Bumbl3b33

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Hey guys,

I want your take on my current plan, which is to apply REALLY broadly (more on the lower-end) and hope to get a scholarship SOMEWHERE. Right now my list is at 35-44 schools and my hope is that, even if it costs me $15k to apply, if any school gives me even a $10k per year scholarship, I would end up in the black. My MCAT was 12PS 7VR and 10 BS (29R) and a 3.78 GPA, and I have some exceptional EC's---it's the EC's that make me believe I could get a scholarship.

Thoughts? Has anyone does this before?

Thanks in advance!
 

Anonymous01

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May 19, 2008
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Best of luck, but don't expect any scholarships with a 29. Most places offer merit-based scholarships to attract students to their schools over other schools that don't offer merit scholarships (Hopkins, Harvard, etc.). As much as I hate to say it, a 29 makes you not only a below average applicant, but definitely a below average matriculant assuming you get in anywhere. Because these scholarships are generally merit-based, as much as you think your ECs may help, I doubt you would even make the academic cutoff for consideration of these scholarships. Also, not to continue pointing out the issues with your plan, but a 3.78 with a 29 MCAT indicates grade inflation, further dampening your chances of a scholarship.

If I were you I would go with applying broadly and heavily to more lower and mid schools. Your ECs may be help you to get in, but I highly doubt they will do anything in terms of scholarships.
 

theseeker4

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I'm not sure how this adds up, looks like you'd be $5k in the red to me.

Medical school scholarships are few and far between and the few that do exist go to students with exceptional ECs and killer stats. You only have half of that equation. Save your money and apply broadly to 20-25 schools and be happy with an acceptance, especially with such an unbalanced MCAT.
He said 10K per year, vs a 1-time 15K expenditure....
 

LizzyM

the evil queen of numbers
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Consider that if you are fortunate enough to get interviews you will feel obligated to attend all of them until the point where you get an offer. This could become very stressful (and expensive) if you are running all over the place but holding nothing but waitlists. It is also very stressful to wait and wait for schools that will not notify you until May (if then) that they will not interview you as you will hope and hope for something that is not going to happen.

Merit scholarships are mostly a mechanism for schools to outbid other schools for applicants that they need to recruit either to increase racial and ethnic diversity at their school (something the accrediting body requires) or to increase their average MCAT/gpa so as to rise in the USNews rankings. Schools will seldom start a bidding war over ECs so don't count on scholarships on that basis.
 
OP
Bumbl3b33

Bumbl3b33

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Feb 12, 2011
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He said 10K per year, vs a 1-time 15K expenditure....
Yup!

So the reason I was thinking of doing this...even though I know it's anti-SDN thinking...a friend of mine who has a 31 MCAT got a 100k total scholarship (he did peace corps, that's it) to one of the best primary care focused institution in the country. I know this is n=1, but if he got it, i'm assuming others have too...(no need to argue this, I know it's not a statistically sound argument)

I worry about SDN disconnect with this 'WAMC' type comments...a friend of mine had a 3.8 GPA 29 MCAT (8vr, 10bs, 11ps) and gained acceptance to all instate schools and some out of state--the only school she got rejected from was a research powerhouse, and she didn't do any wild EC's either...sigh...so confusing!

All inputs are appreciated!
 
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I thought that generally, applying "broadly" meant 20-30 schools and realistically, 10-20 would be the norm. 35-44 seems way over the top to me.
 

theseeker4

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Yup!

So the reason I was thinking of doing this...even though I know it's anti-SDN thinking...a friend of mine who has a 31 MCAT got a 100k total scholarship (he did peace corps, that's it) to one of the best primary care focused institution in the country. I know this is n=1, but if he got it, i'm assuming others have too...(no need to argue this, I know it's not a statistically sound argument)

I worry about SDN disconnect with this 'WAMC' type comments...a friend of mine had a 3.8 GPA 29 MCAT (8vr, 10bs, 11ps) and gained acceptance to all instate schools and some out of state--the only school she got rejected from was a research powerhouse, and she didn't do any wild EC's either...sigh...so confusing!

All inputs are appreciated!
If you are dead-set on this, go for it. Know that you will most likely be wasting money applying to that many schools, with very little chance that you will get a scholarship.
 

Ebola4Breakfast

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Oct 31, 2011
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If you are dead-set on this, go for it. Know that you will most likely be wasting money applying to that many schools, with very little chance that you will get a scholarship.
+1; I had similarly low stats and some rare ECs, yet I haven't seen a penny in scholarship money. n=1, but it's something to consider. I honestly wish I had applied to less schools, especially those of the reach variety. If you're concerned about costs, your state school is a guaranteed lower cost venture (in most cases).
 

RedSox10

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Mar 9, 2010
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Yup!

So the reason I was thinking of doing this...even though I know it's anti-SDN thinking...a friend of mine who has a 31 MCAT got a 100k total scholarship (he did peace corps, that's it) to one of the best primary care focused institution in the country. I know this is n=1, but if he got it, i'm assuming others have too...(no need to argue this, I know it's not a statistically sound argument)

I worry about SDN disconnect with this 'WAMC' type comments...a friend of mine had a 3.8 GPA 29 MCAT (8vr, 10bs, 11ps) and gained acceptance to all instate schools and some out of state--the only school she got rejected from was a research powerhouse, and she didn't do any wild EC's either...sigh...so confusing!

All inputs are appreciated!
First, LizzzyM is right, schools are not going to give you a scholarship over EC's...

