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Fooling myself?

Discussion in 'Nontraditional Students' started by lainey234, Apr 11, 2007.

  1. lainey234

    lainey234 Member 7+ Year Member

    Jan 19, 2006
    Out of the cold
    I just went through and actually figured out what my AMCAS GPA will be if I apply this year. In spite of getting a 4.0 while taking O-Chem, Physics and Bio this year I will wind up with a 2.87 BCPM 3.0 I would like to apply this year and I have always thought it was optimistic to do so, but with those numbers it seems crazy. I don't have my MCAT back yet so not sure how much of a help that will be.

    Any thoughts? I can afford the application process so that is not an issue, but if I don't get it and have to re-apply will it look bad?
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  3. aspirationMD

    aspirationMD Rookie of the Year 2+ Year Member

    Mar 24, 2007
    I have NOT been there yet, but I strongly encourage you to take more classes to bring your GPA up. Aside from your GPA you don't mention any EC's, and you still don't know what your MCAT score is. Taking some time to build a better gpa and getting a good EC resume will benefit you. Like I said though, I haven't gone through this stage yet, but personally if I have less then a 3.5-6 I won't bother applying to med school, not because I wouldn't have the money, but because I would feel like I should do better then that. I have no clue yet what kind of GPA I will have when i finish my undergrad, obviously I'm going to attempt a high GPA, but lots of things can happen along the way. The best thing to do is try and improve, then apply, when you feel you are in the best position to do so.
  4. OncoCaP

    OncoCaP 2+ Year Member

    Aug 28, 2006
    Houston, Texas
    Continue taking classes ... you need to get your GPAs up.
  5. Flopotomist

    Flopotomist I love the Chicago USPS 7+ Year Member

    May 22, 2005
    Before you spend thousands applying, spend $25 on an MSAR and look at how many people were successful with those numbers.
  6. Kateb4

    Kateb4 7+ Year Member

    Nov 28, 2006
    Are you open to a DO program??
  7. lainey234

    lainey234 Member 7+ Year Member

    Jan 19, 2006
    Out of the cold
    I have the MSAR, I realize it is an uphill battle no matter whether I apply this year or next. I have an UG from 12 yrs ago with a whopping 2.6. I've been working my rear off trying to make up for it. Full, rigorous load this year (all A's), volunterring at my local hospital, shadowing a physician, doing everything I can think of to expose myself more to the field and become a better candidate all while I try and be a good mom to two young kids and a reasonably good wife. It has not been easy, I don't expect it to be. My only question is really whether it is hopeless for this cycle.

    The issue of course is that with 145 hours of mediocrity it is next to impossible to raise your gpa significantly. Even after another full year I will just barely break the 3.0 mark. What I am counting on is that adcoms will see that it has been a long time since my first go round and recognize that I have matured and am capable now.

    I'm considering getting a CNA certificate this summer as well so that next year I can work part time to gain more exposure. I guess I was just a bit thrown by how bad my transcript really was. It had been a long time since I went through it and it was ugly. As for DO, I would like to try 1 or 2 cycles for MD first and then consider DO after that, jusy my personal preference.
  8. njbmd

    njbmd Guest Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

    May 30, 2001
    Gone Walkabout!
    Nothing is "hopeless" but the average GPA for matriculants for 2005 was 3.6 and average MCAT was 30. Those numbers have increased every year and are likely to continue to do so. You already know that you are well under those numbers. You also know that with 145 hours, you will need a significant number of credit hours of A to offset enough to raise that GPA. You can calculate what you need and figure out how long it will take you to get at least above 3.0 to 3.4 or so. Below that number, the chances of getting an acceptance really drop sharply allopathic or osteopathic.

    We do look at upward progression and we do take into consideration later coursework done after a "youthful" slow-start. You recent excellent coursework will be taken into consideration but beware of schools that automatically screen by undergrad GPA and do not apply to them. Osteopathic schools will substitute recent retakes of courses and thus you are likely to have a much higher GPA if you apply to osteopathic schools as opposed to allopathic.

