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Found your problem. External locus of control homie. I'd love to see you succeed but the likely reason is in your writing, narrative, attitude, mindset, and personality. Read the book "Extreme Ownership." Reframe your narrative and communication styles. I personally don't think its the end of the road for you in terms of DO. But I think you must change all of the above and have some hard conversations with yourself. That is, if you want to be a doctor.
Thanks for your input. I do fully take ownership of the decisions I have made, some of which were the best in a bad situation, some of which were just dumb and uninformed. I can't take responsibility for my mom getting sick or having to work low-paying jobs to make ends meet or not being able to take a traditional 4 year college path for financial reasons though, which is the context of the sentence you quoted, and to be honest, telling me my problem is my "writing, narrative, attitude, mindset, and personality" which can be solved by reading some finance bro book is pretty out of touch and frankly d*ckish.
 
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Lemonlime98

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I totally understand and agree with your sentiments. However, with the reality of how competitive med school admissions has gotten, your numbers really hurt your application. Your recent SMP and post-bac GPA should have been 4.0 or at least 3.9+ to balance out earlier GPA, and they weren't. If you had gotten a 512 on the first and only MCAT you took, you would have been fine, but in light of the 4 attempts, the 512 is also weak because some schools are known to consider all MCAT attempts. It's unfortunate but med schools are not prioritizing applicants by how much they want to pursue medicine. I have suspicions that if you don't have the stats, adcoms are not going to look super hard at your application because they have thousands more to go through.
 
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Thanks for your input. I do fully take ownership of the decisions I have made, some of which were the best in a bad situation, some of which were just dumb and uninformed. I can't take responsibility for my mom getting sick or having to work low-paying jobs to make ends meet or not being able to take a traditional 4 year college path for financial reasons though, which is the context of the sentence you quoted, and to be honest, telling me my problem is my "writing, narrative, attitude, mindset, and personality" which can be solved by reading some finance bro book is pretty out of touch and frankly d*ckish.
Yes, you can take responsibility. If you get hit by a car it’s likely not your fault. But it is certainly your responsibility to deal with. No one respects a bitter person, regardless of their circumstance.

I’ve read every word of what you’ve posted here. You come off as very “woe is me”, don’t quite answer questions as directly as you believe, youre then extremely overconfident at weird times in your dialogue, not to mention cliche and elementary when describing yourself.

There is a reason 6-7 people liked my comment and I received private messages about it. Because you are blind to your own weaknesses. Perhaps because you are older.
So let me set the record straight.

My original comment was meant to help you because I want you to succeed. I am a 32 year old husband and father. I’ve led upwards of 30 Marines as a platoon sergeant, I’ve served in director level hospital position in which I coordinated code blues,EMT transport, emergency management, ect... I am a published author and I’ve also started/owned/and sold a successful business. Now, I am starting med school this summer.

When I say your problem lies in your attitude and your writing. What I am actually saying is that it likely lies in your own lack of self-awareness in how you present yourself. There is a reason you’ve been rejected 3 times and worked toward this for decades. Perhaps it’s time to give some credence to things you don’t want to believe about yourself. I’m sure you are more than capable. But you don’t do an SMP at a medical school and NOT get an interview without it being YOU.
 
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Also, Extreme Ownership is a book written about life by a former Navy SEAL. It’s not about finance or “bros.” Its one of the most influential books in leadership today.
 
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deleted889094

Thought about giving my own take, but all the good advice has been given already. OP, I feel for you, but your chances are not good at this stage. If you've been unable to land a DO acceptance across several cycles, you're either gonna have to find another career to scratch this itch, maybe PA or NP, or go to the Caribbean and risk it all and hope you can yeet your way into a residency. Probably your only shot at an MD at this point, but know that some people have been unable to get a residency and were in such despair they committed suicide.

As a side note, I absolutely would have done Perfusion as a backup to med school. Good career.

I suppose I gave my take after all lol
 
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Is a 3.4 SMP bad? I was under the impression that SMP expectations are 3.6+ for MD and 3.4+ for DO?
I wonder if there's a deeper issue with OP's essays.
 
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Is a 3.4 SMP bad? I was under the impression that SMP expectations are 3.6+ for MD and 3.4+ for DO?
I wonder if there's a deeper issue with OP's essays.
If you're doing an SMP, it's usually because you didn't do as well as you would have liked in undergrad, and now you are trying to show medical schools that you are capable of handling graduate level/medical school coursework. If you want to show them that you're capable of that you should really be aiming for a 4.0 in your SMP, or at least a 3.7+.
 
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Hey there, It sounds like you're a bit run down from this process (who wouldn't be?!). May I offer you a perspective that you haven't gotten yet? I am a non-traditional student who ran the marathon, kicking all those obstacles out of my way, totally unaware of what I was getting myself into, while living in poverty, and with other challenges. Just to give you a sense that I get what you're facing. First of all: that was the easy part. Adjusting to medical school has been rough, and partly because I'm a non-traditional student, without the privileged background of many of my peers, partly because global pandemics are the worst. I have never felt like the odd one out as much as I do in medical school, and I went back to school in my 30's so I'm used to being older than the other kids. I think you should focus on DO schools if you do apply again. MD schools as far as I can tell really don't like older candidates unless there's something about you that makes them go "WOW!" DO schools, on the other hand, place a value on life experience.

