Are you a D.O. because..........

Discussion in 'Medical Students - DO' started by Wannabe Doc, Sep 30, 2000.

  1. Wannabe Doc

    Wannabe Doc Member

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    I have applied to about 12 D.O. schools and about 10 M. D. schools. I haven't heard from any yet, but its still early. I was just wondering? Did most of you'll apply to M.D. schools and then choose D.O. because you didn't get into M.D. schools. I am not implying that everyone is a D.O. school is not smart enough to get into a M.D. school. I was just wondering, because we have all heard the joke that every dentist just didn't get into medical school, and I was wondering if the same should be said about D.O.'s. Honestly, I like the D.O. philosophy and I will consider them very very seriously if I get in two both types. I just wanted to see what everyone else thought. Thanks very much.
    Khalid
     
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  3. pags

    pags Senior Member

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    Here's a little synopsis based on a true story....
    I graduated from college with a pre-med/bio BA in 1995 with a not so good GPA or MCAT score. My pre-med advisor basically told me to not waste my money applying that year, work somewhere in the health care industry for awhile, retake my MCAT's, and then apply the following year. So, I did. I worked as a NAsst, took the MCATs over with minimal improvement, applied to 17 MD schools, and recieved 0 interviews. Feeling discouraged, my advisor's words were, "Keep trying, kid". Ironically, I first was introduced to the DO philosophy by a MD surgeon that I'd worked with as a surgical technician. He suggested that it might be slightly easier for my acceptance and I'd still be practicing the same medicine I always wanted. So, the following year, I applied to about 10 DO schools and 7 MD schools. I had one interview at a DO school and was placed on the alternate list at that school. Hmmmmm, getting better now. Still discouraged, I decided to enter into a post-bacc program in Chicago for a 2 year medical physics degree, thinking that if I do well, it probably will help my chances. I applied again that same summer to only 10 DO schools. I did well in the med physics program, sent out my grades to all the DO schools I applied to, and recieved 4 interviews from which I was finally accepted to one. Hey!!! I'm finally here in medical school!

    No, I'm probably not the "ideal" osteopathic student that most osteopathic schools want. However, I must thank my school for seeing something in me that no other medical schools did. All I ever wanted to do was to become a physician (desire waned a bit in college for extracurricular reasons...), and I'm grateful for being given the opportunity to fulfill that desire. Some of you might say that I "settled" for an osteopathic school because allopathic schools didn't want a student with my credentials. And you know what, you're right. However, the truth is I still was accepted to an American medical school and eventually will be practicing medicine like everyone else. Getting into medical school, DO or MD, is not so much how "smart" you are, it's more or less how dedicated and how much you work for it in college. There are lots of very bright college students that have ideas of medicine, but at present their desire to work to their fullest potential is not currently evident for whatever reasons. Thus, their mediocre GPA's and MCAT's mask their true potential. This is a category where most medical school applicants fall into, which included me.

    However, my take home message is that if you keep trying and show that you are persistent in your dreams, in time, you will get what you want. I will be a physician, and a damn good one, too. He he.

     
  4. drusso

    Physician Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved

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    I was specifically interested in dual-degree programs when I was applying to medical school--DO/MPH and MD/MPH programs. I had prior experiences with DO's and new about osteopathic medicine, OMT, etc. I interviewed as an out-of-state student at TCOM in Fort Worth and liked the school and the dual degree program. The rest is history. The DO and MD degrees are just alternate routes to a career in medicine.

    True, osteopathic education may be more primary care focused, DO schools may attract more "non-traditional" applicants, and DO's may be underrepresented in some geographical regions, but except for those differences the quality of any medical education is directly proportional to the effort and dedication you put into it. Try to look at every school objectively and worry less about the kind of degree awarded and more about the overall "fit" between the school and the kind of physician you imagine yourself someday being.

    I have really enjoyed my medical education so far and look forward to being a DO.
     
