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I will give up my quest to medical school unless you convince me otherwise.

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by wheyprotein, Jun 19, 2008.

  1. wheyprotein

    wheyprotein 2+ Year Member

    Nov 2, 2007
    I finished my undergraduate work back in 2006 with a double-major in political science and history. Since then, I did a career-changing post-bac in which I did just the four basic pre-med pre-requisites. Right now, I am studying for the MCATs and I am going to be taking them in August. I did everything else that medical schools have asked me to do to allow me entry through their doors. So, why is it now that I am hearing horror stories that make me want to give up? Why, of all times, am I now hearing about the GPA 3.9, MCAT 38 student who didn't get accepted anywhere? Why, of all times, am I now hearing about the GPA 3.3, MCAT 34 student who didn't get in anywhere? Why, of all times, am I now hearing of students who are scoring in the high 30s but only getting acceptances to osteopathic schools and no allopathic schools? I got a 3.6 GPA in my post-bac, and I am shooting for a 30 on the MCATs. But why do it? After hearing those stories, what good will a 30 on the MCATs do me? Could anyone please motivate me to gather the strength to go on? Or, am I working towards failure?

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  3. HoboCommander

    HoboCommander 7+ Year Member

    Sep 30, 2007
    work harder. you can do it.
  4. neurocirujano

    neurocirujano Banned

    Jun 13, 2008
    If you study enough, a 30 is easily attainable for just about anyone... IF you at least put in the time. Then you could stop worrying so much.
  5. thzone1986

    thzone1986 2+ Year Member

    Jun 16, 2006
    Looks like you better pack it up then :rolleyes:

    Seriously though, you could use more confidence in yourself. It does not bode well that you are begging strangers on an internet forum to boost your self confidence. If you want it bad, you have to convince Adcoms that you deserve it. And to do that you have to believe you deserve it first.

    Just my opinion.
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008
  6. pianola

    pianola MS2 7+ Year Member

    May 23, 2008
    Just bear in mind people don't always tell the whole story on SDN. Maybe they only filled in half their secondaries or applied only to Harvard, Mayo, and Washington University in St. Louis. Maybe they got arrested, got a misdemeanor, a felony, who knows what? Maybe they lost the interview invitation through spam. Maybe they're lying about their 3.99 GPA and 41T MCAT. Maybe they have all the personality of your average cream-of-wheat breakfast cereal. Maybe they made offensive jokes at their interviews. Maybe they did all of their courses at the worst university in the United States. Maybe someone sent in a nasty LOR. Maybe they're not pre-med students at all but just enjoy the thrill of sending fear into the hearts of 20-somethings everywhere.

    I'm not going to convince you of anything. Just don't believe everything you hear and do your best. That's all one can ever do.
  7. bioteach

    bioteach MSIV 7+ Year Member

    Apr 9, 2007
    You can't base your likelihood of success upon individual stories of success or failure.

    Sure there are people with 3.9gpa 38 MCAT that don't get in anywhere. There are a million reasons why that person didn't get in, how do you know any of those reasons apply to your situation? Maybe you'll get 10 interviews but no one likes your personality, so you get zero offers. Maybe you'll get 10 interviews and 10 offers...who knows?

    There are also cases like me of a 3.1 uGPA, 33 MCAT that DID get into an allopathic school. Sure that probably ticks off the high GPA/MCAT scorers that didn't get in, but obviously I brought something to the table that they didn't. Maybe you will too. Maybe you won't. Can't know unless you try.
  8. Chuckwalla

    Chuckwalla Junior Member 2+ Year Member

    Aug 10, 2006
    The person with a GPA 3.9 and MCAT 38 probably had bad interview skills. Maybe they wrote a terrible personal statement. We saw an example of that on these forums the other day.

    The person with a 3.3 had a low GPA. They had a chance at MD school but it was far from a sure thing.