Even still, this is a competitive cycle, applications are up, and they might still be up next year if the "Fauci effect" is real. How much more rejection can you handle? Have you considered being a Nurse Practitioner? This is a pathway that frequently takes people changing direction in their careers. The scope of practice is a little different, but you can still be a primary care provider. And when you finish the NP masters you can do an online doctor of nursing practice even while you're in practice and still become a "doctor" (not the same, but still nothing to sneeze at). And some nurse practitioner specialties can qualify for loan forgiveness through the national health service, which would help with that end of education debt burden. I was planning, if I didn't get in last cycle, to take the 2 remaining pre-reqs for a direct entry NP program (which for me were anatomy and physiology, you probably already have those) and reapply both to medical schools and to direct entry NP programs. Would something like that work for you?

Above all, please remember that this process is one of the most academically competitive things you can do. Not getting in isn't a reflection of you, it is a reflection of difficulty of the process. A lot of times we ask "what did I do wrong?" when evaluating the attempts, when the reality is that most people who try do not make it, and when your background isn't picture perfect it is that much harder to be one of the ones who does make it. Should you try again? Only you know if you have that in you. Should you consider some other options while you make that decision? Definitely: don't throw away all the work you've done towards a career in medicine!
 
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stickgirl390

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I feel like everything of value has mostly been hashed out already, but I did want to add one thing:

Your lack of success isn’t just you. Yes your GPA and MCAT scores are not the best, but aside from that even if they were a few points higher; medical school is competitive for a reason. Your application is being looked at in comparison with the best and brightest students in the country, and the world. With how many people apply each year, and the average matriculant stats continuing to rise, it’s very likely that there are simply too many strong candidates for you to compete with. You may have made the best app you can, and at the end of the day med school is just competitive and there are a LOT of qualified people.
 
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BeingForItself

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Hi OP, I have no specific advice but just want to wish you the best going forward. Your situation sounds incredibly difficult but I hope that you're happy regardless of the decisions you make and your outcome in this hypercompetitive and even dehumanizing process.
 
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CricB4Tube

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Yes, you can take responsibility. If you get hit by a car it’s likely not your fault. But it is certainly your responsibility to deal with. No one respects a bitter person, regardless of their circumstance.

I’ve read every word of what you’ve posted here. You come off as very “woe is me”, don’t quite answer questions as directly as you believe, youre then extremely overconfident at weird times in your dialogue, not to mention cliche and elementary when describing yourself.

There is a reason 6-7 people liked my comment and I received private messages about it. Because you are blind to your own weaknesses. Perhaps because you are older.
So let me set the record straight.

My original comment was meant to help you because I want you to succeed. I am a 32 year old husband and father. I’ve led upwards of 30 Marines as a platoon sergeant, I’ve served in director level hospital position in which I coordinated code blues,EMT transport, emergency management, ect... I am a published author and I’ve also started/owned/and sold a successful business. Now, I am starting med school this summer.

When I say your problem lies in your attitude and your writing. What I am actually saying is that it likely lies in your own lack of self-awareness in how you present yourself. There is a reason you’ve been rejected 3 times and worked toward this for decades. Perhaps it’s time to give some credence to things you don’t want to believe about yourself. I’m sure you are more than capable. But you don’t do an SMP at a medical school and NOT get an interview without it being YOU.
You hit the nail on the head.

A lot of us wish we were born with two doctor parents who paved the way for us and life was just fine and dandy. Plenty of traditional and non-traditional students struggle with family illness/death, poverty, homelessness, discrimination, disabilities, and so on. Being able to overcome those challenges or at least elaborate on what you learned from them and how it's made you better is what shows that grit and character that can sometimes overcome lackluster stats.

OP, I only know what you've posted on here so I may be entirely incorrect, but judging from what you've written here, you do come across as someone who is trying to make excuses and play the sympathy card. I feel your pain, I've had a lot of obstacles to overcome before applying too, but nobody wants to hear a sob story of how you couldn't/didn't/can't; they want to hear how despite your disadvantages, you succeeded.

You may want to consider some self-reflection and see what is really holding you back personally, and if you're even able to overcome your stats. Even if you don't end up as a physician, you may end up as a happier and more capable person if you can overcome that external locus of control.
 
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RogueUnicorn

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I don’t know that much about pa admissions but I do know that they despise people who use them as the fallback option and it’s actually quite competitive.

I don't know any PA or PA student that didn't entertain or often pursue medical school as a first choice. PA schools are not dumb and presumably most of them are not swallowed up in a complex about themselves. If OP presents the very straightforward case of poorly advised 1st gen student, diamond in the rough, needs to get on with his/her life, I doubt it's going to be some kind of slap in their faces.

The real question of course if why OP wants to do this at all which in my brief skim I have yet to discern but that's of course a bit out of scope.

I always politely turned them down, as I couldn't see myself happy doing anything else -- doesn't matter if I'm rich or if I'm paying off my loans until the day I die.

This kind of statement/thinking honestly worries me, in anyone.
 
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RogueUnicorn

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Please read the entire thread and then tell me that the OP has a chance for PA school.
I didn't say the OP has a chance for PA school, I said his/her application won't necessarily be considered a slap to their faces like you seem to imply.

Also if the OP could do that, the OP would probably have been able to get into med school by now. People don’t change overnight and if you want to recommend PA, just know you could be sending the OP down another never ending rabbit hole that could do more harm than good.
People in fact do change but that's neither here nor there and you can clearly see I have recommended nothing.

