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Jan 14, 2004
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Does anyone know if certain schools grant deferrals? I have been accepted to a number of med schools, but am thinking about deferring entrance for 1 or more years.

I saw a list circulating another posting that listed "Schools with a lot of waitlist movement" and "Schools with little-to-no waitlist movement".

Is there a similar list for schools that have been known to grant deferrals to accepted applicants? If so, what are valid reasons that students cite for requesting the deferral?
Which of these reasons have worked, and which fail?

Are there specific schools that NEVER or RARELY grant deferrals? Which schools are more flexible? Why?
Is this at all based on whether a particular school is public or private? What about the Ivy medical schools?

Any help much appreciated!!



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I deferred for one year after be admitted to enter straight from undergrad. I went through the entire application process with every intent to defer once the opportunity presented itself. When I was accepted, I promplty contacted the administration and asked how I deferred, but in the mean time continued the matriculation paperwork. I simply stated that I needed time off to relax (obviously worded much better) and that I would continue working fulltime as a chemist (which I had done during undergrad). I had to submit my wish in writing, but I was more or less told to have fun. In Jan/Feb I had to submit a new AMCAS application as a formality along with a letter stating my intent to matriculate. The whole process was very easy. A few of my med school classmates had done the same thing. One traveled around South America with little aim and another had an irrelevant job (part time at a book store, I think). While my data set is not very large, I have not heard of anyone who wanted to defer but wasn't allowed to.

Something about your post makes your situation sound a bit sketchy to me. I'm not sure what it is, however. You can not ask for a deferral until you have accepted admission to a school, and once you have accepted admission, the rules of play state you also must withdrawal all active applications and pending admission offers. Given that it IS April already, if you have more than one admission offer, you should kindly reject all but one since I'm sure there are many people on waiting lists, sitting on pins and needles. You should accept admission based on where you'd like to go to medical school, NOT based on where you are likely to get a deferral especially since I believe most schools will grant deferrals for any reasonable request.


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I saw your other post about Michigan. Know that it is highly unlikely (almost impossible) to defer if you are coming off the waiting list at a school. The reason that LOIs are suggested is that schools want to take students off the waitlist that are almost surely to accept the offer--for that class, not the next one.
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Dr Scorpio

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Apr 6, 2004
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I was accepted off the waitlist at my med school and deferred for one year. The process was very simple: My pre-med advisor contacted the school without giving my identity and got a feel for the process. I sent a letter stating my reasons (death in the family, needed time to recoop) and they replied with stipulations of the deferral (I could only apply to that school the next year, had to apply by a certain time, etc).

I know that some schools, such as Creighton, do not allow deferrals. Princeton Review's "Complete book of Medical Schools" breaks down which schools allow deferrals.

I would recommend having your advisor contact the adcom at the school you want to defer if they are willing and able.

Hope this helps.
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