    You can usually figure out why things didn't work out. Learn from peoples mistakes. This forum is a great resource for that.
  9. BluePhoenix

    BluePhoenix 5+ Year Member

    Mar 17, 2007
    Calm down. If you get a 30 MCAT and have a GPA around 3.5+, you're doing ok. Not spectacular but you're not out of the running by any means. Most med schools look at other things in your application beside the numbers. Get a copy of the MSAR and check out the schools you're interested. So long as you're around the average numbers for the school, your MCAT is fairly balanced and you've got a good amount of activities and whatnot, you've got a good chance of getting in somewhere. The key is to apply broadly and make sure that a majority of your schools have average stats similar to yours...of course you can always add a few reach or dream schools, just make sure those aren't the only ones you apply to.

    There's always people with incredible stats that don't get in anywhere...maybe they don't have any EC's or maybe they come across as jerks or condescending or unfriendly. Maybe they only applied to top 10s schools and just didn't have what the schools were looking for. There's a number of reasons some people with great scores don't get in, but the average stats at most med schools aren't 3.9 GPA and 44 MCAT so obviously there's space for people that might not have the best scores but have great experiences and personal statements and recommendations.
  10. Fibroblastman

    Fibroblastman A stumble prevents a fall 5+ Year Member

    Jun 12, 2008
    Palo Alto, CA
    Okay, seriously... you're hearing the butt-end of stories with the assumption that the extreme-end cases apply for everyone and everything. Let's all be honest with ourselves, we all know what we generally need to do and get to go somewhere -- it's all the same general recycled information with a few differences in percentage points, etc. from year-to-year.

    So what if you don't have a 99.99% percentile MCAT score. I'm not questioning your motives into medicine, but if medicine is going to be a life-long passion then there's more to it then numbers, or 'where'.

    For me, hey, I'm an average applicant. In the end, it doesn't matter where I go, as long as I can get in and become a doctor. If I don't get in this cycle, I'll work harder and try again... and will get there eventually.

    Just keep going, 'cause I'm sure there will be more difficult times ahead in medical school and on. Good luck!
  11. Captain Fantastic

    Captain Fantastic Physician 10+ Year Member

    Mar 28, 2005
    Mizzou Med
    Because the application process is about more than just numbers, that's why.
  12. BigRedBeta

    BigRedBeta Why am I in a handbasket? Physician 10+ Year Member

    Nov 1, 2007
    never mind...what I had previously written wasn't that helpful.
  13. Virgil

    Virgil Hi hi! 5+ Year Member

    Dec 8, 2005
    Ha, you make it seem like we desperately need you and would be devestated if you decided not to continue your "quest." Realistically, medical school admissions are extremely competitive and there are tons of people who are very passionate about getting in...and a lot of them are on these forums (so watch out for the gunners). Nobody will convince you to do this but yourself. It seems to me that most of us here NEED medicine to fulfill some aspect of our lives (this is our driving force, whatever it may be...find out what it is for you) but medicine doesn't really need us. It also seems you have a fear of failure so strong that you are disuaded from putting forward any effort. Realize this fear is unfounded. I hope this doesn't come off as harsh, but to get through this you need to stop whining and find some inner strength.
  14. BigRedder

    BigRedder Passing Gas 5+ Year Member

    Jan 31, 2008
    What is all this nonsense about shooting for a 30? Aim for a %^&*ing 45!
  15. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member Physician Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Dec 20, 2004
    Exactly. This isn't an objective process. This is a process about "good fit".
    And none of us have any reason to try to convince you to apply to med school. Either you really want it, or you don't. If reading about some kid with high numeric stats that didn't get in makes you ready to pack it in, you frankly aren't ready to attend med school yet.
  16. aaj117

    aaj117 7+ Year Member

    Jul 5, 2007
    Quite honestly, if you're posting that you're going to give up on becoming a doctor unless a group of total strangers on the internet convinces you otherwise, you probably should give it up. I think it's definitely possible with your numbers and experience so far, but not with your attitute towards this.
  17. tco

    tco 7+ Year Member

    Apr 22, 2008
    Well...For one, get more self-confidence.

