I am an oral and maxillofacial surgery resident, in my third year of six. Our program starts with a grueling intern year at a Level III trauma center followed by the clinical years of medical school. Having completed dental school, an internship in a busy hospital, and nearly two years of medical school, I have a perspective on healthcare that is…let’s just say singular. I’ve also spent six years living on a professional student budget, painstakingly researched the best ways to manage my debt and retirement savings simultaneously, and found many ways to save time, increase efficiency, and make or save money on the side. As healthcare providers in training we are better prepared to do this than trainees in any other field–but most of us don’t even realize it.
I delve into greater detail elsewhere on the site, but with the tools you’ll find here, I’ve managed to obtain dental and medical degrees, and even bought a house, as a professional student. If I followed the traditional path, spending what I’ve been told to spend and focusing exclusively on my textbooks and crown preps, my student loan debt would be over $400,000 without interest.
Instead, with some pivotal sacrifices, a slew of research, and the millennial and medical side hustles you can read about on this site, my cumulative education debt is just south of $175,000, and that doesn’t include our retirement accounts or the principal in our house. Not bad for two professional degrees that hold inestimable value of their own, but not where I want to be. The grand goal of Millennial in Medicine is to finish training at net zero: neutral net worth. I’ve got three and a half years left to do it, and I think I can. Even more importantly, if you’ve already read this far: I believe that you can, too.
Still, finances are not the only element that I discuss here. What our generation really craves–how I plan to structure my practice and my life–is freedom. Financial independence is a huge element of that freedom, but so is the right career, free time for hobbies and travel, and autonomy at work. Making strategic sacrifices at pivotal times and utilizing the concept of arbitrage to it’s full advantage, our millennial minds have the ability to make our workplaces happier, our lives more fulfilled, and improve the care we offer our patients.
This blog also encompasses my area of training, facial surgery, as well as miscellaneous topics like tips for patients, parenting, and travel. To find out more about me, including what I’m up to right now, those hobbies I work so hard to create time for check out the Right Now page or Past Escapade archives. Thank you for stopping by!