I recommended nursing because at least they’ll be more impressed with the SMP and I’m sure the OP would be welcomed there. But hey not my life
This is so wildly conjectural as to invalidate your entire post. My God if you think PA schools will be offended by being considered a "fall back" you ought to spend some time with "academic" nurses.
 

RogueUnicorn

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Well I see this place is still an oasis of sanity :laugh:
 
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A few people now have suggested my problem is that I don't own my decisions, or suggested I don't have values independent of becoming a doctor based on what I wrote here, which I find pretty insulting. Obviously I don't have my interview face on here. Obviously this is not how I wrote my essays. Human beings have emotions and sometimes need to vent frustrations. Human beings aren't in control of everything that happens to them. We do the best we can given our circumstances. Frankly, I find the idea that you are somehow not trying hard enough if you ever let your "customer service face" slip (in the parlance of my former life), or admit that not everything is in your control, to be deeply inhuman and toxic. There are many things about me to criticize, believe me, but no one who knows me would say my problem is that I don't "take ownership" or try to pull myself up by my bootstraps enough. I wouldn't have gotten this far if I didn't.

Let me share a story about ownership. I graduated high school way back in 2003. I seriously explored joining the military, as my options for financing college and medical school were very slim, especially after I had to move back home--I had talked to a recruiter and had a date set to take the ASVAB and everything. If I had gone, there's a pretty good chance I would be a doctor today, an attending even. Why didn't I? Because I decided that my dreams, however dearly I held them, could not justify being party to the crime Bush and the US military were inflicting on the Iraqi people, even in a noncombat capacity which is where I most likely would have ended up. Some of you may be too young to remember, but back then being anti-war was not a popular view even among liberals until later. I stood up for my values, which are what drive me to want to become a doctor (not the other way around), I worked, I took out loans, I found a different path, though it was harder, and I own that decision 100%.
 
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TragicalDrFaust

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A few people now have suggested my problem is that I don't own my decisions, or suggested I don't have values independent of becoming a doctor based on what I wrote here, which I find pretty insulting. Obviously I don't have my interview face on here. Obviously this is not how I wrote my essays. Human beings have emotions and sometimes need to vent frustrations. Human beings aren't in control of everything that happens to them. We do the best we can given our circumstances. Frankly, I find the idea that you are somehow not trying hard enough if you ever let your "customer service face" slip (in the parlance of my former life), or admit that not everything is in your control, to be deeply inhuman and toxic. There are many things about me to criticize, believe me, but no one who knows me would say my problem is that I don't "take ownership" or try to pull myself up by my bootstraps enough. I wouldn't have gotten this far if I didn't.

Let me share a story about ownership. I graduated high school way back in 2003. I seriously explored joining the military, as my options for financing college and medical school were very slim, especially after I had to move back home--I had talked to a recruiter and had a date set to take the ASVAB and everything. If I had gone, there's a pretty good chance I would be a doctor today, an attending even. Why didn't I? Because I decided that my dreams, however dearly I held them, could not justify being party to the crime Bush and the US military were inflicting on the Iraqi people, even in a noncombat capacity which is where I most likely would have ended up. Some of you may be too young to remember, but back then being anti-war was not a popular view even among liberals until later. I stood up for my values, which are what drive me to want to become a doctor (not the other way around), I worked, I took out loans, I found a different path, though it was harder, and I own that decision 100%.

I'm commenting out of a desire to be helpful. I believe everyone deserves a fair shot at med school and maybe you haven't been given the right kind of feedback or had it delivered in a palatable way. So here's my bit: It seems like you're more interested in defending your past choices than finding actionable ways to get closer to your goal. Although no doubt some of the past was determined by circumstances out of your control, it's clear that significant mistakes were made. There's nothing wrong with making mistakes- there's no handbook for this, especially for folks who don't have family connections to the healthcare. Most mistakes don't reflect poorly on you if you learn from them. But when I read your OP, I was stricken by the fact that you hadn't advanced in a meaningful way in any of your undertakings, other than getting the hours. Though I don't know the exact situation, taking a leadership role somewhere, even at Target, likely could have put you in a better position to help your family and save up so you could take the time to complete school and apply properly. I did the retail thing for about a decade, as I described, and it paid off. It also seems you weren't doing due diligence when it came to researching the SMP. If you're going to invest hundreds of thousands of dollars, you should know what kind of grades you need in order to move forward in the application process. Those are two pretty big red flags and they're on you. You even mentioned you turned down leadership positions, and you applied for the SMP. Would you rather try to convince a bunch of people on the internet none of this is really your fault, or would you rather move past it and figure out what your best options are? It's clear from this thread that the former isn't working. You have obviously have the potential to be successful but you're letting defensiveness about past mistakes prevent you from changing your course - not saying give up but something different needs to happen.
 
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what drive me to want to become a doctor (not the other way around),
OP, just apply podiatry and call it a day. The cycle is still early and you would get an interview within hours of applying.
Podiatry isn't quite MD/DO, but you're more of a "doctor" than you would be as a PA/NP.
 
