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jsta2304

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So i will be applying in May 2018 and was wondering what I could do to improve my overall package while i still have a semester till the application opens. As of now I have a 3.2 GPA and plan on it going up this semester and next. I have over 100 shadowing hours. I have worked as a ful-time dental assistant for one full year. I don't have many volunteer hours, but plan on getting those within this winter break and spring semester. (any recommendations in places that are good to volunteeer at by the way??) I want to get at least 60 hours before May. I have been in 3 organizations as an active memeber and am currently VP of a dental shadowing program in an organization that I am in on campus and wil have done this for a year by the time i apply. I have mentored for a semester. Done undergraduate research for a semester. I plan on working with kids and have worked at a YMCA summer camp for 1 summer. Is there any recommendations on what else I could do? I know i dont have much time till i apply but what else can help? I want to stand out. I know I have a unique story, but i also know my package matters. Do those spring break medical/dental trips help? Any recommendations would be appreciated. Thanks guys and good luck to all.
 

Quinque

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I would focus on the volunteering then if you say that’s what you’re lacking
 

jsta2304

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I would focus on the volunteering then if you say that’s what you’re lacking
Is that it? I just feel like I have done enough. But thanks for your time!
Do you know of palces that dental schoos prefer you to volunteer at? I was thinking about doing a food bank.
 

Quinque

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Is that it? I just feel like I have done enough. But thanks for your time!
Do you know of palces that dental schoos prefer you to volunteer at? I was thinking about doing a food bank.

I think just volunteer in something you are passionate about. Quality over quantity in my opinion. I had 250 hours volunteering at a private practice (non observational) over 1.5years, and 35 hrs over a year volunteering at a nursing home. And minor one day events ~20hours. I ended up getting accepted to Texas a&m, UT Houston, UT San Antonio, nova, and WesternU

I was only asked about my private practice/nursing home volunteering (not one day events) so it seems they like/are interested in consistent volunteering you show a passion in. And I didn’t have crazy 500 hrs of non dental volunteering like others, and still got in, so I definitely think what you got out of it is more important than the number of hours.
 

WolfsBane

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Bring that GPA up as much as you can. With that GPA you need to kill the dat to be considered.
 

jsta2304

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Bring that GPA up as much as you can. With that GPA you need to kill the dat to be considered.
Since im applying in May does that mean that i only have till May to bring it up? Or will my summer classes also be considered?
 

caffeine jitters

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Since im applying in May does that mean that i only have till May to bring it up? Or will my summer classes also be considered?
Unless you're only applying to TMDSAS you will have to wait until June 1st to apply to AADSAS. Also, you can do an academic update from mid-November to February (Nov 2018 - Feb 2019) to showcase your continued improvements in GPA.
As far as improving the non-academic aspects of your app, I highly suggest improving upon your volunteering. It is already going to look somewhat questionable to adcoms that you got the majority of your volunteering hours within a few months; however, that is just the situation you're in so you gotta work with it.
As others have mentioned, look for something you will be able to have a passionate conversation about when adcoms ask you about these volunteering experiences. Ideally, see if you can obtain ~100 hours of dental-related volunteering and another ~100 from non-dental volunteering. Your leadership experiences are good. GPA needs to be improved upon and you MUST do well on your DAT.
 
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