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help w/ amcas hours mistake

chaim123

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Hey

Submitted amcas a while back. Decided to randomly look at my app because why not (that was a bad idea).

I opened up my app and my heart sank. I had put place holders on the hours for most of my activities back when I first started the application in May. I knew I was gonna have to double check with my EC people to get the right # since they were a while ago. I got the right #, updated my excel tracking sheet, and never updated AMCAS. Thankfully most of my activities list the right hours. However, 6 of my activity hours are:

1) [AMCAS] 40 --> 15 [what it should be]

2) 40 --> 15

3) 40 --> 25

4) 400 --> 206

5) 250 --> 122

6) 250 --> 114

I really can't believe I did this. After so many years of classes, MCAT, volunteering, I really can't believe I let this major mistake happen. Wish I could go back in time and tell my earlier self not to use placeholders, god damn (or at least use more obvious placeholders i guess 9999)

I was thinking of emailing the different school's admissions and letting them know of the error and hope for the best. Either that or withdraw. I would appreciate some thoughts on this error. I feel like my cycle is done before it even started.

I don't think you've destroyed your app. My issue is that you lied by overestimating all these activities, and therefore could be granted admissions based on false information. A simple letter to the admissions office may serve to quell any fears but could also draw unnecessary attention. I'd like to hear form my more learned colleagues about this one.
 

gonnif

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ignore it, correct only when interviewed and/or when accepted. Writing notes to schools now simply says "Hello, I am apparently not detailed oriented nor am I concerned with checking my work so I submitted my application with so many errors that if I did this with a patient I would have likely killed them."
 
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gonnif

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Thank you for your feedback. The funny thing is that I am currently a pharmacist, so double/triple checking my work is part of my daily job so I don't kill people. But for the most important application of my life, I let it slip. Really beating myself up about this, but I appreciate your advice

Would you suggest I write it in my secondary if given the chance?
No; leave it alone. You already screwed it and there is no reason to bring it to attention. I will keep my general rant and rave to premeds who do this crap all the time to myself.
 
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RJ McReady

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ignore it, correct only when interviewed and/or when accepted. Writing notes to schools now simply says "Hello, I am apparently not detailed oriented nor am I concerned with checking my work so I submitted my application with so many errors that if I did this with a patient I would have likely killed them."
Bit of a stretch , dontcha think...?
 

KnightDoc

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This has been the consensus I have been getting on here and reddit. IDK why it feels wrong, but I think its time to just listen to people who know more than me.
It feels wrong because it is wrong, but, as the saying goes, two wrongs don't make a right. Making a big deal about it now will certainly do more harm than good. Disproportionately. So just be patient and make the correction at the appropriate time, as suggested by others.
 

KnightDoc

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By appropriate time, you would suggest at the interview as @gonnif had mentioned? And if it is never brought up at the interview? Thanks for your reply.
@gonnif said interviewed and/or accepted.

I'm not sure I would ever bring it up if not asked. I absolutely would not have done it intentionally, but, now that it's done, I'd leave it alone. You say you listed most of your activities with the correct number of hours. I know most of us are obsessive perfectionists, but I'm assuming this mistake is immaterial in the context of your entire application.

Please correct me if I am wrong. Assuming I am not, I just wouldn't worry about it. Although overstating hours by 478 might seem like a lot in the abstract, I'm assuming you have thousands of hours in total. If so, a decision is not going to be determined by 500 hours one way or the other, so, as so well stated by @gonnif, I would not draw attention to my carelessness or lack of attention to detail unless I had no choice.

The risk is that the points you get for honesty and integrity will not overcome the fact that you made 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, count 'em, 6 mistakes. Just leave it alone because, while making the mistake was not right, drawing attention to it will risk a disproportionate penalty for what was, in the end, an immaterial, inadvertent error. If you didn't feel the need to compulsively review an application that was already submitted and cannot be amended, this wouldn't even be an issue. Leave it alone!!
 

KnightDoc

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Thank you, that makes a lot of sense. I completely agree with you -- I should have never looked into the application in the first place! My immediate concern was that if I don't bring it up, some adcom somewhere will find out, call AMCAS, and BAM I'm blacklisted. IDK if that even happens, but I am so scared of facing that kind of penalty for an honest-to-God mistake (a mistake that will be in my nightmares for yyeearrrsss)

How would you suggest I approach it if it is brought up in an interview? Besides of course acknowledging the mistake and correcting it.
First of all, how many other activities did you have where the numbers were correct, and how many hours do you have in total, just to provide context?
 

KnightDoc

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9 correct; 6 in correct (as listed in my first post)

Over 5,000 hours in total
GREAT!!! Less than 500 out of more than 5,000 hours is absolutely immaterial. I seriously doubt an interviewer is going to waste precious time during an interview drilling down into a single activity with 250 or 400 hours, and questioning you about the hours.

If it comes up, just be honest and explain how it was a placeholder that you neglected to update before submitting. Under no circumstances are you going to be blackballed because your EC hours are overstated by less than 10% because of an uncorrected, careless error. You have so many hours that whatever a school does with you would be exactly the same as if you had submitted with the correct number of hours, so just forget about it and move on.

Stop torturing yourself. Turn on the TV. I'm sure you'll find something else you can worry about. :)
 

gonnif

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@gonnif I'm wondering if your advice also applies if I undershot my dates. For example, if I was employed part time since 2018, but accidentally wrote 2019, should I still ignore it? I'm thinking it wouldn't look as bad to bring attention to it by emailing schools since I applied with less than my actual commitment (I had the correct number of hours just incorrect start date), and because I didn't embellish my commitment, and because it was only one simple mistake. What do you think?
Just leave it alone
 
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sk4589

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AMCAS randomly added a year to 2 of my activities, has this happened before? I wrote the dates correctly when I submitted but after verification, I see that an extra year was added so it looks like I spent extra time on the activity. I really don't want to come across as dishonest when I did not intend this at all...
 

PigsHaveWings

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@gonnif said interviewed and/or accepted.

I'm not sure I would ever bring it up if not asked. I absolutely would not have done it intentionally, but, now that it's done, I'd leave it alone. You say you listed most of your activities with the correct number of hours. I know most of us are obsessive perfectionists, but I'm assuming this mistake is immaterial in the context of your entire application.

Please correct me if I am wrong. Assuming I am not, I just wouldn't worry about it. Although overstating hours by 478 might seem like a lot in the abstract, I'm assuming you have thousands of hours in total. If so, a decision is not going to be determined by 500 hours one way or the other, so, as so well stated by @gonnif, I would not draw attention to my carelessness or lack of attention to detail unless I had no choice.

The risk is that the points you get for honesty and integrity will not overcome the fact that you made 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, count 'em, 6 mistakes. Just leave it alone because, while making the mistake was not right, drawing attention to it will risk a disproportionate penalty for what was, in the end, an immaterial, inadvertent error. If you didn't feel the need to compulsively review an application that was already submitted and cannot be amended, this wouldn't even be an issue. Leave it alone!!


You are still remembering your Webers law from MCAT :):):) when you made that statement.
 
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