levelsands

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Hi All,

I'm a Canadian student with a cGPA of 3.95 (if it makes any difference I've received ~20A+s over the past 30 courses), sGPA of 3.92 and an 2015 MCAT of 520 (129/132/130/129). I previously wrote the old MCAT, but only needed the VR section so didn't prep for the others and received a score in the low 30s, not sure if that affects my application at all. I was hoping to get some advice regarding whether I should bother applying to top 5 U.S. Medical Schools (I'm limiting it to this selection as I would rather go to UofT if it isn't one of these schools due to cost).

Here are my extracurriculars:
-2000 hours of clinical and basic science research yielding several manuscripts, with one first author publication in the leading journal in my field of research (IF ~15).
-approx. $48,000 dollars in research grants, research studentships and research awards
-approx. $20,000 dollars in academic scholarships (not a ton, but this is the equivalent of a full ride where I live)
-150 hours shadowing in the hospital, scrubbed up for many procedures and operations, rounding, etc. (not much, but shadowing isn't typically done in Canada)
-100 hours clinic shadowing
-100 hours palliative care volunteering
-Volunteer chair of regional branch of large health related NPO
-several on campus club exec positions
-300 hours working as a speaker and advocate for a large health related NPO
-100 hours tutoring disadvantaged children with learning disabilities
-multiple awards in debate and oratory
-leadership development conferences, facilitator of support group, etc.

Would appreciate input on where to apply, or to even bother applying at all. Knowing whether scholarships would be on the table is also something I'd love to hear about as I wouldn't qualify for any financial aid.
 
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gonnif

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Hi All,

I'm a Canadian student with a cGPA of 3.95 (if it makes any difference I've received ~20A+s over the past 30 courses), sGPA of 3.92 and an 2015 MCAT of 520 (129/132/130/129). I previously wrote the old MCAT, but only needed the VR section so didn't prep for the others and received a score in the low 30s, not sure if that affects my application at all. I was hoping to get some advice regarding whether I should bother applying to top 5 U.S. Medical Schools (I'm limiting it to this selection as I would rather go to UofT if it isn't one of these schools due to cost).

Here are my extracurriculars:
-2000 hours of clinical and basic science research yielding several manuscripts, with one first author publication in the leading journal in my field of research (IF ~15).
-approx. $48,000 dollars in research grants, research studentships and research awards
-approx. $20,000 dollars in academic scholarships (not a ton, but this is the equivalent of a full ride where I live)
-150 hours shadowing in the hospital, scrubbed up for many procedures and operations, rounding, etc. (not much, but shadowing isn't typically done in Canada)
-100 hours clinic shadowing
-100 hours palliative care volunteering
-Volunteer chair of regional branch of large health related NPO
-several on campus club exec positions
-300 hours working as a speaker and advocate for a large health related NPO
-100 hours tutoring disadvantaged children with learning disabilities
-multiple awards in debate and oratory
-leadership development conferences, facilitator of support group, etc.

Would appreciate input on where to apply, or to even bother applying at all. Knowing whether scholarships would be on the table is also something I'd love to hear about as I wouldn't qualify for any financial aide.
Excellent Candidate who is limiting him/herself to

1) Top 5 school only
2) A Canadian/International applicant
3) very, very (ridiculously) late for beginning the process.
(not too mention scholarships are very, very unlikely)

Frankly I would say 3 strikes and you are out. Chances are so slim it would be silly to waste time and money this year to do so. If you really want to, wait until next year
 

NotASerialKiller

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Obviously a great application but have you not submitted your primary yet? Being international is already a set-back so I think you'd want to just apply next year. I take it you're applying to Canadian schools this cycle as well?

edit: Oh I didn't see you said only top 5 thought you were wondering what to add. Yeah don't bother, try next year if you don't get in in Ontario

edit: Also wondering why you're saying "UofT" instead of "a Canadian med school".
 
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levelsands

levelsands

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Apr 21, 2015
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Medical Student
Excellent Candidate who is limiting him/herself to

1) Top 5 school only
2) A Canadian/International applicant
3) very, very (ridiculously) late for beginning the process.
(not too mention scholarships are very, very unlikely)

Frankly I would say 3 strikes and you are out. Chances are so slim it would be silly to waste time and money this year to do so. If you really want to, wait until next year
Thanks for the reply! Does being Canadian/applying late hurt me at private schools without rolling admissions like Harvard? I should also state that I've finished my Canadian apps, so have all my references and general essays completed.
 
