Aug 16, 2016
3
0
Hi. I'm really interested in entering a basic sciences postbac program in 2017, but I'm having trouble finding resources that would help me go down that path confidently. The information out there on the web seems so ambiguous and/or conflicting.

First, I'd like to know if I'm good enough. I'm a rising senior at Princeton who's set to graduate by June 2017. I'm a psych major with no courses in the basic sciences (I focused on computer science and statistics instead!). I think I have a pretty solid activities background for an UG (leadership positions in more than a few clubs, 100+ hours community service for a crisis hotline nonprofit, two summers doing research that might eventually get published), and I know I could get solid recs from at least two people, but the big thing dragging me down is that my GPA right now is a meh 3.25 (It's a 3.6 if you ignore my first year!).

...am I good enough? Does the fact that I'm a URM (Black) help? I know I sort of upselled myself a bit above, but I'd like an honest assessment. I'd like to get into a formal, structured 2-year basic sciences program with convincing statistics that leaves me (and my family!) sure that this post-graduation shift is not some wild goose chase. Cost and location does matter (perhaps more than I know), but that's really the key thing. I'm not asking if I can get into a program; I know miracles can happen. I want to know if there are enough strong-but-not-too selective programs out there that I can apply to a solid number of them and reasonably plan to end up at one next Fall. Would it actually take a miracle for me to get into a program I know is worth paying for?

I don't really know what they look for and will ask of me in my application. I figure it's not like med school since I'm applying specifically so I can build a med school resume, but I'm unsure how much it is like grad school or like applying to UG again. For example, I'm worried that I was really silly to mention my ECs above since graduate schools really don't care about that kind of thing. The information out there on the web seems so conflicting.

Third is the issue of actually selecting programs to apply to assuming that some exist that I can get into. Not many programs exist near my home (South Carolina) and I don't know if I want to be near home anyway. This site: http://services.aamc.org/postbac/ is a great tool for finding specific programs, but so many programs come up seem really hard to differentiate between them given the information provided. I don't really have the time or funds to go on some grand tour of each school. I didn't before UG either but I had name recognition helping me. With so limited information, how do I choose? Rely on name recognition more than I should again?

Also, what is the typical timeline for this process? Am I missing application deadlines as I speak (probably not, right??)? I know I'm short on time, but I'm ready to get as serious about this as it takes.

Thanks for whatever help on these questions you're willing to offer. I really am grateful.
 
Last edited:
OP
M
Aug 16, 2016
3
0
I've read lately about the Harvard Extension School's premed program and heard that it's relatively easy to get into. Am I mistaken?