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how good is your pre-med advisor?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by jennb, Dec 1, 2002.

  1. jennb

    jennb Member
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    Hi guys,

    I'm just wondering how good your pre-med advisor is. If you think he or she's good, why do you think that way? What has he/she done to help your pre-med life less miserable and the application process easier?

    I'm very disappointed with my school's pre-med advisor. I've met with him once and will probably never ask for his advice again. As soon as I sat down with him, he asked me what I wanted to do. I told him I needed help with scheduling the required classes, when to take the MCATs, etc. He automatically assumed that I'm majoring in Biology and wrote out the next 3 years plan on what classes to take to satisfy all the requirements for the Bio major, while also satisfying the med school prereqs. That's all great, but I never told him that I was a Bio major (which I'm not).

    I was just disappointed that he assumed I was a Bio major as soon as I mentioned my plans to go to med school. To make the long story short, I just sat there pretended to listen, while thinking that he shouldn't assume that all pre-meds are the same.

    He's made a bad first impression!

    What should I do now? :confused: I can't not have a pre-med advisor since I need guidance through this process (unfortunately, he's the only one at our school).
     
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  3. canadagirl

    canadagirl Senior Member
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    At most Canadian schools we don't have premedical advisors at all - I feel your pain!!!:(

    I'm involved in a peer-advising service, though, where we get a lot of first- and second-year students coming in and asking us "how do I get into med school" ... and because there are so many of them, and because so few of them have actually thought through what they are asking, it is easiest (and usually most helpful) to give them a very standard talk focussed towards the bio majors. Not that it excuses your advisor, but he may just be doing it because that's what MOST people want to hear, and he assumed you would interupt if he was wrong! You've got him as a resource, give him a chance :)

    (fyi, we aren't "premed advisors", we're just there to help with any questions that students might have in general with getting through college, we happen to get a lot of premed questions, but it's not our main purpose)
     
  4. Gleevec

    Gleevec Peter, those are Cheerios
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    Why didnt you interrupt him and say you're not a bio major?

    I really like my premed advisor. Only met with her once (im a junior right now so I wont be talking to her more til later this year), but she is really nice and knows a lot. She is pretty active and flies to all sorts of meetings. She listens well and will tell you your options, but wont give you a path. I like it because she tells you the most viable options and then lets you decide.

    Sorry to hear about your meeting. Try and be more assertive maybe, because there has to have been some non-bio premeds from your school. good luck.
     
  5. UCLAMAN

    UCLAMAN Air Jordan Collector
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    at UCLA?...nonexistent...unless you consider our career center people "pre-med advisers," but all they know about medical school is that you have to apply to get in.

    You would think that since ucla produces such a large number of med school applicants would have some decent premed advising.

    so as far as getting through the process without any advising...well...you don't need an advisor to get through it....just look at all the UCLA undergrads in med school, most didn't have a real premed advisor.

    you are lucky to have one adviser....use him and just make sure to take everything he says with a grain of salt. research what he says and keep your ear to the ground(ie SDN) and you'll make it through the process just fine. a lot of times the best guidance may be calling the schools you are interested in regarding their specific requirements(req. classes, avg gpa/mcat accepted, in/out of state accept., etc.). A lot of this info is online, if not; call the schools. and in the end...take all the information you gain from premed advisers, SDN, other premeds, medical school admissions offices, websites, premed books, grandma and grandpa, your pet dog etc. :D and guide yourself through the process. there is no one way to get to medical school. you need to take all the information from these various sources, sprinkle a little initiative and guide your own path to med school.

    Just because he assumed that you were a bio major doesn't make him a bad adviser either. i'm sure he has some valuable insight for you. perhaps you should have told him you weren't a bio major?
     
  6. surfdevl02

    surfdevl02 Senior Member
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    Do some schools really assign undergrads as your premed advisor?? Maybe that works for a lot of people but i just thought everyone had full time faculty advisors. Anyhow, the Premed Advisor at Duke is pretty good and organized. She has a meeting with us several times a year our junior and senior years and then the fall before you apply to med school she has a meeting with you where you outline your activities, awards, plans, and she does an interview with you for the committee letter. At the meeting we're also required to have a copy of our personal statement for her to go through and also a listing of classes and awards (like AMCAS). So, at Duke if you follow the premed advisor's schedule, come June, your AMCAS is basically done. Then she sends us out updates about online articles and stuff that would help us brush up on current medical news for our interviews. At Duke we also do electronic committee letters to medical schools so that the time from a student's request for recommendations till when a school receives it is usually within a day or two. This helps especially if you're a slacker and are near deadlines. I think MIT may be the only other school in the country with this sytem and i don't know why more schools don't go to it. It seems so much more efficient to me.
     
