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pdoa20

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Hi everyone, this is my first post on here and hope I can get some insight from everyone on here!

I’m about to graduate (in about a year) with a degree in Sociology and Spanish. Early last year I reflected upon what I really wanted to do and came to terms that I really wanted to pursue a dental career. Right now, I feel like it’s too late to try and finish my two bachelor’s degrees and also try to finish my pre-requisits needed to apply to a dental school. I feel like it’s too late for me to try to finish the pre-reqs, I honestly wouldn’t mind if it took me longer to graduate but I want to make sure that I’m a competitive applicant and for that, I don’t know if trying to finish off 2 majors and the pre-reqs would be a good choice.

I wanted to know if it’s possible to graduate and then go back to school to do my pre-reqs?
Because of my given situation I feel like it would be better for me to graduate and then go back to school afterwards but I was wondering if I could go back just to a Community College instead?

After I graduate, can I go to a CC and get my pre-reqs done there? Would I just have to do the pre-reqs or would I have to finish another major/minor (have to transfer to a 4 year uni)? I can’t seem to find much info online about this. I just wanted to know if it’s possible to do my pre-reqs after I graduate or if I should just take longer to graduate and try to finish them now?

Personally, I feel like I would be a better candidate if I “started over” instead of trying to cram everything right now. However, I don’t know if it’s possible for me to do so and how would I go about applying to school after I already graduated, I’m not really interested in a Master’s program, I’d rather do undergraduate school again or just take the pre-reqs (if it’s possible).

Does anyone have any input/advice on this? Has anyone ever gone through something similar? Does it seem unrealistic? Any input or advice would be greatly appreciated because I want to see if it is possible for me to accomplish it.

Thank you so much in advanced!

:)
 

pdoa20

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You have two options:

1) Start your prerequisites now in addition to your current degree plan(s)
2) Finish your degree(s), then pursue your prerequisites

Option #1 assumes you can handle the courseload and your university will allow you to take biology, chemistry, physics, or any other required courses that may fall outside your current program(s). Taking even one class (e.g. general chemistry) per semester, in addition to your current courses, will help you, especially if you're aiming to apply June 2016 to start with the class of 2021 at any school that might accept you.

Option #2 assumes you can't make Option #1 work. In this case, your best bet would be to stay with your current university (very few schools prefer community college work, but this is situation dependent). A lot of schools offer "pre-dental" programs that are designed to cover all the typical prerequisite coursework most schools prefer. You'd simply declare this "major" and complete as many required courses that are necessary based on your academic record. If your university does not have a "pre-dental" program, declare biology or chemistry - just make sure your school will allow you to work outside of that program if necessary. Again, you don't have to finish this program, you just need to finish the minimum prerequisite requirements.

One you apply to dental school, you'll have up through Spring-Summer semesters to complete your prerequisite coursework. Based on what you've shared here, it seems this is doable for you, so long as you take a full load and devote yourself to the cause. Keep in mind GPA and DAT scores are important, but you'll also want to ensure you gain 50-100 observation hours with a general dentist and/or varied specialists, and devote some free time to volunteering in your community. Your Spanish skills, and any other special skills or experiences you have, will certainly help you out.

I was in a similar situation and recently received two December 1 acceptances. My undergrad included a B.S. in Public Health, which didn't include the standard science pre-reqs. I pursued them via a combination of community college and university coursework, which I was able to accomplish over a 16 month period. That said, what you're wanting to do is completely possible, you just have to plan ahead and work hard. Best of luck!

Wow! Thank you so much for your input! It really gives me hope! In regards to the option 2 you talked about that would require me to go back to school after I graduate right? just so I can finish the pre-reqs? I’d be willing to do that! Thank you for your input! (and congrats on your acceptances!!!)
 
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