years of service after finishing a military residency.
Student Loans Paid Off
Theres no argument that its a financial hardship to get through medical school, but the military can help. Students can opt to attend a military medical school, but it isnt necessary to have a degree from a military-affiliated school to get financial aid. Students may qualify for military financial aid to support them in non-affiliated medical schools. In this case, students make an agreement that they will join the military as a commissioned officer after graduation.
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Us Army Health Care Team
What is the ARMY recruiting for? The U.S. Army Health Care Team hires for all medical fields. Our focus at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center however is the F. Edward Herbert Armed Forces Health Professions Scholarship Program , which pays full tuition, books, equipment, and all fees to optometry, veterinary, dental and medical schools. In addition, the HPSP pays students a monthly $2,062.00 stipend. Please read on to find out more on the HPSP.
Uniformed Services University Of The Health Science
America’s Medical School:
The Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences is the nations federal health professions academy akin to the undergraduate programs of the U.S. military academies at West Point, Annapolis and Colorado Springs. And like the academies, students attending USU can focus on their education without the worry of incurring debt. Medical students enter the University as commissioned officers in one of the four uniformed services: Army, Navy, Air Force or Public Health Service . No prior service is required for admission to USU. Students pay no tuition or fees and, in fact, receive the full salary and benefits of a uniformed officer throughout their four years at the university in exchange for a seven-year active duty service commitment. . These benefits include free medical care for students and eligible family members, a housing allowance, and 30 days paid leave annually. Books and laboratory equipment are also furnished to students at no charge.
Prior to matriculation, all incoming students attend a four- to six-week officer orientation program where they learn about the customs and traditions of life in their respective services as well as the responsibilities of a uniformed officer. This orientation provides students who have no prior commisioned officer experience with a transition to the uniformed services. Students then proceed to USU for the beginning of their formal medical education.
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Finding The Right School
There are many factors that go into choosing a list of medical schools to apply to . Also, depending on the institution, your benefits may go further at one place, rather than the other tuition-wise, namely.
Use this G.I. Bill tool to narrow down your search and gain confidence in your shortlist of places to apply.
Paying For Medical School With Scholarships
As far as scholarships go, there are a number of options. Dr. Richard Beddingfield, an anesthesiologist and author of Med School Uncensored, says you will find the most options for students with stellar academic performance, strong research interests, or underrepresented cultural backgrounds. You should also consider looking into local and school-specific scholarship opportunities. Some medical schools offer very generous awards. Look beyond traditional merit-based scholarships too. Dr. Bernard Remakus, an internist and author, outlines a handful of available options:
- Military scholarshipstrade medical school tuition and expenses for commitments to serve as a military doctor.
- National Health Service Corps scholarshipscover tuition and expenses for students who commit to working in a medically underserved area at the beginning of their physician career.
- Public, private, and governmental institutions offer partial and full scholarships and grants.
Make sure to read the fine print and be aware of any commitments these programs require, such as geographic location, specialty, and length of service.
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