I will be 26 years old soon. I did my bachelors in Mechanical Engineering and I worked in an investment bank for sometime. Then I joined a masters in Applications of Mathematics, but I dropped out without completing the degree. I have been working as a research assistant for the past six months.

I have no real exposure to biology or medicine. But of late I feel very interested in Medicine. I began with interests in mathematically modeling bio-processes. I am also interested in instrumentation for bio-medical purposes.

Given my current circumstances, I feel I can indeed pursue a Ph.D. that would allow me to get involved with some medicine, mathematics and engineering. And I seem content with that.

But I want to know:

  1. If I too strongly feel like actually practicing Medicine (full-time with a license) after completing my Ph.D. will it be too late for me? Is it too late already?
  2. At the moment I am not imagining myself to be seeing patients in the future. I imagine to be more invested in research, publishing and lab-work. Will pursuing a degree in medicine be the right decision for me? If I am not a MD, will I be able to run clinical trials? I have come across some MD-Ph.D. programs, but I wasn't too clear about them.


  • 1
    You will probably need to mention whereabouts on Earth you are situated for anyone to be able to answer your (country-specific) questions. – user1220 Jul 20 '15 at 5:37
  • 5
    I'm voting to close this question in its current form because: it contains multiple questions, number one cannot be answered without knowing the specifics of your life and any answer will be irrelevant to other people than you, and number 3 is a shopping question. I suggest editing to focus on number 2 that can be answered by "You don't need an MD to do clinical research, involving mathematical modeling of biological processes or the development of instrumentation for bio-medical purposes." – Cape Code Jul 20 '15 at 5:45
  • Voted to close as "Too broad" based on @CapeCode's comment above. – scaaahu Jul 20 '15 at 6:03
  • Have you though about medical engineering? You could use your engineering degree, it is research, and it is something you can start pretty soon, without doing everything from zero. – Greg Jul 20 '15 at 9:09
  • @user1220: I am especially looking for programs in USA or Canada. I am from an Asian country. – Inspired_Blue Jul 20 '15 at 14:04

While I don't have experience within the specifics of your question I can give general advice based on other fields I studied and work in:

1). It's never too late to go back to school. When people say "is it too late" they generally mean "will people be willing to hire me?". So I'll answer it that way. Age doesn't matter, skill set does. If you can prove that you have potential and the skills needed to do a job then employers won't see age as a big factor. If you're worried that your age to experience will be off then stop worrying. When you're fresh out of school you'll be on the same playing field as others fresh out of school. Make your resume look better than theirs as someone who employs people with degrees I never factor age into my decisions because it's a bias that doesn't effect much until the person is 50-60 (depending on the field).

2). This is not my field so I won't answer this one, sorry but I'd like to convey information I'd stand behind.

3). When it comes to schools and programs that's a very broad question. Look into medicine programs in certain countries so you can see how countries compare to each other and how people in that country use their degree. Once you have a country in mind you'll need to locate all schools with medicine degrees (to rule out areas without any). Keep researching and narrowing until you have 2-4 schools in mind. Each school operates differently and different countries run their education systems very differently so until you have a country in mind you shouldn't look into specific programs because then you may end up needing to look at the education system of X amount of countries, the funded programs if any, etc.

  • It's never too late to go back to school Well that depends on a lot of factors. For example, can OP afford to be a student until her/his late 30ies? – Cape Code Jul 20 '15 at 6:57

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