Army Vet, should I give up? Current GPA vs Cumulative GPA

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Crimson16

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Let me get straight down to business. I am currently in the Army on active duty and will be getting out early next year and am planning on going back to school. Before joining the Army, I attended a major big state university and was enrolled for about 3 years. Officially I was a Philosophy and Political Science major but in practice I was more of an interdisciplinary studies major as I didn't know what I wanted to do and changed or added majors and minors too many times to count. I was heavily involved in student life and worked pretty much full time the entire time I was there as well. In addition, while I was there I had a lot of serious medical and personal crisis' that culminated in me eventually having a breakdown, losing my scholarship, and being academically dismissed. So my current stats are pathetic. About a 2.1 CUM GPA with about 60 something credit hours. However I am in negotiations with my old school to backdate a withdrawal for my last semester which would bring me up to a 2.53 with the same number of credit hours. My current science GPA is also pretty bad but the only science courses I undertook where fresh chem, fresh bio, and college algebra. C's in all. It goes without saying that I didn't try all that hard academically and was pretty distracted and that was before dealing with my personal crises. Those stats are not at all indicative of my true potential.

Ok. Now for the future. After a 3 year absence (in reality more of a 4 year since my last year of school was spent mostly in and out of hospitals) I am planning on going back to school full time next fall and my driving academic focus is to become a doctor. What would be the best route for doing so? I've run the numbers and I know I have a tall order in terms of raising my CUM GPA (in theory the best I could do in 2 years is 2.9/3.0, 4 years 3.3/3.4). But in theory, that along with a very strong MCAT and addition to being a URM and Veteran, would I have a decent shot at U.S. Allopathic medical schools? Also, given my circumstances, would it be better to knock out my undergrad in 2 years and then go to post bacc or masters program and then apply or just drag out my undergrad to boost my gpa and then apply? I greatly appreciate your help.

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Nasrudin

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Let me get straight down to business. I am currently in the Army on active duty and will be getting out early next year and am planning on going back to school. Before joining the Army, I attended a major big state university and was enrolled for about 3 years. Officially I was a Philosophy and Political Science major but in practice I was more of an interdisciplinary studies major as I didn't know what I wanted to do and changed or added majors and minors too many times to count. I was heavily involved in student life and worked pretty much full time the entire time I was there as well. In addition, while I was there I had a lot of serious medical and personal crisis' that culminated in me eventually having a breakdown, losing my scholarship, and being academically dismissed. So my current stats are pathetic. About a 2.1 CUM GPA with about 60 something credit hours. However I am in negotiations with my old school to backdate a withdrawal for my last semester which would bring me up to a 2.53 with the same number of credit hours. My current science GPA is also pretty bad but the only science courses I undertook where fresh chem, fresh bio, and college algebra. C's in all. It goes without saying that I didn't try all that hard academically and was pretty distracted and that was before dealing with my personal crises. Those stats are not at all indicative of my true potential.

Ok. Now for the future. After a 3 year absence (in reality more of a 4 year since my last year of school was spent mostly in and out of hospitals) I am planning on going back to school full time next fall and my driving academic focus is to become a doctor. What would be the best route for doing so? I've run the numbers and I know I have a tall order in terms of raising my CUM GPA (in theory the best I could do in 2 years is 2.9/3.0, 4 years 3.3/3.4). But in theory, that along with a very strong MCAT and addition to being a URM and Veteran, would I have a decent shot at U.S. Allopathic medical schools? Also, given my circumstances, would it be better to knock out my undergrad in 2 years and then go to post bacc or masters program and then apply or just drag out my undergrad to boost my gpa and then apply? I greatly appreciate your help.

A 3.3-3.4 with all of your other factors thrown in puts you in the running. A 3.2 or below so makes for more of a scrappy sort of lucky. You can potentially give them a compelling narrative. And that could move you into contention. But not without proving them that you won't fail out. They have to see that you can survive the medical curriculum. If you give them a recent tour de force in science. And do well enough on the MCAT. You'll be looking pretty good.

Keep in mind. These conversations are highly subjective. If you want to do it. Go for it. I think you can make it. This with the understanding that your current gpa has a low credit volume and is still mobile.

