Do I need to do a DIY Post Bacc? Active duty military.

May 3, 2020
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So I graduated college in 14, joined the mil in 16' and still owe the Government 4 more years (Am a pilot and added a lot of time). So that opens a whole can or worms with trying to get LOR from professors.

Here is what I have so far.

3.55 GPA
3.65 SGPA (if memory serves me correct on both of them).
Worked for 18 months as a scribe/medical assistant and have like 1500-2000 hours of patient contact.
Volunteered for a year at an emergency department 200-300 hours there (have to call and get my actual number).(2014)
Volunteered at a major GI Lab/surgery center for a year and have 184 hour there.(2015-16)
200 hours of volunteering at a local high school Robotics team(2014-2016).
Took the MCAT in 2016 got a 507(def rushed it and should've taken another month on prep).
Was a member of several clubs, held leadership positions in them but I dont think they're notable to mention here.
Im a helicopter Pilot in the army with about 300 flight hours.
I have been shadowing the flight doctors, and other doctors for the last 9 months (once a week for about 4-6 hours, have to actually calculate the time). I have probably 150 hours of shadow time from 2014-2016 as well.

Would I need a DIY post bacc to help my chances (besides retaking the MCAT)? And is there a good template to one? Also would I need to retake some of my sciences basted on how long ago I took them (chem 2011, physics 2012/13, ochecm 13/14, biochem 14, etc).
 

gonnif

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So I graduated college in 14, joined the mil in 16' and still owe the Government 4 more years (Am a pilot and added a lot of time). So that opens a whole can or worms with trying to get LOR from professors.

Here is what I have so far.

3.55 GPA
3.65 SGPA (if memory serves me correct on both of them).
Worked for 18 months as a scribe/medical assistant and have like 1500-2000 hours of patient contact.
Volunteered for a year at an emergency department 200-300 hours there (have to call and get my actual number).(2014)
Volunteered at a major GI Lab/surgery center for a year and have 184 hour there.(2015-16)
200 hours of volunteering at a local high school Robotics team(2014-2016).
Took the MCAT in 2016 got a 507(def rushed it and should've taken another month on prep).
Was a member of several clubs, held leadership positions in them but I dont think they're notable to mention here.
Im a helicopter Pilot in the army with about 300 flight hours.
I have been shadowing the flight doctors, and other doctors for the last 9 months (once a week for about 4-6 hours, have to actually calculate the time). I have probably 150 hours of shadow time from 2014-2016 as well.

Would I need a DIY post bacc to help my chances (besides retaking the MCAT)? And is there a good template to one? Also would I need to retake some of my sciences basted on how long ago I took them (chem 2011, physics 2012/13, ochecm 13/14, biochem 14, etc).

from the brief outline you gave
1) I dont think you need a postbacc for GPA
2) I dont think you need to worry about old classes being accepted by medical schools
3) I would say that with the length of time since some classes, an intense MCAT is in order.
4) Spending time money on MCAT class or such is probably a better approach
5) Getting a LOR from a professor isnt the worst thing as you are sure to get decent ones from CO
6) taking an advanced class or two may be in order to both show you are still academically capable as well as getting a more recent letter
7) you may want to consider some additional volunteering (as opposed to shadowing) when you get out
8) One of the founders of SDN is a Brigade Physician with 82nd I believe
8) thanks for your service. What are you flying?
 
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6) taking an advanced class or two may be in order to both show you are still academically capable as well as getting a more recent letter
I strongly second this suggestion as I've seen that some med schools express a concern when an applicant has been away from academics for more than two years (and at least one if it's just been 6 months).
 
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May 3, 2020
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from the brief outline you gave
1) I dont think you need a postbacc for GPA
2) I dont think you need to worry about old classes being accepted by medical schools
3) I would say that with the length of time since some classes, an intense MCAT is in order.
4) Spending time money on MCAT class or such is probably a better approach
5) Getting a LOR from a professor isnt the worst thing as you are sure to get decent ones from CO
6) taking an advanced class or two may be in order to both show you are still academically capable as well as getting a more recent letter
7) you may want to consider some additional volunteering (as opposed to shadowing) when you get out
8) One of the founders of SDN is a Brigade Physician with 82nd I believe
8) thanks for your service. What are you flying?
You wouldnt know who they are? Or are they no longer in the 82nd? Cause if they are may sway some future PCS.