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deleted889094

A few people now have suggested my problem is that I don't own my decisions, or suggested I don't have values independent of becoming a doctor based on what I wrote here, which I find pretty insulting. Obviously I don't have my interview face on here. Obviously this is not how I wrote my essays. Human beings have emotions and sometimes need to vent frustrations. Human beings aren't in control of everything that happens to them. We do the best we can given our circumstances. Frankly, I find the idea that you are somehow not trying hard enough if you ever let your "customer service face" slip (in the parlance of my former life), or admit that not everything is in your control, to be deeply inhuman and toxic. There are many things about me to criticize, believe me, but no one who knows me would say my problem is that I don't "take ownership" or try to pull myself up by my bootstraps enough. I wouldn't have gotten this far if I didn't.

Let me share a story about ownership. I graduated high school way back in 2003. I seriously explored joining the military, as my options for financing college and medical school were very slim, especially after I had to move back home--I had talked to a recruiter and had a date set to take the ASVAB and everything. If I had gone, there's a pretty good chance I would be a doctor today, an attending even. Why didn't I? Because I decided that my dreams, however dearly I held them, could not justify being party to the crime Bush and the US military were inflicting on the Iraqi people, even in a noncombat capacity which is where I most likely would have ended up. Some of you may be too young to remember, but back then being anti-war was not a popular view even among liberals until later. I stood up for my values, which are what drive me to want to become a doctor (not the other way around), I worked, I took out loans, I found a different path, though it was harder, and I own that decision 100%.
So I think the big question is: What are your next steps?

Maybe we should all move on from talking about the past since nobody's being swayed
 
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I don't want to come across as unnecessarily harsh, but I still am not sure what concrete reasons you have for not pursuing other healthcare professions at this point. You mentioned that you love medicine and can't see yourself doing anything else, but at this point isn't it worth thinking more about some of the practical considerations here, and maybe settling for something that isn't quite your dream job but something sort of close (podiatry etc)?
 
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deleted889094

I would like to hear what OP thinks are practical next steps. Whether or not we think OP should pursue another career, we can still give advice about specifics of the next steps she wants to take.
 
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A few people now have suggested my problem is that I don't own my decisions, or suggested I don't have values independent of becoming a doctor based on what I wrote here, which I find pretty insulting. Obviously I don't have my interview face on here. Obviously this is not how I wrote my essays. Human beings have emotions and sometimes need to vent frustrations. Human beings aren't in control of everything that happens to them. We do the best we can given our circumstances. Frankly, I find the idea that you are somehow not trying hard enough if you ever let your "customer service face" slip (in the parlance of my former life), or admit that not everything is in your control, to be deeply inhuman and toxic. There are many things about me to criticize, believe me, but no one who knows me would say my problem is that I don't "take ownership" or try to pull myself up by my bootstraps enough. I wouldn't have gotten this far if I didn't.

Let me share a story about ownership. I graduated high school way back in 2003. I seriously explored joining the military, as my options for financing college and medical school were very slim, especially after I had to move back home--I had talked to a recruiter and had a date set to take the ASVAB and everything. If I had gone, there's a pretty good chance I would be a doctor today, an attending even. Why didn't I? Because I decided that my dreams, however dearly I held them, could not justify being party to the crime Bush and the US military were inflicting on the Iraqi people, even in a noncombat capacity which is where I most likely would have ended up. Some of you may be too young to remember, but back then being anti-war was not a popular view even among liberals until later. I stood up for my values, which are what drive me to want to become a doctor (not the other way around), I worked, I took out loans, I found a different path, though it was harder, and I own that decision 100%.
Being starkly against the entire bush admin, war, and service in the military......then going as far as setting a date for the asvab and having your name in a recruiters book is not admirable, indicative of character, or evidence of someone with a solid moral compass.

It’s actually evidence of a conflicted inner moral compass. Worse, to brag about it now at 36 years of age as if it’s a triumph story shows that you are seriously lacking in self-concept and critical thinking.

The real story says “I’m came dangerously close to joining the military (chasing personal gain) even though those actions would’ve run in contrast to everything I believe.”

Further, the entire point is that things can certainly be out of your control. But that doesn’t mean you don’t take responsibility for them. By that, one needs to truly live their life in such a way that it’s a central part of who they are. Not in such a way that it comes across when their “interview face” is on. But in how they act and conduct themselves 100% of the time.

All in all, everything you’ve said said makes you a poor candidate for any position of responsibility or leadership. Of course, I don’t know YOU....but I can tell you I’d never hire you, admit you, or put you in a position that I had to deal with you often.

By all means, continue defending (poorly I might add) the actions and choices that have led you here if you want to remain in the same place. Good luck.
 
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First OP, I am sorry to hear this and I am sorry you are going through this.

Im not in admissions but if I were you I would reach out to my pre-med advisors. i also went to a huge state school and I know they are worked to the max in the public system. But really the pre-med advisors give a lot better and more personalized advice then you would receive here. You may have alumn services from both your undergrad and SMP

Also hard to believe a 509 mcat and a 3.0 gpa is a death sentence for DO. I have seen people with lower for both get in.

