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I feel so lost and hopeless sometimes

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Saf1, May 6, 2008.

  1. Saf1

    7+ Year Member

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    I guess I'll start with the ones that're bugging me the most (also, I'm in Texas if that makes a difference)

    1. I just got a C in Organic II (or am looking at one, but I did get the A- in Orgo I), and now I'll probably get a B in Human Physiology. Mix that with an even mix of A's and B's with my other pre-reqs and I'm not in too great of shape. Weird thing is in ALL my other classes I have nothing but A's. I guess I just need someone to tell me it's not the end for me (still haven't taken physics or the physics labs).

    2. I can't find out how to find doctors to shadow. The people I know that've shadowed either know the doctor personally from family relations or something, or are in some sort of program. Given my info from #1, I don't think my GPA's competitive enough to get into any of those programs (yet at least). Put simply, how do I find doctors to shadow?

    3. This is more an extension of #1, and really a much larger problem. Ever since high school I was a B+ student. Why? I realized early on that I could purely rely on my intelligence to get by in classes and still make 88-91 grades, and the college I planned on going to (the one I'm going to now) I knew wouldn't give me any trouble for it. NOW I'm really running into trouble, since Orgo II hit me hard purely for my sucky study habits. I can't bring myself to read a text book let alone just start studying. I needs some tips on fixing this. Please. More than any of these.

    4. This may be fairly generic (I guess these all are), but what type of extra curriculars should I look into? It's driving me crazy. Every time I see something that might look good, it seems like it'd just look like resume padding, which I really don't want to make it come off as. What's a good rule of thumb to avoid things that simply look like I'm just trying to show down.

    Currently, GPA's 3.594, which will probably change after Orgo II and Human Phys's grades kick in finishing off my sophomore year

    :(

    Thank so much. This place's been really useful for a lot of my other questions.


    Oh, and I've been wondering something for a while

    5. What does someone do when they don't get accepted to med school the first time around? Is it like working in a lab and doing like full time volunteering and shadowing every available second? Maybe take more classes to boost your science GPA (I think you can do that after you've graduated, right? Man I'm confused :().
     
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  3. MilkmanAl

    MilkmanAl Al the Ass Mod
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    Wow, if only I had the misfortune of sporting 3.6 GPA. I'm sorry, man, but it's really hard for me to feel sorry for you when your GPA is just fine.

    For shadowing, try to find family friends or parents of your friends. Failing that, cold-call private practices and describe your situation. You'll find someone who's sympathetic eventually.

    What do you want to hear about your study habits? You just said that you have trouble making youself start studying. Well, make yourself start studying. That's all there is to it.

    Pretty much all EC's are only resume padding. You'll occasionally have some interesting -and perhaps even influential - experiences during them, but how many of us would spend our time volunteering at hospitals and washing glassware ("research") if we weren't silently required to do so? Just pick activities you think you'll be able to enjoy most of the time, adn roll with them. You've got to play the game just like everyone else.
     
  4. Saf1

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    Well, it was 3.6 before the C in orgo II and B in Human phys, which will probably drop it to like 3.3 I'm guessing, which kills me since... I mean I see the other people doing so well here and I know I can to. I guess I'm scared that if I try, and fail, then what can I tell myself? Like now, if I do bad I can just say "Oh, it's not that I'm not smart enough, I just didn't study. If I did I would've killed it." I know it's a pretty juvenile way to look at it, but I guess it's been ingrained in my head.

    And you know, you're right. I should just.. do it. Just pick up the book.

    I'd feel weird just cold calling offices. An upperclassman I talked to said he simply mailed (not e-mail, actual mail) each doctor in the local hospitals (~300+). Sort of a shot gun approach, but he got like 15 responses and went from there. I feel... like there's probably a more efficient way.
     
  5. bigDee

    bigDee Junior Member
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    I can relate to this because my gpa is similar to yours. But I don't think it's good to imply that he's a-ok just because he's in a better shape than you are. The average gpa is about 3.65 so his gpa is his weak point. He should be given tips on how to improve his gpa since its not where it should be.

    OP, you should study more. People here can make you feel better about your gpa so if that's what you're looking for then ok that's fine. Only you can raise your gpa though and no advice here is going to help you do that. Looking for advice to improve your gpa is something people do when they want another reason to blame for their gpa instead of the real reason; your poor performance, lack of time management, pure laziness.

    I know your post talks about other stuff too but I'm just referring to your mention of your gpa.
     
  6. tmatt

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    Trust me, you're not the only one who thinks like that.
     
