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Do I have a chance?

Discussion in 'What Are My Chances?' started by MJR Major Major, Dec 5, 2008.

  1. MJR Major Major

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    My first year of school I was a math major, very unfocused and uninspired, and received a couple D’s and an F, dropped some of my courses and was put on academic probation. I had some family problems at home and trouble adjusting to college.

    Since my freshman year I’ve completely overhauled my study habits and have a 3.9 science GPA, and 3.94 nonscience GPA. I have humanitarian volunteer experience in soup kitchens and philanthropies, some time working in a hospital as a pharmacy tech, time shadowing a highly placed ophthalmologist at a private hospital, lots of international study experience, and a 33 MCAT. However, my cumulative GPA took a hit from my first year (only a 3.41), and my research experience isn't quite up to par. My rec's are extremely strong, and I have an aptitude for writing and would say that my personal statement is strong as well (in which I addressed my freshman year).

    I'd settle for pretty much any med school at this point. What are my chances, considering I have some blemishes on my record, but have had immense noticeable improvement since then? And how important is research to the application process? Feedback greatly appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. bluesmd

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  3. Mobius1985

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    Your good MCAT score may be enough to redeem the low GPA, considering you'll have had two full years of excellent academics by application time (I'm assuming 90 hours total). But as a backup plan, it might be good to plan another full year of 4.0 GPA (then your GPA would be up to 3.55) and you could get in some research time. No, research isn't required, but more schools will consider you seriously if you have it. And since you do have a GPA weakness in your application, everything else should be as good as it can get.

    Besides the research deficiency, there may be an additional concern in regards to your clinical experience. If work as a pharmacy tech and some shadowing are all you have to list, how are adcomms going to know you are dedicated to entering the field of medicine (rather than pharmacy)? Yes pharm tech is a clinical experience you can list, but I'd recommend you get work or a volunteer position where you interact with sick folks more directly on a face-to-face basis, so adcomms will be confident you know what being a doc is all about. It could be in a free clinic, hospice, residential home, or hospital, and might give you contacts to enable shadowing other specialties too.
     
  4. MJR Major Major

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    Thanks for the advice. I think I'm going to take some time before application to work on my research and get a job in a clinical setting. I'll try to take some classes part-time in the meantime to see if I can break the 3.5 barrier. Just have to keep my eye on the prize. Thanks for the help.
     

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