    You'll do fine. If you really want to be a doctor, you're going to have to learn to deal with rejection, being wrong, and feeling like crap in general. It's all part of the learning process.
  18. Dulcina

    Dulcina =) 5+ Year Member

    Aug 14, 2007
    there are as many ppl with 4.0 and 40mcat that got rejected everywhere as there are ppl with 2.0 and 20mcat that get accepted into allo.

    why are you looking at people like, 5 standard deviations away from the norm?

    don't freak out, keep chugging away, and stop getting bitten by the premed-stress-bug =)

    and good luck on the mcat :luck:
  19. AmoryBlaine

    AmoryBlaine the last tycoon 7+ Year Member

    May 1, 2006
    No. The MCAT is an aptitude test. You can't study hard enough to increase your aptitude.
  20. jult24er

    jult24er 2+ Year Member

    Jul 25, 2007
    How are your ECs and your clinical experience?
  21. pianola

    pianola MS2 7+ Year Member

    May 23, 2008
    I would have to disagree here, unfortunately. Yes it can be difficult to increase your score but frankly, it's more a knowledge-based test than an aptitude test. It's just...a lot of knowledge, that's all.

    You can increase your endurance by taking a LOT of exams, increase your knowledge-base by memorizing a lot of facts, increase your pace by getting used to the question types.

    It's possible. Go for it.
  22. darkelven29

    darkelven29 7+ Year Member

    Jun 9, 2007
    Medical school is getting more competitive year by year but if you have

    1. gpa: 3.5-4.0
    2. MCAT: at least 30
    3. 100+ hours of strong clinical experience (ER, neonatal unit, ICU)
    4. At least one year of research experience (clinical or basic), not necessaily publishing,
    5. Strong leadership experience (officer in a club with more than fifty people, serving more than 500 community members, and have a regional presence)
    6. Strong service record (volunteering abroad, with underserved communities, AmeriCorps, PeaceCorps)
    7. Strong recommendation letters (3 from professors, 1 research, and 1 service/leadership)
    8. Write a clear, creative, polished personal statement that recaps the above experiences to decision into medicine
    9. Practice interview techniques
    10. Apply broadly (geography and reputation and state/private) and BEFORE end of AUGUST for primary

    If you can do most of the above, there is really no reason why you would not get accepted to at least one U.S. school (majority of the time)
    Now someone with 38MCAT and 3.9GPA probably didn't get in because he/she applied to too many top tier schools, have no research/clinical experience, or probably got waitlisted at numerous schools because of no social skills. Don't look at the few people you know around that are not getting in (too small of a sample).
  23. Narmerguy

    Narmerguy Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Jul 14, 2007
    Well I guess we should tell you more about the students that got a 3.4 and a 28 but got accepted everywhere or that got a 3.0 and a 30 and got into Standford. Feeling better? :D
  24. BigRedder

    BigRedder Passing Gas 5+ Year Member

    Jan 31, 2008
    That's a scary list! With a 3.5, 30, reasonable research experience, reasonable patient exposure, a bit of leadership experience, some volunteer work, and an apparent informed desire to practice medicine, you should be able to get in somewhere.
  25. Hyperstudyosis

    Hyperstudyosis 7+ Year Member

    Jul 25, 2007
    OP- some encouragement...I was on MDapplicants last night looking at profiles and one girl on there had a 31 MCAT (I don't remember her GPA) and she got a full free ride to Mayo Medical School. If going to med school is your dream, don't let anyone or anything discourage you from pursuing it.
  26. AmoryBlaine

    AmoryBlaine the last tycoon 7+ Year Member

    May 1, 2006
    No. The amount of knowledge required to do well on the MCAT is fairly reasonable. It isn't like you have to have a broad mastery of bio/chem to do well on it.

    Most of the test is glorified (or explicit) reading comprehension -- the answer is usually in the passage.

    Doing practice tests and stuff like that is helpful but it's not going to take you above your natural ability.
  27. wheyprotein

    wheyprotein 2+ Year Member

    Nov 2, 2007 many inspiring replies. Well, the least I can say is that I am convinced. I guess I just didn't realize that the game is more than just numbers in the form of GPAs and MCAT scores. I am going to set my mind on this goal and work towards it and if I fail, I will work at it again...and again...and again...until I have seen the mission through.

