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3.76 GPA 37 MCAT School List help

Discussion in 'What Are My Chances?' started by focobos, Apr 3, 2012.

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  1. focobos

    focobos

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    I'll be applying in this coming cycle and I'm starting to pick schools. I really have no idea where to start and was hoping to get a little bit of feedback from people who might have more experience. To give a quick overview of my application:

    - 3.76cgpa, 3.71sgpa (both with strong upwards trends) , 37N Mcat (11vr, 12ps, 14 bs) at a respected east coast school
    - 300 pt. contact hospital volunteering hours in the ER and oncology department and another 200 as an EMT
    - 40 hrs shadowing an orthopedic surgeon
    - 4 published papers including a 2nd author nature paper, a senior honors thesis, and an engineering senior design project
    - significant on campus involvement including leadership positions in 2 professional society clubs
    - 5 very strong letters of recommendation from well known faculty, my research mentor, and the hospital volunteer coordinator

    This is my first post so I guess to start with is there anything obvious that I might be able to do to strengthen my application? I know my GPA isn't great but there's not much I can do about that this far into my college career.

    As my main question what kindof schools should I be looking at? Do I have a shot at the top 20 or are those applications a waste of money that I really can't afford? Also, if I'm interested in research heavy schools that emphasis early patient contact are there any in particular that I should look at?

    Thanks in advance, let me know if you need any additional information from me, and best of luck! :)
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2012
  2. flodhi1

    flodhi1

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    Apply to wherever your heart desires. Good job on the stats and ECs :thumbup:
  3. littlefaster

    littlefaster

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    You've got a realistic shot anywhere. I noticed an "N" writing score, so make sure your personal statement and secondaries are tightly written (they should be anyway).

    The first thing you should do is go to http://www.aamc.org and purchase an online copy of the MSAR. Spend some time going through that and eliminating schools based on location and low OOS acceptance rates. With your stats and strong ECs, you'll only be wasting money on places that will screen you out based on your state of residence.

    Hopefully someone else can answer your last question. I wasn't very research oriented when applying last cycle.
  4. EvilSponge

    EvilSponge

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    You are a very strong applicant.

    I'm matriculating at a top 20, and I think you have a better application than I do...
  5. CanadianPremed

    CanadianPremed

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    ,.,.,.,.,.,.,.
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2013
  6. Catalystik

    Catalystik Providing Herd Protection SDN Advisor

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    1) I'd like to see some primary care shadowing, even if only for 4-8 hours. I'm also not seeing nonmedical community service. Don't forget to list hobbies, sports, and artistic endeavors to help you look well-rounded.

    2) It's fine, so long as you don't have a bad final semester.

    3) You do have a chance at the top twenty, just so long as your application seems to suit their mission. It would help if you have 2+ years of research experience.
  7. focobos

    focobos

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    wow... Thank you all for the support! I don't want to be too optimistic because I know nothing is guaranteed but you've all helped me feel a little more comfortable.

    In direct response to Catalysic:
    1) Thanks for the suggestion! I'll definitely look into some primary care work. With regards to non-medical experience I volunteered with special olympics for three summers and also was an orientation leader, a premed mentor, and a science tutor if those count. For hobbies I was a competitive skier prior to college and have been teaching my self piano throughout college with a couple of other little things here and there (learning to sail, rock climbing, microfabricated art).
    3) I actually have three years of research experience (and will have another with this coming gap year I suppose)

    With regards to other posters, what exactly determines a reach vs. a mid tier school vs. a safety school? Of my school list right now (below), how would some of these schools be categorized:
    -Harvard's HST program (I'm spending my gap year doing research in one of the professors labs)
    -Wash U St. Loius (legacy)
    -Pittsburg
    -NYU
    -Tufts
    -BU
    -my state school.

    Are there any that would be good additions for some one interested in continued research without an md. phd?

    Again, Thank you everyone and best of luck!
  8. Catalystik

    Catalystik Providing Herd Protection SDN Advisor

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    1) Perfect.

    2) Sounds good. Include it all.

    3) Excellent.


    You might consider Mayo, and Case if cost control is important to you. Also Duke and UChicago (the latter of which gives hefty merit scholarships).
  9. TBMcGee

    TBMcGee

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    AHHHH! I'm so excited for you! =) Good luck! It sounds like you're going to do great!
  10. focobos

    focobos

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    You guys are the best! I did a little more research on all of those programs and they all look really good (Mayo and Duke in particular). Thanks for all the help and I'll try to come back once I have a complete list
  11. Catalystik

    Catalystik Providing Herd Protection SDN Advisor

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    Note that Case has the Lerner track, which is research-oriented (and I believe, tuition free).
  12. focobos

    focobos

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    Money is unfortunately an issue... and even excluding that factor the Lerner program looks amazing! Case may now be my first choice (although I assume that a program like that is incredibly competitive, fingers crossed).

