I will always remember how dreadful it seemed when I learned that my cost of attendance for 2010-2011 (first year of medical school) was about 90k… I’ve never made 90k a year prior to starting medical school (in fact, I still have not made 90k a year as a PGY2, 6 years after I started med school in 2010). I could not imagine borrowing 90k, only 8k of which was subsidized (interest free during med school), and rest came with 1-4% loan origination fee and 6.8% interest snow-ball starting day one of med school.
Along with this dread came one of my favorite memories of Mini Wise Money.
I was crying and complaining on the phone to my mom, feeling wronged by the fact that I had to get into so much debt to become a doc in the US, when the rest of the world pretty much made med school free appreciating what aspiring doctors already give up by embracing such an all-consuming and demanding career.
Then, the 2 year old Mini Wise Money, tried comforting me,
“Mommy, don’t be scared of monies. I am here. [MWM gave DWM a hug.] Don’t be scared of monies.”
Because of how expensive my medical school was, the day I started with nothing was March 2015, of internship year, when I was 30 years old.
I tried everything in my power, worked 7 jobs in college, 2 jobs in med school, to “start with nothing” at the age of 30; while my non-med friends already have a house, cars, fat retirement funds, kids college savings, annual family vacations to exotic places.
But I’m grateful to be starting at zero at 30, rather than 40, 50, or 60.
Here today to share one major reason why I was able to pay off my student loan within 1 year of graduating medical school.
Here’s my guest post on my financial mentor White Coat Investor’s blog, detailing how I minimized and delayed student loan interest.
Hope this helps!
Here is a flow chart that demonstrates how interest starting day 1 of medical school on the federal student loans we borrowed just for 1 semester of tuition snowballs… This is for the numerically inclined people, just so that every step of math is accounted for and the number I’m using has solid backing. Feel free to skip the flow chart if it’s dizzying. This flow chart itself warrants 2 posts to elaborate (which will be coming in the future…)
- How did you pay for medical school aside from taking out student loans?
- Did you work during medical school? Was working a plus or minus on your medical school academic performance?
- If you are a med student (today or again), what would you do to minimize your student debt burden?
- Do you think the credit card method is too risky? Why or why not?
- Since you have the discipline and intelligence to make it into med school &/or survive med school, don’t you think you can apply 3% of your brain power to take advantage of credit card offers to help you build net worth?
please share your insights, questions, experiences below. We are here to help one another 🙂