What have they done?
Here are some of the endeavors that our alums have pursued in time off prior to applying to health professions school:
Student, Johnson and Wales Culinary program
Student, Oxford University PhD in Physiology
Student, Boston University Master of Arts in Medical Sciences
Peace Corps Volunteer, Cameroon
HIV Counselor, San Francisco CA
Associate Scientist, Schering-Plough
Research Technician, Mass General Hospital Cancer Center
Occupational Therapy Assistant
Emergency Medical Technician
Research Assistant, Beth Israel Hospital Dyspnea Lab
Taking Time Off
Taking a year or more off between graduating from Brandeis University and beginning your health profession training program will not harm your chances of being admitted. There are many advantages to taking time off. For example, you could gain valuable work experience and thus garner strong letters of recommendation from a supervisor. In addition, time off allows you to pursue a more flexible undergraduate curriculum since you would not have to take two of your premedical courses in your sophomore year. Perhaps also you might want to pursue some other interest (such as travelling or working in a public service like the Peace Cops or Teach for America) before committing yourself to a lengthy period of professional training. Some students may want to strengthen their academic record by taking additional courses after graduating or perhaps pursue a masters degree. Finally, you may just need a break from school! Whatever the case may be, if you think you need some time off do not hesitate to make an appointment to see a pre-health advisor.