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Hi All,
I'm getting ready to apply to post bacc programs but I'm worried about a glitch in my background. I see alot of applications ask whether you've been dismissed from a school for academic reasons. Back in 1993, I was dismissed from a SUNY school because of a .52 GPA in the Fall 1993 semester (1st semester at this school as a transfer student). I was a junior but taking Bio 1, Chem 1, and Calc 1. Pretty much failed them all because I was 19 and into partying more than studying. But since then, I changed my major to psych, transferred to another SUNY school, got a 3.8 GPA my last two years (3.8 cum psych GPA; 3.3 cum undergrad), then went on to get an MBA in finance at Syracuse University, and have been working for the past 10 years in finance. I want to return to school to fulfill the dream I gave up on in 1993.

Is it still worth it to apply to post-baccs despite this hiccup in my academic history? I was thinking its been 17 years and I've had a stellar career since then so it wouldn't really matter. Any suggestions?

Thanks,
Joe
 

jslo85

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To be honest, if post-baccs cared enough about your academic dismissal to not accept you, then medical schools would realistically reject you as well.

I think you would be a good candidate for going to Texas and taking advantage of their clean slate policy for people who have been out of school for 10 years. My advice is look into it.
 
Mar 24, 2010
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To be honest, if post-baccs cared enough about your academic dismissal to not accept you, then medical schools would realistically reject you as well.

I think you would be a good candidate for going to Texas and taking advantage of their clean slate policy for people who have been out of school for 10 years. My advice is look into it.
Thanks for the advice...Which programs in Texas would you suggest I look into?
 

DrMidlife

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Hi All,
I'm getting ready to apply to post bacc programs but I'm worried about a glitch in my background. I see alot of applications ask whether you've been dismissed from a school for academic reasons. Back in 1993, I was dismissed from a SUNY school because of a .52 GPA in the Fall 1993 semester (1st semester at this school as a transfer student). I was a junior but taking Bio 1, Chem 1, and Calc 1. Pretty much failed them all because I was 19 and into partying more than studying. But since then, I changed my major to psych, transferred to another SUNY school, got a 3.8 GPA my last two years (3.8 cum psych GPA; 3.3 cum undergrad), then went on to get an MBA in finance at Syracuse University, and have been working for the past 10 years in finance. I want to return to school to fulfill the dream I gave up on in 1993.

Is it still worth it to apply to post-baccs despite this hiccup in my academic history? I was thinking its been 17 years and I've had a stellar career since then so it wouldn't really matter. Any suggestions?
From the perspective of med school apps, it matters, and you have to explain it, and you have to submit those grades. But I see this as flavor in your app - it's a really nice comeback story. If you do well in the med school prereqs and on your MCAT, and you apply early and broadly with a compelling package, you'll do as well as anyone else with your stats.

From the perspective of postbac admissions, you might find that your GPA is too low to get into a linkage program. But you can absolutely get into a program that lets you finish your prereqs. Keep reading in this forum to get a sense of pros and cons with different ways to get the prereqs done. Going back to a SUNY or doing a night program is fine.

To be honest, if post-baccs cared enough about your academic dismissal to not accept you, then medical schools would realistically reject you as well.
I agree in the sense that an old red flag is a med school concern before it's a postbac concern. But I completely disagree that a 17 year old academic dismissal, followed by years of solid grades, is a deal breaker for med school. If you look through the low GPA thread (the one with a quarter million views) you'll see much worse damage than a .52 junior year.

The app services (AMCAS/AACOMAS/TMDSAS) present your GPAs in a 6 line template. For a nontrad who has more than 4 years of college grades, there's so much info there that a .52 may or may not even show up, and it's likely dwarfed by the numbers that come after it.
I think you would be a good candidate for going to Texas and taking advantage of their clean slate policy for people who have been out of school for 10 years. My advice is look into it.
Way too big a hammer for this nail.

