Josh Galt

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I am a senior in a joint undergrad and med program, and am getting worried about med school. The program puts me into Downstate medical college. I had considered applying out of the program last summer when I got my MCAT scores back (98th percentile) but I was in Europe and couldnt get the applications materials together in time. I have a great GPA, some research, clinical internship, lots of volunteer work study abroad, and I'm a humanities major with a chem minor.

As it stands, I am accepted at Downstate. Should I withdraw from Downstate, take a year off (do research?) and apply with next year's class? Is Downstate really that bad? People in NYU are giving me a hard time, and none of my friends in the regular applicant pool want to go there. Are my chances for getting in lower if I'm applying out of a program?

I'm not really so savvy when it comes to these things. I thought a joint program would be a good idea and would help me focus my undergrad time on other interests. I know people who are happy at Downstate. But I also want a competative residency.
Thanks,
Josh
 

chaeymaey

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If it's one thing I've learned, it's that the med school app process is totally unpredictable. If you've got an acceptance take it and don't ask questions. You have no idea what some people would be willing to do to be in your place right now. Congrats, you're gonna be a doctor!
 

Elastase

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You would definitely have to explain your actions (withdrawing from an acceptance/agreement) to all the med schools that you apply to...like what was said above its a random process...
 
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45408

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I wouldn't take a year off.
 

sanford_w/o_son

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98th percentile. wow, i feel for you. there's only one thing holding me back from telling you to take the year off: just how WILL it be looked upon to jump ship? it's time to have a straight talk with some admin from the program. i think they would be understanding of your position, and hopefully they can give you level advice on whether you have to put on the scarlet letter to leave the program. don't leave until you get a solid understanding of how it's looked upon, but don't get locked in to downstate without finding out if you could be elsewhere.
 

badlydrawnvik

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i "jumped ship" on a joint program and am doing the regular application thing now. i think with the 98th percentile mcat you owe it to yourself to see where else you could go. while i've been asked once or twice why i left the program a simple "i wanted to explore my options and see if other schools were a better fit for me" seemed to satisfy every interviewer, and it's definitely the truth. it's too bad that at this point you would have to take a year off though. i got the impression from my advisor that schools dont seem to mind if you leave a program. i almost think taking the year off might be a good thing because at least you were doing something productive for a year before entering med school, i certainly thought of doing that and you could say that.
 

BooMed

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Well how do you feel about Downstate? Have you ever been to visit or talked to students there? Is the tuition reasonably priced? What your friends think doesn't matter, you're the one with an acceptance to med school.
 

attaboybambeeks

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definitely apply to other schools.
a year off is not a year "off". Live it, Love it. You can go to a better school.
 

Josh Galt

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I take a class at Downstate now. It's ok. I'm not deliriously happy about it, but I've been accepted since high school, so I dont have that acceptance euphoria that has been going around lately. The price is excellent, much better than anything else I'd get in NY. And the biggest advantage of all is that I'll be going with a group of good friends. We know each other very well and we study together very well. When college gets difficult, we help each other. We take the pressure off. I think that sort of support group would be really valuable.

I want to stay in NY. I'd rather be in Manhattan than in Brooklyn but it's not the biggest deal. I'll still be close to Manhattan and to my family. I guess my biggest concern is residency. Downstate has a good, not wonderful, match record. Radonc has consistantly matched only at Downstate. I dont have any field in particular in mind, but I dont like the idea that I might be limited later. But the fact is, I feel as if I'll do well in general. I did on the MCAT. I have confidence in myself that I'll do well on USMLE too. Is the school you come from such a big deal?

Ugh, I know myself, I'm just going to Hamlet around and make myself insane.
Thanks everyone,
Josh
 

45408

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badlydrawnvik said:
i think with the 98th percentile mcat you owe it to yourself to see where else you could go.
I don't think it needs to be that way....I've got a friend who's at a school where his MCAT is 8 points above their average. I think it depends on where you want to be in the future, and what kind of ties you have to different schools. This guy is already accepted at a med school - it's a dicey proposition to just give that up in the hopes that other schools will take you. A 37 on the MCAT is great, but it's not a Golden Ticket.
 
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