Menu Icon Search
Close Search

About the ads

Could Use Some Advice

Discussion in 'What Are My Chances?' started by TheWeeIceMan, 10.19.11.

  1. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member

    SDN Members don't see this ad. (About Ads)
    Hey guys. I would appreciate any advice any one here could give me on how I could bolster my application until I apply next cycle, or if I should apply at all. I know I have plenty of room for improvement. Here's my background and ECs:

    cGPA: 3.5, sGPA: 3.4 in Engineering
    -upward trend with about 20 semester hours of upper level science classes at 3.9.

    MCAT: 30(11ps/7v/12bs)
    -Will be re-taking in January. Didn't study nearly as much as I should have, especially in verbal.

    ECs
    -Worked for 8 years at a golf course; Supervised 10-12 employees for 2 years.
    -200 hours clinical volunteering spanning 2 years.
    -50 hours shadowing in two specialties.
    -About 80 hours non-clinical volunteering.
    -Taught golf to kids for 8 years, a few hours a week.
    -Helped run junior golf program for 1 year.
    -Probably not worth mentioning but played competitive golf during summers.

    That's about it. I know I need to apply early and very broadly to have any chance, but any other advice would be most appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. Goro

    Goro

    Joined:
    06.10.10
    Messages:
    11,630
    Location:
    Somewhere west of St. Louis
    Status:
    Non-Student
    Faculty SDN 2+ Year Member
    Keep doing the volunteer work, and if you can crack the 10/10/10 mark on the MCAT, I think you'll be pretty competetive for many medical schools, both DO and MD. As of right now, that 7V will hurt you at most MD schools, but you're fine for all DO schools.

     
  3. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    Any plans for a research experience, even if only for a semester?

    Otherwise, activities so far look pretty good to me. The competitive golf is worth mentioning.

    Keep improving that GPA. The high recent science GPA trend is terrific, though, and makes it easier to overlook the lower-than-average-for-MD matriculants cGPA.
     
  4. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Thank you both for the responses. I'm definitely kicking myself for not getting some research experience in undergrad. I've applied for a few research positions, but at this point I just need to find a full-time job. I'm just hoping it won't hurt my chances too badly if I can't make it work.

    It also looks like I forgot to indicate that the 20 hours of classes was a post-bac and not just the end of my undergrad, if it matters. I would really like to keep raising my gpa, but spending the money on more classes might not be feasible for me at this point. Anyway, thanks again for the input.
     
  5. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    What are your GPAs if you include the postbac grades in the calculation? Or did you already?
     
  6. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Unfortunately, I already did. I just wanted to establish that the upward trend in grades wasn't just toward the end of undergrad.
     
  7. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    The good thing about what you did is that the postbac grades are on a separate line of the application, making an upward trend easier to appreciate, compared to if they'd been incorporated into the senior year grades (which is what happens if you have a senior and a supersenior year).
     
  8. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Sorry to necro bump my dying thread here, but I've got a quick question.

    I'll be re-taking the MCAT in January, but after that I don't have many commitments outside of ECs until I apply in June. I've been debating whether or not to take additional post bac classes this spring. It would be really hard to swing in my financial situation, but I've calculated that if I take 3 more classes I can raise my sGPA from 3.4 to 3.5.

    My question is if it is worth the money in exchange for a few more % points chance at an acceptance, or if I should just concentrate on MCAT, PS, ECs?

    *p.s: I've already done 20 credits of post bac science courses at 3.9.

    *p.p.s: I'm typically not this neurotic, I swear.
     
  9. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    It is preferred for you to bump your own thread so the rest of the story need not be resummarized. And I think your question is a good one.

    IMO, if you can break the 30 postbac credit mark (which shows consistency) AND raise your sGPA to 3.5, you'll be in a much stronger position.

    So, I think it's worth the money.
     