    Application to DO schools (osteopathic) is a very good option for you. Applying "a couple of cycles" to allopathic would likely not net you any acceptances when you could be a second-year osteopathic medical student halfway to residency. The question you have to ask yourself is "Do you want to become a physician or are you more concerned with the initials behind your name?" If you wish to practice medicine, DO is currently your best shot.

    If you have a MSAR, you can see that allopathic schools can be quite unforgiving of a low undergraduate GPA even if your MCAT is wonderful.

    Good luck!
  9. swissmiss

    swissmiss 2+ Year Member

    Dec 1, 2006
    Just speaking from personal experience, so I have no insight as to how adcomms think but if this is helpful:
    I had about a 2.3 BCPM and <3.0 overall gpa. I am also several years out of undergrad. I did a SMP at BU (I don't think this is necessary though if you've been doing rigorous science classes) and next year I will be a med student! If I'd had it to do over again, I may not have done the SMP (ridiculously expensive). I think I would have just taken classes at Harvard Extension School or something as others have had success with that route.

    The things that worked in my favor: being several years away from my undergrad, doing a lot of research (I have a lot of publications), proven commitment to and interest in medicine (worked for a long time doing medical research). I also had a lot of clinical experience in hospitals. I applied to places like Albany, Drexel, and Tulane and have had success. Best wishes to you!!
  10. Chrissy

    Chrissy Senior Member 5+ Year Member

    Jun 16, 2005
    Just wanted to throw in my two cents....there's a lot of posts on here like this inquring about low GPA's....while the OP's GPA is likely too low for allopathic schools I don't necessarily agree with the advice to take classes until it rises to average levels for accepted students. Speaking as a non-trad post bacc....a GPA of 3.0 would take another 2-3 full years to do that...I would definitely take more classes, but not necessarily until it gets to a 3.4-5....take enough (maybe 7-10) until you can show a very strong upward trend. Most post bacc students who are doing damage control never get their GPA up to 3.5....very often their overall remains around 3.0 while showing a year or two of A's. According to a med school adcom rep that spoke to our post bacc program..."we realize things happen and people change....but we need to know that you can do well now"
  11. lainey234

    lainey234 Member 7+ Year Member

    Jan 19, 2006
    Out of the cold
    I appreciate all the feedback I've gotten, both there and in PM's. I intend to take classes next year regardless of whether I apply this year or not. I have always assumed I would not get in this first go round and will continue to improve my app as best I can. By the end of next year I will hopefully have two solid years of A's and will just break the 3.0 mark. Going beyond that seems futile, I will never get above 3.5 overall. Sometimes it just gets overwhelming, it seems that if I am willing to go 150k - 200k in debt to pursue this, someone ought to give me a shot! :laugh:

    Thanks for the support, I love the nontrads here. The pre-allo forum gets a bit gritty for me, but I generally count on this forum to be more level headed. I will keep you posted, I've come this far I certainly am not going to quit now.
  12. MJB

    MJB Senior Member Physician Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2005
    As someone that just went through an application cycle I would HIGHLY recommend you take a look at DO after looking at your numbers.

    I used to think...oh....they'll give me a shot because I've done real well in my post-bacc work (4.0)...

    I don't want to be harsh, so I'll leave it at that. Good luck to you.

    Now, if you get something like a 36+ on the MCAT, it MIGHT be a different story.
  13. public5656

    public5656 Banned Banned

    Mar 9, 2007
    Just go the DO route man. Don't bother spending a good 2-5 years trying to get into a allopath school when you can get into a DO school much easier.
  14. unsung

    unsung 10+ Year Member

    Mar 12, 2007
    I did a search on MDapplicants for applicants from my alma mater (a top 10 university), and to my surprise, found successful applicants with a wide range of GPAs. In fact, one successful applicant to Pritzker had a 3.0 GPA (similar for BPCM) and a 29 MCAT. S/he was also the president of the pre-med association at my school! I was honestly like wtf when I saw her list of acceptances!

    Then again, at my school, a 3.25 gets you on the Dean's List, due to the lack of grade inflation...

    Anyway, I think it is a myth that you can't get into medical school without a 3.5+ GPA. It DOES depend on the prestige factor of your undergrad school and it DOES depend on courseload/rigor of course selection.

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