Which undergrad will give me the best chance of going to an allopathic medical school?

  • Ohio State University

  • University of Toledo

  • Kalamazoo College

  • University of Findlay


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mahalopele

2+ Year Member
Nov 7, 2015
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Pre-Medical
Hi everyone

I currently attend the University of Findlay, which does not have a strong pre-med curriculum. I am looking to transfer to another university this upcoming spring. My options are Ohio State University, University of Toledo, and Kalamazoo College. Out of these options, which will provide the best chance of getting accepted to an allopathic medical school?

This is assuming GPA, extra-curriculars, MCAT, etc are the same. Are any of these schools more challenging academically? Do any of them provide better opportunities (in your opinion)?

Thanks!
 
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mahalopele

2+ Year Member
Nov 7, 2015
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Pre-Medical
What does that mean? UF has the bio, chem, etc classes that the other schools have for premed and STEM students.
They have the absolutely required courses, but they don't offer nearly as many research and shadowing opportunities in the life sciences for human medicine. Instead of focusing on human medicine, the majority of courses are based upon pre-veterinary medicine. For example, there are numerous electives for pre-veterinary medicine, but the only elective offered for human medicine is "Medical Terminology." While there are other biology courses offered, the overwhelming majority are geared toward pre-veterinary medicine instead.
 
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PreMedMissteps

The Great West Coast
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Jan 27, 2017
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but they don't offer nearly as many research and shadowing opportunities in the life sciences for human medicine

It's really not the school's job to offer shadowing opps. Those are usually for you to do on your own.. Few schools find/offer shadowing opps for their premeds.

Research opps may be more limited at your school, but transferring may not result in much more as you'll be an unknown and the other established students will have grabbed the opps.

What year are you now? Have you asked your current science profs if you can help them with any of their research projects?
 

PreMedMissteps

The Great West Coast
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Jan 27, 2017
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To tell you the truth, I had never heard of University of Findlay. So I went to the website, put "premed" in their search bar, and ...

Results

It looks like there is a premed club.

The school reports that it has an acceptance rate that's better than twice the national average. Have you seen any actual numbers? And are they including MD, DO, and int'l MD programs in their reported numbers?
UF pre-med graduates are more than two times as likely to be accepted into medical school compared to the national average
There's some quotes from a premed: "working in the lab with Dr. Lu and growing cells. It’s s really great hands-on experience. ".
So, it sounds like if you're ambitious and contact your profs, there's some that will welcome your help. Student Research

I'll be honest with you. I don't really like it when premeds transfer unless they have no choice (CC to a 4 year). You're going to need profs who know you and will write you LORs...that's more difficult when you're a transfer student. It will be harder for you to get research opps. You may not get very good aid if you transfer.
 
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mahalopele

2+ Year Member
Nov 7, 2015
21
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Status
Pre-Medical
PreMedMissteps,

I have also read the pre-med page on the UF website before. It failed to mention that only 5-12 people per year apply to a medical school, and the majority of them end up at an osteopathic medical school if they get accepted. My end goal is an allopathic medical school, which is why I'm looking to transfer. And while there are some research opportunities, there aren't very many within human medicine. I actually have performed research with Xu Lu in the past, but the experiment failed. UF has provided with some opportunities for research (which I'm incredibly grateful for), but I want to gain more opportunities and a potentially brighter future by transferring.

The schools I'm looking at offer better financial aid and stronger academics. Kalamazoo College offered far more research opportunities and better laboratory technology as well. University of Toledo offered an automatic interview with their medical school upon acceptance of admission into their program too.
 

WingedOx

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PreMedMissteps,

I have also read the pre-med page on the UF website before. It failed to mention that only 5-12 people per year apply to a medical school, and the majority of them end up at an osteopathic medical school if they get accepted. My end goal is an allopathic medical school, which is why I'm looking to transfer. And while there are some research opportunities, there aren't very many within human medicine. I actually have performed research with Xu Lu in the past, but the experiment failed. UF has provided with some opportunities for research (which I'm incredibly grateful for), but I want to gain more opportunities and a potentially brighter future by transferring.

