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Help. Can I Still Become A Doctor? Or Are My Dreams Shattered?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by harold56, Jun 18, 2008.

  1. harold56

    harold56 2+ Year Member

    Jun 18, 2008
    hello all,

    I attend a renowned university (in the top 100 list) but my freshman year was a disaster. Meaning, 2.5 gpa first semster and 3.0 2nd semester.. i didnt do well in bio class but i am retaking it, and retaking any classes that i can to boost up my gpa. ive had alot going on and i was working fulltime. i am a smart kid but i just got dealt a shi*ty hand.

    i really dont have any more options left but to get my self straight and carry on and aim for the highest possible in the upcoming years (2 i believe)

    but what i would like to know is .. say hypothetically speaking,

    it was 3.1 GPA freshman year
    and 3.8 2nd and third.

    will i still be able to get into medical school? or am i chasing the wrong dream? :(

    anything i can do make sure that i still can apply and be an ideal medical student candidate?

    any advice, help, suggestions and comments will be more than appreciated so please help.

    Thank you.
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  3. HoboCommander

    HoboCommander 7+ Year Member

    Sep 30, 2007
    you could always just go to the carribean. or get 4.0GPA your 3rd and 4th year and apply after your 4th year, and also ace your MCATs and get really good clinical experience.
  4. aaj117

    aaj117 7+ Year Member

    Jul 5, 2007

    It's freshman year. Just improve. Totally fine. I screwed up freshman and sophomore year royally, after my sophomore year my gpa was still in the 2. something range, but i got a 3.8 junior yaer and a 3.9 senior year and it really made a difference. Definitely don't try to squeeze undergrad into three years, especially if you've had trouble already. And if it's really your dream, do a postbacc if your grades still aren't high enough when you graduate. It's certainly not too late. Plenty of people have messed up worse than a 2.5 and a 3.0 and still gotten in.
  5. LikeClockWork

    LikeClockWork Guest

    Jul 23, 2007
    Never underestimate the power of an upward trend. If you get your act together there's no reason why med school shouldn't be a very viable option for you.

    As the above poster said, it would definitely help to have some good, medically related ECs and to nail the MCAT. But you knew that already, right? ;)
  6. neuro1617

    neuro1617 2+ Year Member

    Aug 10, 2007
    Not picking your post to note this for any particular reason but WHY do these posts always, always, always start off with "I go to a top 20/prestigious/rigorous undergrad??" And poor me, I've gotten hit with the same hard courses as every other premed? Excuses aren't going to help you and adcoms won't care. Get a 4.0 the next few semesters, show an upward trend, get some excellent EC's and rock the MCAT. You seem dedicated to doing whatever you can, retaking classes, etc, so that's good. If it's what you really want, you aren't chasing the wrong dream.
  7. Hemichordate

    Hemichordate Peds 7+ Year Member

    May 5, 2008
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2008
  8. se2131

    se2131 7+ Year Member

    Jun 27, 2007
    If you get a 3.1 freshman year, and 3.8's sophomore and junior year, your GPA will be close to 3.6, which is definitely a GPA that can get you into med school provided that you have a decent MCAT and EC's.

    And if you were to get 4.0's soph and junior year instead, GPA goes up to 3.7.

    Take-home lesson: A bad freshman year can be made up for, provided you actually do pull off the 3.8+'s.
  9. harold56

    harold56 2+ Year Member

    Jun 18, 2008
    thanks everyone,

    but like even with stellar grades by the end of junior year, will i still be able to apply to like state schools or private universities? are chances of getting into top 20 slim to none?

    and by "rocking/acing" the mcats.. what would be an ideal range? i know 45 is the best but like.. within my situation.
  10. aaj117

    aaj117 7+ Year Member

    Jul 5, 2007

    Take a look at my mdapps, might help you get a good idea. Aim for at least a 34, preferably higher. Make sure your ECs are good.

    No one is perfect. Most of the time, the 4.0 40 applicants have no ECs, and/or the personality of a pet rock. All of these things are taken into consideration. Just make sure these grades are the ONLY weakness on your application. I messed up two years, ended up with only a 3.15, and got interviews at my state school, HBCUs, and top schools-- Cornell, Brown, Sinai, Georgetown, Boston University, etc.
  11. TehDoc

    TehDoc What a pain... 2+ Year Member

    Jan 5, 2008
    This thread is annoying.
  12. eternalrage

    eternalrage Even Kal has bad days... 10+ Year Member

    Jun 22, 2005
    Long Island, NY
    i got in with a 3.2 and a 3.0 BCPM. Had to do some graduate work, and got a 32 on the MCAT. Got about 7-8 interview invites, 3 acceptances.

    So yeah you still got a chance provided you work hard and don't screw up. When you decide to apply, get your stuff in as early as you can in that cycle. Make sure your PS is nothing short of perfection. Also prep for your interviews.