Note: There are also expensive last ditch efforts to get in. See the postbac forum and Drmidlife. I'm not in favor of such programs but acknowledge there usefulness for certain extremely determined candidates.
 
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zebalong

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Let me get straight down to business. I am currently in the Army on active duty and will be getting out early next year and am planning on going back to school. Before joining the Army, I attended a major big state university and was enrolled for about 3 years. Officially I was a Philosophy and Political Science major but in practice I was more of an interdisciplinary studies major as I didn't know what I wanted to do and changed or added majors and minors too many times to count. I was heavily involved in student life and worked pretty much full time the entire time I was there as well. In addition, while I was there I had a lot of serious medical and personal crisis' that culminated in me eventually having a breakdown, losing my scholarship, and being academically dismissed. So my current stats are pathetic. About a 2.1 CUM GPA with about 60 something credit hours. However I am in negotiations with my old school to backdate a withdrawal for my last semester which would bring me up to a 2.53 with the same number of credit hours. My current science GPA is also pretty bad but the only science courses I undertook where fresh chem, fresh bio, and college algebra. C's in all. It goes without saying that I didn't try all that hard academically and was pretty distracted and that was before dealing with my personal crises. Those stats are not at all indicative of my true potential.

Ok. Now for the future. After a 3 year absence (in reality more of a 4 year since my last year of school was spent mostly in and out of hospitals) I am planning on going back to school full time next fall and my driving academic focus is to become a doctor. What would be the best route for doing so? I've run the numbers and I know I have a tall order in terms of raising my CUM GPA (in theory the best I could do in 2 years is 2.9/3.0, 4 years 3.3/3.4). But in theory, that along with a very strong MCAT and addition to being a URM and Veteran, would I have a decent shot at U.S. Allopathic medical schools? Also, given my circumstances, would it be better to knock out my undergrad in 2 years and then go to post bacc or masters program and then apply or just drag out my undergrad to boost my gpa and then apply? I greatly appreciate your help.

Having a non-trad back ground (serving in the military) and being a URM is very helpful. If you really can do well on the MCAT like your plan says (34 or greater) then I'd think you'd have a decent shot at allo if you can pull a 3.9ish for the next two to three years even if your cum gpa is only around 3.2ish.

The MCAT is tough for people who aren't good standardized test takers though so assuming you can nail the MCAT is a hard assumption to make unless you've score REALLY well on standardized tests.

I say you have a good shot if everything goes according to plan for a couple of reasons - most importantly you are a URM - if you weren't this road would be a lot tougher. Also 1.) you've done something in between your bad academic track record and your new classes. 2.) if you prove you can rock your classes for the next 2-3 years i think most admissions committee would feel comfortable in assuming you're capable and academically "reformed". and 3.) A lot of schools are willing to overlook certain areas such as a bad gpa for a URM IF everything else is in line - EC's, MCAT, a good story ect...

Do really well your next couple of years (a aim for a 4.0 ), and try and add in research, volunteer - the normal stuff. and kill that MCAT - then apply. If you've done it right I think you might do well. good luck!
 
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UpwardTrend

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Have you looked into Osteopathic? I was in a similar situation, only a worse initial gpa with even more hours. You have a better shot at DO than MD. Any poor grades that aren't cleaned up with your retroactive withdrawal could be retaken on the DO route. I'm just saying that the DO route would be easier for your situation and could spare you from having to take an SMP.
If you end up with a mostly 4.0 this time around and a 30+ MCAT then you most likely have a decent shot at MD. If you don't get right in with those new stats then an SMP would probably get you right in. That would mean you need to drag out 3 years to get 3.3-3.4 cgpa and take another year in Masters. This is all assuming that you will ace all your classes. With your current 2.0 in approx 13 BCPM hours, if you got a 4.0 in 40 more BCPM hours then you would be at a 3.5 BCPM.
 

Crimson16

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Thanks a lot for the info. I feel much more confident now. My mentality now is that if I can make it through being a combat Infantryman in the Army, I can certainly make it through the trials and tribulations of college and the med school admissions process.
 

sirenomelia

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LupaCupcake

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if we really said "yes, give up" would you do it?
If your answer to that is a yes then med school is not for you.

If your answer is no then that is your answer.

Increase your GPA, show them your positive trend increase. Do good on mcats and push forward.
 
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