currently applying, want 2 reapply in June..is that enough time to improve app?

happygirl

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hi everyone,
this has probably been addressed someone else, but i searched a bit and didnt find anything....so here i go.

I applied this year for the 2005 entering class. I have had 2 interviews, both of which I'm still waiting to hear back from. One of them was several months ago and still no news...so I'm thinking that things are looking pretty bad for me. So, of course, all I think about now is how to improve my application for next year. There are several things I would like to do, however, I dont think I can start on those things yet and committ myself because, although I doubt I'll get in this year, I still do have that small chance of getting in, so I dont want to get a research position and then just quit in 3 or 4 months.

BUT, I feel that if I dont get started now, when I do reapply in June (i want to get started early in the application process), there wont be too much substantial improvement in my application because June is a short 3 months away.

and i've thought about putting off applying for one more year. However, although my current application is not great and does need improvement, I dont think it is THAT bad (not tooting my own horn, obviously b/c I'm not getting accepted anywhere...but would just like some honest and fitting feedback), so I would rather not wait 2 years. but if it comes down to it, of course I would.

ahhhhh so worried/frustrated/confused

thanks for the input in advance =)
 

PTPoeny

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It depends on which parts of your application need to be revised. If your grades are the biggest problem, waiting a year will probably be best unless your grades from this past year (while you were applying) are better than earlier years and you can point to that as evidence of improvement.

If you think you need more clinical experience or volunteer hours start now and you will have something to talk about on your essays and you will be fine. You will have a significant amount of experience and stuff to talk about by the time you get to interviews.

If you think you need better lors, talk to different professors now and you should be fine for june. If your letter writers just got them in late (like mine first time around) just be more on top of things-this year I watched all my lor for one professor go in the mail myself.

So I guess, my opinion is figure out what the weak points of your application are, and an advisor can help, and that will determine if you can be ready by June.

good luck :)
 

crys20

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Yeah, give us your MCAT and GPAs if you don't mind; then people will have a better opinion on your situation. Don't feel bad, there are PLENTY of people around here who's applications "aren't that great". :)
 
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happygirl

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crys20 said:
Yeah, give us your MCAT and GPAs if you don't mind; then people will have a better opinion on your situation. Don't feel bad, there are PLENTY of people around here who's applications "aren't that great". :)
Thanks for the help guys.
MCAT-32
GPA - 3.7 But, I had one really bad semester because of personal reasons which definitely brought down my science GPA (3.4). But in my application, I try to explain the situation...should I go back and retake these classes? If I do, would I have to take it at a 4-year college/university as opposed to a local community college (just worried about the cost).

I have ECs (clinical experience, research, tutor, volunteer things), but they're not amazing, so thats what I was hoping to improve. And, honestly, I'm not too sure how my LORs are. I'm pretty sure that 2 of them are pretty good, but not sure about the others. I would like to get new LORs before I apply, but again, the whole 3 months thing doesn't seem to make that possible. And, Im out of school so can I still go back to profs for better LORs?

Thanks again! Much appreciated!
 

JohnBasedow

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How many schools did you apply to this time, and where did you interview at? Your numbers are definitely good enough to get into an MD school, so there has to be something more to your story (bad LORs and/or essays, applying to only Harvard, Yale, and Columbia, you're from CA, etc.) I bet if you applied to a few more schools w/ lower avg numbers, you'd get in with the same app.
 

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happygirl said:
Thanks for the help guys.
MCAT-32
GPA - 3.7 But, I had one really bad semester because of personal reasons which definitely brought down my science GPA (3.4). But in my application, I try to explain the situation...should I go back and retake these classes? If I do, would I have to take it at a 4-year college/university as opposed to a local community college (just worried about the cost).