Texas fresh start is appropriate if:

1. You have a cumulative undergrad GPA that can't possibly be raised up to a 3.0 by taking more undergrad (note Joe has a 3.3/3.8)

2. You have 2 years to invest in establishing TX residency before you start over on your bachelors degree, so you're signing up for 6 years of work before you can apply to med school. (note Joe is in his 30's)

3. You will only apply to TX med schools.

4. You are comfortable betting your future on the TX state legislature keeping fresh start alive.
 

jslo85

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From the perspective of med school apps, it matters, and you have to explain it, and you have to submit those grades. But I see this as flavor in your app - it's a really nice comeback story. If you do well in the med school prereqs and on your MCAT, and you apply early and broadly with a compelling package, you'll do as well as anyone else with your stats.

From the perspective of postbac admissions, you might find that your GPA is too low to get into a linkage program. But you can absolutely get into a program that lets you finish your prereqs. Keep reading in this forum to get a sense of pros and cons with different ways to get the prereqs done. Going back to a SUNY or doing a night program is fine.


I agree in the sense that an old red flag is a med school concern before it's a postbac concern. But I completely disagree that a 17 year old academic dismissal, followed by years of solid grades, is a deal breaker for med school. If you look through the low GPA thread (the one with a quarter million views) you'll see much worse damage than a .52 junior year.

The app services (AMCAS/AACOMAS/TMDSAS) present your GPAs in a 6 line template. For a nontrad who has more than 4 years of college grades, there's so much info there that a .52 may or may not even show up, and it's likely dwarfed by the numbers that come after it.

Way too big a hammer for this nail.

Texas fresh start is appropriate if:

1. You have a cumulative undergrad GPA that can't possibly be raised up to a 3.0 by taking more undergrad (note Joe has a 3.3/3.8)

2. You have 2 years to invest in establishing TX residency before you start over on your bachelors degree, so you're signing up for 6 years of work before you can apply to med school. (note Joe is in his 30's)

3. You will only apply to TX med schools.

4. You are comfortable betting your future on the TX state legislature keeping fresh start alive.
You did recognize my point in the former which was the only point I was trying to convey. I felt that the OP was worried about whether a post-bacc would accept him because of his academic dismissal because he wanted to use it as a stepping stone towards entering medical school. I personally have no experience in this matter but it seemed reasonable/common sense to me that if a post-bacc cared enough about an old (17 year apparently) academic dismissal to not accept him, then I can't see how medical school would react any differently. Either way, Dr. Midlife is the one to go off of for that.

On the other note, I like the analogy because it is fitting but I felt Texas would be the right choice in my own opinion. That said, Dr. Midlife is correct in saying it's an excessive path to go about your problem. I was also mistaken (I did some reading just now) when I thought that you might be able to get started doing all your pre-reqs while establishing a texas residency and still qualify for the fresh start all at the same time but no, she is correct.

I still entertain the idea of Texas for several different reasons which I think may or may not be relevant to you. Even if the fresh start is not an option, being a Texas resident gives you "access" to 9 medical schools that all give heavy preferential treatment to their own in state residents. You are not a resident, I understand that but as I understand it, you have no pre-reqs completed as of yet. I know you have taken Bio 1 and Chem 1 but received failing grades. AACOMAS/AMCAS both require pre-reqs with a minimum of a C as an acceptable grade which means you will need to retake them again. For all conventional purposes you haven't taken any pre-reqs and as such even if you compressed them all into a concise fashion, it would take you a minimum of a year to complete it. If you wanted to take some upper division science courses, do shadowing, take the MCAT, you're looking at 1.5+ years. Then you have formal programs in the state that cater to students that fit your profile in UT Dallas that are currently establishing linkages to all medical schools in TX, guaranteeing interviews for all of their students that have3.75+ and a 30+ MCAT. Then you add in that Texas has some very quality education at the cheapest in state tuition in the nation. TCOM is one of the top osteopathic schools in the nation for only 10-12K. I think they opened up another medical school very recently and gave the entering class free tuition for all 4 years.

