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Seeking advice: Work experience and changing career path

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Joined: 03 Apr 2018
Posts: 17
Seeking advice: Work experience and changing career path  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Apr 2018, 07:03
I am currently a certified Physician Assistant (Healthcare provider with Masters in Medical Science). I want to apply this cycle to the top 20 MBA schools to do post MBA healthcare consulting and eventually entrepreneurship to own and manage medical practices. I have 1 year of clinical rotations experience as a graduate student/intern and 5.5 months of experience as a Dermatology PA practicing independently. After working for those 5.5 months I moved back home (3 hours away from the job) due to family issues that required me to be present. Now I am looking into consulting jobs as well as medical device/pharmaceutical jobs for me to switch into since I did not particularly enjoy practicing medicine and have more interest in the business side of medicine (reason why I want to go to MBA school). I have read a lot of blog posts about leaving a job before 1 year and how to make that appear better on the application. Whatever job I choose now (whether healthcare provider, consulting or medical device/pharma) I would have 1.5 years in that job before starting MBA school but by the time I apply it’ll be only 6 months. So my question is: Will it be acceptable to only have 5.5 months of experience in that specific job and then switching to either consulting or pharm/medical device industry?
Or should I continue being a healthcare provider even if it’s not at the same practice?
I want to apply in Round 1 to the top 20 schools. I would greatly appreciate some guidance. Thank you!
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Re: Seeking advice: Work experience and changing career path  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Apr 2018, 12:41
Hi Mtarabay,

Thank you for your post! Here are a few thoughts:

- If I understand correctly that you no longer wish to work as a provider, then I encourage you to pursue whatever you believe is your true interest (even if it's outside of the medical/pharma field entirely for that matter... it seems you're at an inflection point and have the chance to really reflect on what you wish to pursue). In any case, you should not feel like you need to return to another provider's office just to show some sort of career consistency before the MBA (or at least before applications). You've already left the previous job. Might as well start anew in a field you're more interested in.

- There are going to be some challenges to presenting your work experience if and when you apply in R1 of this year. There's a choppiness to the 1 year of rotations (which is arguably more student / internship), followed by 5.5 months as a provider, followed by an exit, followed by a new job. (That won't be cured by returned to the provider side.) It's also not a lot of work experience overall (for top 20 MBA programs). If the rotations earned you credit or were a formal part of the degree, then they should probably be excluded from your full-time work experience tally. That would leave you with about a year of full-time experience at the point of application. Applying with one year of experience (split between two places) to enroll with two is too soon. Even if the rotations are counted, applying with two years of experience to enroll with three is still pretty early and be a pretty tough sell (especially when the two were comprised of a year, half a year, half a year).

- My net recommendation would be to introspect and pursue whatever job or path you're truly interested in. Then, if you're still interested in an MBA, I'd encourage you to consider applying next year (2019) to enroll in 2020. It will extend your overall work experience to more reasonable and competitive range, create some consistency in your professional track record, and give you an adequate amount of time to build reputation, accomplishments, and impact at your new job. That can all then become preface to whatever career goals you ultimately wish to articulate in applications.

- When the time comes, definitely consider offering up a few sentences or couple of paragraphs of explanation in the applications' optional essays as to the personal and family situation(s) that you required you to leave your post and return home, as those can be very personal and beyond one's control. And feel free to share some of the professional decisions that went along with that (i.e., the move from provider to whatever you pursue next).

Greg Guglielmo
Founder | Avanti Prep
MBA Admissions Consulting
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Re: Seeking advice: Work experience and changing career path   [#permalink] 30 Apr 2018, 12:41
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