View Full Version : Anything wrong with this scenario?

08-09-2007, 09:15 AM
1) I want to do like a friend did. He was admitted to a PhD in English program (no jobs after PhD but ample funding during PhD) and used his five paid classes to take courses in another discipline where there were great jobs but no funding.

2) Given my performance on the GRE and other factors, I am pretty certain I will be accepted by some PhD Economics program with funding. I have secured a private external scholarship that can be used for doctoral studies (but not for pre-med or any other studies). I don't want to join a top program. I want to join an EASY laid-back school with a poor reputation where I won't have to put in much work. And work on an easy topic like Economics History. And take courses in pre-med, ace the MCAT and get into medical school.

3) I want to work on my medical degree during years 3 and 4 of my PhD Econ program when I won't need to be on campus.

In other words, I am using the Econ PhD as a paid job that will let me take classes for free. I know a friend who did exactly this. It is no different from those who use the military to get a free ride.

- Do you see anything wrong with this scenario? Do you think the plans are far-fetched? My hero is the guy in Prison Break who had an outlandish plan to get himself arrested so he could free his brother in prison. And he did make a success of it (I know, I know it's TV and not real life). But I hope to plan this non-adventure just as carefully and meticulously as him.

- Do you see any potential traps, any downfalls, any weaknesses? If I know the potential traps beforehand, maybe I can plug the loopholes.



08-09-2007, 10:44 AM
Honestly, this is a question about morality... you will be taking the place of a hardworking econ student who could have gone to the program instead of you.

08-09-2007, 11:07 AM
Why don't you try to specialise in Health Economics? I'm sure that you would be allowed to take some cognate courses from the medical school, and health economists are not as common as doctors, I think.

Or, if your primary interest is in medicine, and you're just using economics as a way to get funding, why not simply get a job and save? That would probably get you a lot more money for your medical studies than a stipend.

08-09-2007, 11:36 AM
Poor joke.

08-09-2007, 12:09 PM
Have you considered a PhD in biology instead? That would suit you better for medical school and help you get your MD faster. Economics just isn't the right path for what you want to do.

08-09-2007, 01:26 PM
Yes, I see a very practical problem: typically, enrollment in medical school courses is separate from enrollment in Arts and Sciences courses. The medical school is a different school within the same university. Students who are not enrolled in the medical school are not allowed to sign up for classes there, with very few exceptions/cross listed courses. Unlike undergrad or even some graduate classes, there are not open enrollments in med school courses. And tuition is not transfered between Arts and Sciences/graduate schools and medical schools at the same university without specific, prior, approved arrangements. Medical schools have their own separate tuition structures. And graduate schools often cap the number of credits you can take per semester; you may not be able to enroll in other courses while meeting your econ requirements.

Also, setting aside the very real practical obstacles, what you propose is NOT the same as getting a free ride by joining the military. People who join the military get GI bill education in return for their service to the country, or they get additional training that is conditional upon their remaining in the military. The military compensates soldiers for their service with pay and educational benefits. And there is no parallel for graduate students deserving/earning compensation from their departments.

If you want to go to medical school, do what everyone else does: work, save, slave, and go into debt. Looking for an "easy out" -- a way to get someone else to pay for you -- and doing so with an implied attitude that the world owes you this chance because you are particularly brilliant/deserving/underprivilaged, is just lame.

08-09-2007, 01:37 PM
No offense is meant by this, but here are my two cents. I agree with bayern, what you would be doing seems a bit unethical in the sense that you would be utilizing a funded spot to study in another area. I would assume to get this funded spot you would have to lie on your SOP, in which case this becomes even more unethical. I have been lurking your last few posts, and to be honest you have jumped around what seems like 10 different plans.

To be completely honest with you. Your comment about what you would be doing is the same as utilizing the GI Bill was quite offensive to me, and I am not even military. What the GI bill enables people to do is give up years of their life to their country, possibly risking their lives, in exchange for a college education. What you would be doing is cheating the system, this of course is assuming this plan would even work. Those are not the same things.

It would seem that you need to calm down just a bit, and get a few things in order. If you want to do medical school, why not do it the normal way. I know you have some sort of degree in engineering, would this not enable you to get into say, biology grad school, and then that would be a more clear path to med school.

If you are looking for an easy grad program, may i suggest looking at other disciplines than Economics. It is usually regarded as one of the top three hardest PhD's to obtain. Going into an Econ program without commitment to that program will most certainly spell disaster.