    Top 20 for you will be a long shot.
  13. BigRedder

    BigRedder Passing Gas 5+ Year Member

    Jan 31, 2008
    Don't worry, I'm sure you'll write like the best personal statement ever. After that all you need to like, actually do, is like, totally rock the interview.
  14. TehDoc

    TehDoc What a pain... 2+ Year Member

    Jan 5, 2008
  15. Terpskins99

    Terpskins99 Fear... The Stig 10+ Year Member

    Mar 8, 2005

    Sorry, couldn't help it. :p

    Seriously, figure out what went wrong and make whatever adjustments necessary to get the job done. Anyone can recover from a poor freshman year, but it means you need to do that much better from here on out.

    Your performance on the MCAT is going to be very important as well. Its perhaps a little too early to think about that, but you need to do well on it. For now, focus on mastering your pre-med courses.
  16. Cegar

    Cegar 7+ Year Member

    Feb 17, 2008
    Why are these always prefaced with, "renowned university"?
  17. brsboarder

    brsboarder 10+ Year Member

    Sep 3, 2007
    geez, your a second year. Stop worrying, get good grades, start worrying when your taking practice MCATS. I had a 3.0 freshman year, low 3's second year and was successful during my app process.
  18. harold56

    harold56 2+ Year Member

    Jun 18, 2008
    so what are the chances of me getting into a top 20 medical school?

    with my situation at hand, what would be an "ideal" application?

    for instance, what kind of ECs? GPA and MCATS, etc?

    any further advice is appreciated
  19. Virgil

    Virgil Hi hi! 5+ Year Member

    Dec 8, 2005
    Oh gosh. Why is it so important that you go to a "top 20"? Surely going to a "renowned top 100 university" has been enough to pad your ego thus far?
  20. Charles English

    Charles English faithless, the wonderboy 7+ Year Member

    Apr 3, 2008
    :beat: <-- i've always wanted to use this one.

    according to the zillion "i messed up freshman year because _____, can i still make it?" threads.... yes. but you are going to have to try really hard from now on. not like last year.

    also, ADCOMs apparently adjust your GPA if you came from a prestigious institution, namely world renowned and in the top 100. so stop worrying so much. upward trend. magic words.:laugh::laugh:
  21. BigRedder

    BigRedder Passing Gas 5+ Year Member

    Jan 31, 2008
    Ok, I'll humor you. With your situation, I would wait till after you graduate to apply if you want to get into a top 20 school, whatever that means. You don't need to go to a "top 20 school" anyway, so it's moot. However, since you asked. the "ideal" application would probably be:
    >3.8 GPA (with professor recommendation).
    ~37 MCAT.
    Either clinical or basic science research experience (including great recommendation) with at least 1 or 2 meaningful publications (1st or 2nd author).
    Experience shadowing several different doctors (another recommendation).
    Some sort of volunteer job where you interact with patients regularly.
    A notable talent, like athletics or music, preferably with awards to show for it.
    Some sort of adversity (economic, disability, etc).
    Various honor societies.
    Ivy League (or equivalent) undergraduate education.
    A certain je ne sais quoi.

    Do some people have all of these? Yes. Are you going to have these? No. Do you need them all? No. Stop worrying about the ideal, and just go out there and do the best you can. Don't do things because they will get you into medical school, do them because you enjoy them. Oh, and get good grades. Really. You can always get more experience, improve your MCAT score, and develop a good "hook", but those grades don't go away. You can get new ones, but they really don't boost your GPA that much and they are expensive. Your first priority in college should be to get a good GPA. You should also have fun and do things, because that makes you a better person, but if you ever have to decide between an activity and a grade, choose the grade. You'll thank me later.
  22. Narmerguy

    Narmerguy Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Jul 14, 2007
    Oh god I laughed too long at this.

    You too. I like this thread :D

    But to the OP, nothing's out of reach but if you're expecting to attend a top 20 through the traditional path that those applicants take you'll likely encounter some roadblocks. It shouldn't really matter if that's your ultimate goal, just go heavy in the MCATs, of course pull your grades up, and do pretty much what everyone else does (EC, research, clinical experience, leadership, your ps, blah blah). You just need to make all of it very above average since your first year hasn't been.

    But honestly, don't ask us. Take it to the pros who actually have something to do with the process not to students who either haven't even got in or aren't even fully aware of what it is in their application that got them in.
  23. njbmd

    njbmd Guest Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

    May 30, 2001
    Gone Walkabout!
    How "renowned" your university, you didn't do well. At this point, sit down, make a spreadsheet and figure out your cumulative uGPA if you get no grade less than B+ with mostly As from here on out. If you fall short on the uGPA, then you will likely need to look into a SMP (Special Masters Program) that is geared toward credential enhancement (expensive but worth it if you can perform at a high level) or post bacc work to get yourself as close as possible to the average uGPA of matriculants in the year that you apply.

    If you have to work full time, then you need to be attending class part time so that you can maximize your performance. If you can cut back on your work, it is likely that your grades will improve. At any rate, your intelligence level doesn't matter much because you have not performed up to the level that you need to be competitive for medical school admission. Figure out a way to get there and get the job done. What you have done in the past, is what it is and the more excellence that you can post as you finish, the better for you in the long run. Good luck.

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