Applying to med school with a pending green card application...

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Jan 26, 2017
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I'm a non-trad applicant with a bit of a complicated residency status. I am currently waiting for a response on my green-card application (which may take anywhere between 6 months-3 years). I want to gamble and submit my application in May, but I know that if I don't get an answer by October, my application will be incomplete. But I also don't want to wait for one more year as I have already waited for 2 years already.

Just as a background, I have already taken the new MCAT (508 - will be retaking in May), and have competitive GPA (3.8 for both science and non-science). I also have Committee Letter, LOR's from University Professors, Physicians I shadowed, and volunteer co-ordinators. I have worked for 3 years in an immunology research lab, and have a plenty volunteer clinical hours, including EMT.

Does anyone have similar experiences, or know how admissions would treat such a case?

I appreciate any comment or suggestion.

Thanks in advance

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Being a permanent resident dramatically improves your odds of acceptance. "Green card pending" does not. Immigration policy is unpredictable.
There are only 57 MD schools that consider internationals and most of them matriculate less than 3.
Do not apply until you have the strongest possible application. Do not re-take the MCAT unless you are confident of a much better score. All scores remain visible and a similar or worse score can have a chilling effect.
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I am currently waiting for a response on my green-card application (which may take anywhere between 6 months-3 years).
What's your priority date, category, and country of origin (if willing to provide)? That will determine if your gamble has a chance.

I don't think green cards take that long to get unless there are issues with your application.
It goes beyond that and all depends on category and country of origin. Look up priority dates for F1 for Mexico or F4 for Philippines, or EB2/3 for India.
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We're talking about green cards that have been processed from the US. Not F1, EB2 or F4(especially this one).

Even if OP was outside the US applying for a CR1 visa, it shouldn't take more than a year if married to US citizen or 2 years if married to a green card holder.
OK, I'll give you some of the F categories. However, disagree about EB2/3 (India and China). EB categories can be filed from within the US after being on H1B. I did this. China is now running Dec 2012 (4+ years) on EB2 and India is Jun 2008 (almost 7 years) on EB2.

I should know. I was able to file AoS on EB2 during my 9th year of H1B1 only because of the mistake INS made in releasing visa numbers and priority dates in Jun 2007. If not for that mistake, I would have waited another 3-4 years. Retrogression since then has probably gotten worse (only for oversubscribed countries such as China and India). I will grant that other countries are mostly fine. My co-workers from Uruguay and Turkey on the other hand only waited 6 months.
Dang! I don't know about EB2 but I do know about EB1 and that was quick!
These are different from family based especially when it comes to marrying a US citizen which is probably the easiest way to have it fast.

I wonder what your job was. The ones I know came as professors/researchers.
You are right, EB1 is current for all countries. You are also right about marrying a US citizen (and this can be done here in the US after being on a student visa, etc.)

EB1 can be fast but the barriers are also high - researchers can qualify if they have a PhD (minimum for professors?), publications, awards, etc. NIWs are also fast but have become harder to qualify as I understand. EB2 is your run of the mill master's degree or bachelor's degree with 5+ years work experience. I was that. I'm an environmental engineer (foreign BS, with MS from the US), licensed ChemE, working at a consulting firm that has mostly municipal clients in the water/wastewater treatment universe.

It should not have taken me this long, but my first attorney screwed up. Then my father passed away and I decided to try other avenues - Canada, Singapore, Oz, etc. Nothing came of it and then I found a better attorney and filed my I-140 in my 6th year of H1. Took another couple years before I was able to AoS due to the INS mistake.
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