OsteopathicHopeful

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-I wanted to create a thread for us guys/gals that have MCAT scores below a 25. I feel like we are really underdogs yet can make it in :)
-I wanted to provide a place where we don't just post our stats but encourage/help each other though the process.
-I went through and decided to tag some people that I thought might fit this criteria and would benefit from a supportive community. If anyone else wants to join in feel free, but it is meant for pre-meds trying to get into DO schools with low MCAT scores primarily.
-This thread is meant to help each other through secondaries, interviews, and beyond :) I want us to be able to post anything and have similar individuals comment and provide feedback.

@oOKawaiiOo @Hoping2makeit @aspdr @BeanBag2 @Clinical1 @dutchie000 @Eudaimonia @Greymatterz89 @ManOfDiligence @matt367 @musicmed @Saxappeal1 @Shinobiz11 @stickshifthonda @TurkTurkleton92@zachdwphoto

Let me know what you think...
Admins let me know if there is a more appropriate way of accomplishing this...
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

OsteopathicHopeful

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I guess I'll start by filling everyone in about my particular stats and situations.
positives about my app
Indiana resident
Married w/ 1 son
worked 6 years in surgical technology at a rural hospital
worked as a TA in gen chem and biology for 2 years
competitive swimmer in grade school 2X all american and many records
all pre-req grades are As with 1 B
sGPA 3.65
guest presenter at a surgical skills lab for a DO school
great LORs 2 sci prof, DO, MD
spent a year rotating through big academic urban hospital as a student scrub tech
strong PS
Sunday school teacher
Unit Practice Council voting member (we established regulations and standard protocol for OR and PACU in the hosp. I work in)
very interested in Rural medicine either primary or gen surg
Negatives about my app
cGPA 3.44
MCAT 22 6/6/10
no research experience
waiting to be verified....should be within next week
 
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baxt1412

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Hello!

Biographical Info:
22 year old male
Nebraska native
small kansas private college

Academic Scores/GPA:
24 MCAT (8/7/9)
3.70 cGPA
3.64 sGPA
BA degrees in both Biology and Spanish, minor in Chem

Shadowing
~150+ hrs shadowing (no DO)
transplant rounds and OR (have seen two pediatric transplants, one small bowel, and one liver/small bowel)
ortho clinic and OR
immunology clinic
oral surgery clinic and OR
plastic surgery OR


Letters
Letters from typical places, but one from an MD/Asst. Dean for COM at University of Nebraska Medical Center
Bi0 advisor
My Orgo teacher/orgo research
Spanish professor, had classes w/ her for 4 years (for schools that require a non-science letter)
MD in oral surgery
Priest who helped lead the El Salvador trips (specifically for one school that it relates to)


Other ECs
3 year RA on campus (paid position, gotta be close to over a thousand hours lol)
2 week long mission trips to El Salvador (I know how this can be viewed, just wanted to post it)
2 year football player in college (too much time and was more passionate about the other ECs)
1 year organic synthesis research on antibiotics (non-steroidal squalamine mimics if you feel like researching) poster presentation
1 summer research program at UNMC on synergy of novel and traditional chemotherapeutics on pancreatic cancer, poster presentation
Treasurer of Chem Club 1 year
Helped plan and execute the "Spooky Science Fun Bash" for my college town's youth for 3 years
Tutored at an elementary school for a year
Worked at a Salvation Army summer camp for one summer
Powerlifting 2.5 years since junior year when I quit football, have come in second in both meets I have done (most recent I lost to a seriously roided out freak lol)

idk if i'm missing anything else, but I am retaking my MCAT on Nov 7th. Some schools will take a score that late, some won't.
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

OsteopathicHopeful

2+ Year Member
Sep 19, 2014
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Hello!

