Zanzibar

10+ Year Member
May 8, 2008
9
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Hi everyone,

I"m new here at SDN (well, I've lurked on here before, but this is my first time posting). As the thread title says, I'm in a bit of a dilemma, and I would really appreciate everyone's suggestions.

I transferred from a college my freshman year, where I had a 4.0, to a much higher tier school that is known for being tough on its premeds (I'd really rather avoid giving out the specific names of the schools, but PM me if you're curious). I commuted my freshman year, so life really wasn't that much different from high school. At my second school, I had some adjustment issues ( as well as the fact that the academics were just flat out tougher). I got a 3.45 my fall semester, where my lowest grades were Orgo and Bio (B- and B , respectively). Naturally, coming from my freshman year, where I had excellent grades, this was really quite horrifying. I took on a heavier courseload (which was , in retrospect, quite stupid) and resolved to work harder. Unfortunately, my GPA for this spring semester has hovered around the same, though I did better in Orgo and Bio (B and A).

I will be studying for the MCAT this summer, and I obviously need to do well. (I"ve takne 2 practice tests, and have done well, so I feel like my MCAT score should help me out). I'm just saddened by how much i've dipped this year, and as I would really like to go to a med school in california (UCLA is my dream school). At this point, I feel like the most important thing is just go into damage control and make sure I get my GPA up. I've been working between 2 different labs in the past few years, and I really like working in the lab, so I'd like to apply to some MD/Phd programs. I'll be taking 4 classes next year and working full time in the lab on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Can anyone give me any advice or insight as to what else I should do/change? And, most importantly, is UCLA ruled out for me? Thanks everyone!

- Zanzibar
 

flip26

10+ Year Member
Dec 20, 2007
4,795
9
Status
Medical Student
Hi everyone,

I"m new here at SDN (well, I've lurked on here before, but this is my first time posting). As the thread title says, I'm in a bit of a dilemma, and I would really appreciate everyone's suggestions.

I transferred from a college my freshman year, where I had a 4.0, to a much higher tier school that is known for being tough on its premeds (I'd really rather avoid giving out the specific names of the schools, but PM me if you're curious). I commuted my freshman year, so life really wasn't that much different from high school. At my second school, I had some adjustment issues ( as well as the fact that the academics were just flat out tougher). I got a 3.45 my fall semester, where my lowest grades were Orgo and Bio (B- and B , respectively). Naturally, coming from my freshman year, where I had excellent grades, this was really quite horrifying. I took on a heavier courseload (which was , in retrospect, quite stupid) and resolved to work harder. Unfortunately, my GPA for this spring semester has hovered around the same, though I did better in Orgo and Bio (B and A).

I will be studying for the MCAT this summer, and I obviously need to do well. (I"ve takne 2 practice tests, and have done well, so I feel like my MCAT score should help me out). I'm just saddened by how much i've dipped this year, and as I would really like to go to a med school in california (UCLA is my dream school). At this point, I feel like the most important thing is just go into damage control and make sure I get my GPA up. I've been working between 2 different labs in the past few years, and I really like working in the lab, so I'd like to apply to some MD/Phd programs. I'll be taking 4 classes next year and working full time in the lab on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Can anyone give me any advice or insight as to what else I should do/change? And, most importantly, is UCLA ruled out for me? Thanks everyone!

- Zanzibar
Make As...
 

ChubbyChaser

Yummmy
10+ Year Member
Apr 14, 2007
13,168
5
Status
Medical Student
so whats the problem...your GPA still seems to be around a 3.7...just work harder and start raising that GPA
 
OP
Z

Zanzibar

10+ Year Member
May 8, 2008
9
0
Status
Pre-Medical
er, my problem i guess is just how medical schools will see this dip of around .5 from how I was doing at my first school. will my gpa's from both places get weighted equally?

as for clinical experience...I'm shadowing this summer and this fall. I'm pretty happy with my ECs, i think.
 