I have ECs (clinical experience, research, tutor, volunteer things), but they're not amazing, so thats what I was hoping to improve. And, honestly, I'm not too sure how my LORs are. I'm pretty sure that 2 of them are pretty good, but not sure about the others. I would like to get new LORs before I apply, but again, the whole 3 months thing doesn't seem to make that possible. And, Im out of school so can I still go back to profs for better LORs?

Thanks again! Much appreciated!
If you don't get in, your best bet is probably to get in touch with one of the schools you unsuccessfully interviewed at and nicely ask the Dean what he would recommend you could do to improve your app for next year. He may candidly tell you what the flaw is (if any) and you can then target your efforts appropriately.
 

crys20

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Yeah, that seems super odd. Where and to how many schools did you apply? Did you apply late? Seems odd to me.
 
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happygirl

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crys20 said:
Yeah, that seems super odd. Where and to how many schools did you apply? Did you apply late? Seems odd to me.

I applied to about 20ish (meaning, actually completed the secondary), and I didnt even bother with schools like Harvard and WashU cuz I knew I had no chance. I'm from Cali, so I did all the Cali schools. I mean, I pretty much applied all over. I did apply to stretch schools like UCSF (they just rejected me after being in their hold category) and Northwestern but also applied to George Washington, NYMC, Temple (not bad schools by any means, just not ranked as high) among others.

Yeah, I definitely will call the dean of the school I'm most interested in, but I still just dont know what I will be able to accomplish in the next 3 months, even if I get started now (which I have), to drastically improve my application.
 

crys20

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Yeah, calling the dean is a good idea. I don't think you necessarily have to imprvoe your app DRASTICALLY, because it doesn't seem bad to me at all right now...More like some sort of a weird fluke that you didn't get in anywhere. I would think that things would go more smoothly the second time around.

Of course if you want the confidence of knowing you'll almost definately be going somewhere, apply to DO schools as well. Good luck, I know you'll do fine this cycle and that's assuming you still don't get in at the other school you interviewed at :)
 

JohnBasedow

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happygirl said:
I applied to about 20ish (meaning, actually completed the secondary), and I didnt even bother with schools like Harvard and WashU cuz I knew I had no chance. I'm from Cali, so I did all the Cali schools. I mean, I pretty much applied all over. I did apply to stretch schools like UCSF (they just rejected me after being in their hold category) and Northwestern but also applied to George Washington, NYMC, Temple (not bad schools by any means, just not ranked as high) among others.

Yeah, I definitely will call the dean of the school I'm most interested in, but I still just dont know what I will be able to accomplish in the next 3 months, even if I get started now (which I have), to drastically improve my application.
Yeah I knew you had to be from CA or something like that. Be sure to apply to Drexel, Albany, U Vermont, and Ros. Franklin next time, they like CA people a lot. I completed ~30 secondaries and ended up getting 12 interviews with a better mcat and worse GPA than you (so I guess we're about even stat-wise?). Also, getting those apps out as fast as possible while doing at least a decent job on them could help too.
 

UNOStudent01

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happygirl said:
Thanks for the help guys.
MCAT-32
GPA - 3.7 But, I had one really bad semester because of personal reasons which definitely brought down my science GPA (3.4). But in my application, I try to explain the situation...should I go back and retake these classes? If I do, would I have to take it at a 4-year college/university as opposed to a local community college (just worried about the cost).

I have ECs (clinical experience, research, tutor, volunteer things), but they're not amazing, so thats what I was hoping to improve. And, honestly, I'm not too sure how my LORs are. I'm pretty sure that 2 of them are pretty good, but not sure about the others. I would like to get new LORs before I apply, but again, the whole 3 months thing doesn't seem to make that possible. And, Im out of school so can I still go back to profs for better LORs?