Biographical Info:
22 year old male
Nebraska native
small kansas private college

Academic Scores/GPA:
24 MCAT (8/7/9)
3.70 cGPA
3.64 sGPA
BA degrees in both Biology and Spanish, minor in Chem

Shadowing
~150+ hrs shadowing (no DO)
transplant rounds and OR (have seen two pediatric transplants, one small bowel, and one liver/small bowel)
ortho clinic and OR
immunology clinic
oral surgery clinic and OR
plastic surgery OR


Letters
Letters from typical places, but one from an MD/Asst. Dean for COM at University of Nebraska Medical Center
Bi0 advisor
My Orgo teacher/orgo research
Spanish professor, had classes w/ her for 4 years (for schools that require a non-science letter)
MD in oral surgery
Priest who helped lead the El Salvador trips (specifically for one school that it relates to)


Other ECs
3 year RA on campus (paid position, gotta be close to over a thousand hours lol)
2 week long mission trips to El Salvador (I know how this can be viewed, just wanted to post it)
2 year football player in college (too much time and was more passionate about the other ECs)
1 year organic synthesis research on antibiotics (non-steroidal squalamine mimics if you feel like researching) poster presentation
1 summer research program at UNMC on synergy of novel and traditional chemotherapeutics on pancreatic cancer, poster presentation
Treasurer of Chem Club 1 year
Helped plan and execute the "Spooky Science Fun Bash" for my college town's youth for 3 years
Tutored at an elementary school for a year
Worked at a Salvation Army summer camp for one summer
Powerlifting 2.5 years since junior year when I quit football, have come in second in both meets I have done (most recent I lost to a seriously roided out freak lol)

idk if i'm missing anything else, but I am retaking my MCAT on Nov 7th. Some schools will take a score that late, some won't.
Is your app completed and verified? If so have you gotten any ii yet?
 

baxt1412

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Is your app completed and verified? If so have you gotten any ii yet?
I am completed and verified, but have only started getting secondaries this week. I was released to schools yesterday according to AACOMAS but I got secondaries on 10/1.

I was a little "late" in the game on my DO apps.
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

OsteopathicHopeful

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I am completed and verified, but have only started getting secondaries this week. I was released to schools yesterday according to AACOMAS but I got secondaries on 10/1.

I was a little "late" in the game on my DO apps.
We are in the same boat....I was verified oct 2.....so hopefully I started getting secondaries soon
 

baxt1412

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We are in the same boat....I was verified oct 2.....so hopefully I started getting secondaries soon
You should be getting them within the next few days or so I'm guessing. I couldn't remember where to find the actual date I was verified, but I found it in my email (duh). I was verified 9/23 and received my first secondary 10/1.
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

OsteopathicHopeful

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So @baxt1412 , Do you plan on getting a DO lor? I saw that you didn't have one yet. I think that would help you in your situation. At this point anything that will help you get in I would do....
 

baxt1412

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So @baxt1412 , Do you plan on getting a DO lor? I saw that you didn't have one yet. I think that would help you in your situation. At this point anything that will help you get in I would do....
I have only a few hours of DO shadowing so I don't think that a letter from him would be beneficial since I have to imagine it would be very impersonal and I'm sure ADCOMS see right through that.

I don't know... I know I didn't apply to any schools that require DO letters (obviously), but only 2 of my 14 schools "strongly recommend" a DO letter according to https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AkQjgkrQwlmCdDdPRG15djh5NGJfRFhoVWdLdVJIaFE&hl=en#gid=0

Those 2 schools are PCOM and PCOM-GA. Therefore, I feel pretty confident. I am including that I got DO shadowing since submitting in my secondaries.
 

iWillOneDay

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I have only a few hours of DO shadowing so I don't think that a letter from him would be beneficial since I have to imagine it would be very impersonal and I'm sure ADCOMS see right through that.

I don't know... I know I didn't apply to any schools that require DO letters (obviously), but only 2 of my 14 schools "strongly recommend" a DO letter according to https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AkQjgkrQwlmCdDdPRG15djh5NGJfRFhoVWdLdVJIaFE&hl=en#gid=0

Those 2 schools are PCOM and PCOM-GA. Therefore, I feel pretty confident. I am including that I got DO shadowing since submitting in my secondaries.
any DO letter is beneficial, as long as they aren't negative.
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

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any DO letter is beneficial, as long as they aren't negative.
I agree....The way I look at it is if your applying to a DO school, you should have a DO vouch for you....even if it simply says "baxt1414 shadowed me and was very pleasant, seemed very engaged and interested in the osteopathic philosophy. I would feel very comfortable with him as a colleague."
@baxt1412
 

baxt1412

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hmmm... I guess I will get in contact with him then pending if Goro has anything to say (no offense to any of you guys)
 

Goro

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We understand that many doctors are hard-pressed for time enough to allow you to shadow or chat wioth them about a career in Medicine, and so having them take time to sit down and write a LOR can be taxing for some of them. Hence, even a generic LOR is OK. Having a DO LOR is good because it shows you took an extra effort to find a DO to talk to.

