chemdoctor

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Hello everyone,

I was wondering how to proceed. I will be taking my MCAT in June, and my school requires a minimum 500 MCAT for a committee letter interview. By taking in June, I will have the score by July, and the GPA requirement is a 3.5. Is it considered late?

My plan was to submit transcripts for verification at the end of May, submit to a throwaway school in June to get verified, and prewrite secondaries and submit to more schools once I get my MCAT back. But is it OK to submit the committee letter so late?

Also, could I "get by" without a committee letter since I'm "nontrad"? I have to calculate my final GPA, so if I am below a 3.5, and they refuse me one, what do I do?
 

Goro

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Hello everyone,

I was wondering how to proceed. I will be taking my MCAT in June, and my school requires a minimum 500 MCAT for a committee letter interview. By taking in June, I will have the score by July, and the GPA requirement is a 3.5. Is it considered late?

My plan was to submit transcripts for verification at the end of May, submit to a throwaway school in June to get verified, and prewrite secondaries and submit to more schools once I get my MCAT back. But is it OK to submit the committee letter so late?

Also, could I "get by" without a committee letter since I'm "nontrad"? I have to calculate my final GPA, so if I am below a 3.5, and they refuse me one, what do I do?
No, that's not late.

Do NOT take the exam until you are 100% ready.

And yes, you can get by without a committee LOR. Some med schools, which are used to them/like them, may ask why you don't have one.
 
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chemdoctor

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No, that's not late.

Do NOT take the exam until you are 100% ready.

And yes, you can get by without a committee LOR. Some med schools, which are used to them/like them, may ask why you don't have one.

Thanks Goro!! Doing better on my practice exams as we speak and will be taking a prep course soon ^-^

If they ask why, do I explain that it's because the school didn't want to write me one because of my GPA?

Also, I think I'll have my LOR writers submit letters to the school, and submit them to AMCAS/AACOMAS so I can decide, come July, which one to use. Do you think this is a good idea?
 

Goro

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Thanks Goro!! Doing better on my practice exams as we speak and will be taking a prep course soon ^-^

If they ask why, do I explain that it's because the school didn't want to write me one because of my GPA?

Also, I think I'll have my LOR writers submit letters to the school, and submit them to AMCAS/AACOMAS so I can decide, come July, which one to use. Do you think this is a good idea?
The truth is always the best explanation
 
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gonnif

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Hello everyone,

I was wondering how to proceed. I will be taking my MCAT in June, and my school requires a minimum 500 MCAT for a committee letter interview. By taking in June, I will have the score by July, and the GPA requirement is a 3.5. Is it considered late?

My plan was to submit transcripts for verification at the end of May, submit to a throwaway school in June to get verified, and prewrite secondaries and submit to more schools once I get my MCAT back. But is it OK to submit the committee letter so late?

Also, could I "get by" without a committee letter since I'm "nontrad"? I have to calculate my final GPA, so if I am below a 3.5, and they refuse me one, what do I do?
1) People go freaking nuts over letters and the dates. If the letter gets to a medical school by Sept 1 you are early/on time. That is "lateness" will have no impact on chances.
2) so you are going to write and polish and AMCAS, prewrite secondaries, and study for MCAT all at the same time?
3) even if you submit to throwaway. AMCAS has to be highly polished as it the only chance you get
4) well if they refuse you a committee letter, you can either not apply to medical school or use individual letters
 
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chemdoctor

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1) People go freaking nuts over letters and the dates. If the letter gets to a medical school by Sept 1 you are early/on time. That is "lateness" will have no impact on chances.
2) so you are going to write and polish and AMCAS, prewrite secondaries, and study for MCAT all at the same time?
3) even if you submit to throwaway. AMCAS has to be highly polished as it the only chance you get
4) well if they refuse you a committee letter, you can either not apply to medical school or use individual letters

1) that is not what I was asking about
2) Been studying for the MCAT since last December, taking consistent practice exams, etc.
3) I was asking about if the school refuses me a letter... How would I spin that in a positive light, when its a negative when some schools will undoubtedly ask why I don't have one?
 
