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Sep 4, 2006
Inside the tesseract
A 3.6 cGPA is reasonably competitive, but ending on a downward trend academically could hurt you. How low were the GPAs of your last two semesters?

You need more physician shadowing; can you get this in? Also, the clinical experience is slightly low, and if not recent should be upgraded with current experience before you apply.

The research is the minimum, and better than nothing. The clubs won't help at all. The listed "work" and "volunteer" stuff may save your application and lift it above the mundane. Could you give more detail about time spent? You have some interesting activities.

Average age of matriculants is 24, so you're not old yet.

How "OK" was the last MCAT score?


Bad Medicine
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Apr 14, 2009
Medical Student
What are MY chances? Anybody who can make an educated, informed guess? (Hopefully someone who has "been through it".)

I have been really interested in going to medical school since my sophomore/junior year. I turned to academics in university, plus work due to financial hardship. Only after graduation did I seriously go about applying for medical school. This is my pre-med CV, so to speak:

1. Hospital or clinic volunteer experience (total about ONE HUNDRED hours, throughout 1.2 years) doing adminstrative work in a university affiliated hospital, working on the floor with patients and nurses, referring and accompanying homeless in a clinic, and briefly shadowing a physician in organ transplant.

2. Lab research experience, for ONE semester, under a university nutrition professor, I screened medical articles to support his drug research and helped out in a nutrition study on rodents, during my junior year.

3. Academics: B.S. in a science major, cumulative GPA ~3.6, depending how they calculate it, it might be higher. My letter of recommendation writers are pretty good quality, I either got a national award as a novice, or did in the top 20% of an extremely challenging class.

4. Honors in some extracurriculars, like a national award in public speaking (totally non pre-med students there), a state championship for sports.

5. Clubs: I briefly joined a Pre-med club, then joined a couple honor societies. But I DIDN'T continue into my junior and senior years with this.

6. Other work and volunteer, like tutoring, managing for work in college (to make $), helping out elderly immigrants, international volunteer in Latin America, mentoring as a Big Sister, tutoring, teaching abroad, etc.

I took the MCAT between junior and senior year, got an OK score. I didn't apply then, though. My senior year shows a DIP in grades, esp the chemistry and bio ones, due to some personal, financial and family crises. However, I didn't apply until recently (for this 2010 application season), since I took almost a year off after my graduation (in 2008) for family issues and full-time study abroad, returning in early 2009. Right now, I am part-time working (non medical related, too bad), after trying to work in a volatile-chemicals lab where I grew sensitive to the chemicals, so much for that (and I am a CHEMISTRY major, too bad again). Now it's the 2010 application season. I am re-taking the MCAT in a few months, since I feel I could do WAY better with a little more prep. So, long story short, I was REALLY pre-medical, got sidetracked by academics and work during college, and am re-pursuing my dream. Gosh, I feel hecka "old".....

I am applying "two years out", that is, two years AFTER graduation. What are MY chances?
1. Try and get a little bit more clinical experience
2. 1 semester of research isn't really worth much, you might want to add to that if you have the time.
3. 3.6 is a good gpa for mid tier schools. You could do some post-bac classes to make up for the downward trend and you should be just fine.
4. your nonmedical volunteering is good.

Just try and get a 30+ on the MCAT and you should have a good shot at getting into med school.

By the way, taking a 2 year gap does not make you old at all. Actually it makes you average :]


I wish I were a dentist
7+ Year Member
Jan 22, 2010
The "Garden" State
Resident [Any Field]
You're average, I'm young, and Cat is old.

I would say your resume needs a bit more clinical experience. The GPA is fine. You probably forgot everything on the MCAT, so study for that.