  10. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Thanks again for the response Catalystik. I'm really hoping I can swing 3 classes, but I might have to settle for 1 or 2 considering my impending application cycle which will be made very expensive by the large number of schools I will have to apply to. I'm hoping that will at least show adcoms I am trying to make up for my poor gpa, even if I can't take enough classes to go all the way to a 3.5.

    If only there were cheaper schools within driving distance.:(
     
  11. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    Could you take one at a CC close by?
     
  12. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    There's a community college within walking distance from where I live, but I was under the impression adcoms looked down on science classes taken at CCs? If this is not the case it would be really helpful.
     
  13. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    If it's affordable, you might take a math or Statistics class there, as it would still have a positive impact on the BCPM GPA.
     
  14. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Catalystik, I don't know how you are able to keep up with all of these what are my chances threads, but it is definitely appreciated.

    I was messing around with the AMCAS gpa calculator yesterday and it looks like I may have made a couple mistakes regarding which classes count as BCPM and which don't. I have a little higher sgpa than I thought, but not by much (3.45). Anyway, this means I can take about half the credits that I previously thought I needed to to raise my sgpa to a 3.5.
     
  15. cyanide12345678

    cyanide12345678

    Joined:
    07.27.11
    Messages:
    379
    Location:
    Texas
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    I want to meet Catalystik and shake his hand and thank him for helping out everyone over here.
     
  16. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
  17. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Just a couple quick thoughts:

    1. I'm starting to get a little worried about my lack of research experience. I never really thought of doing research in undergrad because I didn't think I wanted to go to med school until late in my senior year. Is this going to hold me back subtantially even if I avoid applying to research heavy schools? I think I read that about 70% of applicants have research experience? I'm starting to really wish I had paid attention to this forum sooner.:(

    2. I've somehow managed to find the money to take two classes this spring without resorting to going to a CC. I'm thinking about taking Microbiology and Organismal Physiology. This would be my 3rd semester after undergrad taking science classes and I'm hoping this will help reassure adcomms that I can handle med school, despite my gpa.
     
  18. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    If other components of your application are strong enough, a lack of research can be overlooked, especially at schools aiming to train primary care docs, so keep beefing up elsewhere.
     
  19. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Thanks again for taking the time to answer. I wish I could say that I think my other ECs that I listed in my first post were strong, but they look pretty lame compared to most other people on this site.

    With that said, what do you think of replacing one of the science classes I refrenced in my last post with a independent research class? I can really only afford two classes this semester so if I take the research class I wouldn't be able to raise my sGPA to a 3.5 like I would have liked. To be completely honest, the idea of doing research doesn't really excite me, but if I have to do it to be competitive than I'll do it.
     
  20. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    For your purposes, I think you'll get more mileage out of an A in a classroom science course than in a research class.
     
  21. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Edited for being neurotic.
     
    Last edited: 01.10.12
  22. jessicaann471

    jessicaann471

    Joined:
    01.12.12
    Messages:
    4
    I really am desperate for advice so am posting my post in any thread that's asking for advice...i'm really sorry if it is not an appropriate thread but would appreciate advice:

    I am currently doing the IB program in an international school in Singapore. I take HL Econs, HL Maths, HL English, SL World Politics, SL Spanish ab initio and SL Physics. Anyone can easily point out that this is not a good combination to apply for Med School. It was a bad decision on my part as i thought i would never be interested in Medicine when i made my subject choices...but that has changed and i am v passionate and keen on pursuing Medicine.

    I was wondering if anyone could advise me on what to do? I know there are a few options like taking the A levels as a private candidate and studying Chem and Phys...the thing is i have studied v hard for my IB and really would like to reserve retaking my High School curriculum as the very very last option...does anyone know of any universities that accept my subject combination? I came across IMU (accepts IB w HL Math and 1 SL science) but unfortunately it is not accredited in Singapore if i am not wrong? Any way to go about this?

    I am just 4 months away from my final IB exams so it really is too late to turn back but this passion for Medicine has been gnawing at me for the past few months so i really would like advice on the few options i have. Thanks in advance!!! (Sorry for the long post)
     
  23. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Bump for new information.