The schools I'm looking at offer better financial aid and stronger academics. Kalamazoo College offered far more research opportunities and better laboratory technology as well. University of Toledo offered an automatic interview with their medical school upon acceptance of admission into their program too.
So I'm going to be blunt here, but it doesn't appear that you actually understand what's important in a "premed program" at a school.

Stuff like "better lab technology" really doesn't have anything to do with the quality of research or the quality of your application. Telling me that "the experiment failed" also shows me that you don't seem to understand research itself, and that's not really your school's fault.

Just because a biology course is something like Comparative Anatomy or Animal Physiology or whatnot doesn't make it a "pre-veterinary" course. Those are just the basic bio concept courses you're going to see at any undergraduate bio program. They teach you the building blocks of what you need to know for the MCAT.

I can understand OSU or UToledo, but you seemed to have pulled Kalamazoo College at random, particularly when your corner of the Midwest is full of other really really good liberal arts colleges. "K" is a great school but not sure how you chose them as opposed to Ohio Wesleyan, Ohio Northern, Albion, Earlham, College of Wooster, DePauw, etc.

If one of these schools is actually cheaper for you, then by all means, transfer, but otherwise I can't recommend transferring to you because you don't seem to have a good grasp on why you'd do so.
 

Gilakend

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Aug 24, 2012
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I go to one of those schools. You can PM me and ask me about it if you have a lot of questions.
 
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mahalopele

2+ Year Member
Nov 7, 2015
21
0
Status
Pre-Medical
So I'm going to be blunt here, but it doesn't appear that you actually understand what's important in a "premed program" at a school.

Stuff like "better lab technology" really doesn't have anything to do with the quality of research or the quality of your application. Telling me that "the experiment failed" also shows me that you don't seem to understand research itself, and that's not really your school's fault.

Just because a biology course is something like Comparative Anatomy or Animal Physiology or whatnot doesn't make it a "pre-veterinary" course. Those are just the basic bio concept courses you're going to see at any undergraduate bio program. They teach you the building blocks of what you need to know for the MCAT.

I can understand OSU or UToledo, but you seemed to have pulled Kalamazoo College at random, particularly when your corner of the Midwest is full of other really really good liberal arts colleges. "K" is a great school but not sure how you chose them as opposed to Ohio Wesleyan, Ohio Northern, Albion, Earlham, College of Wooster, DePauw, etc.

If one of these schools is actually cheaper for you, then by all means, transfer, but otherwise I can't recommend transferring to you because you don't seem to have a good grasp on why you'd do so.
The experiment failed due to contamination, causing cell death. After that happened for a second time, Xu Lu quit that experiment and wrote a grant proposal for an entirely different experiment (which he received).

I choose Kalamazoo College for its academics and reputation as an excellent pre-medical school. I realize that any courses pertaining to life science in general is excellent prep for the MCAT and medical school, but I also want the chance to focus primarily on the structures in human medicine. While I admit UF offers Microbio, Immuno, Genetics, etc., I hope to take more science classes like neurobiology, embryology, human nutrition, and pathology. UF unfortunately does not offer that chance. There are only four other pre-med students I know on campus, which is very small. I want to make connections with much more pre-med students, which I seemingly cannot do at UF. Kalamazoo also offered better financial aid and merit scholarships than Kenyon, College of Wooster, and Denison University. That's why I'm interested in transferring to Kalamazoo College in particular. And yes, they also offer far better technology than UF. Have you ever tried to count over three hundred cells by hand? Believe me, it's not fun ;) I'm also on a sports team, which I would be able to transfer onto for all three schools. This played a minor roll in my decision as well, since not many schools offer that particular sport.

Any other input from pre-meds, doctors, adcoms, etc., is greatly appreciated!! And thank you for your opinion, WingedOx and PreMedMissteps - I appreciate your honesty! If you have anything else to add, please let me know. Thanks!
 
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