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Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by UCLApremed, Feb 27, 2002.
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Are you working on a grad degree or a second undergrad? Either way, it is imperative that you maintain as high an average as possible. With a great MCAT, good extracurriculars and good letters of rec, you should have a pretty fair shot. Especially if you are not reaching for a top school. Just understand that it will take you a while (another degree, etc.) to overcome your background. Good luck, lots of people in your position have done it!
I am working on my master right now. I know that it will take time to overcome. Hopefully...everything will work out.
If you are as passionate about medicine as you say you are and you truly want to become a doctor...then you can do it!! Believe in yourself!! How bad do you really want it? You can do it!!
If u do well enough during ur post back classes and get a decent MCAT score then anything is possibe.
Most of us ask for advice when we know the answer but we want a different one.
- Ivern Ball
Maintain A's in your post-bac classes. I agree, finish your masters. Get a high mcat. Dont gun for harvard and hopkins but look at some middle tier schools. You definitely have a chance.
I know where you are coming from. Years ago when the competition to get into med school was particularly fierce, I knew a man with a GPA quite a bit lower than yours. He went to Mexico and then did astoundingly well on the exam to transfer back to a US school. He went up to the border and started calling schools by states alphabetically. When the answers were continually positive, he decided to call the NY schools where he was from, and ultimately got into Einstein.
I realize that this story is very dated, but in my years of doing this medicine journey, I have come to realize that there is definitely more than one way to go about this. As other posters have more than amplified, you can do this, but you have to vigilantly keep your eye on your ultimate goal and make a lot of sacrifices to get there. There is no question in my mind that you definitely can do this. But you have to want it badly enough.
I wish you well as you start your journey.
I hope this encourages you. I was in a similar situation. My undergrad major was in economics and accounting. I was very undisciplined and thought that my grades didn't matter much - my plan was to graduate, get a job and pass the CPA exam, which I did. Success story, right? Yeah, up until the time 5 years later when I decided I wanted to become a physician. There's no worse feeling looking back at your transcript and seeing a big 2.5 GPA staring back at you. I realized that I had a tough road ahead but I had nothing to lose.
So, I enrolled in a state university and began taking post-bacc classes. One great thing I had going for me is that I had absolutely no science classes before that I needed to apply. So, in a way I had a clean slate in the premed courses. I did very well. My MCAT wasn't the best, but it was competitive (I only took it once) . I had 3 awesome letters of recommendation and a fantastic interview. I got accepted to the med school I applied to the first try. <img border="0" alt="[Clappy]" title="" src="graemlins/clappy.gif" />
So - I know it can be done. Do the absolute best you can now - you can't change your prior performances. The important thing is this - Adcoms want to see improvement. Who you are NOW and how you perform NOW weighs much more heavily than who and what you did before.
I would wish you much luck, but luck isn't what will get you where you want to be. Stay determined and excited about your future. Bust your butt and you just might be pleasantly suprised.
Your dream is definitely not unrealistic! Work hard during the journey and the destination will be that much sweeter. I wish you the best of luck!
UCLApremed - The key post here is that there is no one right way to get in with your situation. As others have alluded, the application process is nowhere near as competitive as it was in the mid-late 90s. I had similar numbers with a decent MCAT and am applying this year. So far 9 interviews and 2 acceptances. I did a Masters in Public Health with some significant extracurriculars in college and afterwards.
Don't let the numbers get you down. At this point a numeric reversal of your GPA is nearly impossible and to try would be a long waste of time. No matter what, somewhere on your application either via gpa, science grades, grad grades, or MCAT you must show that you can do good science work. At most of my interviews, the only thing that they want to know is do I think I am capable of doing well in the sciences. They don't want to let someone in who can't hang with the workload.
You seem to have the motivation and desire, so you will probably get in if you try. However, from my experience, I can only urge you to spend time doing the activities that you enjoy. Explore what you can, but try not to do anything just for the admissions committee. As most SDNers will tell, the application process can be very random, but in the end it all works out. Good luck.
i think everyone of us get's like that sometimes...at one point i printed out 20 copies of "YOU MUST GET INTO MED SCHOOL" and taped them at various locations in my house. i laminated my notes so i could read them in the shower. i walked around with my stomach always in knots and was having panic attacks about once a week.
it has taken me a while to chill out - it's actually difficult to do at first because you are so used to living the way you are. but i realized that i do better in class and studying for the mcat when i'm calm.
hope this helps
</font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by shireen:
<strong>i think everyone of us get's like that sometimes...at one point i printed out 20 copies of "YOU MUST GET INTO MED SCHOOL" and taped them at various locations in my house. i laminated my notes so i could read them in the shower. i walked around with my stomach always in knots and was having panic attacks about once a week.
it has taken me a while to chill out
</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Good Lord! Glad to hear you've lightened up a little. studying while showering is taking the whole multi-tasking thing a bit too far...
OK, me again. Look. do a search on me and get the whole story, but in short, I left school in 1993 without a degree, a 2.8 overall GPA, and 9 Fs on my record. I returned to school in 1998, changed my major to Biology, and maintained a 3.96 until I graduated last December. My overall GPA at application time was only 3.06 though. I will be starting Med School this fall. It IS possible. Very possible. Be the best that you can be from here on out. You have NOTHING to lose, OK?
