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Medical Advice for an Applicant this Cycle

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I plan on applying this upcoming cycle and wanted a recommendation on how my time could be best spent. Here is a highlight of what my current application looks like:
GA Resident
GPA: 3.65
sGPA: 3.45
MCAT: 503
400 hours of Undergraduate Research
200 hours non-clinical volunteering
50 hours shadowing (General Surgery)
300 Hours paid tutoring
and will have about 1 year of full time paid work as a PCA in a hospital
I am currently accepted and plan on attending the MSPCS 1 Year Program at Mercer University this Fall.

I had originally planned on retaking the MCAT but I have found it hard to find the time to fully study with my full-time job. I was not planning on applying to many MD schools, primarily just Mercer and then DO schools. I know that Mercer tends to value people that fit their mission, which is why I was drawn there in the first place, and my shadowing hours are low and I have no clinical volunteer hours. Should I still try to lock down and retake the MCAT in mid-June or would I be better off tailoring my application in the other mentioned areas as my MCAT would be okay for most DO programs in my area and on the slightly lower end for Mercer. Also, if I were to only apply to Mercer would it make sense to do the early decision program?

Your shadowing hours are not low, but unfortunately they do not include a primary care doc, which if included would make a better case that you "fit the mission" of Mercer.

Considering your paid clinical employment, I don't feel you need clinical volunteering, though you are free to engage in some if you want a experience of a different patient base, eg hospice, inpatient dementia unit, pediatrics, etc.

As to the Mercer Early Decision issue, why not call the admissions office and ask if your stats would qualify you for consideration. And if you were rejected, which you wouldn't typically know before October, how disadvantaged would you be by belatedly entering the regular pool of applicants so late.

I'm not clear on why you plan to attend Mercer's MSPCS program during the same season that you plan to apply to med schools, considering it's a full academic year of studies, that admissions and waitlist decisions will have already taken place by the time your final transcript is ready to be sent out to med schools, and that your stats are fine as they are for DO med schools.
 
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I am currently pursuing an Internal Med physician to shadow, and I think that is what I meant when I said "low," I just need more in specific areas.
Also that is good to know that the paid clinical hours will be sufficient.

As for the MSPCS Program I was under the understanding that it would be looked good upon by programs (primarily Mercer) as well as an educational intro of sorts for myself, even though the transcripts would not be part of my application. This may be something I could ask in an email along with the question about early decision.
I'm glad to hear that shadowing an IM doc is in the works.

I'd predict that the MSPCS value will be judged by your success in the program, ie, the grades earned. If you want it to be worth the money, it would be best to refrain from applying until the following year. If you earn great grades, you could reasonably expand your application list to include more MD schools.
 
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I got in contact with them today. The lady I spoke to said that Mercer specifically looks at the applicant as a whole and how well they fit into the mission for the early decision program, and I gave her a bit of my info and she said that I would be a good applicant for ED. As for the Masters Program she said that the admission committee would be able to see and note that an applicant is attending the program, but like you said they would not have any substantial evidence (a transcript) to look at regarding the performance.
Does this information change your plan?
 

Goro

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I will definitely be applying Early Decision now, as for the Master's I still am not sure. I think I am going to contact some of the DO schools in my area that I plan on applying to and see their opinions on it to see if they will take it into consideration or not.
As of right now, I suggest:
Mercer
MCG
MCW
Loma Linda (only if you are SDA or a very devout Christian)
Loyola
Rosy Franklin
Uniformed Services University/Hebert (just be aware of the military service commitment)
Seton Hall
Any DO school. I can't recommend Touro-NY, Nova, Wm Carey, LUCOM, for different reasons. MSUCOM? Read up on Larry Nasser and you decide. LMU has an accreditation warning, which concerns me.
 
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