Honestly I have seen really problematic people get into great medical schools. The schools don't actually care who you are so i don't buy this "it's your personality" bs. But it may be your personal statements. Who read those? I think we fall into a trap of being too honest in those. Schools really are looking for a couple themes they like. They love hearing about how healthcare was inaccessible and so you saw these x,y.z health outcomes. how you had to work 3 jobs to pay for college but you did it anyways. and how that'll serve you in your future career. I would look at examples and make sure you are happy with how you framed your story. then ask multiple people, both pre med advisors, close friends and not close friends look at those.

so really if I were you I would:

1. take care of myself mentally
2. share your school list, make sure you applied widely to MD and DO. esp newer schools with lower stats
3. Get advice from my pre-med advisors about what to do next
4. make sure you have your bases covered in your essays; frame a story they are known for liking and share your essay with multiple people
5. reach out to the schools you did not get into and ask for concrete advice
6. set a timeline for yourself- if by x time or Y year I do not get in, I will do "backup plan"

career changes are normal and for your own mental well-being I would remove becoming a physician with defining yourself. I am sure you will find a career that brings you happiness, satisfaction and financial stability and at the end of the day that's what we are all looking for. being flexible and exploring what else is out there helps me keep afloat mentally and I think you may feel the same

I wish you a lot of success and hope you find what you are looking for
 
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BeingForItself

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A few people now have suggested my problem is that I don't own my decisions, or suggested I don't have values independent of becoming a doctor based on what I wrote here, which I find pretty insulting. Obviously I don't have my interview face on here. Obviously this is not how I wrote my essays. Human beings have emotions and sometimes need to vent frustrations. Human beings aren't in control of everything that happens to them. We do the best we can given our circumstances. Frankly, I find the idea that you are somehow not trying hard enough if you ever let your "customer service face" slip (in the parlance of my former life), or admit that not everything is in your control, to be deeply inhuman and toxic. There are many things about me to criticize, believe me, but no one who knows me would say my problem is that I don't "take ownership" or try to pull myself up by my bootstraps enough. I wouldn't have gotten this far if I didn't.

Let me share a story about ownership. I graduated high school way back in 2003. I seriously explored joining the military, as my options for financing college and medical school were very slim, especially after I had to move back home--I had talked to a recruiter and had a date set to take the ASVAB and everything. If I had gone, there's a pretty good chance I would be a doctor today, an attending even. Why didn't I? Because I decided that my dreams, however dearly I held them, could not justify being party to the crime Bush and the US military were inflicting on the Iraqi people, even in a noncombat capacity which is where I most likely would have ended up. Some of you may be too young to remember, but back then being anti-war was not a popular view even among liberals until later. I stood up for my values, which are what drive me to want to become a doctor (not the other way around), I worked, I took out loans, I found a different path, though it was harder, and I own that decision 100%.
Props to you for refusing to contribute to US imperialism even when it could've been good for your personal life. Joining the armed forces is not a morally insignificant act.

Looking after your career is important, but being compliticit in war crimes will never hang over your conscience. I think that it's great that you stand by your choices and wish you the best with your next ones.
 
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Props to you for refusing to contribute to US imperialism even when it could've been good for your personal life. Joining the armed forces is not a morally insignificant act.

Looking after your career is important, but being compliticit in war crimes will never hang over your conscience. I think that it's great that you stand by your choices and wish you the best with your next ones.
Lol to all of this. What are you 22?
 
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Katniss Everdeen

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I don't post too often, but please please please don't give up! It's never too late! Medicine is a wonderful career! There's a M1 at my school who's in his late 40's :)

I'd be happy to take a look at your AMCAS application, offer advice, or answer any question you have in the event you decide to apply in future cycles!

Best of Luck! I believe in you!
 
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Matthew9Thirtyfive

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Props to you for refusing to contribute to US imperialism even when it could've been good for your personal life. Joining the armed forces is not a morally insignificant act.

Looking after your career is important, but being compliticit in war crimes will never hang over your conscience. I think that it's great that you stand by your choices and wish you the best with your next ones.

Yes, all of us prior service and military physicians contributing to US imperialism, committing war crimes, and being morally bankrupt are doing the devil's work.
 
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Mad Jack

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Sorry if this is a rant, I'm feeling more than a little dejected right now and could really use some encouragement. I'm nontrad, first-gen from a family with an unsteady income and my college career was complicated. I decided to become a doctor when I was 18 years old. I just turned 36 and realized I have been trying to get into medical school for almost 20 years, more than half my life. This cycle is my fourth, and so far, I have nothing to show for it, not even a single lousy II.

I have tried everything, from shadowing to research to SMP to a DIY postbac to applying to DO schools. Now I'm staring down the prospect of applying a fifth time, and wondering - is it worth it? But if not, what else would I do? I'm not sure I even have any marketable skills. My only professional qualification is a Master's from an SMP. For the past 10 years I have just been bouncing between jobs like tech and scribe and clinical research assistant where all my coworkers are kids fresh out of college. I've made so many sacrifices to be able to do this, I am hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt, I'm not married and not pursuing a serious relationship, I make enough in my job to get by, but certainly not enough to pay down this debt, let alone support a family or retire. I feel like the only way I can ever get out of this hole is by becoming a doctor. It is devastating that none of this effort seems to have paid off. But still, I can't imagine myself doing anything else with my life other than being a doctor. Help???

EDIT: Link to stats
Could always go to the Caribbean. Your chances of matching won't be super high but hey, you can have that shiny MD and even big 4s will take you with a pulse
 
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Gilakend

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DPM is a great option imo for you. I know others have said it, but just wanted to emphasize it.

You could likely get in with a healthy scholarship (from what I've seen on the DPM forums), it's shorter (including residency), and has options for both a medical side and a surgical side. Good salary, good lifestyle, good outlook.
 