    1. I just got my MCAT score back today and got a 31( 11/8/12). I'm a little disappointed since it was a couple points lower than my average (verbal ave. was >10), but I guess I can't change that now.

    2. I'm in the midst of taking two biology classes at a local school and shouldn't have too much of a problem pulling A's to bring both my gpa's up to 3.5. My total post-bacc would then be about 30 credits at >3.9.

    3. I'm continuing both my clinical and non-clinical volunteering this semester a few hours a week. I've also been asked to tutor at my post-bacc school, but I haven't decided if I'm going to do that yet.

    4. I've pretty much made up my mind that I'm going to apply this summer, so I will be buying an MSAR very soon. Unfortunately, I'm a little worried about spending a few thousand dollars on what basically amounts to a coin flip's chance. I haven't decided if I'm going to apply to DO schools yet, but I will be doing more research on that.

    I would very much appreciate any advice anyone might have regarding my situation and what to do next. Whether that be potential schools, EC work, or telling me that I have no chance and would be wasting my money.:)

    edit: Wisconsin resident
     
  24. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    It's good you got your VS higher.

    Your high-GPA postbac will give you a better shot at an MD school than the 54% historically suggested by a 3.5/31. As a starting point, places besides your in-state schools to research and see if they "fit you" that are suitable for those stats:

    Toledo, Wake, Creighton (no CC credit for prereqs), Nebraska, LSU-NO, NYMC, Vermont, Hofstra (newer)
    Wayne, Wright, Drexel, FAU (new), Tulane, MSU (high OOS tuition), Oakland (newer in MI), Penn State (requires a research thesis), Commonwealth in Pa (seeks to train rural NE PA docs), Arizona X 2,
    VCU, Louisville, UIllinois (high OOS tuition), Buffalo,
    EVMS, RFU, Cooper (new)
     
  25. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Thanks Catalystik! I appreciate your advice.

    The 8 on verbal was a real shock to me considering I didn't even study for it before my first MCAT and got a 7. I never got anything other than a 10 or 11 on all of the AAMC's, but I guess it happens. I'm just glad my score didn't drop and I can take a shot at this upcoming cycle.

    Thankfully, I have money lined up to apply to as many schools as possible that fit my stats and ECs. I'm thinking maybe ~30? Hopefully if I apply smart this time, I won't have to do it again.:xf:
     
  26. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Does anyone think the 8 on verbal will screen me out at enough schools to warrant a retake? To be honest, I'm pretty embarrassed by it, and searching old threads on the topic hasn't really made me feel any better.
     
  27. serosanguinous

    serosanguinous

    Joined:
    01.29.11
    Messages:
    74
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    i don't think it's worth a retake as you will have to raise your score significantly to overcome the stigma of a third attempt. apply broadly and early and you should get some interviews. the rest is up to you! good luck! :)

    i would also recommend continuing to shadow and making sure you've shadowed a PCP.
     
  28. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Thanks for the input! I start shadowing again in a couple weeks, and by the time I apply, most of my hours will be with a PCP.
     
  29. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    BUMP!

    Trying to narrow down a school list and would appreciate any advice on schools to exclude/include. (This would be a lot easier if my stats were higher):scared:

    FWIW, my stats have changed slightly from opening post. They are now....
    cGPA: 3.5
    sGPA: 3.5
    MCAT: 31

    Here is what I have narrowed it down to so far:

    1. RFU
    2. Creighton
    3. EVMS
    4. Loyola - Chicago
    5. Medical College of Wisconsin (In state)
    6. UW-Madison (In state)
    7.University of Arizona - Tuscon
    8. University of Arizona - Phoenix
    9. Oakland
    10. Rush
    11. University of Toledo
    12. Tulane
    13. University of Cincinnati
    14. University of Louisville
    15. University of Minnesota - Daluth
    16. University of Nebraska
    17. University of Vermont
    18. VCU
    19. Wake Forest
    20. Wayne State
    21. Wright State
    22. Hofstra
    23. St. Louis

    Thanks!
     