But thanks for the info, and I have mostly flown a desk recently but I fly hawks. I didnt choose apaches when I couldve based on my aspirations of medical school and I figured dropping hellfire on people was a hard sell to "do no harm", plus also dont think I wanted to make that mental decision.
 

gonnif

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You wouldnt know who they are? Or are they no longer in the 82nd? Cause if they are may sway some future PCS.

But thanks for the info, and I have mostly flown a desk recently but I fly hawks. I didnt choose apaches when I couldve based on my aspirations of medical school and I figured dropping hellfire on people was a hard sell to "do no harm", plus also dont think I wanted to make that mental decision.
PM'd you
 

WindmillChaser92

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I didn't do a DIY post-bacc per se, but I did take a few classes in the evening/online while active duty these past two years. I graduated 2010. If you have all your prereqs done, you might not need to, but I took OChem, a couple psy/soc courses, and biochem. It helped me get an LOR from a recent professor. My other LORs came from former CO, lab PI, and doc I shadowed at military hospital. National University gives 50% off tuition for active duty, just FYI. I took their biochem I & II sequence. Most of my time though has been volunteering in hospital and studying for MCAT. Took the MCAT last Fall. Definitely spent a lot of time studying for it, but my score helps prove I still have the chops to perform academically and test well. Not an advisor, just fellow pre-med, but I wouldn't worry too much about taking a full courseload post-bacc if you retest MCAT, get some recent clinical experience, have LOR's lined up, etc. A recent full academic load might knock out a couple med school options, but most don't have a cut-off date for how recent your courses are. A good MCAT will compliment your good GPA and show you can brush off cobwebs and learn.
 
May 3, 2020
12
0
26
  1. Pre-Medical
I didn't do a DIY post-bacc per se, but I did take a few classes in the evening/online while active duty these past two years. I graduated 2010. If you have all your prereqs done, you might not need to, but I took OChem, a couple psy/soc courses, and biochem. It helped me get an LOR from a recent professor. My other LORs came from former CO, lab PI, and doc I shadowed at military hospital. National University gives 50% off tuition for active duty, just FYI. I took their biochem I & II sequence. Most of my time though has been volunteering in hospital and studying for MCAT. Took the MCAT last Fall. Definitely spent a lot of time studying for it, but my score helps prove I still have the chops to perform academically and test well. Not an advisor, just fellow pre-med, but I wouldn't worry too much about taking a full courseload post-bacc if you retest MCAT, get some recent clinical experience, have LOR's lined up, etc. A recent full academic load might knock out a couple med school options, but most don't have a cut-off date for how recent your courses are. A good MCAT will compliment your good GPA and show you can brush off cobwebs and learn.
Yeah need to really take some time after my next movement to sit down and begin studying for the MCAT and take some classes to make relearning things like Biochem less painful.
 

dukun8ter

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Yeah need to really take some time after my next movement to sit down and begin studying for the MCAT and take some classes to make relearning things like Biochem less painful.
Sir/Ma’am,

Current warrant AH-64 driver here, finishing up my 4-year and some pre-reqs for USUHS. Would love to connect, get some insight on your journey, and I’ll take any tips/advice you have!
 

Tonloc

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Same timeline as you but enlisted (2014 undergrad, 2016 joined mil). Both of your GPA's are better than mine and it looks like your on the right track with getting medical experience.

It was tough for me to get letters from professors from 2013 era, but doable with university directories. I laid out my situation as an applicant this cycle and was able to get all the letters i needed after some cold calling of old profs. Checks in the box in the grand scheme of things.

I didn't take any science classes in the last 6 years (took a couple masters in education online) and it didn't seem to hurt me, but ymmv.

Kill the MCAT and it looks like you're gonna be gravy.
 

Ewok Trainer

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I didnt choose apaches when I couldve based on my aspirations of medical school and I figured dropping hellfire on people was a hard sell to "do no harm", plus also dont think I wanted to make that mental decision.
For the vets out there-particularly those who were in combat arms- did an issue like this ever arise at any point during your application process? If so, how did you ally any ADCOM concerns stemming from it?
 