  7. bigDee

    bigDee Junior Member
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    Tell yourself you didn't try hard enough or you simply did it the wrong way.

    That's not a juvenile way to look at it, it's the truth.
     
  8. Saf1

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    Maybe I misphrased it. Replace the word "killed" with "did amazing on it" to get a clearer understanding of my original meaning. Maybe it's true, and maybe it's not, but the reality of it is that it's robbing me out of trying since the fear of it is so bad. Just imagine, knowing, after you've studied and tried as hard as you can, that you simply aren't good enough. I'd be crushed.

    But I can just feel it, you know? Like I know I am.

    Man, I'm seriously the only thing holding myself back. Maybe I need to stop digging my own grave. And thanks, you're right, even 3.6 was not good enough. I'm glad this is only the end of sophmore year. Now I'll be taking more science classes, so as long as I keep up good study habits I'll raise my GPA along with my fledgling science GPA. Still though, C in organic II. Did not see that coming.
     
  9. Mbekweni

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    Meh, don't worry about it. I know a lot of people who got in to top 10 schools with one or more Cs. I got a C and a C-, along with a mix of As and Bs and did very well this past year. Granted, I feel very lucky, but you shouldn't feel overly stressed...it's all a part of the process.

    Shadow your GP, ask them when you go in for your next appointment. I also shadowed the orthopedic surgeon who did a knee operation for my mom. Seemed to me like they ought to give back afer doing a $20,000 operation, no?

    As for extracurriculars- do a few of the basics: shadowing, maybe a bit of research, get a publication if you can. Other than that, I think you're much better off doing what you love and doing it very well. Just give it your best shot and be true to yourself. The right school will come through for you.
     
  10. Saf1

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    Also, I meant all of that as my regular GPA, not math/science GPA. I don't know if people always mean math/science GPA when they post here.
     
  11. bandaids

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    Since when did shadowing become such a big deal? I completed a post-bacc program and we were never encouraged to shadow. Most of my friends in my program have been accepted into med school and none of us have "shadowed" a doctor, which is basically just following them around. Med schools just want to see that you know what you're getting in to, and you can do that by volunteering or working in a medical setting. Pretty much every single hospital has a volunteering program, rather than cold calling doctors you should spend your time doing one of those.
     
  12. WellWornLad

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    I second that thought. Shadowing in and of itself is not a particularly interesting or compelling EC. Shadowing is useful when you're exploring whether medicine is right for you or you want to get a feel for different specialties, but personally I think it looks pretty lame when people include shadowing on the AMCAS. If/when you've decided to pursue medicine, it's time to graduate from shadowing and do some volunteer work, clinical research, medical assistantship, etc.

    I thought shadowing was awkward, to tell the truth. It was interesting, but I'd rather have a job to do than to feel like I'm just in the way, tagging along.
     
  13. MilkmanAl

    MilkmanAl Al the Ass Mod
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    I was under the impression that his GPA, the 3.6, was including the C's, but I guess that was wrong. 3.3 is going to be rough, but I can't imagine someone seriously saying that a 3.6 is "not where it needs to be" concerning general med school admission.
     
  14. junqu

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    The idea that doctors get really rich these day shows a VAST misunderstanding of the current state of american medicine, especially with regard to the FUTURE.

    Secondly, the reason you see so many failed business graduates is because there are SO many more bottom feeders. Medicine is extremely quality controlled from the BOTTOM (so there isn't a huge "underclass" of MD students) whereas any jackass can get a business degree.

    If you look at ibankers who work REMOTELY as hard / have REMOTELY the talent of the AVERAGE MD student, you immediately see that ibanking (as well as law) are a MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH better deal financially.

    example: good friend of mine, smart guy, worked maybe 50% as hard as I did in college (kind of skewed as I was 4.0 40) makes 130,000 first year out of college at a large I-bank.
     
  15. 191159

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    If the change is going to happen in your studying habits most likely it will not be because of something you read here. It all depends on you and the only way you'll ever get the study habits you desire is if school is your main priority. Take a look at my MDAPPS page my whole transcript there. Took 3 semesters off school and straightened myself out. It is possible to turn things around. Good luck. :thumbup:
     
  16. Saf1

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    Thanks for all the responses, these were great, but could someone answer these last two


    Thanks again
     
  17. Saf1

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    What is a medical assistantship, and how would I look into something like that?
     