Really? I've heard that generic letters are potentially negative.

@Goro any input?
 

drcabbie

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Hello all
I received my MCAT score and it was a low 22. I applied to Osteopathic schools and my application is still processing. I do have a high GPA from a lower tier Ivy league, (3.7 science and a 3.8 overall) and I wanted to know my chances of getting in. Seeing that my aamcomas app is still processing it wont be finished until mid October. I am signed up for the November MCAT but I think its too soon to try to improve on my score. I think I want to wait and take the January MCAT but the results wont come out till February and I think that would be too late for even DO schools. I'm not sure whether to give up on Osteopathic schools and try for Carribean. I would love some advice. Thanks!
 

baxt1412

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We understand that many doctors are hard-pressed for time enough to allow you to shadow or chat wioth them about a career in Medicine, and so having them take time to sit down and write a LOR can be taxing for some of them. Hence, even a generic LOR is OK. Having a DO LOR is good because it shows you took an extra effort to find a DO to talk to.
Thank you very much, I will get in contact with him ASAP.

I am planning on talking to the schools individually, but many of them state that they only require a Physician letter and then usually a pre-med committee letter (which doesn't exist at my school) or in place of that, two or three letters from faculty (which I have). I am going to ask them if additional letters can be sent, and if they can help my application because I have an MD letter from a very established physician who is head of pediatric transplant and the assistant dean at an allo COM, and with whom I have shadowed on rounds and in the OR for ~50+ hours, that I believe will be an *incredible* letter.

If they will not allow additional letters, do I send the DO letter? If they do allow multiple letters, I will send both.

TLDR - if they only allow one physician letter, do I send the most likely neutral DO letter even though I think the MD letter is going to be amazing?
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

OsteopathicHopeful

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Thank you very much, I will get in contact with him ASAP.

I am planning on talking to the schools individually, but many of them state that they only require a Physician letter and then usually a pre-med committee letter (which doesn't exist at my school) or in place of that, two or three letters from faculty (which I have). I am going to ask them if additional letters can be sent, and if they can help my application because I have an MD letter from a very established physician who is head of pediatric transplant and the assistant dean at an allo COM, and with whom I have shadowed on rounds and in the OR for ~50+ hours, that I believe will be an *incredible* letter.

If they will not allow additional letters, do I send the DO letter? If they do allow multiple letters, I will send both.

TLDR - if they only allow one physician letter, do I send the most likely neutral DO letter even though I think the MD letter is going to be amazing?
If the schools don't require it and you can't send another letter or it is discouraged, I wouldn't worry about it. If the schools will accept another letter then a DO letter will help
 
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baxt1412

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If the schools don't require it and you can't send another letter or it is discouraged, I wouldn't worry about it. If the schools will accept another letter then a DO letter will help
That's sort of what I was thinking. If they only accept one, I think having a potentially incredible MD letter could > a neutral DO letter. I am including my recent, albeit short, DO shadowing in secondaries, so hopefully the schools that will only allow one letter (which will be my MD letter preferably) will see that in my secondary.
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

OsteopathicHopeful

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That's sort of what I was thinking. If they only accept one, I think having a potentially incredible MD letter could > a neutral DO letter. I am including my recent, albeit short, DO shadowing in secondaries, so hopefully the schools that will only allow one letter (which will be my MD letter preferably) will see that in my secondary.
I'm, again, in the same boat. I have a stellar MD letter that have been a surgical assist for for 5 years. I am using his because it will be so good. I'm using the DO letter simply because of logistics
 

Goro

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Most DO schools are OK with MD LORs (like mine is) but a having a DO l LOR always helps.

The MD schools seem to be more unforgiving of NOT having a committee LOR. But all med schools recognize that not all colleges have pre-med or pre-professional committees.

And most schools are OK with extra LORs.

I know that this is an anxiety-provoking process...you'll get through it.

Thank you very much, I will get in contact with him ASAP.