Yes, getting a 4.0 in grad school will mean something, and I think taking a few undergrad courses to boot is a great idea. I see you're in Cali, which makes things tough, but again, not impossible. Don't listen to people who say you can't do it--you've already shown that you can!
The only thing that bothers me is you saying that you hate where you are right now--why is that? Feel free to PM me anytime. you seem in need of support!
It sounds like you need to distance yourself away from all this negativity around you. It shouldn't matter what other people think about your situation. It comes down to you knowing what you want and working for it. Yes, it might take a little longer since your undergrad GPA isn't as high but you're already doing the right thing by working on a master. Just don't get too overwhelmed by what lays ahead of you and take it one day at a time. I know what you're going through because this is exactly what I'm doing too! Good luck and believe in yourself!!!! It't definitely 90% mental!!!!!
By the way, UCLApremed, if you don't mind me asking...what masters program are you working on at UCLA? I've been doing research about possibly obtaining a masters and would appreciate any help you can offer. (If you're not too swamped.) Thanks!!!!
First, here is your disclaimer:
1. I am not a doctor.
2. I have not even applied to any medical schools. (Yet.)
3. My GPA is lower than yours. (In my own defense I've got a lot of undergrad to go.)
4. I am 22, so I may very well have no idea what I'm talking about.
Now that that's out of the way, here is my message:
A few months ago I posted here with a somewhat similar message "My numbers suck but I've got it in my blood and I'll do anything." The standard line is, yes, it's in your blood, good luck. Racergirl boosted my spirits as well with her personal story, which has a fabulous "ending" (as if a medical life's story ever has an "ending", as opposed to a long stream of learning and discovery.)
To get personal, I grew up being somewhat discouraged from "reaching high." After digging through some repressed memories, I discovered that when I was a youngster (a *real* youngster, unlike the proto-youngster I remain as) I used to have a lot of stuffed animals. I talked to them every day. But eventually my mother had to throw them all away. Why? I cut them all open. Operated on them. Convinced myself they were sick. Probably because they were unresponsive and had oral temps of 25 C. (yuk yuk yuk)
Back to my point: Remembering that I cut up those stuffed animals has brought me tremendous joy as I look down the long, long road ahead of me. It convinces me that it *is* in my blood. I don't want a BMW, or a McMansion, or a horde of secretaries offering to freshen my coffee. I want to put my hands on a sick person and find their sick and kill it and let them walk away and live their lives. I don't see any other thing worth my time in this world.
That's how I know that if I want to, I will get in. My resolve is fueled by the fact that it is in my blood. And that gets to the point of my reply to you: Nothing in this world should matter except what you feel your calling is. Even if you've exhausted everything and no adcom will take you, move to equatorial Africa with your science knowledge and I guarantee you you will heal the sick. Maybe this doesn't appeal to you: If it doesn't, you won't be a good doctor.
Recently I've taken a job in a hospital and I've already seen, in three weeks, good doctors and bad doctors. Those with fire in their eyes and those with golf in their hips. The ones with fire wouldn't trade it for the world, and failure was never an option.
If you want to heal sick people, you will. If you want a BMW, you will have one. If you want to fail, you will fail fantastically. I don't want to Yoda you; but don't let anyone tell you anything. Not this board, not an academic advisor, hell, not even an adcom. Fulfill your life's mission and when death takes you, you will smile.
when i said i hate where I am at. I meant i hate the whole mess. really, i didn't want to ask for this coming out of high school. i didn't want my undergrad grades to be what they are. so, i hate it b/c i am mainly judge by my past grades and not by what i put on paper right now. when you go talk to professors and they ask you how your grades are in undergrad. you tell them and they are silent and give you the "hm...".
BTW, would 14 straight science post bac A's be good enough to say that I've proven myself? sometimes I feel like, "what else do people want from me????" i just hate this whole PROVEN business. that's what i meant when i say i hate where i am at right now. i feel like i don't have to prove anything. if they let me in, i know i can be just among the best as any med student. i'm sure you guys are too. anyhow, thanks for letting me getting my frustration out guys. GRRR, anyhow, like i said, my whole day today is another day to go out, do my stuff, and in order to ultimately PROVE. yuk.
OK UCLA . . . if you keep on whining, I'm going to have to agree with your friend and girlfriend. <img border="0" alt="[Pity]" title="" src="graemlins/pity.gif" /> Just how bad do you want this???? Did you read all of our posts? Does this look impossible to you? It's possible if you believe it is . . . that's the only thing that is going to get you thru this long process. If you keep doubting yourself everytime someone else does, you'll get nowhere. If only you knew how many people said I was crazy 4 years ago when I started this process. I used it as motivation. Do the same. And for crying out loud! Stop second-guessing yourself. Decide you're going to do it and go all out. You have nothing to lose!
UCLA, you can not listen to other people and their negativity. I had professors who told me to drop their class and I should choose something else, also. I just used that to motivate me more. I have multiple acceptances. If you want this, go for it. Take the negativity and use it to prove to everyone what you are capapble of. That is what I did. Some of those same professors who doubted me ended up writing letters of recommendation for me. Anyway, go for it and blot out the negativity and doubters.