  18. Isoprop

    Isoprop Fascinating, tell me more
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    get used to failure. get used to feeling stupid. knowing what to do after failing is a useful skill b/c i promise you, you WILL make mistakes in med school, in residency, and in practice. how you handle failure is more important than succeeding all the time.

    oh, and getting one C and one B and having a "mix of A's and B's" does not count as failure. but if you want to do better, you need to evaluate your study habits and make a plan physically on paper on how you can do better. be specific but set realistic goals.
     
  19. EpiPEN

    EpiPEN Aegis of Immortality
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    4. Unfortunately whatever you do will seem like resume padding to some people, so don't even think about it. Do whatever you WANT to do if you feel like you already have a good chance for med school. But if you think you need a boost, ain't nothing wrong with going out there to get a resume pad. But if you are really worried about how you might come off, don't worry about what you do, but worry about how you sell yourself when you talk about what you do, which comes much further down the line when you actually submit your application.

    5. They change career paths or they work on whatever their application was lacking. If you do get rejected, you can ask the schools for a reason why, and based on that and your own evaluation of your progress, you can either go improve your academic background with a post-bac degree, go get a job and get some real life experience working in medicine/science, do research and get a stronger research protfolio, go teach homeless kids english lessons to get a diverse life experience, or whatevery you need to do to improve yourself.
     
  20. LeLu

    LeLu Cookie Monster
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    Some hospitals have shadowing programs. Check with the volunteer dept. It is a great experience shadowing an ER physician.
     
  21. Saf1

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    I know this is definitely a case by case basis, but generally what do you think they're looking for in applicants for these sorts of programs?
     
  22. umz

    umz panĂ­ doktorka
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    that you're premed.

    you are freaking out for nothing. don't worry about "what they are looking for" if they don't explicitly state any specific requirements up front and just apply to the programs.
     
  23. void

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    I'm in the same boat you are. A lot of the people here are older and have a lot more perspective, so they don't exactly understand. But I'm a sophomore, with a similar GPA, and just started to do poorly this semester too.

    My study habits improved a great deal this semester too, and I've been rocking my orgo tests (A's) but I just bombed the final which was completely unexpected. I am still waiting on my grade, but it will not be what I expected, given how much preparation I did for it.

    In the long run, there isn't much people can do on this forum to help you with this, and that's the sad truth. It really comes from within. Something I am changing is that I am lessening my course load, and going to try to take easier classes. I spread myself too thin this semester and took on an ambitious course load. I have to pick my classes smarter.

    You're a sophomore, so you can still bring your GPA up. It's what everyone tells me. It hurts knowing that you can't make it to the top schools though, which is what I thought coming in as the upper echelons in college freshman year. It sucks. But a med school's better than no med school.
     
  24. Womialas

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    Must be that time of year again...

    I got Cs in both semester of organic, a B in phys, and graduated with a low GPA (lower than 3.6, for sure). I volunteered at a local hospital, which turned into a job following graduation. I am headed to med school in the fall, after deciding between multiple acceptances.

    A low GPA will not kill you, despite what 95% of SDN says. Keep the grades respectable and show interest, that's all you really need.

    And don't worry about the study habits. I am facing the same fears with med classes only a few months away, but I find solace in the fact that med school is solely for studying. I won't have to work multiple jobs, dedicate hours to athletic practice, or bust my butt to find worthy ECs. Just study.

    I'll be fine. You will too.
     
  25. umz

    umz panĂ­ doktorka
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    i agree. especially in tx, op. i'm in tx, too. i have some gpa problems, and they let me in. if you want to talk about it, pm me.
     
  26. imascientist

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    A C in orgo II is not the end of your burgeoning medical career, just as my C- in the course wasn't the end of mine. It's frustrating, sure, and disappointing. This is an opportunity, though, to critically consider the path that you're on. Are you invested enough in the med school thing to learn from this semester and bounce back in the fall? Will (not so) simply reevaluating your studying techniques get you the results you feel you need?

    After my dismal performance, I took a step back, and decided to study abroad for a semester. I stopped with all the premed posturing, and remained committed to only those ECs that I enjoyed and found personally rewarding. When I returned, I was refreshed, and started pulling in grades like I hadn't seen since high school. Granted, I worked my *** off, but I was working to do well, not to do well enough to get into med school.

    My reductionist take on all of this is that all med school apps will ultimately have one of two overtones: a) padded, disengaged, mechanical or b) coherent, interesting and personalized. I certainly don't have the best statistics, and have not had the most successful application process, but those schools that have worked out for me to varying degress have recognized in my application those qualities that I'm most proud of possessing.

    Take this chance to break out, push your comfort level, and regain your self confidence. Good luck!
     

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