ChubbyChaser

Yummmy
10+ Year Member
Apr 14, 2007
13,168
5
Status
Medical Student
er, my problem i guess is just how medical schools will see this dip of around .5 from how I was doing at my first school. will my gpa's from both places get weighted equally?

as for clinical experience...I'm shadowing this summer and this fall. I'm pretty happy with my ECs, i think.
Well it would definitely be better to start at a 3.5 and end up at a 4.0...so you just start working harder.
 

dArroway

Gettin' my hood on
10+ Year Member
Apr 9, 2008
321
1
look at the life on this planet sir, no sign of it
Status
Pre-Medical
er, my problem i guess is just how medical schools will see this dip of around .5 from how I was doing at my first school. will my gpa's from both places get weighted equally?

as for clinical experience...I'm shadowing this summer and this fall. I'm pretty happy with my ECs, i think.
You can do it Zanzibar. You have the flyest name on SDN. But seriously, just try harder, do your best, and believe it will work out. There is no need in worrying. If you had a 4.0 at an easier school and now have a 3.5 at a tougher school you just need to adjust... and if a 3.5 is the best you can do then well just accept it and evaluate your options. A 3.5 isn't the end of all especially if it really is at a top tiered school (ie Standford etc.)
 

Schemp

drawing infinity
10+ Year Member
Mar 27, 2008
422
5
Seattle
Status
Pre-Medical
And as far as weight for GPAs, don't many weight your latter years heavier than your earlier?

I saw somewhere that for the weighted GPA they will take year 1 and multiply it by 1, year 2 multiplied by 2, and year 3 multiplied by 3, then divide the sum by 6. In other words, your GPA for junior year holds the same weight as your freshman and sophomore years combined.

I haven't really seen anything about that here, so that may not be common practice, but it is certainly well known that finishing strong is much more important than starting strong. Just do your best junior year, don't send your transcripts until your last semester/quarter is finished, and I think you'll be great.
 
OP
Z

Zanzibar

10+ Year Member
May 8, 2008
9
0
Status
Pre-Medical
thanks guys. and as for turning in the transcripts in late schemp...dont applications open the summer before senior year? woudlnt i be at a disadvantage turning it in so late?
 

ChubbyChaser

Yummmy
10+ Year Member
Apr 14, 2007
13,168
5
Status
Medical Student
And as far as weight for GPAs, don't many weight your latter years heavier than your earlier?

I saw somewhere that for the weighted GPA they will take year 1 and multiply it by 1, year 2 multiplied by 2, and year 3 multiplied by 3, then divide the sum by 6. In other words, your GPA for junior year holds the same weight as your freshman and sophomore years combined.

I haven't really seen anything about that here, so that may not be common practice, but it is certainly well known that finishing strong is much more important than starting strong. Just do your best junior year, don't send your transcripts until your last semester/quarter is finished, and I think you'll be great.
I call bs on that...but it would be great for me if they did.
 

Schemp

drawing infinity
10+ Year Member
Mar 27, 2008
422
5
Seattle
Status
Pre-Medical
That'd be a better question for some other people actually. I'm also only finishing my second year of pre-med.

From what I've heard, I think applications actually start some time in May, and many schools don't release grades until June, so you miss the early application process, but you can turn them in any time until late summer/early fall (I think). Earlier is better, but if you really want to show that this year was a fluke and you're capable of more, you'd be better served to wait and get those grades from the end of junior year. You didn't do poorly this year, but I understand how you feel. We all want to do our best, especially competition being what it is, but now you have an opportunity next year to show that you're serious.
 

Schemp

drawing infinity
10+ Year Member
Mar 27, 2008
422
5
Seattle
Status
Pre-Medical
I call bs on that...but it would be great for me if they did.
I had forgotten where I read that ChubbyChaser... it was here: http://uwmedicine.washington.edu/Education/MDProgram/Admissions/FAQ.htm

I plan on going to UWSOM, so that is especially important for me. Just use search function or scroll down to the "weighted GPA" section. Like I said, I don't know if that is common practice, but UWSOM is a very prestigious school, so maybe it's not that unusual. It makes sense, since junior year is (theoretically) harder than freshman and sophomore year, and it really minimizes any stupid mistakes you made during your first year and the adjustment from high school to college life.
 
OP
Z

Zanzibar

10+ Year Member
May 8, 2008
9
0
Status
Pre-Medical
oh ok schemp, i atually thought you meant applying sometime within senior year. im cool being a month late and submitting it in june though.