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levelsands

levelsands

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Obviously a great application but have you not submitted your primary yet? Being international is already a set-back so I think you'd want to just apply next year. I take it you're applying to Canadian schools this cycle as well?
I haven't submitted my primary yet, tbh don't really know how the U.S. app system works with primaries and secondaries. I will be applying to Canadian schools, so this is likely my only chance to apply to U.S. institutions.
 

Lawper

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I haven't submitted my primary yet, tbh don't really know how the U.S. app system works with primaries and secondaries. I will be applying to Canadian schools, so this is likely my only chance to apply to U.S. institutions.
Despite with your obviously strong application, even if you submit your primary sometime this week, you won't be verified until around October, so your application will be very very late for US medical schools, which by then started handing off acceptances (for rolling) or many interview invites (both rolling and non-rolling). You can squeak into a top US school by March, but at the risk of being waitlisted due to your late app. Probably not worth it at this point.

So focus mainly on Canada, and if need be, apply to US schools early on in June 2016.
 

NotASerialKiller

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I haven't submitted my primary yet, tbh don't really know how the U.S. app system works with primaries and secondaries. I will be applying to Canadian schools, so this is likely my only chance to apply to U.S. institutions.
You're setting yourself up for The Big Hurt. You're either way too cocky or just naive if you think you're guaranteed to get into any Canadian school, let alone one specific one (doesn't matter whether it's UofT or not). That's not how the system works. After a certain point it's a lottery, if you don't have something that is OUTRAGEOUSLY unique (olympic medalist, etc.) then you're far from guaranteed to get in. Your stats are good but not shocking. Also saying that you only want to apply to top 5 US schools speaks to your arrogance, I'd strongly advise you to change your attitude, whether you get in or not.
 
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gonnif

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Thanks for the reply! Does being Canadian/applying late hurt me at private schools without rolling admissions like Harvard? I should also state that I've finished my Canadian apps, so have all my references and general essays completed.
By the time you got your primary application submitted and verified, have secondaries in, be at the very bottom of 5,000-10,000 pile of applications to review, at the most competitive of medical schools, I think you'd have a snowball's chance in hell of making it. Save your money, increase your clinical hours, and work on next year. Else stay in the great white north for an acceptance this year

BTW, just because Harvard doesnt have rolling admissions, doesnt mean they havent been continuously culling the herd of applicants and keep the most likely candidates in a pile. Dont lose sight of how things actually work.
 
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levelsands

levelsands

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edit: Oh I didn't see you said only top 5 thought you were wondering what to add. Yeah don't bother, try next year if you don't get in in Ontario

edit: Also wondering why you're saying "UofT" instead of "a Canadian med school".
Disappointing to hear, but thank you for your input. Would I be a competitive applicant if I did end up applying earlier next year? As for why UofT specifically, I think it's on par with US medical just outside of the top 5.
 

NotASerialKiller

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As for why UofT specifically, I think it's on par with US medical just outside of the top 5.
Okay... now I'm thinking that you're just naive. Ranking Canadian schools is absurd. You should be looking at how the program works, even in the US the education you get is the same, the advantage of going to the higher ranked schools is that they're more research-heavy so there are more opportunities if that's what you're interested in.

You do NOT, ever ever ever ever ever assume that you will get into a specific school of your choice in Canada. Hell even in the US for "lower ranked" schools you can't guarantee that you'll get into your #1 choice. In Canada if you get in anywhere in a given year you thank your lucky stars. Never mind that there is literally no difference in your education/opportunities between the programs in Ontario, they are all absurdly competitive. Your application is good, but you are definitely not a rockstar applicant (your GPA is actually very slightly lower than the average of accepted applicants last year at UofT). No one who hasn't cured a major disease could possibly pre-select what school they're going to get into.
 
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levelsands

levelsands

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You're setting yourself up for The Big Hurt. You're either way too cocky or just naive if you think you're guaranteed to get into any Canadian school, let alone one specific one (doesn't matter whether it's UofT or not). That's not how the system works. After a certain point it's a lottery, if you don't have something that is OUTRAGEOUSLY unique (olympic medalist, etc.) then you're far from guaranteed to get in. Your stats are good but not shocking. Also saying that you only want to apply to top 5 US schools speaks to your arrogance, I'd strongly advise you to change your attitude, whether you get in or not.
I apologize if any of that came off as arrogant; it was not my intention. I should have said "a school like UofT" (I'd like to attend a school with a strong research program, like U of T, which happens to be my home institution; also provided U of T as reference since I didn't think most Americans were familiar with other Canadian schools). I stated interest in top 5 US schools as I would rather just go to a Canadian school for far cheaper if the US school doesn't offer a huge advantage in terms of joint degree programs or research opportunities. I don't harbor any illusions regarding gaining admission into any Canadian school I choose, but I do believe I have a fighting chance at gaining admission in a Canadian school.
 