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Being starkly against the entire bush admin, war, and service in the military......then going as far as setting a date for the asvab and having your name in a recruiters book is not admirable, indicative of character, or evidence of someone with a solid moral compass.

It’s actually evidence of a conflicted inner moral compass. Worse, to brag about it now at 36 years of age as if it’s a triumph story shows that you are seriously lacking in self-concept and critical thinking.

The real story says “I’m came dangerously close to joining the military (chasing personal gain) even though those actions would’ve run in contrast to everything I believe.”

Further, the entire point is that things can certainly be out of your control. But that doesn’t mean you don’t take responsibility for them. By that, one needs to truly live their life in such a way that it’s a central part of who they are. Not in such a way that it comes across when their “interview face” is on. But in how they act and conduct themselves 100% of the time.

All in all, everything you’ve said said makes you a poor candidate for any position of responsibility or leadership. Of course, I don’t know YOU....but I can tell you I’d never hire you, admit you, or put you in a position that I had to deal with you often.

By all means, continue defending (poorly I might add) the actions and choices that have led you here if you want to remain in the same place. Good luck.
There are two kinds of people, in my experience, who think the way you do: those who are privileged, and those who desperately wish they were. If you had ever experienced poverty, you would know that it is constant compromise, sometimes even on your moral compass. Only someone who has never lived the reality of poverty could so blithely say "well why was it hard to turn down something you were opposed to".

Again, I am going to acknowledge something deeply humanly vulnerable, which may be unrelatable to you: making the right moral choice wasn't easy for me at the time, particularly when it meant turning down financial stability as a 20 year old with a negative bank balance and major immediate financial consequences for my family, and also as someone brought up with immense reverence for servicemembers and the US military. (this was also a decision that required a long reflective process considering the practical and personal implications and not one I took out of hand, but leave that aside) When it came to the Iraq War, this conundrum for poor people was by design. So many people I grew up with were in a similar position, holding similar beliefs who--completely understandably--made the other decision, and came back deeply scarred, physically or mentally. I am not bragging about it or saying it makes me better than anyone else, I am simply saying that I own my choices and their consequences, one of which is that I am in my position now. You will note that nowhere in this thread have I said "I wish I would have done this" or "if only that would have worked out differently" -- I own how I got here, both what was in my control and what wasn't, and ownership to me means continuing to push forward. I'm not going to give up.
 
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I'm not going to give up.
OP with all due respect, you still have yet to offer any personal thoughts on next steps. You ask in the thread title when to give up. You indicate in the post quoted that you are not going to give up despite excellent advice to the contrary from practicing physicians, current medical students, and sitting admissions committee members. I guess that means you've now answered your question and the thread has run its course unless you bring up a new thought about alternative careers or the reasons behind your lack of interest in them.

The facts of the matter stand no matter how noble, resilient, or motivated you are: you are deeply and desperately in debt with little career mobility (a self-inflicted condition due to turning down leadership opportunities as you yourself confess) chasing a fading dream of an MD or DO degree. Not giving up is admirable but not practical and your consistent avoidance of the most repeated question from SDN members throughout this thread on things like your previous school lists and your reasons for not pursuing other professions is not going to get you anywhere. Unless you are a troll account, I cannot fathom why, at this stage of your premed journey, you continue to decline help.
 
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There are two kinds of people, in my experience, who think the way you do: those who are privileged, and those who desperately wish they were. If you had ever experienced poverty, you would know that it is constant compromise, sometimes even on your moral compass. Only someone who has never lived the reality of poverty could so blithely say "well why was it hard to turn down something you were opposed to".

Again, I am going to acknowledge something deeply humanly vulnerable, which may be unrelatable to you: making the right moral choice wasn't easy for me at the time, particularly when it meant turning down financial stability as a 20 year old with a negative bank balance and major immediate financial consequences for my family, and also as someone brought up with immense reverence for servicemembers and the US military. (this was also a decision that required a long reflective process considering the practical and personal implications and not one I took out of hand, but leave that aside) When it came to the Iraq War, this conundrum for poor people was by design. So many people I grew up with were in a similar position, holding similar beliefs who--completely understandably--made the other decision, and came back deeply scarred, physically or mentally. I am not bragging about it or saying it makes me better than anyone else, I am simply saying that I own my choices and their consequences, one of which is that I am in my position now. You will note that nowhere in this thread have I said "I wish I would have done this" or "if only that would have worked out differently" -- I own how I got here, both what was in my control and what wasn't, and ownership to me means continuing to push forward. I'm not going to give up.
Saying this as something completely separate on my personal opinions on the matter: I doubt you're going to get anywhere constructive by participating in a slapfight re the morality of joining the military. I would caution against furthering this discussion because it's only going to color people's opinions of you more negatively when it comes to giving you advice. You're here to discuss practical next steps to a satisfying career in healthcare, not to defend all of your choices against internet randoms (although I understand the impulse)!!
 
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There are two kinds of people, in my experience, who think the way you do: those who are privileged, and those who desperately wish they were. If you had ever experienced poverty, you would know that it is constant compromise, sometimes even on your moral compass. Only someone who has never lived the reality of poverty could so blithely say "well why was it hard to turn down something you were opposed to".

