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Your life experience is pretty minimal so you might as well be talking about becoming an astronaut. that said, i'll explain the basic steps and also a few ways you can speed up the process (assuming you live in the usa). 1st step is an undergrad degree. med schools don't care what college as long as it's regionally accredited. think about a state college or university where you can get financial aid discounted from the already low tuition costs. you have a long way to go and you WILL have to repay every $ you borrow!!! while in high school, pay attention in chemistry, biology, physics, and science classes. take kaplan SAT/ACT prep class. TRY to take as many AP classes or CLEP, online classes, or any to get advance credit. state colleges and universities offer summer/winter session classes pretty cheap condensed into shorter sessions. it is possible before your freshman year of college, you could already have a semester or more already completed. once in college, pick classes and teachers wisely. get involved in social groups (school paper, student govt, clubs, sports, etc.) don't let these activities take a lot of time, but they help network with students who can help navigate the system. you can test out of some classes and get credit as long as you can get a satisfactory score on the final exam. the stuff i have already mentioned could even help you complete up to 60 credits BEFORE your 2nd year even starts. this is important because most medical schools will accept students with as little as 90 college credits if all of pre requisites (org chem w/lab, inorg w/lab, bio, phys, sometimes math class like stats or calc) are completed, adequate gpa, MCAT, recommendations. if you take the path i layed out, 2 1/2 years after graduating from high school, you could already be accepted to an Massachusetts program. this saves a lot of time, $$, and energy. in the US, 2 degrees qualify you to apply for a physicians license: Massachusetts & DO. Massachusetts from "allopathic" school, DO from "osteopathic" school. curricula identical (1st 2 years basic sciences, 2nd 2 clinicals) except some clinicals at osteopathic schools have chiropractic focus not required of allopaths. osteopaths don't get accepted as easily to surgical specialties so you want to apply to Massachusetts program. commonwealth grads have BBS degrees (equivalent to MD/DO). it's possible to attend med school for free depending of the commitment you are willing to make to whoever is paying your tuition after you get licensed. after you get licensed, there are also lots of tuition reimbursement programs so you could get loans re payed by employers easily. another option is to attend medical school "off shore". some off shore med schools are actually licensed by u.s. states and have campuses in the u.s. and conduct all their clinicals at u.s. hospitals, even u.s. financial aid. ross and st. mattews and st george are a few very good off shore schools. sometimes those schools also offer "trimesters", so you can go to school year round and complete your 1st 2 academic years in 4 straight semesters (about 16 months) then return to the u.s. for clinicals. you have to pass united states medical licensing exam (usmle step 1 BS) after your 1st 2 years of basic science classes, then pass step 2 after clinicals. after your MD, you have to work as a "resident" (limited license to practice medicine under supervision of attending physician at qualified institution) until you become board certified in a specialty. at this point you have worked VERY hard and racked up incredible debts to obtain your Massachusetts and become licensed, something the vast majority of people are not capable of for many reasons, and you are about to enter the most grueling experience anyone can ever endure. surgical residents legally are allowed to work like 100 hours/week and work more than that. suffice it to say that you will not sleep for 6 years and completing a surgical residency will take years off your life. you will be subjected to intense scrutiny and even slight mistakes are life and death. if you follow the path i layed out for you, you could be a neurosurgeon by your mid to late 20's. each step of the way, you can fail: high school classes, bad SAT/ACT's, college rejections, college classes, medical school rejections, medical school classes, residency rejections, expelled from residency program because attending physician doesn't like you. there are still sub specialties you could acquire and that area will constantly be evolving so you would need to stay current. if you can achieve this lofty goal, your malpractice insurance may be 1/2 your income and after obamacare kicks in, you may not make very much $$...
There are only two things you should do if you are a high school student who is interested in medicine. The first one is obviously get stellar grades. You need to get into a good college if you want to get into medical school. However, you should work on getting great grades regardless of your college plans. Take as many advanced classes as you can and maintain a high G.P.A. The second thing, and without question the most important, is you need to job shadow and /or interview an M.D. You can contact a hospital and ask to volunteer. Once you get there you can start asking around and you will eventually gain access to an M.D, maybe even a surgeon. It is imperative that you find out whether or not medicine is for you. It does not matter how much you love biochemistry and anatomy, or how much you have researched the job descriptions of M.Ds, because there are things books cannot teach you. You really need to get a grasp on what the job of a surgeon consists of. The road to becoming an M.D. is a long and difficult one, so make sure it is what you want. As for the steps to become a Neurosurgeon, there is too much information to for me to answer. Fortunately, this is what academic advisors are for. They will be able to tell you about the pre-med curriculum, a convenient major for a pre-med student, the MCAT, etc. You really don’t need to worry about what a “residency” is, as you will learn all of this information on the way. You really need to focus on one thing, and that is whether or not this is what you truly want to do, and you can discover this by job shadowing, interview, and volunteering. Good luck!
This Site Might Help You. RE: Steps to become a neurosurgeon? What are the steps to becoming a neurosurgeon? What does residency mean? What can I do now (Sophomore in high school) to prepare me?
You have to really like school, because that is what you will be doing for about half your life. You need to be very good in Biology, and have lots of money for school.... if you don't have lots of money, you can try to get scholarships to good schools or get loans (which you may be paying back for a long time). Take AP Biology and Chemistry classes. You will take more with extensive labs in college. Thats another four years. You have to do well to get into medical school... After another 4 years in medical school, you do a residency, which is like another 4 years of school, except you are learning in a similar environment to where you will work. You will work long hours as a resident, sometimes up to 36-hour shifts with a 12 hour break in-between. By now you can finally start your real job, which will be important because you will probably be about $150,000 in debt which will hurt your credit if you don't get it paid off. Oh yeah... and you have to like cutting into peoples heads and poking / slicing their brains.