I missed this yesterday, but CNN.com had an interesting article on nontraditional medical students - i.e. those who start medical school later in life. The piece reports that 9 percent of medical school applicants are over the age of 29, despite the fact that they won't be done with their (eventual) medical training until they've reached their 40s or 50s. And it discusses the benefits to being a more "seasoned" student:
Medical schools are accepting nontraditional students because "emotional intelligence is just as or more important than IQ," [Dr. Suzanne Miller, a medical school admissions consultant] said.
Nontraditional students are more likely to have real life experiences like balancing their checkbook, taking care of sick people or dealing with death. They might be better able to relate with patients, because they've already worked outside the academic setting, said Miller, author of "The Medical School Admissions Guide: A Harvard MD's Week by Week Admissions Handbook."