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Help/advice on ways to improve my profile(MCAT=34R, GPA=3.6, BCPM=3.5)

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by batman1983, Mar 5, 2007.

  1. batman1983

    batman1983 10+ Year Member

    Mar 4, 2007

    My Profile:
    MCAT=34R, P=10, V=11, B=13
    UC Berkeley
    Extracir= 1 yr volunteering at Hospital and with Sports Medicine Program, many jobs (had to support myself and family during college), fraternity, government organization, created a tutoring company, lots of tutoring experience
    Biggest Negative= Lack of research experience due to the fact that I had to work 30-40 hr weeks for jobs

    First time poster, I just found out about this site from a friend. Glad to see so many people, like myself, that are interested in medicine and willing to help others out(totally different than the overly competitive environment of UCB)
    As for myself, I am currently applying to medical school after having graduated in May 2006 from UC Berkeley with dual degrees. I took the MCAT in August 2006, and upon finding out my score in October, decided on applying to med school for this year (sent out the secondaries by December-early Jan). Like yourselves and probably many others from CA, I applied to 30+ schools (including all the UCs, and most of the schools were not top-tier), and received secondaries from all, except UCSF. Unfortunately, after having spent thousands of dollars on apps, I did not receive any interviews, and am getting really disappointed and frustrated by this process. If possible, I would like to get peoples' advice and recommendations onto my profile, maybe possible areas of improvement and suggestions. I have thought about retaking the MCAT again, since I did not do as well on the physical section as I wanted or could have achieved, and probably can improve by 2-3 pts. But, I am wondering if going from a 34 to a 36/37 range will really make much of a difference, especially with the amount of work that must go into studying for the MCATs.

    Furthermore, a friend suggested that the main reason I might not have received any interviews was due to the fact that I applied relatively late in the process, even though, I sent out my completed secondaries 1.5-2 months before the deadlines for most of the schools. Is there any truth to this theory, and if so, will applying early in June/July for the next cycle really improve my chances?

    Thanks for the help and suggestions, as well as reading about my frustrations about this whole process.

    -Frustrated Premed Applicant.
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  3. nutster

    nutster Rarrr! 5+ Year Member

    Jun 20, 2006
    The sticky up at the top of this forum is probably your best bet. Based on a quick glance at the info you gave, the fact you applied late is likely the reason you haven't heard anything yet. Have you been rejected from schools, or simply heard nothing? Regardless of an institution's deadline, many of these schools utilize rolling admission; sort of first-come, first-served. If you just haven't heard anything from many schools, don't despair just yet, as the interviews are not over.

    Don't bother retaking the MCAT; your score is fine.
  4. sirus_virus

    sirus_virus nonsense poster 2+ Year Member

    Nov 6, 2006
    Apply to a lot of schools early and you will be fine.
  5. UMP

    UMP Recovered Under-Achiever 7+ Year Member

    Aug 27, 2004
    considering how late you sent back your secondaries, you might still get some more interviews. I applied pretty late myself, and I just got an interview invite today for example. It takes a while for everyone to get to your file.
  6. Captain Fantastic

    Captain Fantastic Physician 10+ Year Member

    Mar 28, 2005
    Mizzou Med
    Your GPA is average for matriculants but your MCAT is well above. With a 34, retaking the MCAT is a fools' errand. My take? The late application sunk you.

    What is your GPA trend? Over the past two-three semesters has your GPA been high/improving or is it slipping with the advanced courses? Of course you just have this semester to do anything about it before the '08 cycle begins.

    I bet if you submit early (June/July) you'll find luck next year. Shadowing would be a nice addition to your volunteering for a more robust perspective on medicine.
  7. Droopy Snoopy

    Droopy Snoopy 7+ Year Member

    Apr 3, 2006
    The Alamo
    Applying early is key, but the cycle isn't over yet. Otherwise the things you list should get you in somewhere. It takes a lot of work to pull up a gpa, and yours looks about average for accepted applicants. Don't retake the MCAT unless you're confident (based on having more study time, practice exam results, etc.) you can pull up at least 1 point on each section.
  8. Stroganoff

    Stroganoff Nice marmot. Rocket Scientist 10+ Year Member

    Nov 6, 2003
    If you don't get in this year, can you bump up your P to a 12-14? Do full-time research this coming year while applying insanely early. You'll get in.
  9. tacrum43

    tacrum43 Behold the mighty echidna 7+ Year Member

    Oct 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    Apply early really, REALLY helps, as does quickly returning secondaries once you receive them. I would imagine if you reapply next year, you should have no problem getting interviews (unless there's some mark on your record or something like cheating).
  10. Soccer885

    Soccer885 Senior Member 2+ Year Member

    Jun 6, 2006
    Don't retake the MCAT, I don't think it will help at all. I would say your main problem is you applied so late. If you were to apply early in the next cycle, I am sure you will get plenty of interviews. Don't give up hope! I think your stats are good enough to get you in!
  11. NonTradMed

    NonTradMed Perpetual Student 7+ Year Member

    Your stats at first glance is fine. The fact that you applied late is not. Sending out secondaries a couple months before the deadline is LATE. I can't stress this enough, competitive applicants stand to lose ALOT if they apply LATE. The reason is because med school classes fills up near the first half of the semester than the adcoms becomes very picky about who they pick for interviews.

    Your MCAT is a great score. Retaking is a BAD IDEA, mainly b/c once you hit the mid-30's, the difference between a single point is a few questions which can be hit or miss----you could end up with a lower MCAT score.

    Since you applied so late, many schools have probably not gotten to you yet so you will need to wait. You'll probably get a few interviews but there's no guarantee of an acceptance. If you don't get in this year, just apply EARLY next year. Most people sent out all their stuff by August. And yes, that makes a huge difference in when you get interviews and will influence your chances of getting in. This is especially true for people who do not have 'instate friendly' med schools and have to depend on out of state med schools with many times the application to look through than the average instate med school.

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