reluctantoptimism

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I was recently talking with my PI and he casually mentioned that he know people at a certain SOM. In addition, he told me what I need to focus on in order to be competitive for medical school and went on to say that I would be a good fit at the school in question. I do not know if I'm over-analyzing the situation but how should I interpret this situation?
 

reluctantoptimism

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He can't get you in or influence the process unless the LOR he writes gets into the hands of someone who is able to appraise its value in a positive light.
Right, he said that he was going to write a great LOR but is it possible that connections could help? Has anyone here been in a similar situation?
 
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sovereign0

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I've seen adcoms here say that calls from Congressmen recommending a candidate are seen as annoying. Unless he has significant ties directly to the admissions committee, I don't see it helping.

I would be surprised if an unqualified candidate got an admission, regardless of who is advocating for them.

In your specific case, a PI knowing faculty at another school probably does not mean anything. Research communities are often quite small, especially within narrow fields. My PI knows just about every researcher on his subject across the globe, including people at multiple medical schools. However, most of the time, a PI's connections will be research PhD's who are unlikely to have sway on medical school admissions (perhaps some sway on graduate program admissions).
 
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I was recently talking with my PI and he casually mentioned that he know people at a certain SOM. In addition, he told me what I need to focus on in order to be competitive for medical school and went on to say that I would be a good fit at the school in question. I do not know if I'm over-analyzing the situation but how should I interpret this situation?
This is it dawg, welcome to medical school.
 

Goro

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At best, he could land you an interview, but if your stats and ECs are subpar, you'll get a polite spot on the wait list, and then a very polite rejection.

Right, he said that he was going to write a great LOR but is it possible that connections could help? Has anyone here been in a similar situation?
 
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reluctantoptimism

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At best, he could land you an interview, but if your stats and ECs are subpar, you'll get a polite spot on the wait list, and then a very polite rejection.

See, this is why I'm confused. My PI is very knowledgable about med admissions and he said my stats, EC s, research are good and after knowing me for some time, he says I'm very capable. Additionally, he has sent at least one student to a very high ranked school. If it matters, the school has some significant ties to my UG.
 

sovereign0

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See, this is why I'm confused. My PI is very knowledgable about med admissions and he said my stats, EC s, research are good and after knowing me for some time, he says I'm very capable. Additionally, he has sent at least one student to a very high ranked school. If it matters, the school has some significant ties to my UG.
His capacity as an advisor is another story. If he is familiar with medical school admissions, then his guidance can be really valuable.

You would have to expand on how he "sent a student" to a very highly ranked school, but it is unlikely that the student got accepted because of your PI. Especially if it is a very highly ranked school, nobody will get an acceptance from a medical school that they are not qualified to attend. It is bad for both the medical school and the student.

A good LOR from a respectable PhD can be extremely helpful though. Like I said before, research is a small community, and if the Adcoms know your letter writer and think highly of him, that LOR will be points in your favor (provided the letter itself is personalized and well-written).

But someone with no direct ties to the admissions committee calling to say "Hey, accept this guy" is unlikely to have much bearing. If your UG has signficant ties to a medical school, it is more likely that he has ties to the Dean of Admissions, but it still won't get you an acceptance where you haven't earned one.
 

Goro

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If your app is good then you don't need your PI, except as a writer of a good LOR.

I've seen LORs from Nobel laureates and US Senators. They don't help marginal candidates.

See, this is why I'm confused. My PI is very knowledgable about med admissions and he said my stats, EC s, research are good and after knowing me for some time, he says I'm very capable. Additionally, he has sent at least one student to a very high ranked school. If it matters, the school has some significant ties to my UG.
 

Lawpy

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If your app is good then you don't need your PI, except as a writer of a good LOR.

I've seen LORs from Nobel laureates and US Senators. They don't help marginal candidates.
Maybe not marginal candidates, but surely an LOR from a Nobel laureate for a good applicant (LizzyM > 74) would sway the research powerhouses? Into giving pretty much an acceptance to said applicant?
 

Goro

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I think a really good candidate could have a LOR from Bozo the Clown and still get accepted.

:)
Maybe not marginal candidates, but surely an LOR from a Nobel laureate for a good applicant (LizzyM > 74) would sway the research powerhouses? Into giving pretty much an acceptance to said applicant?
 

ImmunoLove

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At best, he could land you an interview, but if your stats and ECs are subpar, you'll get a polite spot on the wait list, and then a very polite rejection.
I'd be curious as to how (e.g. by what mechanism, logistically speaking) someone with connections to AdComs could secure an interview for a candidate. Just wondering how that might come about.

But to OP, sounds like you've done good work and you'll have a solid LOR, which will help your app at multiple institutions. Good luck!
 

Goro

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Goes something like this:

Goro [to wily old Admissions Dean]: Dr X, I know a student at ___ college who has a GPA of 3.6 and an MCAT of 25. I'd think she'd be a good fit here, but she has a weak MCAT VR score because she's a ESL."

wily old Admissions Dean: "I think that the Dean might look down on the MCAT score but we can squeeze her in."

Goro [to prospective student] "Get your app in here now!"

I'd be curious as to how (e.g. by what mechanism, logistically speaking) someone with connections to AdComs could secure an interview for a candidate. Just wondering how that might come about.

But to OP, sounds like you've done good work and you'll have a solid LOR, which will help your app at multiple institutions. Good luck!
 

ImmunoLove

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Goes something like this:

Goro [to wily old Admissions Dean]: Dr X, I know a student at ___ college who has a GPA of 3.6 and an MCAT of 25. I'd think she'd be a good fit here, but she has a weak MCAT VR score because she's a ESL."

wily old Admissions Dean: "I think that the Dean might look down on the MCAT score but we can squeeze her in."

Goro [to prospective student] "Get your app in here now!"
thanks!
 

GypsyHummus

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Goes something like this:

Goro [to wily old Admissions Dean]: Dr X, I know a student at ___ college who has a GPA of 3.6 and an MCAT of 25. I'd think she'd be a good fit here, but she has a weak MCAT VR score because she's a ESL."

wily old Admissions Dean: "I think that the Dean might look down on the MCAT score but we can squeeze her in."

Goro [to prospective student] "Get your app in here now!"
The Dean talks to himself in 3rd person?
 

Goro

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The WOAD was referring the Dean of the school...the Head Honcho, the Boss, the Big Cheese, the Big Guy, the Man Himself.



The Dean talks to himself in 3rd person?
 

MyNameWasUsed

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@Goro ok how about a great LOR from an alumni of the school youre applying to? Any bonuses there?
 

Goro

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It sometimes helps in the Adcom meeting. One of those "Oh' I remember him!" moments.


@Goro ok how about a great LOR from an alumni of the school youre applying to? Any bonuses there?
 
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