NotASerialKiller

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I apologize if any of that came off as arrogant; it was not my intention. I should have said "a school like UofT" (I'd like to attend a school with a strong research program, like U of T, which happens to be my home institution; also provided U of T as reference since I didn't think most Americans were familiar with other Canadian schools). I stated interest in top 5 US schools as I would rather just go to a Canadian school for far cheaper if the US school doesn't offer a huge advantage in terms of joint degree programs or research opportunities. I don't harbor any illusions regarding gaining admission into any Canadian school I choose, but I do believe I have a fighting chance at gaining admission in a Canadian school.
Oh, well good then. Saying that you'd rather just go to UofT and you won't have a chance to apply next year because you'll already have gotten it reeeeeally made it sound like you don't know what you're in for. You're competitive, but a lot of competitive candidates don't get in.
 
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levelsands

levelsands

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Okay... now I'm thinking that you're just naive. Ranking Canadian schools is absurd. You should be looking at how the program works, even in the US the education you get is the same, the advantage of going to the higher ranked schools is that they're more research-heavy so there are more opportunities if that's what you're interested in.

You do NOT, ever ever ever ever ever assume that you will get into a specific school of your choice in Canada. Hell even in the US for "lower ranked" schools you can't guarantee that you'll get into your #1 choice. In Canada if you get in anywhere in a given year you thank your lucky stars. Never mind that there is literally no difference in your education/opportunities between the programs in Ontario, they are all absurdly competitive. Your application is good, but you are definitely not a rockstar applicant (your GPA is actually very slightly lower than the average of accepted applicants last year at UofT). No one who hasn't cured a major disease could possibly pre-select what school they're going to get into.
I think you're being unduly rude. I know rankings aren't accurate reflections of the education provided by the school; however, "top five" schools would encompass schools like Harvard, Johns Hopkins, Stanford, etc. which all have renowned research programs (for good reason) and allow for joint degrees in excellent graduate programs. Moreover, although this is besides the point, the average accepted candidate to UofT had a 3.94 weighted GPA, which would give me a 4.0 if applied to my application. There is no reason to aggressively put people down under the assumption of naivety.
 

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You're a rock star applicant. Puts me to absolute shame. Best of luck to you this cycle - both in the U.S. and Canada.

Edit: I'm in accordance with what @NotASerialKiller has told you. Humility is key - forget about the arrogance because that is a non-issue here on an anonymous messaging board (unless you actually want people to like you). You have to realize that, even with your stats, you may not get an interview and, if you do, may not end up gaining admission to a medical school. Personally, I think you're fine. But you just never know.
 
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NotASerialKiller

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I think you're being unduly rude. I know rankings aren't accurate reflections of the education provided by the school; however, "top five" schools would encompass schools like Harvard, Johns Hopkins, Stanford, etc. which all have renowned research programs (for good reason) and allow for joint degrees in excellent graduate programs. Moreover, although this is besides the point, the average accepted candidate to UofT had a 3.94 weighted GPA, which would give me a 4.0 if applied to my application. There is no reason to aggressively put people down under the assumption of naivety.
You've said several things that have indicated that you're assuming you're going to get in this cycle. Naivite or arrogance, take your pick. No one gets to assume that in Ontario, ever.

I'm responding curtly because you made a thread saying "So yeah I'm already going to get in where I want in Canada but should I apply late to the best 5 schools in your country?". Obnoxious and naive, plain and simple.
 
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levelsands

levelsands

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Can't help how you interpret a post, none of that was intended. I also happen to be an Alberta resident, and I only made that statement since statistically, I have a very reasonable chance of at gaining admission to the UofA or UofC if Ontario doesn't pan out.
 

NotASerialKiller

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Can't help how you interpret a post, none of that was intended. I also happen to be an Alberta resident, and I only made that statement since statistically, I have a very reasonable chance of at gaining admission to the UofA or UofC if Ontario doesn't pan out.
Haha oh man, so that means you were talking about UofT as an OOP applicant, I take back my remark about arrogance. I've said my piece, good luck, medicine needs more entitled kids like you.
 
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levelsands

levelsands

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Haha someone sounds bitter. Did you get rejected the previous few cycles from Ontario schools or something?
 

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Can we please stop making sweeping judgments on each others' characters based on only a handful of posts on an anonymous forum?

Good luck in Canada, OP.
 
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