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Is financial independence and no help from parent/guardian considered?

CapeMayNJ

New Member
Mar 7, 2012
2
0
Cape May, NJ
  1. Pre-Medical
    Hello,

    I'm new to the forum, and I was wondering if anyone could help me answer a question I have?

    When applying to medical school is your financial independence, or lack of free time considered? I have been on my own since my senior year of high school. I work two jobs (one full-time and one part-time) while attending school full-time (I commute) and doing research. I live on my own and work to pay for rent, food, bills, commute, school, etc. Each term (I am a second semester Sophomore) I have taken 18-20 credits, performed research and my GPA=3.91. One of my jobs is as an ER Tech. My single mother lives in another state where she has been receiving psychiatric help for a few years. I also help pay her medicals bills and had to work in high school to help support her.

    Outside of the Summer months, I have virtually no free time for anything besides school and work. Will this be considered when I apply to medical school? If I was able to get a relatively high score on the MCAT (34-38 range), is it possible that my need to work could negate the need for ECs that I do not have time for? Could I still have a shot at a top-tier school without outstanding ECs?

    Thank you in advance for any advice/information.
     

    LizzyM

    the evil queen of numbers
    Verified Expert
    15+ Year Member
    Mar 7, 2005
    25,850
    44,790
    1. Academic Administration
      Hello,

      I'm new to the forum, and I was wondering if anyone could help me answer a question I have?

      When applying to medical school is your financial independence, or lack of free time considered? I have been on my own since my senior year of high school. I work two jobs (one full-time and one part-time) while attending school full-time (I commute) and doing research. I live on my own and work to pay for rent, food, bills, commute, school, etc. Each term (I am a second semester Sophomore) I have taken 18-20 credits, performed research and my GPA=3.91. One of my jobs is as an ER Tech. My single mother lives in another state where she has been receiving psychiatric help for a few years. I also help pay her medicals bills and had to work in high school to help support her.

      Outside of the Summer months, I have virtually no free time for anything besides school and work. Will this be considered when I apply to medical school? If I was able to get a relatively high score on the MCAT (34-38 range), is it possible that my need to work could negate the need for ECs that I do not have time for? Could I still have a shot at a top-tier school without outstanding ECs?

      Thank you in advance for any advice/information.

      It might help to know what information will go on your application. First you will be given the opportunity to give your parent(s) name(s), living (y/n), county where living, highest education attained, where highest education was obtained, and profession (other, homemaker, and retired are also options... disabled might be an option, too, I don't recall). Then you are given an opportunity to spell out how you have met your college costs as a percentage of the whole: your contribution, parental contribution, need based aid, merit based aid, loans, other. You may "check the box" signifying that you consider yourself "disadvantaged" as a child (0-18) and will be given additional questions to answer about use of government benefits, employment before age 18, etc. Some schools might give some preference to students who come from disadvantaged backrounds so don't be afraid to check the box if the description fits.

      In the experience section you may list your employment with number of hours per week during a specified time period (month/year to month/year). You can also list research, tutoring, volunteer (broken into clinical and non-clinical) and many other "experiences".

      Your gpa will be broken out by year in school (1st, 2nd, etc) and by type of course (biology/chem/physics/math, "all other" and total) with both gpa and number of credits taken that year shown.

      So, as you can see, the adcom has a lot of information about your circumstances. You can add more information in your essay if you can weave it into "why medicine" and/or in the supplemental if it fits whateve prompts the school gives you.
       

      CapeMayNJ

      New Member
      Mar 7, 2012
      2
      0
      Cape May, NJ
      1. Pre-Medical
        It might help to know what information will go on your application. First you will be given the opportunity to give your parent(s) name(s), living (y/n), county where living, highest education attained, where highest education was obtained, and profession (other, homemaker, and retired are also options... disabled might be an option, too, I don't recall). Then you are given an opportunity to spell out how you have met your college costs as a percentage of the whole: your contribution, parental contribution, need based aid, merit based aid, loans, other. You may "check the box" signifying that you consider yourself "disadvantaged" as a child (0-18) and will be given additional questions to answer about use of government benefits, employment before age 18, etc. Some schools might give some preference to students who come from disadvantaged backrounds so don't be afraid to check the box if the description fits.

        In the experience section you may list your employment with number of hours per week during a specified time period (month/year to month/year). You can also list research, tutoring, volunteer (broken into clinical and non-clinical) and many other "experiences".

        Your gpa will be broken out by year in school (1st, 2nd, etc) and by type of course (biology/chem/physics/math, "all other" and total) with both gpa and number of credits taken that year shown.

        So, as you can see, the adcom has a lot of information about your circumstances. You can add more information in your essay if you can weave it into "why medicine" and/or in the supplemental if it fits whateve prompts the school gives you.
        Thank you so much for the thorough response. That definitely answers my questions concerning the communication of that information to adcoms and the process involved.
         
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