Digsbe

7+ Year Member
Aug 6, 2011
1,368
994
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Pharmacist
I'm a P4 on APPE's right now and I'm considering career paths and residency. I plan on attending midyear and have been looking into programs. I just wanted to see if I had a shot at obtaining a residency at decent/good institutions.

Right now my GPA is a 3.2, our school counts APPEs as grades and I anticipate this to go above 3.3 by December (made A's on all my rotations so far). By the time December comes I will have done 3 clinical rotations with my community rotation being heavily MTM based as well as a management rotation in clinical pharmacy. I have a published publication from my senior year of undergrad and have worked on unpublished (but will be published eventually) research while in pharmacy school. I have held a leadership position in pharmacy school and have some volunteer projects on my CV. As far as work experience goes I only have experience in retail. I worked as a tech and as an intern for 2 different chains.

Do I have a shot at programs? My main fear is my GPA feeling low, everyone I hear from or hear about has 3.6+ and stressed how hard it is to match. I've had a few preceptors offer to write me LoR's if I chose to apply. Any advice would be appreciated.

Edit: I'm aware I accidentally put this in the wrong spot
 

Maruko

10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Jul 14, 2007
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Medical Student (Accepted)
i think you'll be fine. most residencies I checked up require minimum 3.0 GPA :)
 

zelman

7+ Year Member
Nov 27, 2009
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Your best shot will be at a site where you do an APPE and blow them away.
 
Feb 17, 2015
12
2
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Pharmacy Student
I am a recent new grad and had three rotations with a residency program director and I asked them what they look for in potential applicants. Both of them said that grades are far down that list. All three say that leadership activities and an applicants letter of intent are the two aspects of a application that holds the most weight.
 

GoldfishPharmD

walking on a dream
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7+ Year Member
May 25, 2009
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I think you have a great shot. Apply broadly. You can find a great program without it being some huge big name academic medical center.
 
Jan 22, 2013
107
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I agree. Your stats sound good. Every program has a different definition of an "ideal" resident. They are all looking for well rounded people.
 

UofK

7+ Year Member
Nov 22, 2009
128
54
Status
Pharmacist
Good shot, but man, I wish my APPEs counted towards my GPA. Talk about an unfair playing field...
 

Chriskahn

5+ Year Member
Feb 2, 2013
258
166
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Pharmacist
I feel like I have zero chances. My school has a h/s/f curriculum with no GPA. So the only thing that will stand out is class rankings. I'm a pretty good student but I know for sure I'm not ranked with an impressive number like top 10. My school offers a letter explaining the h/s/f grading system but I'm afraid its not going to look competitive compared to other candidates from different schools with GPA grading.
 

stark3

7+ Year Member
Jul 29, 2012
79
28
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Resident [Any Field]
I feel like I have zero chances. My school has a h/s/f curriculum with no GPA. So the only thing that will stand out is class rankings. I'm a pretty good student but I know for sure I'm not ranked with an impressive number like top 10. My school offers a letter explaining the h/s/f grading system but I'm afraid its not going to look competitive compared to other candidates from different schools with GPA grading.
I don't think GPA matters as much you think it would. Does your school not match people every year? If they do, then you don't have to worry about your schools grading system.
 

Chriskahn

5+ Year Member
Feb 2, 2013
258
166
PNW
Status
Pharmacist
I don't think GPA matters as much you think it would. Does your school not match people every year? If they do, then you don't have to worry about your schools grading system.
They do not. You are on your own if you want a residency. I feel a bit better now knowing its not heavily based on GPA. I'm involved in leadership programs at my school but I'm not a member of every pharmacy organizations like a lot of students at my school...that bit worries me a little. I'm only a member of APHA. I feel like theres really no benefits of joining 4-5. Most students just joined that many because they were told it looks good on their CV.
 

stark3

7+ Year Member
Jul 29, 2012
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Resident [Any Field]
They do not. You are on your own if you want a residency. I feel a bit better now knowing its not heavily based on GPA. I'm involved in leadership programs at my school but I'm not a member of every pharmacy organizations like a lot of students at my school...that bit worries me a little. I'm only a member of APHA. I feel like theres really no benefits of joining 4-5. Most students just joined that many because they were told it looks good on their CV.
What I mean is does your school not have students that match every year? If X amount of students match from your school, then its possible for you to match too.

Leadership is good but also try get some work experience, preferably hospital.
 

Chriskahn

5+ Year Member
Feb 2, 2013
258
166
PNW
Status
Pharmacist
What I mean is does your school not have students that match every year? If X amount of students match from your school, then its possible for you to match too.

Leadership is good but also try get some work experience, preferably hospital.
Oh I see. I think a hand full of people get accepted into a program each year. Its hard because theres only 2 hospitals in my area so space is limited.

Which makes interning at the hospitals even harder. I might need to go home over the summer and try to find an internship at a rural hospital away from the city. Thanks for your response.
 

jmcmans1

7+ Year Member
Oct 11, 2009
53
15
I don't necessarily think that hospital internship vs community will make or break you application--but what will is your references. Make sure your are going above and beyond during your APPEs and make a great impression. I swapped a compounding rotation to neuro critical care with a pharmacist who has a great reputation; I ended up getting a great reference and gaining a mentor in the process. People can fluff up their CV and their letter of intents but not what someone else has to say about you.
 
Jan 7, 2016
7
10
Status
Pharmacy Student
I don't necessarily think that hospital internship vs community will make or break you application--but what will is your references. Make sure your are going above and beyond during your APPEs and make a great impression. I swapped a compounding rotation to neuro critical care with a pharmacist who has a great reputation; I ended up getting a great reference and gaining a mentor in the process. People can fluff up their CV and their letter of intents but not what someone else has to say about you.
I would agree with this. From what I hear, everyone's CV and letter of intent sounds the same after a while. However, if you have some fantastic letter of recommendations, it gives you more credibility.
 
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stark3

7+ Year Member
Jul 29, 2012
79
28
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Resident [Any Field]
I never stated that hospital vs community will make or break your application. I just said that work experience, preferably hospital is also important. Obviously having strong letters of reference are important but this student is not on APPE rotations at the moment.
 

sde780

7+ Year Member
May 15, 2011
97
11
Appalachia
Status
Pharmacist
I have a GPA very close to 3.0 and have received 4 interviews out of 7 applications so far. My mentor has always told me as long as it starts with a 3 I'm in good shape.

I think you are a decent applicant, they are looking for a well-rounded individual as previously mentioned. Your letter of intent and letters of recommendation make a huge difference so make sure you try your best on APPE rotations. Try to be involved at some of the regional meetings and bring a poster to Midyear if possible (abstract is published by ASHP so it's considered a "publication"). Start working on your CV ASAP and be thorough; I regret not putting more time into my CV and listing the small presentations and extracurriculars I did over the years.
 
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