    Thanks, everyone! Even those with the brutally honest replies...thanks!
  28. Trojanation

    Trojanation Banned

    Jan 11, 2008
    Wrong. Doing practice tests can greatly increase your score because you are much more familiar with the test. You start to recognize patterns in the questions asked. It worked for me and many others I know.
  29. pianola

    pianola MS2 7+ Year Member

    May 23, 2008
    With all due respect, even if the answer is in the passage, you probably don't have much time to look for it within the time restraints given. You're far better off knowing the answer cold. In my humble experience.

    I think part of the issue may be that the MCAT has changed...the earlier AAMC exams that I took were far more passage-based and occasionally you WOULD find answers that were directly out of the passage. The test I took 5/23/08? I doubt there were many, if any answers that could be gleaned directly from the passage. Sometimes you had to refer to the passage, of course, but only enough to figure out what the questions were talking about...
  30. LittleRocker

    LittleRocker 2+ Year Member

    Jun 20, 2007
    Can you link it please?
  31. AmoryBlaine

    AmoryBlaine the last tycoon 7+ Year Member

    May 1, 2006
    I do have to bow to your more recent experience, being as how I took the thing in 2003. That said, I'd be very surprised if it was really transitioning to a straight knowledge test.

    When I took it your knowledge of Orgo/Chem/Phys/Bio really only came to bear on about 1 Q per passage, the rest of it was applying precepts from the passages.
  32. AmoryBlaine

    AmoryBlaine the last tycoon 7+ Year Member

    May 1, 2006
    Did say doing practice tests wouldn't raise your score there ace, just said that at some point you are going to hit the asymptote of you natural ability/aptitude.
  33. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member Physician Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Dec 20, 2004
    That may be true of the verbal section perhaps, but certainly the science sections are learned things, not really aptitude. You can absolutely always learn more, be better prepared. Which is why Kaplan and Princeton Review tend to make so much money preparing folks for this test -- it is one of the few that they can actually show success because it is one of the standardized tests most subject to teaching. It is not an IQ test or something that tests your aptitude. It tests preparation.
  34. Trojanation

    Trojanation Banned

    Jan 11, 2008
    Agree with you 100% on that.
  35. Chuckwalla

    Chuckwalla Junior Member 2+ Year Member

    Aug 10, 2006
    That is a bit extreme.

    Keep in mind that the MSAR is distorted. It will freak you out if you take it at face value. It looks at those accepted and not those who actually matriculated. That means a lot of people with high GPA's who got accepted to a bunch of schools throw off the mean GPA.
  36. mtrks

    mtrks 2+ Year Member

    Jun 11, 2008
    I did some research the other night on mdapplicants and saw that only about 15 people with MCAT scores above 37 out of over 500 applicants didn't get into any schools. Perhaps they now have a hook for a right hand after an unfortunate pirating accident and that's why they were denied the chance to become a surgeon.
  37. Myuu

    Myuu 例えば、貴方の名前を忘れてしまうとか。 。。 Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Well, some of us didn't get those scores until August and then in a very silly manner unbecoming of a pre-med weren't complete at all schools until January. I mean this all anecdotally, of course.:laugh:

    The trick here is in knowing _why_ these people, myself included, missed the boat. There's no point in saying "oh, this person with a <number> got rejected. End of the road!"
  38. littlealex

    littlealex little tiny alex 7+ Year Member

    Apr 5, 2007
    Honestly I don't give a damn. Quit if you want to. No one can make your choices for you.
  39. HiFi09

    HiFi09 2+ Year Member

    Oct 15, 2007
    No, you are right. As a recent taker (6/13) I understand where others are coming from when they feel it is a more knowledge based test, but the truth only appears that way. I studied for this test for quite some time, and found that it is more of a critical thinking/ reading comprehension/ aptitude test then most people realize.

    Can you increase your score by knowing the material cold? Absolutely. But that is far from the key of hitting a top score on this test.