I am planning on talking to the schools individually, but many of them state that they only require a Physician letter and then usually a pre-med committee letter (which doesn't exist at my school) or in place of that, two or three letters from faculty (which I have). I am going to ask them if additional letters can be sent, and if they can help my application because I have an MD letter from a very established physician who is head of pediatric transplant and the assistant dean at an allo COM, and with whom I have shadowed on rounds and in the OR for ~50+ hours, that I believe will be an *incredible* letter.

If they will not allow additional letters, do I send the DO letter? If they do allow multiple letters, I will send both.

TLDR - if they only allow one physician letter, do I send the most likely neutral DO letter even though I think the MD letter is going to be amazing?
 

baxt1412

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Most DO schools are OK with MD LORs (like mine is) but a having a DO l LOR always helps.

The MD schools seem to be more unforgiving of NOT having a committee LOR. But all med schools recognize that not all colleges have pre-med or pre-professional committees.

And most schools are OK with extra LORs.

I know that this is an anxiety-provoking process...you'll get through it.
I called the DOs assistant and she didn't think he would have any reservations about writing a positive letter. I emailed him and will be waiting to hear back.

Thanks guys.

Goro do you think sending extra letters to a school would ever be a negative? Maybe if it was like 10 letters I could see it being negative, but I'm just trying to figure out if I need to contact all 14 of my schools to make sure that additional letters will be okay or not and just send both physician LORs.

Thanks again! Happy friday!!!!!!
 

Goro

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Only if the school has a specific limit.
Goro do you think sending extra letters to a school would ever be a negative? Maybe if it was like 10 letters I could see it being negative, but I'm just trying to figure out if I need to contact all 14 of my schools to make sure that additional letters will be okay or not and just send both physician LORs.
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

OsteopathicHopeful

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Hey guys/gals,

I know I don't technically qualify for MCAT 24 or below but wanted to say it is possible to get into medical school with a less than "stellar" score. I've only been on SDN for a few months but wanted to provide some positive encouragement to those that might not have the MCAT score they had hoped for before or while applying to school. I earned a 25 with a relatively unbalanced score (6/10/9) but received my first acceptance about two weeks ago. I'm a non-trad and this is something I have been working towards for the past eight years (first-time applicant).
congratulations!! I hope to have similar news in the future!
 

user3

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Hello all
I received my MCAT score and it was a low 22. I applied to Osteopathic schools and my application is still processing. I do have a high GPA from a lower tier Ivy league, (3.7 science and a 3.8 overall) and I wanted to know my chances of getting in. Seeing that my aamcomas app is still processing it wont be finished until mid October. I am signed up for the November MCAT but I think its too soon to try to improve on my score. I think I want to wait and take the January MCAT but the results wont come out till February and I think that would be too late for even DO schools. I'm not sure whether to give up on Osteopathic schools and try for Carribean. I would love some advice. Thanks!
apply to LMU, ACOM, WVSOM, KYCOM, VCOM-Auburn, PNWU, COMP-NW, PCOM-GA, WCU, and SOMA. Chances are still in your favor (>50%). I cannot recommend LUCOM.
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

OsteopathicHopeful

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apply to LMU, ACOM, WVSOM, KYCOM, VCOM-Auburn, PNWU, COMP-NW, PCOM-GA, WCU, and SOMA. Chances are still in your favor (>50%). I cannot recommend LUCOM.
Really..... >50%???? I scored a 22 as well. I have a decent GPA though.....c3.44 and s3.65
where did you get that stat....really curious?
 

Drrrrrr. Celty

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I'll be honest though, if you have a 22, you really need to be considering retaking to at least a 24. DO school may not be as competitive as MD, but it gets more and more competitive every year. The cycle is long and with minimal studying you should be at least at a 24.
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

OsteopathicHopeful

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I'll be honest though, if you have a 22, you really need to be considering retaking to at least a 24. DO school may not be as competitive as MD, but it gets more and more competitive every year. The cycle is long and with minimal studying you should be at least at a 24.
I'm fully aware that I am not a competitive applicant because of my low MCAT scores.....That is why I'm in the underdog forum for low MCAT :rolleyes:. Problem is I am a father, husband, work 3 jobs, and am in school full-time. I don't have time to retake the MCAT this cycle. I am waiting to see what happens with this cycle and if I don't get an acceptance then I'll have to take the new MCAT and apply next cycle.
Plus you act like I didn't study hard for the MCAT, "The cycle is long and with minimal studying you should be at least at a 24." I studied about 7 hours a day all summer long for this damn test and I still got a 22. I realize that maybe a more intelligent person can take the test with minimal studying and do better, but for me that is apparently not the case. If I have to retake the MCAT I need more time and will need to learn more effective ways of preparing for it.
 

