Non-traditional medical students are students that decided to pursue a career in healthcare long after graduating high school, starting a career and even a family. The transition for a non-traditional student to medical school can be a difficult one, especially when it comes to finances. Luckily, non-traditional students do have some advantages over traditional students, especially when it comes to money.
Making the Transition to Student Life
As a non-traditional student, you should realize that in all likelihood you will be living on less money than you are accustomed to. As you make the transition to medical school life, it’s best to put together a budget or spending plan. If you’re an older student, this should be a fairly easy undertaking. To make a plan, simply set your monthly income, subtract your monthly expenses and determine what is left over to spend.
As you go through your plan, be sure to leave room for anticipated expenses that will accompany medical school, such as transportation, clothing, books, study materials, etc. You should also look for areas in which you can save money. These ‘variable’ expenses are things such as entertainment and dining out. You can quickly identify your variable expenses by using the FIRST Interactive Budget Worksheet.
Costs for Non-Traditional Students
If you’re making the transition from a salaried employee to a medical student, there are several costs that could arise. If you have children, child care costs may now factor into your monthly budget equation. Relocation is a typical expense for many students, traditional and non-traditional alike. Once you’ve relocated, your partner may need to find a new job, which can obviously take away from your monthly income. New health insurance plans can also put a significant dent in your budget.
All non-traditional medical school students should take the time to explore what financial aid options are available to them. You can alleviate a great deal of stress with scholarships, grants and student loans.