    With that said, I disagree with your thought on a score of 30. My belief is that the average pre-med, native english speaker, who has the content down pretty well, can hit a 30 with some work. I dont see anyone's naural aptititude holding them back from that score. A 40? Yea, I see natural aptitude playing a much bigger factor.
  40. ^=^

    ^=^ S.D.N.'s BATMAN 5+ Year Member

    Jan 2, 2006
    If you need a bunch of random people online telling you to continue pursuing a career in medicine, then I suggest you give up right now. I mean think about, a couple years later there might be a thread like "I feel like giving up on the usmle, unless you convince me." And don't think I'm being harsh. :)

    Anyway, don't give up. :D
  41. Myuu

    Myuu 例えば、貴方の名前を忘れてしまうとか。 。。 Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Bingo to the bolded. (I'm trying to make sense, I swear...)

    As to the last statement, it would seem from personal experience that it's more about mastering the test itself (structure, strategy, timing) after having a solid knowledge-base to work from.

    Being born awesome (for all you 40+ people) can't hurt, though!:thumbup::laugh:
  42. cleothecat

    cleothecat 10+ Year Member

    Feb 1, 2007
    (for the record I am an MD)
  43. p30doc

    p30doc Ever true and unwavering 10+ Year Member

    Aug 22, 2007
    This thread reminds me of a website that popped up a couple of years ago, it was like "I will kill, cook, and eat fluffy unless I raise $20,000", fluffy or whatever its name was, was a rabbit. The guy actually ended up raising the money and fluffy lived to die another day. Anyway this seems like a cry for attention more than anything else. Are you seriously going to let a bunch of random people on the internet going to decide your fate? seriously?
  44. Greonis

    Greonis 5+ Year Member

    Jul 5, 2008
    This is an old thread, but I'd like to mention this quote with a slight modification:

    Not only is the original quote true, but it is important to note (and I believe that more people here need to do this) that almost everything mentioned on this site must not be taken at face value. For example, if someone tells you that they have a 3.95 GPA and a 42T MCAT and their only supporting evidence is a profile on MDapps, can you really be 100% sure that those are their actual statistics?

    Of course not. Just like that Savage Garden song about being anyone or anything that you want over the telephone line (Santa Monica), so too is the case with the internet. It is very difficult (in most cases) to prove that any of the people here are genuine. This is a good reason, in addition the biased/self-selected population, not to let SDN siphon your confidence.
  45. JaggerPlate

    JaggerPlate 10+ Year Member

    May 28, 2007
    I'm not too sure about people blatantly lying about stats (though some may be inflated), but your main point rings true: take everyone you read on this site with a grain of salt. You never know who is giving the advice and everyone knows how pre-meds feel about spreading their wisdom (no matter how unfounded it may be) ...
  46. RSAgator

    RSAgator Junior Member 5+ Year Member

    Aug 8, 2006
    You shouldn't need anonymous people on an internet forum to convince you that it's WHAT YOU WANT TO DO. Seriously, have passion and do as well as you can instead of worrying about all the other great people that are failing. For every person that "should" get in and doesn't there's someone that "shouldn't" get in that does. All that you can do is your best. Do as well as you can on the MCAT, apply to a good range of schools, and what more can you do?

    I'm telling you, pre-meds either have an overinflated opinion of themselves or a severely deflated one. If it's what you want to do, work your hardest and do it.
  47. paranoid_eyes

    paranoid_eyes 2+ Year Member

    Sep 18, 2006
    i have a feeling that all these people with really high numbers but rejections are A-holes, and their A-holish personality comes across in the interviews and essays resulting in a rejection. I think if you got a nice personality and some genuine interest in medicine, it isn't THAT hard to get past the interview (getting the interview is the hard part).

    im not applying till next year, but this is just my extrapolation from my SDN lurking.
  48. eternalrage

    eternalrage Even Kal has bad days... 10+ Year Member

    Jun 22, 2005
    Long Island, NY
  49. ACSurgeon

    ACSurgeon Acute Care Surgeon Bronze Donor Classifieds Approved 7+ Year Member

    Jun 8, 2008
    Mainly becomes our economy is going down the crapper... people want stable, secure jobs, and professional degrees sure do provide that.
  50. Bradstein

    Bradstein Friendly R3 7+ Year Member

    May 19, 2008
    Sounds like you've had a rough day, wheyprotein. Time to take a couple days off or go to a spa or something.
  51. JaggerPlate

    JaggerPlate 10+ Year Member

    May 28, 2007
    Ronald McDonald = nice rack???? My head hurts.

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