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Any chance for a nontraditional student with a 3.0 undergrad GPA?

Discussion in 'What Are My Chances?' started by Iceali, Dec 30, 2008.

  1. Iceali

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    I have a Bachelors of General Studies from a Big Ten university with a 3.0 GPA and virtually no Science. I'm starting an MBA program soon with a Cal State campus. If I can get a 3.8 in my MBA, take Chem, Physics, and Bio at a community college, and get at least a 35 on my MCAT, would I have a chance at getting into an MD medical school? I'm settled down with my family in the LA area, so I'd love to go to UC Irvine, Loma Linda, UCLA, USC, the new UC Riverside program when it opens, or somewhere else within driving distance...

    I would be 40 years old by the time I apply with no clinical experience, although I do have some interesting life experience to talk about in an interview: I've made a feature film; I've worked as a fundraiser for a nonprofit; I've worked as a Network Engineer for a Fortune 500 company; and a few other nontraditional things which I've excelled at... and I always do very well in job interviews...

    Would I have any chance of getting into the kinds of medical schools I've listed here or any other ones for that matter?

    Or would I have to start over from scratch with a BS in a hard science with an outstanding GPA to prove myself first? In that case, should I do a BS instead of an MBA?

    I know I'm very nontraditional and have had a weird life, but I feel a strong calling to become a doctor and would be willing to do the necessary work that it takes to become one.
     
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  3. Mobius1985

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    Being an older nontraditional is in your favor as your undergrad GPA of 3.0 won't be held against you so much. But you must prove you can perform brilliantly in a science-intense curriculum. An MBA won't help you there so much. And without any basic sciences, I'm not sure you can get into science-based masters program right now.

    You could apply for a formal post-baccalaureate program (if there's one in your area) meant for someone with no science prerequisites. The advantage of such a program, which is expensive, would be the opportunities for shadowing, clinical experience, counseling, and research it would provide. For more information see: http://forums.studentdoctor.net/forumdisplay.php?f=71

    You could also apply to get a second bachelors degree at a local university. By majoring in a science, you could get all your prerequisites in, as well as upper-level science classes, without needing to qualify for graduation by taking non-essential classwork. If you achieve an A- average, you prove you are not the same person you were in your twenties, that you have the intellectual horsepower to do well in a science-intense environment like med school, you have access to research opportunities, and you can get the needed letters of recommendation. Taking prerequisites at a community college would not be a good idea, except maybe for a semester to get your feet wet, academically-speaking, as some schools don't want to see them on your transcript (California schools come to mind), and they tend to be less rigorous, so they don't prepare you as well to get a good score on the MCAT.

    Whatever path you choose, it's important to start some medically-related volunteering (3-4 hours/week is fine) as adcomms will want to see that you've tested the vocation and have some reason for being drawn to the profession. They'll also want to see some longevity in whatever activity you choose, showing prolonged dedication to the idea of being a doctor.
     
  4. Mobius1985

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  5. Iceali

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    Thank you for the great feedback and links Mobius1985 - much appreciated! I've got a lot of work ahead of me, but I'm sure it will be an exciting and rewarding journey.
     
  6. Nasem

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    Just to make you feel a little better....

    I graduated in 2004 with as a double major in Computer Science & math... Overall GPA was.... you guessed it, 3.01 (sounds familur?) and my BCMP science was a 3.15-ish.

    Now after doing a 2 year informal post-bacc where I applied @ MSU as a 2nd bachelor degree seeker in chemistry (the real goal here isn't to get a 2nd bachelors, but to get the necessary pre-med undergrad classes complete along with some upper level sciences as well).

    Today (after 2 years of 32-credit post-bacc while working fulltime, I managed to keep a straight 4.0), my overall GPA is now 3.19, my BCMP has jumped to about 3.55, and if the upcoming winter semester (17 credits of only upper level sciences) I end up doing well, that overall GPA is going to go over 3.2xx and my BCMP science is going to be around 3.6...... I know my numbers are still low, but at least I am showing an upward trend (and I hope to God they look at my more mature state today than how I was in my late teens / early 20s).

    However, because my numbers are lower than average still, this coming cycle, I am planning to apply broadly to about 35 schools (25 allopathic, and 10 osteopathic)....

    good luck to you
     
  7. FutureDrB

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    Don't worry, you're not alone...

    I'm currently retaking undergraduate courses in order to get my GPA up to a 3.0 so I can apply. Granted I have a graduate degree too and a lot of EC's, etc.

    I don't know why everyone thinks you need outrageous grades in order to get accepted. The admissions board looks at more than your grades.

    If you do your research you'll discover that have just as much chance getting in with a 3.0 as you do with a 3.8.

    Go look at all the people on the "MDapps" website who are accepted with GPA's way below 3.0.

    http://www.mdapplicants.com
     

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