I saw the OP as being someone who was financially secure (extrapolating from your financial career comments) and that he is at an age where his decision to enter medicine was because he wanted to achieve his long term goal and saw time as being less of an issue than say an impatient pre-med like myself. Either way, I don't feel this route takes more time (fresh start would have taken forever you're right and not very appropriate to the OP) and would save him substantial amounts of money. Even without UT Dallas's linkages, a 3.5 GPA and a 30 MCAT would pretty much all but guarantee you a spot in one of the medical schools in Texas I can say with almost 100% certainty if you applied early. That would also be at a good quality school. I cannot say the same if you applied elsewhere across the nation.
 

DrMidlife

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jslo, you're so wordy it's hard to get enthusiastic about responding, but you've got enough weak info in here I feel compelled.

I felt that the OP was worried about whether a post-bacc would accept him because of his academic dismissal because he wanted to use it as a stepping stone towards entering medical school. I personally have no experience in this matter but it seemed reasonable/common sense to me that if a post-bacc cared enough about an old (17 year apparently) academic dismissal to not accept him, then I can't see how medical school would react any differently.
Look, a SUNY took the guy off a .52 junior year, 17 years ago, on the way to a bachelors degree, so why even play with the idea that he's not going to get into a postbac. Why go way off into the hypothetical of a misprioritized and unsuccessful attempt to get into a postbac, when a thousand stories in this forum demonstrate that folks with all kinds of backgrounds get into postbacs, formal and otherwise?

I still entertain the idea of Texas for several different reasons which I think may or may not be relevant to you. Even if the fresh start is not an option, being a Texas resident gives you "access" to 9 medical schools that all give heavy preferential treatment to their own in state residents.
Heavy in-state preference is a given in almost every state. Texas is the sweetest deal but it's not the only sweet deal.

You are not a resident, I understand that but as I understand it, you have no pre-reqs completed as of yet. I know you have taken Bio 1 and Chem 1 but received failing grades. AACOMAS/AMCAS both require pre-reqs with a minimum of a C as an acceptable grade which means you will need to retake them again. For all conventional purposes you haven't taken any pre-reqs and as such even if you compressed them all into a concise fashion, it would take you a minimum of a year to complete it. If you wanted to take some upper division science courses, do shadowing, take the MCAT, you're looking at 1.5+ years. Then you have formal programs in the state that cater to students that fit your profile in UT Dallas that are currently establishing linkages to all medical schools in TX, guaranteeing interviews for all of their students that have3.75+ and a 30+ MCAT.
That guarantee isn't in writing except on SDN, buyer beware. I love the UTD program, but I love facts better.

Then you add in that Texas has some very quality education at the cheapest in state tuition in the nation. TCOM is one of the top osteopathic schools in the nation for only 10-12K. I think they opened up another medical school very recently and gave the entering class free tuition for all 4 years.
Clearly you haven't been to El Paso.:laugh: Love to visit, not sure I'd be willing to live there for free tuition. Same goes for Orlando, where the first year class got free tuition at UCF.

Jslo, if you're smitten with Texas' med school landscape, more power to you, but seriously, there are other states that have cheap postbacs and cheap med schools.

I saw the OP as being someone who was financially secure (extrapolating from your financial career comments) and that he is at an age where his decision to enter medicine was because he wanted to achieve his long term goal and saw time as being less of an issue than say an impatient pre-med like myself.
Backwards. It's one thing to be 21-or-so and impatient: that's a lack of perspective, and imho it's foolish to spend every single year of your 20's in school. It's another thing to be 30-or-so and impatient: the number of practice years is reduced, a key earning decade is lost, there's more likely a mortgage and a family and a lifestyle to lose. There are very, very few over-30 candidates who can maintain financial security through med school based on earnings that under-30 candidates don't have. Assume a quarter million debt, folks, and if you're lucky enough to spend less, be grateful.

Either way, I don't feel this route takes more time (fresh start would have taken forever you're right and not very appropriate to the OP) and would save him substantial amounts of money.
Incorrect on both time and money. Being a student in Texas doesn't establish TX residency. You either lose time to establishing residency, or you lose money to paying OOS tuition.

Even without UT Dallas's linkages, a 3.5 GPA and a 30 MCAT would pretty much all but guarantee you a spot in one of the medical schools in Texas I can say with almost 100% certainty if you applied early. That would also be at a good quality school. I cannot say the same if you applied elsewhere across the nation.
You do not know what you're talking about. I suspect you are wigging at OHSU's tepid support for Oregon residents, over-reacting to how much better it is in TX, and ignoring the other 48 states.