Again, I am going to acknowledge something deeply humanly vulnerable, which may be unrelatable to you: making the right moral choice wasn't easy for me at the time, particularly when it meant turning down financial stability as a 20 year old with a negative bank balance and major immediate financial consequences for my family, and also as someone brought up with immense reverence for servicemembers and the US military. (this was also a decision that required a long reflective process considering the practical and personal implications and not one I took out of hand, but leave that aside) When it came to the Iraq War, this conundrum for poor people was by design. So many people I grew up with were in a similar position, holding similar beliefs who--completely understandably--made the other decision, and came back deeply scarred, physically or mentally. I am not bragging about it or saying it makes me better than anyone else, I am simply saying that I own my choices and their consequences, one of which is that I am in my position now. You will note that nowhere in this thread have I said "I wish I would have done this" or "if only that would have worked out differently" -- I own how I got here, both what was in my control and what wasn't, and ownership to me means continuing to push forward. I'm not going to give up.
Why do you only respond to the people who are saying negative things about you and not the ones who are trying to give you the advice you asked for?

You should realize that you're actually only losing support the more you try to defend yourself.
 
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Lord_stark

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OP, just apply podiatry and call it a day. The cycle is still early and you would get an interview within hours of applying.
Podiatry isn't quite MD/DO, but you're more of a "doctor" than you would be as a PA/NP.
Podiatrists (DPM) are not just more a "doctor", they are physicians and surgeons. Federal government defines them as physician and reimbursed as one in Medicare. They also get physician privileges in the hospitals, and function just like any regional specialist.

Department of Homeland Security CISA also specific listing physician as MD/DO/DPM.

Screenshot_20201213-162035_Drive.jpg
 
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There are two kinds of people, in my experience, who think the way you do: those who are privileged, and those who desperately wish they were. If you had ever experienced poverty, you would know that it is constant compromise, sometimes even on your moral compass. Only someone who has never lived the reality of poverty could so blithely say "well why was it hard to turn down something you were opposed to".

Again, I am going to acknowledge something deeply humanly vulnerable, which may be unrelatable to you: making the right moral choice wasn't easy for me at the time, particularly when it meant turning down financial stability as a 20 year old with a negative bank balance and major immediate financial consequences for my family, and also as someone brought up with immense reverence for servicemembers and the US military. (this was also a decision that required a long reflective process considering the practical and personal implications and not one I took out of hand, but leave that aside) When it came to the Iraq War, this conundrum for poor people was by design. So many people I grew up with were in a similar position, holding similar beliefs who--completely understandably--made the other decision, and came back deeply scarred, physically or mentally. I am not bragging about it or saying it makes me better than anyone else, I am simply saying that I own my choices and their consequences, one of which is that I am in my position now. You will note that nowhere in this thread have I said "I wish I would have done this" or "if only that would have worked out differently" -- I own how I got here, both what was in my control and what wasn't, and ownership to me means continuing to push forward. I'm not going to give up.
(1) You have said in this thread "i cant take responsibility" and "I cant help I was born low income."

(2) Our power was cut of regularly when I was a kid, terrible family life, I got a job at 14 to help pay for food, I got out of the military to come home and support my terminally ill father while working full time and going to school full time, when I bootstrapped my business me and my wife (even when she was pregnant *surprise for us*) we were sleeping in an abandoned office with no working bathroom/kitchen on a couch and a chair. I live with a constant cognizance of exactly what poverty is.

I possess empathy for your position, which is exactly why I possess zero sympathy for your position. OnLy SoMeOnE WhO gReW uP iN pOvErTy, Stfu, you are privileged in your own victimhood, as if you are somehow enlightened by it. Guess what? It's never been hard for me to do the "right" thing according to my own moral code, bc I have an internal locus of control. You are, in reality, ignorant and unwise....willing to judge successful people as privileged when in reality their backgrounds are very similar to yours.....the only difference being their mindset.

(3) You are 36 years old and got on SDN to ask for help; yet are choosing to mostly reply to people so that you can defend yourself as wise, accomplished, or that your life experience has taught you something that can somehow trump what I and many others are saying.

You are pompous, delusional, and by all measurements your "experiences" has stagnated you in wisdom so as to never surpass a rebellious 20-something that's unwilling to hear they don't know everything about the world or themselves.

(4) I would like to drive home that you've never done anything professionally or in leadership of consequence; yet you are more interested in arguing and defending yourself when you don't like what people have to say... rather than try and find something actionable. You're inability to see (or acknowledge) your own internal failures will likely mean you pass on your crippling debt and victimhood to whatever children you may have.

God bless you, woman. I truly, truly hope things change for you and you can go on to be successful. I'm out, no more replies from me. Not worth it.
 
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RogueUnicorn

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I don't post too often, but please please please don't give up! It's never too late! Medicine is a wonderful career! There's a M1 at my school who's in his late 40's :)

I'd be happy to take a look at your AMCAS application, offer advice, or answer any question you have in the event you decide to apply in future cycles!

Best of Luck! I believe in you!

This is well-intentioned but uncritical pollyanna cheerleading is probably not helpful. "NEVER GIVE UP" makes a nice motivational poster but is not advisable for young middle-age people with a load of debt and no clear end in sight.


Podiatrists (DPM) are not just more a "doctor", they are physicians and surgeons. Federal government defines them as physician and reimbursed as one in Medicare. They also get physician privileges in the hospitals, and function just like any regional specialist.

Department of Homeland Security CISA also specific listing physician as MD/DO/DPM.

First point - for all intents and purposes, certainly in this forum and in the vernacular, "doctor" in the clinical setting refers to physicians/surgeon so the clarification is moot. The fact that so-called "allied" fields have decided to grant themselves doctorates does not change this fact.