  5. Henry

    Henry Senior Member

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    If you are over 30 years old, even with good grades and MCAT scores, MD schools will put your application in another pile where all the less qualified applicats are.

    However, in many DO schools, they actually appreciate your serious decision of seeking a second career as a physician.
     
  6. krazykat

    krazykat Junior Member

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    henry,

    just out of curiosity, why would an allopathic school put someones application in the less qualified candidate pile just because they are over thirty? I think many people who are over thirty are just as qualified if not more than those who may be younger!!!!!!
     
  7. docflanny

    docflanny Senior Member

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    Wannabe,

    I am currently a student at MSUCOM, the only school in the nation that has an MD and a DO medical school on the same campus. As a matter-of-fact, both schools have the same basic science classes and gross lab together the first year. The difference in our educations reflect our philosophies. My school, MSUCOM, has their students take courses in Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine from the first to sixth semester. Also, our schools have distinct classes regarding our ideas toward the Doctor Patient Relationship and Clinical Skills classes.

    Overall, the DO students take more credits before graduating than the MDs, mostly from the OMM classes. Some of my MD friends, have appreciated the difference in our curriculums and are envious that we will be taught palpatory skills at length in our OMM classes. Specifically, many of the MDs that are interested in Ortho would love to have the additional repetoire of using their hands to diagnose musculoskeletal problems.

    Becoming a D.O. was not on the forefront of my thought process going through undergrad, basically because I had no exposure to the profession. Being raised in MN, where there are very few D.O.s, the question of which branch of medicine I'd pursue was not raised. However, after realizing that there was another branch of medicine post-graduation, followed by rejections from many MD schools that I was well qualified for, my eyes were opened. I wish that I would have been better informed/exposed to the option during undergrad.

    The osteopathic profession is increasing its exposure, but it still has a way to go. I've found my classmates as a whole are more collaborative and less ego-driven than our counterparts. This is not to slam my MD classmates, but an observation nonetheless. Many of my MD classmates are very open and generous, but a pocket of them reminds me much of the very antisocial, gunner types from undergrad days. As a whole, I believe my school and Osteopathic schools in general, look for students with maturity and experience with working in the health care setting.

    If you are curious what my grades were like for comparison purposes: 3.75 BS in Bio and Spanish with a minor in Chem (in 4 years), MCAT avg. ~9.5, with many leadership experiences, and awards for volunteerism.

    It makes me question the priorities of allopathic ad. committees...I interviewed twice at U of MN, my home state, and was rejected solely because my MCAT avg was not 10+ (told by the Dean of Admissions). I was even told that I should consider pursuing college admissions as a profession. (nice huh? 4 years of hard work in the sciences to be told to go into a completely different discipline).

    If you're interested in the Osteopathic profession I'd suggest asking to shadow a D.O. and reading "D.O.s in America" by Norman Gevitz.

    Good luck in your decision. Choose a school that fits your personality.


    ------------------
    Matt Flannigan
    MSUCOM Class of 2004
     
  8. DrStacey69

    DrStacey69 Member

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    I agree with Pags 100%, and not just because he's a classmate! I also went DO mainly b/c I didn't want to re-take the MCAT for the 2 extra points that the SUNY schools wanted in order for me to be considered "suitable for admission". Mind you, my GPA was more than adequate and I was coming to them with a Master's degree from a top-level school; in addition, my grandmother passed away on the morning of the MCAT (yes, I mentioned this in my applications), but most schools couldn't care less. NYCOM was the only school that was willing to give me a chance and for that I will always be grateful. And I can say with certainty that the education you'll get at NYCOM is as good as what you'll get at many other schools - I have done rotations with students from NYU, St. George's, and Downstate and I have never felt inadequate. We receive the same license to practice medicine as students from the allopathic schools. A physician is a physician - so long as the pharmacy fills my prescriptions, I don't care if my degree is MD, DO, or FU. [​IMG]

    [This message has been edited by DrStacey69 (edited 10-09-2000).]

    [This message has been edited by DrStacey69 (edited 10-09-2000).]
     

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