08-09-2007, 02:15 PM
No offense, but are you trying to show off how clever or brilliant ideas you have? One has to agree with Bayern and Volconomist. It is highly immoral, and one should not even think of attempting this. Your admission into a program means a loss of a great opportunity for another person who really cares about economics, and therefore dampening that person's future.

08-09-2007, 02:34 PM
A PhD in Economics does not sound right for you at all. If you are interested in med school then go that route. Having two years of formal training in graduate Economics does not seem to be something that med schools will particularly care about. Like others have pointed out, there are many other roads which would work out better. Work full-time and take the med school prereqs part-time. Go to a PhD program in biology (they also have funding) and if you want you can stop after you get your masters and apply to med school.

Why can't you apply to med school yet?

08-09-2007, 05:42 PM
Also, what school with a bad econ program has a good med school?

And honestly...if you want to be an md, it's worth it to fork over the money for med school without having to devote time to econ then using sacrificing studying time through your econ work.

You'll be able to pay off the loans in a matter of years once you get your med degree, you might as well concentrate on that and get into the best school possible, the earnings will make up for themselves...

Other than that, do you even know anything about economics? Have you taken the necessary coursework? Even lower ranked programs will require a solid math background. What about some letters of reccomendations? Econ programs don't really care much about them if it isn't from another economist or a math professor. Have you worked these things out? How do you think a program would react to your plans? Would you try to keep your plans secret until the 3rd year? Can you keep it secret?

Sounds like you're going to be leading on lots of people by doing this...and possibly burning some bridges.

My basic knowledge of econ tells me its not worth it in any way, and just take some loans out for med school.

08-09-2007, 05:59 PM
ok, assume it's technically doable, how could u pass the qualifying exams in econ phd and all these med exams together? both are very time-comsuming(even the econ in less renowned institutes as u said).

08-09-2007, 07:08 PM
Other issues aside, didn't the OP say "pre-med"?

08-09-2007, 07:11 PM
buckykatt, the OP said
I want to work on my medical degree during years 3 and 4 of my PhD Econ program when I won't need to be on campus which I took to mean he wanted to enroll in med school classes, and have the tuition for those classes covered as part of a tuition waiver from the econ department. But maybe he means to apply to a separate med school program and begin that while completing his dissertation? (Or not complete the dissertation, who knows?).

08-09-2007, 08:28 PM
If the OP chose a not-very-demanding school, they could certainly be done with core, comps, and field courses by the end of year two, having taken pre-med courses during that time to prep for med school. But I can't imagine that the tuition waiver would cover actual med school classes outside of a joint MD/Ph.D. program (which I've never noticed, but I suppose one might exist...).

Now, paying for law school by studying economics, that seems more doable to me.

08-10-2007, 02:54 AM
What an annoying troll this clearly is. Yes, yes, I know, you're a recovering drug addict with a wife and kids and external funding and an MIT degree and a minimum wage job and...


08-10-2007, 04:11 AM
oh, this is the same guy?! jeez!!

08-10-2007, 04:48 AM
I think it's clear by now that you're just posting the most outlandish stories you can think of just to see how many suckers will take them seriously.

08-10-2007, 06:27 AM
I agree this would be perceived as borderline unethical but millions do things like this - Citizens of China or Korea or especially Russian citizens come here as students on visas but their secret intention is to marry someone and stay here forever. They are least interested in the subjects they study. They pick universities based only on two parameters 1) % accepted and 2) % given aid. What I am doing is not all that different. Besides I do intend to finish my Econ PhD and work as a professor. . My medical degree is for a tangential reason that I feel uncomfortable discussing here (if you must need a reason, think of it like this: Only if I get a medical degree, I stand to inherit several millions. Now this is not the real reason, but the real reason is something that is not relevant). Besides the kinds of school I am considering - no one else wants to go there, trust me. .

08-10-2007, 06:34 AM

first thing, i am not a Chinese, Korean or Russian but I still think you have no right to say anything about anyone on a forum like this which is meant to help anyone and everyone regardless of the country he or she belongs to so please refrain from some direct remarks.

having said that, you should really think whether you can cope up with the work load of all these courses plus the work load of your family. you really need to choose one field to pursue because graduate studies are not like 8th standard studies where you can take biology and mathematics side by side.

just think!!!!!!!!

08-10-2007, 02:30 PM
Seriously. Stop paying attention to aspencolorado's outlandish, completely unhelpful posts, and maybe we won't have to see any more of them.