Second (more personal, biased) point - while the specifics of what you are saying is 100% factually accurate, it grinds my gears as orthopedist that podiatrists are considered actual physicians. Their general medical knowledge is, in my experience, appalling bordering on dangeous, and for christ's sake I'm ortho!

[accurate diatribe]

At ease soldier...
 
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I want to take a moment to seriously thank the people who have put in the time to give me good-faith advice, encouragement, and constructive criticism on this thread, while I haven't been able to reply to everyone, it has been so, so helpful. So next steps: I'm not going to pretend that I have had an epiphany, I still have a lot of uncertainty and am drawing on multiple sources to consider what to do next, but I will say that these perspectives have been invaluable and I am planning on doing a lot of things different as a result. First things first: this cycle isn't over, and my priority will be to send schools my updates and keep campaigning any way I can to get a spot this cycle.

As for after that, if that doesn't work: I thought @bngli had some really good advice in particular about setting a "deadline" for myself at 40--it is a hard thing to contemplate for sure, but after thinking about it seriously I agree it is necessary to set a hard *out* to avoid this just dragging on indefinitely. Believe me, it has been an exhausting process! So I have decided if I don't have a spot by 40, that's it. But that doesn't mean I'm giving up! That still gives me 4 years, and a lot can change between now and then!

Until then, I think I'm going to take a break from applying for a few years, and work on myself to make the next time I apply my last--whatever happens. I'm going to try to get my postgrad GPA up to 3.7 by taking a few more classes, but only as a part-time thing. Now that I have some relative financial freedom, I'm going to throw myself into nonclinical extracurriculars and volunteer work, give low-income students the mentorship I didn't have through my tutoring org, maybe even join that jazz band. Some people mentioned leadership--I'm sorry, my comment about being put on management track at Target was just a random throwaway, I didn't provide any detail: to clarify that would have been a whole career, retail management is a skilled profession that people invest years to move up in, not something I could just do for a year to check a box and then move on. But I am in a leadership position in my job now as a Research Coordinator and have quite a large role in the day-to-day running of the trials I am involved in, which I am using and intend to continue using to advocate for patients. Hopefully by the time I apply again some of these trials will be finished and written up and I will have some publications under my belt as well.

As for how I'll use my last cycle, I haven't decided yet. Everything is on the table: the schools you guys recommended, some of which I haven't applied to yet, DPM, Caribbean, Australia... I know it is important for me to be in a job where I both work with patients and think about the science and mechanisms of disease, but beyond that I don't know.

Thanks again!
 
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Saying this as something completely separate on my personal opinions on the matter: I doubt you're going to get anywhere constructive by participating in a slapfight re the morality of joining the military. I would caution against furthering this discussion because it's only going to color people's opinions of you more negatively when it comes to giving you advice. You're here to discuss practical next steps to a satisfying career in healthcare, not to defend all of your choices against internet randoms (although I understand the impulse)!!
Absolutely, to clarify I am not anti-military at all, I still have immense respect for the men and women who serve our country, there are a lot of people in my family who served, a lot of friends as well, I volunteer at a VA for this reason, and under difference circumstances I might have become one of them. To be clear, my objection was to the specific circumstances surrounding the Iraq War, which was a formative event for my generation. I consider servicemembers to be the victims of that immense waste of life as well. To be honest I did not expect "The Iraq War was bad" and "The Bush admin exploited poor people" would be controversial opinions today in 2020 on this board of smart and highly educated people.
 
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(1) You have said in this thread "i cant take responsibility" and "I cant help I was born low income."

(2) Our power was cut of regularly when I was a kid, terrible family life, I got a job at 14 to help pay for food, I got out of the military to come home and support my terminally ill father while working full time and going to school full time, when I bootstrapped my business me and my wife (even when she was pregnant *surprise for us*) we were sleeping in an abandoned office with no working bathroom/kitchen on a couch and a chair. I live with a constant cognizance of exactly what poverty is.

I possess empathy for your position, which is exactly why I possess zero sympathy for your position. OnLy SoMeOnE WhO gReW uP iN pOvErTy, Stfu, you are privileged in your own victimhood, as if you are somehow enlightened by it. Guess what? It's never been hard for me to do the "right" thing according to my own moral code, bc I have an internal locus of control. You are, in reality, ignorant and unwise....willing to judge successful people as privileged when in reality their backgrounds are very similar to yours.....the only difference being their mindset.

(3) You are 36 years old and got on SDN to ask for help; yet are choosing to mostly reply to people so that you can defend yourself as wise, accomplished, or that your life experience has taught you something that can somehow trump what I and many others are saying.

You are pompous, delusional, and by all measurements your "experiences" has stagnated you in wisdom so as to never surpass a rebellious 20-something that's unwilling to hear they don't know everything about the world or themselves.

(4) I would like to drive home that you've never done anything professionally or in leadership of consequence; yet you are more interested in arguing and defending yourself when you don't like what people have to say... rather than try and find something actionable. You're inability to see (or acknowledge) your own internal failures will likely mean you pass on your crippling debt and victimhood to whatever children you may have.

God bless you, woman. I truly, truly hope things change for you and you can go on to be successful. I'm out, no more replies from me. Not worth it.
thanks for your input bae 😘 enjoy your control fetish...
 
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