Drrrrrr. Celty

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Who knows, but the point is that it's dangerous to apply with a 22 for many reasons. Namely that reapplying is going to expect more.
 

iWillOneDay

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I'm fully aware that I am not a competitive applicant because of my low MCAT scores.....That is why I'm in the underdog forum for low MCAT :rolleyes:. Problem is I am a father, husband, work 3 jobs, and am in school full-time. I don't have time to retake the MCAT this cycle. I am waiting to see what happens with this cycle and if I don't get an acceptance then I'll have to take the new MCAT and apply next cycle.
Plus you act like I didn't study hard for the MCAT, "The cycle is long and with minimal studying you should be at least at a 24." I studied about 7 hours a day all summer long for this damn test and I still got a 22. I realize that maybe a more intelligent person can take the test with minimal studying and do better, but for me that is apparently not the case. If I have to retake the MCAT I need more time and will need to learn more effective ways of preparing for it.
I don't think serenade intended in a bad way. I feel you. I don't have a good mcat score either. But I'll tell you one thing if I may, studying long hours doesn't mean you are studying smart. If you study smart, you don't have to study ridiculous hours.
I personally would advise you not to apply this cycle. If you do, you'll have to change up ur personal statement and "improve" someway or another. And i don't know if bringing up mcat by a couple point will be a sufficient improvement to show schools. I have no idea.

Just offering my opinion.
 
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Shinobiz11

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Hey guys. You can see all my stuff in my MDapps. I'm pretty well-rounded like the rest of you, just that one huge blip and on my app. I hate my MCAT score lol 24(8/6/10). I only had enough money to choose between applying to more schools and retaking so I went with the first. So far I'm wait listed at MUCOM, hold at ATSU, one rejection (Oakland) and everyone else has been silent lol. If I don't hear anything else from my schools this week I am going to apply to more; LECOM, WVSOM, and thinking about DMU (might have a chance).

I hear y'all regarding DO letters. Mine is literally a sentence, but I don't blame the 75-year old doc lol. Also like Goro said, it depends on the school. MSUCOM rep told me they don't want weak letters, they would prefer a great letter even if its from your boss or volunteer coordinator.

Wish y'all the best of luck. 22 is pretty low but I'd say roll with it for now if you explained your situation to the schools. You never know when they'll give you a chance.
 
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OsteopathicHopeful

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Who knows, but the point is that it's dangerous to apply with a 22 for many reasons. Namely that reapplying is going to expect more.
I've already spent so much money.....i can't withdraw now....just my opinion
 

Drrrrrr. Celty

Osteo Dullahan
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I am very confident he will receive an acceptance, eventually. Likely to LMU, WVSOM, VCOM, or KYCOM.
LMU's averages are 3.4/27. WVSOM is very IS heavy and is 3.5/25. VCOM is likewise heavily favoring towards a particular region, but is potentially a shot. . KYCOM is 3.X/24-25. All of them are however above a 22.


Truth is that averages are going up catastrophically. I won't be surprised if they're up again this year.
 

Shinobiz11

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LMU's averages are 3.4/27. WVSOM is very IS heavy and is 3.5/25. VCOM is likewise heavily favoring towards a particular region, but is potentially a shot. . KYCOM is 3.X/24-25. All of them are however above a 22.


Truth is that averages are going up catastrophically. I won't be surprised if they're up again this year.
WVSOM is only IS heavy because their OOS tuition is ridiculous
 

Drrrrrr. Celty

Osteo Dullahan
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WVSOM is only IS heavy because their OOS tuition is ridiculous
You're thinking MSU. WVSOM is only marginally more expensive than the average and schools like MWU are already more expensive.
Now factor in cost of living and WVSOM becomes relatively center costs.