Second, know that a 29 is MUCH different that a 31 so your first example doesn't refer to you. Psychologically, anything in the 30s differs greatly than anything in the 20's. Your second example refers to state schools and some state schools have lower average MCATS/are willing to take lower than average MCAT scores from people with great ECs.

Overall, consider yourself lucky IF with a 29 and great EC's you get in. I have similar numbers and believe that's it my really unique EC's that got me multiple acceptances. Nowhere along the line did I ever assume I'd be given a penny of merit.
 

Rumalum

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Apr 28, 2012
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why the hell would you apply to 40 schools? just be normal and chose schools that are a fit for you and don't worry about money. If you get accepted, you're going to be a doctor. You'll be fine.
 
OP
Bumbl3b33

Bumbl3b33

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Overall, consider yourself lucky IF with a 29 and great EC's you get in. I have similar numbers and believe that's it my really unique EC's that got me multiple acceptances. Nowhere along the line did I ever assume I'd be given a penny of merit.
Where all did you apply/get in?
 

Narmerguy

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Jul 14, 2007
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Consider that if you are fortunate enough to get interviews you will feel obligated to attend all of them until the point where you get an offer. This could become very stressful (and expensive) if you are running all over the place but holding nothing but waitlists. It is also very stressful to wait and wait for schools that will not notify you until May (if then) that they will not interview you as you will hope and hope for something that is not going to happen.

Merit scholarships are mostly a mechanism for schools to outbid other schools for applicants that they need to recruit either to increase racial and ethnic diversity at their school (something the accrediting body requires) or to increase their average MCAT/gpa so as to rise in the USNews rankings. Schools will seldom start a bidding war over ECs so don't count on scholarships on that basis.
This is surprising. It seems to me that a lot of schools could fill their class with 3.9+ 37+ if they wanted. I don't understand why they'd go through such monetary lengths to get something as simple as that.
 

RedSox10

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This is surprising. It seems to me that a lot of schools could fill their class with 3.9+ 37+ if they wanted. I don't understand why they'd go through such monetary lengths to get something as simple as that.
I'm not quite sure ALL med schools could fill their classes with all 3.9+ and 37+'s...Maybe it appears that way on SDN, but SDN applicants typically have much higher numbers than the average. Maybe Harvard could, but even a top 10 like UChicago, Michigan, Pitt, etc has to incentivize its best students to choose them over Harvard, etc.
 

phltz

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May 13, 2010
889
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Hey guys,

I want your take on my current plan, which is to apply REALLY broadly (more on the lower-end) and hope to get a scholarship SOMEWHERE. Right now my list is at 35-44 schools and my hope is that, even if it costs me $15k to apply, if any school gives me even a $10k per year scholarship, I would end up in the black. My MCAT was 12PS 7VR and 10 BS (29R) and a 3.78 GPA, and I have some exceptional EC's---it's the EC's that make me believe I could get a scholarship.

Thoughts? Has anyone does this before?

Thanks in advance!
The "lower end" doesn't necessarily have the big endowments necessary to throw big bucks at their students.
 

RedSox10

5+ Year Member
Mar 9, 2010
417
2
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The "lower end" doesn't necessarily have the big endowments necessary to throw big bucks at their students.
Agreed. As posted above, with similar stats I got into a bunch of "lower" end/ middle tier schools, top 40-60 which dont have a lot of (if any) money to give you.
 

Narmerguy

Moderator Emeritus
10+ Year Member
Jul 14, 2007
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I'm not quite sure ALL med schools could fill their classes with all 3.9+ and 37+'s...Maybe it appears that way on SDN, but SDN applicants typically have much higher numbers than the average. Maybe Harvard could, but even a top 10 like UChicago, Michigan, Pitt, etc has to incentivize its best students to choose them over Harvard, etc.
Harvard rejects plenty of students with nothing but grades and MCAT scores (no leadership, research, EC's, etc). These students have to go somewhere. If a school just wanted some high MCAT/GPA, I always thought they could get them. Regardless of SDN, there are many hundreds of students that take the MCAT and get over a 37 every year. To be honest, I don't even see that many incredible MCAT/GPA combinations on MCAT. I've seen probably a dozen each year. Maybe they're all hiding in the school specific threads.

It makes sense to me that a school would have to throw money at someone with high MCAT/GPA and that has other attributes that makes their application exciting. However, a vanilla student with a 40, a 3.95, and a couple ECs and nothing else? Schools would pay for that?
 

RedSox10

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Mar 9, 2010
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Harvard rejects plenty of students with nothing but grades and MCAT scores (no leadership, research, EC's, etc). These students have to go somewhere. If a school just wanted some high MCAT/GPA, I always thought they could get them. Regardless of SDN, there are many hundreds of students that take the MCAT and get over a 37 every year. To be honest, I don't even see that many incredible MCAT/GPA combinations on MCAT. I've seen probably a dozen each year. Maybe they're all hiding in the school specific threads.

It makes sense to me that a school would have to throw money at someone with high MCAT/GPA and that has other attributes that makes their application exciting. However, a vanilla student with a 40, a 3.95, and a couple ECs and nothing else? Schools would pay for that?
I think WashU would pay for that, Harvard probably doesnt need to. But yea, I know someone with a 32 who got into Harvard (not URM), so surely ECs do matter, but as a whole, take a look at who's getting scholarships on this forum and on mdapps and its predominantly 37+ people (maybe even 40+ people).....Either way, id agree as a whole Good MCAT + Good GPA + Good EC's will lead to the best chance at a scholarship