It should come as no surprise to anyone that knows anything about BS/MD programs that we work with some very bright kids. The result of having a bright student, particularly in the younger grades, is that sometimes students will skip a grade to be academically challenged. But, skipping a grade may not be a good idea for students that might want a BS/MD program.
The problem is that BS/MD programs are looking for students with a high level of maturity. Most 17 and 18 year old students don’t know what they want to do for the rest of their lives. That’s fine because we really don’t expect that from students this age. But that sort of commitment to medicine is exactly what these programs are looking for. Now, when the student is 16 or sometimes 15, there is even less certainty that they have a commitment to medicine.
Sometimes skipping a grade is the only real option. But, before making that decision, carefully consider all other options that might be available. If we have a student that is younger than normal we have to make sure to do everything we can to show that they have a high level of maturity. This might be done through reference letters that speak to their maturity, by their involvement in activities or even in their applications and essays.
Having a younger than normal student doesn’t mean that BS/MD programs aren’t an option, but it does require careful planning. If you have a student that skipped a grade and is considering one of these programs, give us a call to discus how we might help.