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1) that is not what I was asking about
2) Been studying for the MCAT since last December, taking consistent practice exams, etc.
3) I was asking about if the school refuses me a letter... How would I spin that in a positive light, when its a negative when some schools will undoubtedly ask why I don't have one?
I don’t understand what you mean by trying to spin it in a positive light? If the school has a policy that they won’t write committee letters for people with less than a 3.5 GPA, and you have less than a 3.5 GPA, and a medical school asks why you don’t have a committee letter, you say “my school has a policy that they don’t write committee letters for students with less than a 3.5 GPA”.
 
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chemdoctor

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I don’t understand what you mean by trying to spin it in a positive light? If the school has a policy that they won’t write committee letters for people with less than a 3.5 GPA, and you have less than a 3.5 GPA, and a medical school asks why you don’t have a committee letter, you say “my school has a policy that they don’t write committee letters for students with less than a 3.5 GPA”.

Makes sense. Thank you; I will do just that.
 

LizzyM

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You could get by as a non-trad with individual letters even if your undergrad institituion offers a committee letter. That said, if you have < 500 MCAT and < 3.5 GPA you will need something extraordinary to get any traction from MD schools as you would be seen as a higher risk student. Polish each portion of your application and don't short-change MCAT prep by also preparing your AMCAS application concurrently. Better to be late and be good than to be early but subpar.
 
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chemdoctor

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You could get by as a non-trad with individual letters even if your undergrad institituion offers a committee letter. That said, if you have < 500 MCAT and < 3.5 GPA you will need something extraordinary to get any traction from MD schools as you would be seen as a higher risk student. Polish each portion of your application and don't short-change MCAT prep by also preparing your AMCAS application concurrently. Better to be late and be good than to be early but subpar.

Thank you LizzyM! I double checked and I have over a 3.5, and my mcat practice exams have been well over 500. But my school said they may still deny someone a letter even if they meet these requirements... My school just seems picky.

Yes, I've been working on AMCAS for quite some time now.

How well could I get by as a nontrad? I didn't go to a big, "well known" school for undergrad, and graduated May 2020
 

LizzyM

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That's less non-trad than if you were in a profession for several years or had completed a post-bac after graduating with a degree in trumpet performance or something equally "non-traditional". Try for the letter. It makes everything easier.

P.S.: unsolicited advice. Do not worry about what might happen "if..." Compartmentalize, take one step at a time and let the future worry about the future. Don't waste bandwidth now on what you'll do or say IF your school doesn't give you a committee letter. The space in your head is too precious to let it be taken up with "what ifs".
 
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chemdoctor

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That's less non-trad than if you were in a profession for several years or had completed a post-bac after graduating with a degree in trumpet performance or something equally "non-traditional". Try for the letter. It makes everything easier.

Will definitely work on. Thanks LizzyM!!
 
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Asking for a pre-med friend....she has a super strong committee letter from school, has excellent ecs, but limited shadowing, however enormous amount of volunteer hours but does not have a professional letter of rec from a physician at this time. COVID has impacted her ability to form a recent, strong relationship through limited shadowing opportunities...how will this impact her application?
 

gonnif

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Asking for a pre-med friend....she has a super strong committee letter from school, has excellent ecs, but limited shadowing, however enormous amount of volunteer hours but does not have a professional letter of rec from a physician at this time. COVID has impacted her ability to form a recent, strong relationship through limited shadowing opportunities...how will this impact her application?
There is a strong belief/myth that applicants need a "professional" shadowing or clinical letter. The vast majority of medical schools do not require nor recommend one. Most shadowing letters are from extremely short-term experiences with a person who does not know the applicant. They have little impact on admissions committee. However, applicants do need shadowing experience from 25-75 hours preferably across a couple of specialties. I strongly recommend that applicants shadow where they can see patient-doctor interactions in office or clinical setting. Observing a surgeon and anesthesiologist with patients on the table isnt sufficient
 
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