Three years ago, my (now) wife and I got engaged and almost immediately afterward both decided to dump freelance music in favor of other career paths. I opted for music education (a transition well-documented here on the blog) and, after a few years spent slogging my way through a handful of undergrad courses, now find myself as an orchestra teacher in suburban Chicago. Better pay, better hours, and both more fun and more satisfying than my previous “career” (though I’d never have believed that would be the case a decade ago).
My wife, on the other hand, opted for a much more radical career change: from harp performance to pre-med. Like me, she also had bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music, but she went back to school at Northwestern, balancing teaching harp, playing gigs, volunteering at hospitals all over Chicagoland, and working in a research lab with courses like (gulp!) organic chemistry.
How’d it work out? Well, after getting a great MCAT score and getting invited for interviews at prestigious medical schools all over the country, she has started to get a bunch of acceptance letters. The first acceptance to come in was, in fact, our #1 pick: the University of Chicago’s Pritzker School of Medicine!
I’m pumped for this for so many reasons. For starters, this is one of the top med schools in the country, and it is the place that most resonated with her throughout this interview season. Also, though I won’t mention the exact deal she’s being offered, let’s just say that they’ve put an outstanding package in front of her. Most people going through this process would kill even for an interview from this school (it was the third most selective med school last year, and they’ve cut their class size for this coming year, meaning even fewer available spots), and if they knew the deal she was getting they’d probably faint.
So we’re moving to Hyde Park–Obama’s neighborhood (OK–he’s technically in Kenwood just to the north, but that’s splitting hairs), the home of one of America’s most acclaimed academic institutions, next to Lake Michigan and the Museum of Science and Industry. Will we miss Evanston? Sure…but life keeps moving forward, and We’re both really excited for this change.