    Something I'm realizing now as I look through different web sites is that many of these schools (including Lerner) are looking for 1 semester of a college writing class and that worries me because I used AP courses to skip college level writing. My gap year position pays for me to take classes and I was wondering if it would be worth it to take a writing class or instead to focus on something that I have a greater passion for (ie. Microfluidics, or learning to sail, or even just more spanish)?
  13. Catalystik

    Catalystik Providing Herd Protection SDN Advisor

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    Some schools accept AP classes and some do not. If a website is not clear call the school and ask. Then decide.
  14. focobos

    focobos

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    I don't know if this is the correct forum (and if not I apologize in advance) but I was hoping to get some advice on the activities section on the application and have a wonderful group already helping me in this tread. I'm having some trouble getting my activities list down to 15 and was wondering if you all might be able to provide some guidance.

    Right now I have:

    1) Senior Honors thesis with highest honors
    2) A summer research grant that I received including a publication
    3) 3 years of research with my department w/ 2 publications and one pending (1000+hours or research)
    4) my gap year research position with surgical training (rodents) in a harvard med lab
    5) Biomedical Engineering society VP, Activities Coordinator, and Incoming student outreach officer
    6) EMT for 2 years
    7) 2.5 years and hundreds of clinical hours at a respected hospital
    8) Special Olympics coach and referee (all four years of high school and first 2 of college)
    9) Micro Fabricated Art on silk (unique talent, the way I do it probably no more than 20 people in the world have the mix of skill sets required)
    10) Premed society (4 years) and premed mentor to two students
    11) awards: Deans list x8, Summa Cum Laude, University Award for excellent research in Biological Sciences
    12) publications
    13) Shadowing
    14) Senior Engineering Design Project, 1 publication
    15) 3 years as an orientation leader
    16) 100 hours of clinical volunteering at another hospital in the ER
    17) self taught Piano for the past 2 years
    18) position on the Engineering Student council
    19) Skiing competitively
    and a couple of other smaller activities that I already cut.

    If any of you have suggestions as to what might be the least important/ what to drop it would be really appreciated. I want to come of as well rounded but also really want people to know how much research has meant to me.

    Can I not list the awards if most of them are on my transcript anyways? Are piano and skiing at all important? If the student council was a joke should I drop it because I have very little to say?
  15. nheit

    nheit

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    1) Senior Honors thesis with highest honors
    2) A summer research grant that I received including a publication
    3) 3 years of research with my department w/ 2 publications and one pending (1000+hours or research)
    4) my gap year research position with surgical training (rodents) in a harvard med lab
    5) Biomedical Engineering society VP, Activities Coordinator, and Incoming student outreach officer
    6) EMT for 2 years
    7) 2.5 years and hundreds of clinical hours at a respected hospital
    8) Special Olympics coach and referee (all four years of high school and first 2 of college)
    9) Micro Fabricated Art on silk (unique talent, the way I do it probably no more than 20 people in the world have the mix of skill sets required)
    10) Premed society (4 years) and premed mentor to two students
    11) awards: Deans list x8, Summa Cum Laude, University Award for excellent research in Biological Sciences
    12) publications
    13) Shadowing
    14) Senior Engineering Design Project, 1 publication
    15) 3 years as an orientation leader
    16) 100 hours of clinical volunteering at another hospital in the ER
    17) self taught Piano for the past 2 years
    18) position on the Engineering Student council
    19) Skiing competitively
    and a couple of other smaller activities that I already cut.

    If any are redundant (stuff I put in italics) you could take some out and mention them in the description.

    The stuff in bold are expendable in my opinion. Maybe leave the art and skiing. They can extrapolate your academic awards from your transcript/GPA. The piano thing is cool, and maybe you could talk about that in secondaries or interviews. However, I just think there are more important things here than that.

    Good work, excellent app.
  16. waterpolo480586

    waterpolo480586

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    Have one activity called hobbies and one called awards where you can list a few activities under that one heading.
  17. Catalystik

    Catalystik Providing Herd Protection SDN Advisor

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    Silk Art, skiing, and piano could be put together under Hobbies/Avocations.

    Mention Engineering Council at the end of the Biomedical Engineering Society gig, label the activity something inclusive, like, "Engineering-Related Leadership."

    If the gap year Harvard position just started, maybe save it for an update letter later.

    Add #1 to #11.

    Put #7 and #16 together. If #6 was volunteer, you might add that in there, too.
  18. focobos

    focobos

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    Once again you all have been incredibly efficient and helpful. Thank you and best of luck to any of you who are currently applying!

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