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Pre-Vet and Pre-Med

A photo of Jess322 Jess322
I'm going into grade 12 this school year, and I'm considering going into medicine (probably be pediatrician or specialize in sports medicine) or being a small animal veterinarian.

Is there a way I can fulfill the prerequisites for both med school and vet school when I get my undergrad degree?

I plan on going to University of Alberta for my undergrad, then: if Vet I'd go to either U of Calgary or U of Saskatchewan. if Med, I'm not sure where I'd go just yet..


Also, to specialize in Sports Medicine, or become a Pediatrician, how many years of schooling would that be??

Thanks!!
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A photo of ktel ktel
You really have to decide now which one you are going to do. Both programs are so competitive it's going to be really obvious in your application if you don't choose. Vet schools want to see a lot of experience working with animals, in vet clinics, etc. Med schools probably want to see you working with humans. So it would be difficult to get meaningful experience in both. Getting in is obviously a lot more about other things than taking the prerequisite courses (which you could probably easily take the prereqs for both in your undergrad).

But welcome to the U of A.
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A photo of inthemaking inthemaking
Technically yes since the prereqs overlap a lot (not sure about the U of Sask/U of Calgary prereqs but the 8 prereqs for Guelph are very similar to med school ones - and we even have to take the MCAT too). But it's the volunteering that will be vastly different..you'll need vet and animal experience (as well as reference letters from vets) to get into vet school. For med school you should be working on getting research/clinical/hospital experience. It's pretty hard to do both and rack up a decent amount of hours.

That being said, becoming a vet has been my main goal and if I didn't get into vet school at Guelph this year, I would've applied to both vet and med school next year. It's easier to make med school the "backup" rather than vet school imo because for vet school, vet and animal experience is NECESSARY whereas for med school, volunteering experience is not an explicit requirement (99% of applicants do have it though and your grades/MCAT/interview/ref letters/ECs would have to be stellar to get in without it).
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A photo of Jess322 Jess322
Ok, so from my understanding, I can fulfill both prereqs then. Only it's not that simple. lol so if I were to use med school as my back-up as well, how much would the necessary courses overlap - do I need to worry about med school needed courses and choose them as electives?
Any other tips would be appreciated as well :) Thanks!
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A photo of inthemaking inthemaking
Well it would depend on which med schools (if any) you had in mind. For myself, I would've just applied to Mac med (no prereqs), U of T med (1 year of humanities/social science + 2 years science), Queen's med (1 year each of humanities, biological sciences, and physical sciences) and UWO med (no prereqs). I minored in psych during my undergrad so I had plenty of humanities courses, and the science courses were fulfilled by my major. I wouldn't have applied to McGill/UBC, both of which require physics with a lab (I didn't take this because it wasn't a prereq for OVC).

So for most Ontario schools, vet school prereqs would be sufficient to cover those prereqs as well. But keep in mind that you'll have to write the MCAT for med school admission (except for schools like NOSM which don't require the MCAT) - OVC requires the MCAT anyway but I know U of Calgary and Sask don't, so you'd be only taking it for the sake of med school.
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A photo of Jess322 Jess322
Ok sounds good.
So what med schools are recommendable then? Preferably in Canada, USA is fine too.

Are schools that don't require an MCAT or any prerequisites not so good? What do they base the application process on then?


And, side note, how many volunteer hours does vet school usually look for?
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A photo of inthemaking inthemaking
For professional schools, it doesn't really matter which one you go to since at the end of the day you will be graduating with a MD or DVM - whether you graduate from Northern Ontario or U of T. It's really up to each individual as to which med schools they apply to..based on whether they meet the requirements (most med schools have a minimum GPA/MCAT you must achieve to be considered), location, tuition fees etc. I'm assuming you're from out west so UBC/U of Alberta/U of Calgary/U of Sask may be your best bets since it'll probably be cheaper for you and they reserve seats for people out west (whereas Ontario med schools reserve seats for Ontario residents).

No, some schools just feel that the MCAT isn't a fair representation of an applicant's potential (it is only one, really stressful test, after all). They base admissions on GPA, supplementary essays/application, reference letters and interview. GPA will be weighted more heavily instead.

There is no minimum # of hours you must achieve but most applicants have at least several hundred. I applied with ~1300 vet hours and ~650 animal hours. The most important thing is that you get decent vet experience in the area you want to go into (eg. if you want to be a SA vet, make sure that the bulk of your vet experience is in SA).
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A photo of CatRunner CatRunner
The other issue with the MCAT is that it is in English only. So the French medical schools in Quebec don't use it and McGill removed it recently due to the fact that they wanted more Quebecers applying who were able to function well in English, but might not have taken the MCAT due to it being in English only. Ottawa doesn't use it since they have a French stream at their medical school.

NOSM is a special school in that they are looking for people either from rural areas or from Northern Ontario. They give you a "context" score which indicates how rural or how northern you are. They also have a Francophone stream.
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A photo of Jess322 Jess322
wow thanks inthemaking and CatRunner!! that was really helpful :)
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