TX has lots of cheap med schools and has competitive admissions. You've got no more of a guarantee of getting into a TX med school as a TX resident with a below average 3.5 and a 30 than you do in the average state.

Recommended reading:
http://www.aamc.org/data/facts/applicantmatriculant/start.htm
 

jslo85

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jslo, you're so wordy it's hard to get enthusiastic about responding, but you've got enough weak info in here I feel compelled.


Look, a SUNY took the guy off a .52 junior year, 17 years ago, on the way to a bachelors degree, so why even play with the idea that he's not going to get into a postbac. Why go way off into the hypothetical of a misprioritized and unsuccessful attempt to get into a postbac, when a thousand stories in this forum demonstrate that folks with all kinds of backgrounds get into postbacs, formal and otherwise?
(the OP voiced his concern, I only extended it because I really had no basis on determining whether a post-bacc or medical school would even consider it)

Heavy in-state preference is a given in almost every state. Texas is the sweetest deal but it's not the only sweet deal. (Of course state schools give preference to their instate residents. You are right, I was trying to point out there were 8 schools that give heavy in state preference as opposed to other states that have less)


That guarantee isn't in writing except on SDN, buyer beware. I love the UTD program, but I love facts better. (You are right. I am a bit disappointed in myself because I usually remember to add in a comment to not quote me on this but that it is something I have read from students in the program who have posted. I apparently didn't this time)


Clearly you haven't been to El Paso.:laugh: Love to visit, not sure I'd be willing to live there for free tuition. Same goes for Orlando, where the first year class got free tuition at UCF. (Yep never been to El Paso. Only Houston and San Antonio. I will admit again I have personal bias, I thought it would be a good place to live with the low income tax. To each their own though, new classes are guinea pigs and have to suffer being the prototype and risk lower board scores)

Jslo, if you're smitten with Texas' med school landscape, more power to you, but seriously, there are other states that have cheap postbacs and cheap med schools. (Was generalizing but yes there are. I again was looking at the example I had posted, UNTH's TCOM as compared to other "low tuition" schools like LECOM which is one of the lowest but still more than double that of an IS TCOM student)


Backwards. It's one thing to be 21-or-so and impatient: that's a lack of perspective, and imho it's foolish to spend every single year of your 20's in school. It's another thing to be 30-or-so and impatient: the number of practice years is reduced, a key earning decade is lost, there's more likely a mortgage and a family and a lifestyle to lose. There are very, very few over-30 candidates who can maintain financial security through med school based on earnings that under-30 candidates don't have. Assume a quarter million debt, folks, and if you're lucky enough to spend less, be grateful. (Advice taken)


Incorrect on both time and money. Being a student in Texas doesn't establish TX residency. You either lose time to establishing residency, or you lose money to paying OOS tuition. (I was referring to the time spent in Texas where he could establish residency. In a nutshell the formula goes: move to TX-> live for a year -> purchase state car insurance + plate-> maintain job, can be part time -> get voter registration -> paperwork filed = TX residency. I was trying to say he could have it done if he wanted if he had to be there for a while doing pre-reqs)


You do not know what you're talking about. I suspect you are wigging at OHSU's tepid support for Oregon residents, over-reacting to how much better it is in TX, and ignoring the other 48 states. (You are right I am referring to that and am biased and a bit jaded. With 8 TX schools giving preference. Texas A&M 90% IS. UT Galv. 90%. UT Houston 90%. UT Southwestern 90%. UT San Antonio 90%. etc.)

TX has lots of cheap med schools and has competitive admissions. You've got no more of a guarantee of getting into a TX med school as a TX resident with a below average 3.5 and a 30 than you do in the average state. (Checked and admissions standards cited that I have seen agree with what you have said. I was going off stats of friends/family who moved to TX or went there for UG to ultimately apply as a TX resident)

Recommended reading:
http://www.aamc.org/data/facts/applicantmatriculant/start.htm
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