Is it really too late to start over?

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PAlocoke

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Hey everyone. I kind of need some advice. I'm a first generation college student that's always gotten A's throughout grade school and APs etc. but really had no guidance or direction when going into college. The last four years however have been kind of trying and my family's trials have been distracting. From one parent having a severe stroke and being on ventilator to another one going through a long and annoying domestic abuse case and hospitalizations, I was going back and forth to my hometown a lot and not really concerned with doing anything but 'passing' to get a degree since I had no plans to go to graduate school afterwards. I felt really bad that my home could use help and I'm up here doing the college thing instead of working or helping out with my 5 year old sister. Because of my personal issues, I have a bunch of Cs and Unsatistfactories in random classes ( including non major & science classes.) I also changed my major four times. I also work many hours during the week and have done so for the last 3 years.
This summer things have been improving and with the help of doing research, and talking to health care professionals, I may have finally gotten a plan together. I've been CPR and phlebotomy certified and also working on patient care and volunteer hours. I've also signed up for 400 level biology classes for my senior year. The thing is, my GPA is still around a 2.7 and I'm not sure how to get out of that rut. I'm not making excuses, but I know if things were like they were now I definitely could have done better, especially with having direction. What's my best plan of action from here?

Somehow finding a masters program to apply to that accepts below 3.0 undergrads?
Retaking the science courses while gaining more patient and work experience? (I actually never took Chem 1 and 2 because of AP exams).
Taking one or two higher level chemistry and biology courses instead of retaking the ones I took and got C's in.

Also, if I were to apply in Summer/Fall 2014 for Fall 2015, would the classes I take in Summer/Fall 2014 be taken into consideration? The classes I plan to take are:

Chemistry II
Biochemistry II (I got a C in BCH 1 two years ago)
Statistics (I got a C in an online stats 3 years ago)

Classes I'm in now that I plan to do well in (the relevant ones)t:
Adv. Anatomy & Physiology
Immunology
Cell Biology
Next semester:
Genetics/Genetics Lab
Developmental Anatomy-Vertebrates


It probably won't bring up my cumulative or "science" GPAs higher than like 2.8, but from those who have applied or are experienced for committees, will they take situations and trends into account (and that I'm taking a gap year) or should I pretty much look into another profession. I hope to do well on the GRE also.
I attend North Carolina State and I really like what I've seen of Duke's program. I went to high school right next to Duke and I like it there, so I hope it wouldn't be out of reach (along with the other NC PA schools).

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pamac

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Hey everyone. I kind of need some advice. I'm a first generation college student that's always gotten A's throughout grade school and APs etc. but really had no guidance or direction when going into college. The last four years however have been kind of trying and my family's trials have been distracting. From one parent having a severe stroke and being on ventilator to another one going through a long and annoying domestic abuse case and hospitalizations, I was going back and forth to my hometown a lot and not really concerned with doing anything but 'passing' to get a degree since I had no plans to go to graduate school afterwards. I felt really bad that my home could use help and I'm up here doing the college thing instead of working or helping out with my 5 year old sister. Because of my personal issues, I have a bunch of Cs and Unsatistfactories in random classes ( including non major & science classes.) I also changed my major four times. I also work many hours during the week and have done so for the last 3 years.
This summer things have been improving and with the help of doing research, and talking to health care professionals, I may have finally gotten a plan together. I've been CPR and phlebotomy certified and also working on patient care and volunteer hours. I've also signed up for 400 level biology classes for my senior year. The thing is, my GPA is still around a 2.7 and I'm not sure how to get out of that rut. I'm not making excuses, but I know if things were like they were now I definitely could have done better, especially with having direction. What's my best plan of action from here?

Somehow finding a masters program to apply to that accepts below 3.0 undergrads?
Retaking the science courses while gaining more patient and work experience? (I actually never took Chem 1 and 2 because of AP exams).
Taking one or two higher level chemistry and biology courses instead of retaking the ones I took and got C's in.

Also, if I were to apply in Summer/Fall 2014 for Fall 2015, would the classes I take in Summer/Fall 2014 be taken into consideration? The classes I plan to take are:

Chemistry II
Biochemistry II (I got a C in BCH 1 two years ago)
Statistics (I got a C in an online stats 3 years ago)

Classes I'm in now that I plan to do well in (the relevant ones)t:
Adv. Anatomy & Physiology
Immunology
Cell Biology
Next semester:
Genetics/Genetics Lab
Developmental Anatomy-Vertebrates


It probably won't bring up my cumulative or "science" GPAs higher than like 2.8, but from those who have applied or are experienced for committees, will they take situations and trends into account (and that I'm taking a gap year) or should I pretty much look into another profession. I hope to do well on the GRE also.
I attend North Carolina State and I really like what I've seen of Duke's program. I went to high school right next to Duke and I like it there, so I hope it wouldn't be out of reach (along with the other NC PA schools).

If you plan to take 6 or seven courses and do well, and have that change things for you by next year, you are being unreasonable.

And Duke is one of the top PA programs in the nation. They turn away excellent students.
 
D

deleted6669

DUKE IS LIKELY NOT AN OPTION WITH MINIMAL EXPERIENCE AND A SUB 3.0GPA AS IT IS A TOP 3 PROGRAM.
GET THE GPA UP, GET SOME SIGNIFICANT HCE MEASURED IN THOUSANDS OF HRS OVER THE NEXT FEW YEARS BEFORE YOU EVEN CONSIDER APPLYING. A SUB 3.0 GPA IS AN AUTOMATIC EXCLUSION AT MANY PLACES.
(opps, sorry about caps..)
 
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pamac

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Its probably not impossible for you to get into a program, but you should expect to significantly pad your resume with health care experience, and improve significantly on your coursework. Most programs I know of have at least a 3.0 cutoff for gpa, both cumulative and science.... And that's just for them to even look at your ap. to be competetive takes much better gpa than that.
 

PAlocoke

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If you plan to take 6 or seven courses and do well, and have that change things for you by next year, you are being unreasonable.

And Duke is one of the top PA programs in the nation. They turn away excellent students.

So the eventual Master's route instead of the take harder versions of the 4-6 prerequisites is the vibe I'm getting, alrighty thanks for the insight. Will continue to work on that and of course the HCE over the next 2-3 years.
 

pamac

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So the eventual Master's route instead of the take harder versions of the 4-6 prerequisites is the vibe I'm getting, alrighty thanks for the insight. Will continue to work on that and of course the HCE over the next 2-3 years.

You probably will have to do both. The retakes will be averaged with the previous grades, so you will still have a low gpa. The new grades don't replace the poor grades. So you probably will need a lot more coursework to help boost you up.
 

PAlocoke

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You probably will have to do both. The retakes will be averaged with the previous grades, so you will still have a low gpa. The new grades don't replace the poor grades. So you probably will need a lot more coursework to help boost you up.

Alrighty. Better late than never! Every distraction could've been worse.
If only PA programs had the DO grade replacement system.
 

RoadTo

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Its never too late , and there is always a possibility :) Do what will make you happy !
 
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