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Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by MTY, Jul 26, 2000.

  1. MTY

    MTY

    arti,
    i thank you for your assistance and advice that you have given to many medical applicants. your advice, most of time, sounds very optimistic especially compare to some of the med advisor i've heard.

    since i don't have a current pre-med advisor, i rely alot on this website for opinion and insights.

    i'd like to know what's your honest opinion on how does adcom select their students? from the words that i've heard from some pre-med advisors, it seems like number/grades play far more important then the essays or other activities for which they consider minuscule. they made me feel like only 30+ and 3.50+ applicants can get to the doors of the med school.

    what is your adv or opinion on this issue?

    by the way, congrat on your entrance to cornell. best luck to you in the future.

    mty
     
  2. Arti

    Arti Member
    10+ Year Member

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    MTY:

    Thank you for the compliment.

    Please take everything I write here with a big grain of salt, since it is based only on my experience and those of my friends.

    Grades and MCATs are definetly important when it comes to the admissions process, the reason that they are important is because the admissions committee needs to know that you will be able to handle the information and concepts presented to you in medical school and beyond. However what considered good grades/MCAts is by no means a set issue, I would consinder any one with 3.0-4.0 and average MCATs to be perfectly well prepared, and this is the reason why people with average and below average stats do get accepted into medical schools, and in fact quite often. So having good grades and decent MCAT scores is important, but these things really only qualify you for further consideration.

    I think what makes the admission's officer select you out of 10,000 other applicants is in fact your essay, supported by your exracuricular activites. So many people apply with nearly perfect GPA and MCATs yet they spend no time on their essays and thus they are not able to show Adcoms their individuality, personality and maturity. These things/qualities have to be reflected in your essay. It is not even what you write but more importantly how you write it. The admissions people need to get a feeling of who you are from your essay because they will be inviting a human being not a paper full of stats to the interview and to their school. The essay in fact is the last "gate" you have to walk through to get accepted. And many times the gate keepers will reject very well qualified applicants because they are just not able to get that glimpse of the person who is writing the essay.

    I had a chance to read a collection of essays before I was applying, and even as
    an untrained reader I could pick out the ones
    that wer able to reflect these qualities and also the ones that reflected nothing but a page full of words. I could not do the same with my own essay (most writers can't) so I had to give it to read to maybe 20 people for feedback. One guy, a good friend, just laughed at my rough drafts and that was acctually very helpfull because I knew that as a whole the essay did not flow. Once he stopped laughing, I submitted my AMCAS.

    In addition to essay the second thing I think
    that is most important is to show the admission committee an involvement in some activity for a prolonged amount of time (best if more than a year). You could work at Harvard Med/MGH for the summer and it would definetly not look as good as doing a year and a half long project (or volunteer) with some one from university NW (no where), esspecially if that someone writes you a solid letter of support. Medical school is long, residency is long and you will have to show the Adcoms that you have the endurance to handle "long" things. Such experiences, be it research/volunteer/work/sports or whatever is the best way to show that you have what it takes.

    Lastly third most important is your rec letters. Make sure that in your gut you know that you mentors are writing you solid letters, if you can't gauge that you can go ahead and ask them - "will you write me a good letter". There is nothing worse that a bad rec letter. Friend of mine (2nd year in medical school in California) reviews student files and once he told me about a rec letter that went a little something like this.

    I think "Jim" is now ready to go ahead and apply for medical school, before "Jim"
    was doing it just for the money and prestige but now I think he is doing for the right reason.

    That was it- four lines, and Jim did not look too good.

    To get accepted your entire package needs to be pretty solid, but to say that MCATs and GPAs alone are the most important is maybe true in only very small percentage of schools. Look at median GPAs for top 50 schools (excluding a few) it is about 3.4-3.6 (MCAT 30), this means that about 50% of class had GPAs/MCATs lower than that. Why do you think they got in????? There is more to this than just stats.

    Hope this helps.

    Good Luck
    Arti

     
  3. MTY

    MTY

    arti,
    thanks for your detailed and valuable info on applying to med school.

    just base on your msg, i can see that you will be a great doc in helping your patients. hey, keep up the 'attitude'. [​IMG]

    again, thanks a million.

     
  4. DOman

    DOman Member
    10+ Year Member

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    Arti- you are cool. Can you be my big sis?
    j/k about that..but you are really knwledgeable person. Best of LUCk to you!
     

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