  7. Adcadet

    Adcadet Long way from Gate 27
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    my undergrad pre-med advisor was so-so. She gave decent advice regarding who I should take organic chem from, and she was pretty good at telling me which classes I needed to take to be able to apply to 99% of the med schools, but that was about it.

    As a grad student I didn't have a pre-med advisor, and did just fine with the help of SND :)
     
  8. Adcadet

    Adcadet Long way from Gate 27
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    uh, make that SDN.
     
  9. ivyleague22ny

    ivyleague22ny Member
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    All I can say is take your pre-med advisor's advice with a
    grain of salt.

    My premed advisor told me that my GPA was not competitive
    enough and that I should first get a Master's before applying.

    I didn't take her advice, applied for the first time, and I
    got my first acceptance to an M.D. school in the US even before thanksgiving (I am a non-URM with great EC's, a below avg. GPA,
    but a decent MCAT score: 32).

    So there's hope for you pre-meds who are constantly
    discouraged by your pre-med advisors from applying.
     
  10. pillowhead

    pillowhead Senior Member
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    the adviser for my school (just one of them for all 47,000 of us! oh how i love public schools) is a complete idiot. the few times i've had questions about what to do, i went and talked to her. i always ended up doing the exact opposite of what she said (i.e. decided to graduate early, take MCAT early, minor instead of double major, etc), and I am now sitting on three acceptances. she's impossible to see and just has an attitude problem. I'd have been better off never seeing an adviser during undergrad b/c all she made me do was doubt my own good decisions.
     
  11. UCLAstudent

    UCLAstudent I'm a luck dragon!
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    There isn't a pre-med adviser at UCLA, so I go to the biology department counselors instead. I think that they are great. They even plan out your class schedule for the 4 undergrad years if you make an appointment with them.
     
  12. ShortStuff

    ShortStuff a trueblue spitfire
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    I went to the University of Chicago and we have a really good pre-med advising office. I have known my advisior since freshman year and have met with her almost every quarter -- I probably knew her better than some others but I think in most cases she is able to write a very personal letter which i think is important. Plus the advisiors sit on Pritzkers adcom so they have a real grasp of what is going on ......
     
  13. rbassdo

    rbassdo newly hindu
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    Hope College has an unbelievable Pre-med advisor. When I was at U or Chicago, I asked one of the admissions officers what he thought of first when he thought of Hope College. He said "John Smith" (I'll preserve the anonymity). He writes great letters, organizes everything for us, sends most everything out, and knows most schools in and out. Acceptance rates from the college are always 90%+ - sometimes 100%. In this case, this guy has, at least, something to do with the amazingly high rates.
     
  14. kaos

    kaos Web Crawler
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    Mine left my school--right in the middle of our application process, and right after doing the committee letters. +pissed+
     
  15. traveller4ever

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    Hi, I don't have a pre-med advisor,
    but after first year, I went to see my Registrar/Dean of Admissions... we were chatting away and he said...

    u should definitely get a degree in chemistry and then go into law school.... i was like huh??? chemistry was my lowest mark!
    here i am thinking... maybe he thinks i'm someone else.
    needless to say, i did not pursue chemistry.:rolleyes:

    yeah, now i take those opinions with a grain of salt...
     
  16. Pre-Dent-David

    Pre-Dent-David Super Hero
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    We have a pre pro advisor.. I am only 1st sem fresh , but I have already met with him. He is a very accessable guy I guess. I'm glad I did meet with him so early though. He set me on the right track and answered a ton of my Q's. So far so good, but I am still early in the process. :clap:
     
  17. I'm suprised to read everyone's negative experiences and even more so to find out that some schools don't have a premed advisor at all.

    I go to a small state school of about 12,000 students. We currently have 3 premed advisors available. And a premed office where you can find all the forms you'll ever need in one place. I've worked with all 3 advisors and I'm very happy with what they've done so far. They'll pretty much hold your hand and take you through the process if needed.

    My main advisor especially seems to go out of his way to help. The other day I was talking to him about my interview status. This wasn't during an appointment it was just a casual conversation I had with him. Anyway he asked if I had received any interviews yet. I told him no, and he volunteered to contact all the schools I applied to and ask them about my status. Well he did and sent me an e-mail in two days regaurding my status at the schools to which I applied. I thought that was cool that he would go through that trouble instead of just telling me to call myself.
     

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