Thanks again! Much appreciated!
Sounds like me - 31 MCAT, 3.7 gpa, research, phlebotomy, shaddowed multiple docs, tutored gifted underprivledged children for almost 3 years, starting a political organization of campus - I'm in the middle tier of the waitlist at my state school, looks like a little better than a 50/50 I get in - kind of at a loss at what I should do to improve my application if I don't get in...a little frusterating because I know of a lot of people that got into the state school with lesser scores/ECs
 

Scarletbegonias

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That's too bad and frustrating that you two were unsuccessful. I am in the same boat. I will be reapplying. And it will definately be as early as possible. That is one change I am making this year. I don't know how early you applied, but I do know that it can make a difference, as well as, calm fears much earlier in the year depending upon to what schools you apply and how they do their app processes. I think improving on ECs can definately be done in 3 months. You can also send update letters if more experiences come around after your app has been submitted. That is one of the things I am working on also because it never hurts to have more experience in that field. I don't know if you have graduated, or are graduating this spring, but another thing to look into is what you are going to be doing between now and med school. I'm hoping to find a job in an area that will also add to my EC experiences. I will have a psych BA, so I'm hoping to do some kind of social work or another. Another app area I am going to work on is my LORs. With the outcome of this app cycle, I am suspicious as to what my pre-med committee LOR said, as I know of a few people with worse stats get interviews at the same school to which I applied (they use a formula to do preliminary screening, so if those people reached the cut off, then I certainly did. My conclusion is that there must be something in an LOR or something that affected my app negatively, or I just didn't have the connections :) ). I will also be contacting deans of admissions and pre-med advisors to see what I need to change.
With all that being said, I do feel we re-applicants have some advantage to first time applicants in that we are more experienced with the application process. I now know more about the schools to which I would do well as an applicant. Therefore I have decided to apply to all DO. My other reason is that over the past year and through some experiences I have had, I developed a philosophy about medicine that is line with the osteopathic philosophy. That is, I feel it is a match for me (not to say that allopathic medical doctors can't achieve the same things that I feel are essential to treating patients) Anyway, we have our previous applications to refer to when filling out the standardized applications, which should make it go a lot faster.
 
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happygirl

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Scarletbegonias said:
Another app area I am going to work on is my LORs. With the outcome of this app cycle, I am suspicious as to what my pre-med committee LOR said, as I know of a few people with worse stats get interviews at the same school to which I applied (they use a formula to do preliminary screening, so if those people reached the cut off, then I certainly did. My conclusion is that there must be something in an LOR or something that affected my app negatively, or I just didn't have the connections :).
Yeah, I've been told by an med school interviewer that the committee letter is very very important. So much so that if you have a only "okay" letter, they won't even bother looking at your other letters. I'm worried about my committee letter too. My interviewer/commitee letter writer didn't even take any notes or really ask me any questions about me, so obviously the letter was just written off of what she read in my file and didnt add anything new to my application. Scarletbegonias, are you plannning on getting a new committee letter? Or are you just going to go without it? Do u think it will look bad if I choose not to have one and then have to explain why, even tho my school has a committee letter service, I chose not to use it?
 
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happygirl

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thanks everyone for the input thus far! much appreciated...and gluck to those feeling as frustrated as I am =) :luck:
 

Scarletbegonias

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I have to talk to the pre-med advisors about the committee letter to see if I have to sit at an interview again and have them write a new letter. I hope and I think that is the way things go, because hopefully I will be able to do a lot better from the experience with interviews that i have gained since the committee interview. I go to a rather large school where it's hard to establish rapport with faculty easily, so I don't really know three faculty members well enough to ask them to write a letter for me. If I did, the letter probably wouldn't be that great anyway.
Hmmm.... I don't really know if it will look bad for you to not use your committee. I do kind of think that they will have questions about that. You could explain that the committee letter is written by one person, (at my school four people interview and write the letter in collaboration; so it seems more equal to having three different professors write the letter) which you didn't feel reflected your qualifications for admission the way three separate faculty letters from your school did. I would definately ask some of the applicant veterans about that. If you search, you will find some threads about it. I know for sure there is one on the pre-osteo forum (I posted on it recently), but I can't remember if any posts address that issue specifically.