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Advice---is 19 too young?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - DO' started by kimber, Aug 10, 1999.

  1. kimber

    kimber New Member

    Jun 6, 1999
    Ada, OK u.s.a
    I would like a bit of advice concerning my situation. I am applying to only D.O. schools this fall, and I have an interesting situation. I am only 19 (which really should not matter), will have finished by B.S. in a total of two years after graduating High School (I graduated in May of 98). In May of 2000, I will graduate with a B.S. in Biology, minor in chemistry, gpa 4.00 all around, but have waited to take the August MCAT due to wanting to take my summer classes (physiology, physics II, and a Forensics class) for preparation. I volunteer at a free family clinic, volunteer at a hospital and blood bank, plus have research experience from working in a USDA-genetics lab and at an EPA research lab this summer. I have plenty of other activities like Habitat for Humanity that I am involved in, so I think I have all areas covered except for the MCAT. I have been studying for it and feel ready. I have the letters of rec. covered, so I am just curious as to what else I can do. Note: Due to taking the MCAT so late, I am only applying to D.O. schools I am seriously considering. So, basically what I am saying is, will my age even matter?
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  3. funkyrob

    funkyrob Junior Member

    Aug 3, 1999
    Oh Please. Do you have to ask? To top it off you'll probably score a perfect MCAT. Stop studying so much and live life a little, you're some traveling etc.. Don't rush it, drink a beer or something.
  4. rhillstr

    rhillstr Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 2, 1999
    Downer's Grove, IL
    Kimber's too young to drink a beer.

    Your concern is not going to be numbers (your age). It will be proving that you are mature. They will likely interview you and they will check your maturity there. Say something establishing your maturity level in your secondary essays/statements. It sounds to me like it is the only major red flag. Don't be shocked if they hold off on you this year. Take the time to travel and enjoy life you worked very hard for it. Then come back and try again. Travelling gives you some culture and schools like to see that too.
  5. Henry

    Henry Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Dec 30, 1998
    The level of your maturity maybe the main focus of the admissions. PROVE it to them you are ready. Your age has nothing to do with your competency. Just go for it and do your best.
  6. drhenderson

    drhenderson Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Jul 24, 1999
    Columbia, MO, USA
    Dr. Doogie:

    You'll do fine. Just remember to laugh a little.

  7. DocC

    DocC New Member

    Aug 12, 1999
    As they all have said, you will be judged if you're mature enough. Knowing doctors on the admissions committees at various schools, the criteria is how well rounded the person is, and would they want to be treated by them as a patient when they graduate. ALso, most states require you to be 21 to get a medical license. It takes four years to get through school.
  8. DrDASmith

    DrDASmith New Member

    Aug 12, 1999
    Atlanta, GA, USA
    Dear Kim,

    I have no doubt you will be accepted to medical school somewhere. However, what I believe, you most need to ask yourself is why you want to be a DO vs. an MD? Your reasons for wanting to be a DO should be more definitive than the fact that osteopathic schools have traditionally had more liberal policies for admitting "non-traditional" students.

    I entered the admissions process as a pre-med/international economics major. It has been my experience that the unusual works for you rather than against you,as long as it is just unusual. If you go over the edge to just plain "geeky" or "weird", you have gone too far. Have a little fun in school this year, get involved in debating or model United Nations or or student government or humanitarian organizations. Take the time to fill a leadership role in this capacity. It counts for a lot that you are a well-rounded/mature individual and have not just focused on getting into medical school to the exclusion of all else in life.

    Remember the MCAT is just one test and one variable in your admission process. While it is important, as long as you do reasonably well, it will be the complete picture of who you are that will make or break your admission to med school i.e. grades-science/nonscience, extracurriculars, honors/awards, research programs, summer programs etc. By the way the summer programs you participated in will be your biggest plus, be prepared to tak about them on your interviews!

    Best wishes,
    Debra A. Smith DO, MIHM, MIM
  9. prefontaine

    prefontaine Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Nov 27, 1998
    Northern Liberties
    Most students enter medical school straight out of high school. Of course I am referring to outside of the US. This is customary in the UK, asian countries, Australia, NZ, etc.

    According to stats from AAMC, applicants <20 years old have the highest acceptance rate of any age group.

    As far as will it matter...yes, it will probably help.

    In the mid '90's, a 17 year old GRADUATED from one of the NY medical schools and went on to an ophthalmology residency @Harvard.

    BTW, UMKC has a six year MD program for students matriculating out of HS.

    Anyway, it is a wellworn path for students of your age.

    [This message has been edited by prefontaine (edited August 14, 1999).]
  10. Paul's Boutique

    Paul's Boutique B====D 10+ Year Member

    Jul 18, 1999
    Pomona CA

    [This message has been edited by Paul's Boutique (edited August 17, 1999).]
  11. Paul's Boutique

    Paul's Boutique B====D 10+ Year Member

    Jul 18, 1999
    Pomona CA
    My honest opinion? Yes, 19 may be too young, but I don't know you, so I'm just floating this one out there...

    I found that my mid-to-late 20's were the years of greatest change for me. It would just be a shame to go through school and come out not liking it, or finding something else you'd like to do better...

    So who cares? Why should you take any advice from others? well... I can only describe my situation: I've sort of backed into medicine, after having had some "life experiences" (ha ha ha---the ubiquitous 'life experiences'!). I've worked a bit in research, have had some grad school, and the like. So, the thing that I have going for me is that I'll never wonder to myself "Hmmm.... I wonder if I'll be happier in research?", 'cause I've already done it. See what I'm saying? Sometimes there really is no substitute for personal experience, be that with work, school, or life.

    Whoopee... (stepping down of the soapbox) just do what your heart and mind tell you to, and enjoy the ride!

    [end of burst of hot air] [​IMG]

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