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comm. college courses as postbacc or give up?

Discussion in 'Nontraditional Students' started by seva86, Jun 16, 2008.

  1. seva86

    seva86 2+ Year Member

    Mar 21, 2008
    Hey everyone,

    I just graduated from a pretty good university with a Biopsychology major, but finished with a very low GPA of 2.7 (no point in explaining that). I was on the fence about medical school all four years because I didn't think I was really cut out for it. To be honest, I'm still not sure.

    Fortunately I was accepted into an MPH program and will be attending next Fall. In the meantime, I'll be taking a year off from school to work in the field. However, I've been calling both MD and DO schools about my chances of getting into medical school given my undergrad GPA and my hypothetically good graduate grades + MCAT. Most have said that I wouldn't have a chance. Granted, most MPH programs are not based in science but my particular concentration is (toxicology).

    In short, I feel screwed. I'm 100K in debt from undergrad and don't want to risk doing a post-bacc; that's more money wasted if I don't get into medical school. At least with a MPH, I'd have a degree to work with. So I'm wondering, would it be acceptable to retake the prereqs at a community college (a good one)? I called one medical school, and was told that CC courses taken post-grad would count in the post-bacc section of the AMCAS.

    If this is possible, then I plan to retake my courses (including labwork), complete my MPH, take the MCAT then apply to medical school. Would this work?

    I'm not sure if anyone has this issue or not. Perhaps this is the wrong forum alltogether:p
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  3. flip26

    flip26 2+ Year Member

    Dec 20, 2007
    Well, this is a toughie...why are you doing the MPH? You must realize that even if you ace it, it will not help you with med school admissions.

    An informal post bacc taken at a CC is the next lowest rung on the need to make straight As...and would be better doing a post bacc at a 4 year uni, all else being equal...if instead of your 2.7 you had a 3.8 from a Uni, and were looking to do a post bacc at a CC, I would say go right on and do it, but with your low GPA, you really need to PROVE your abilities to med schools, and a CC could hamper you in that goal.

    An SMP is your best bet. High risk, but very high return IF you make the grades (As)...seems like an SMP would be a better use of your time and $ than an MPH IF you think the MPH is going to help you with med school admissions (it won't)...only do the MPH because it furthers your non medical school career aspirations...
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2008
  4. seva86

    seva86 2+ Year Member

    Mar 21, 2008
    I initially wanted an MD/MPH dual degree. I didn't think I could get into the MPH but I scored well on the GRE and applied, so I'll be at Michigan next fall. I've been told time and time again that it won't help for medical school. So given that, I may just forget medical school =/
  5. gman33

    gman33 Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Aug 18, 2007
    MD is going to be a very tough, uphill battle.
    If you are interested in DO, you can retake classes and only the new grades would count. 1-2 years of retakes could significantly boost your stats (assumming you do MUCH better).

    An MPH will provide you with many career opportunities, but it will do next to nothing as far as increasing your chances at getting into med school.

    I'd spend the next year working and trying to figure out what you really want. Make sure you are truly committed to med school before you start pursuing it. :luck:
  6. Nasem

    Nasem 2+ Year Member

    Aug 30, 2006
    Lansing, MI
    well, you can do what many of us non-trads do...

    Work fulltime job and take parttime classes (in your case, it will be retakes)

    I totally agree with one of the posters above, you should defenetly take your post-bacc at a 4-year university instead of a Community college... but again, this is mostly an opinion.... there is no proven evidence that Community college courses are less looked upon than university level courses

    My situation is similar to yours.... I finished my undergrad degree in computer science w. minors in math in 2004.... overall GPA was 3.01.
    I started doing my post-bacc (parttime basis while keeping my fulltime job as a software engineer) in spring of 2007 @ MSU and since then, I took (for the first time ever), both general chemistries, both orgos, all thier labs, and scored a perfect 4.0 in all.... My current overall GPA is 3.14 (wheww, takes FOREVER to raise that GPA, and its still pretty damn low)

    Right now (summer 2008), I am taking my biology I at a community college, not because I didn't want to take it at MSU, but MSU NEVER offeres this course at a good time, so I was forced to take it at a CC (I am 100% medical schools will underestand my situation), after my biology is done, I'll going to hit MSU again with upper division sciences (like biochem, genetics, anatomy, immunology, etc etc)

    so my advice to you is, if you dont' want to be in further debt, get a fulltime job, work, payoff your classes as you take em (thats what I do)
  7. david594

    david594 The-OSU CVM c/o 2013 7+ Year Member

    Aug 20, 2007

    I would have to second this idea.

    I am in the same exact boat... graduated with a degree in CS in spring 07 with with a 3.02 GPA(rounding up).

    Working 2 jobs for a collective 40 hours a week and then fitting classes in where ever I can. Doing 8 - 13 credits during the normal semesters and summer and winter courses. We have a month long winter sessions where 1 grabbed one other course, and then another 2.5 courses this summer. Just a matter of fitting them in wherever its possible and finding work that will allow it.

    Managed to take 28 credits since graduating and will have finished up 9 more by the end of the summer. Its a long slow process and the GPA will never really recover. Only bright side is that you can at least salvage a decent BCMP.

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