  30. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    Nice job getting the BCPM up to goal.

    Creighton has changed the wording on their website so that it sounds like they may not be friendly to any CC credits. I don't know that this would even apply to you, but it's just a heads-up, in case.
     
  31. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Thanks Catalystik. I don't have any CC credits, so I should be fine for Creighton. Now if I could just get all of the different LORs that each school wants, my stress levels would be under control.:oops:

    I'm trying to look for a few more schools to apply to, but at this point it seems like any more schools I add would be reaching a bit high in terms of stats.
     
  32. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    BUMPING for any more opinions on school choices. Would like to add a few more, but not sure what schools.
     
  33. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    One last bump for input/suggestions.

    BTW, this is me filling out my application:
    [​IMG]
     
  34. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    What about the new med school in Central Michigan?
     
  35. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Thanks Catalystik! I actually had no idea this school was starting up next year, as I have last year's edition of the MSAR. Will definitely check it out.
     
  36. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    OK, I'm going to post this question here because the official LOR thread is kind of dead.

    So far I have recieved letters from 2 science profs and a work supervisor. However, the 2 potential non-science profs that I asked are a no-go, which leaves me in a bit of trouble. I was thinking that I would ask an old engineering professor since technically, engineering is not a science. Would this work considering it's not really what schools have in mind when they say non-science? The other option is to call all schools that require a non-science letter and ask for a substitution.

    Also, for the record, I've been out of school 2 years and haven't had a non-science class in 4 years, which is why I'm having so much trouble with this.
     
  37. Catalystik

    Catalystik Santa Paws SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    09.04.06
    Messages:
    21,019
    Location:
    The RugRat Lab
    Physician Faculty SDN 7+ Year Member
    I think there's been a recent thread on this topic (last few weeks?) in PreMedAllo. You might try to find it. I don't recall the consensus, but wouldn't be surprised if you'll need to call each school and ask. You have a valid reason for your petition, so I hope you get the answer you need to hear.
     
  38. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Yeah, I'll probably just start calling schools and asking about substituting for a non-science prof letter. Unfortunately, the engineering professor that I asked shot me down so that's a moot point now.:(
     
  39. Mjolner

    Mjolner

    Joined:
    04.20.12
    Messages:
    254
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    If 30 post bacc shows consistency, how much help would 50-60 hours @ 3.8+ taken now do towards making adcoms not look at sub 3.0 GPA from a decade and more ago?
     
  40. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Just found out that the non-science professor that I had written off after 2 weeks of no response was on vacation, so he didn't see my e-mail until yesterday. He agreed to meet with me and help me out.:D Really glad, since I can now fulfill all of the school's letter requirements without needing waivers or special considerations.
     
  41. TheWeeIceMan

    TheWeeIceMan And like that... *poof*... he's gone.

    Joined:
    04.08.09
    Messages:
    3,522
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Okay, so after more school research, I have changed my list a bit, and would appreciate any opinions people may have. I would like to add maybe 2 or 3 more schools. Also, I'm a little concerned at the number of public schools I have on the list, so if anyone knows of schools I should cut, please let me know. Thanks!

    Also, @Catalystik, I decided not to add Central Michigan because even though they are going to take 20% OOS, I don't think their mission statement gels with my app.

    1. Albany
    2. Creighton
    3. Drexel
    4. EVMS
    5. Hofstra
    6. Indiana U
    7. Loyola-Chicago
    8. Medical college of wisconsin
    9. Oakland
    10. Rosalind Franklin
    11. SLU
    12. Temple
    13. Commenwealth
    14. U. of Vermont
    15. U. of Arizona -Tuscon
    16. U. of Arizona - Phoenix
    17. U. of Cincinatti
    18. U. of Iowa
    19. U. of Louisville
    20. U. of Wisconsin
    21. Wake Forest
    22. VCU
    23. NYMC
     

// Share //

Style: SDN Universal