Matthew9Thirtyfive

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For the vets out there-particularly those who were in combat arms- did an issue like this ever arise at any point during your application process? If so, how did you ally any ADCOM concerns stemming from it?

No. Having to do things in the military is not the same as being a serial killer or something. I was a gunner and had zero interviewers seem concerned. They know we aren’t out there committing violence for fun. All my infantry or SF friends had zero problems as well.
 
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Patriots5298

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So I graduated college in 14, joined the mil in 16' and still owe the Government 4 more years (Am a pilot and added a lot of time). So that opens a whole can or worms with trying to get LOR from professors.

Here is what I have so far.

3.55 GPA
3.65 SGPA (if memory serves me correct on both of them).
Worked for 18 months as a scribe/medical assistant and have like 1500-2000 hours of patient contact.
Volunteered for a year at an emergency department 200-300 hours there (have to call and get my actual number).(2014)
Volunteered at a major GI Lab/surgery center for a year and have 184 hour there.(2015-16)
200 hours of volunteering at a local high school Robotics team(2014-2016).
Took the MCAT in 2016 got a 507(def rushed it and should've taken another month on prep).
Was a member of several clubs, held leadership positions in them but I dont think they're notable to mention here.
Im a helicopter Pilot in the army with about 300 flight hours.
I have been shadowing the flight doctors, and other doctors for the last 9 months (once a week for about 4-6 hours, have to actually calculate the time). I have probably 150 hours of shadow time from 2014-2016 as well.

Would I need a DIY post bacc to help my chances (besides retaking the MCAT)? And is there a good template to one? Also would I need to retake some of my sciences basted on how long ago I took them (chem 2011, physics 2012/13, ochecm 13/14, biochem 14, etc).

Similar GPAs as you, I was told not to do one. With your military experience I think it's looking good for you to get an acceptance somewhere
 

LLB226

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For the vets out there-particularly those who were in combat arms- did an issue like this ever arise at any point during your application process? If so, how did you ally any ADCOM concerns stemming from it?
Shouldn't be a problem. Just highlight the humanitarian aspects of your deployments. In fact, that's what will stand out the most from other applicants. It's probably pretty easy to come up with one or two good examples if you've spent any time in the GWOT areas or third-world JCETs.
 

CricB4Tube

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For the vets out there-particularly those who were in combat arms- did an issue like this ever arise at any point during your application process? If so, how did you ally any ADCOM concerns stemming from it?
My application was heavy on military experiences but I didn't mention a single thing about combat. I kept it focused on how difficult the training was (shows resilience), leadership and educator roles I held in the military, etc. While I don't think a machine gunner would be disqualified from becoming a healer, I do think some adcoms may feel uncomfortable if said machine gunner emphasized his role in shredding people while in the sandbox. It's okay to be proud of serving in the military and fighting for America's interests, but it's not okay to be proud of taking another life, whether or not it was justified/in combat.
 

Matthew9Thirtyfive

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My application was heavy on military experiences but I didn't mention a single thing about combat. I kept it focused on how difficult the training was (shows resilience), leadership and educator roles I held in the military, etc. While I don't think a machine gunner would be disqualified from becoming a healer, I do think some adcoms may feel uncomfortable if said machine gunner emphasized his role in shredding people while in the sandbox. It's okay to be proud of serving in the military and fighting for America's interests, but it's not okay to be proud of taking another life, whether or not it was justified/in combat.

Yeah I was a gunner. I focused on leadership and service. They will assume you had to do things, but they will also most likely assume you didn’t necessarily take pleasure in it. I wasn’t asked at all, and being a gunner did not hinder me at all.
 

iHawk_MD

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My application was heavy on military experiences but I didn't mention a single thing about combat. I kept it focused on how difficult the training was (shows resilience), leadership and educator roles I held in the military, etc. While I don't think a machine gunner would be disqualified from becoming a healer, I do think some adcoms may feel uncomfortable if said machine gunner emphasized his role in shredding people while in the sandbox. It's okay to be proud of serving in the military and fighting for America's interests, but it's not okay to be proud of taking another life, whether or not it was justified/in combat.
"I happen to be a deal-dealing blood-crazed warrior who wakes up every day just hoping for the chance to dismember my enemies and defile their civilizations." Something like this?
 
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