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MD Just decided against a career in research...how am I doing?

Discussion in 'What Are My Chances?' started by asw98, 01.12.14.

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  1. asw98

    asw98 2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    05.06.13
    Messages:
    187
    MDApps:
    Status:
    Medical Student (Accepted)
    I'm a junior at a non-HYP Ivy and for the past two years I had been set on a career in research, either Ph.D. or M.D./Ph.D. However, after witnessing the financial struggles first-hand in my own research lab and shadowing the dean of a graduate school, I decided that I don't think I would be happy with a career in research. So, I was hoping I could get some advice as how to prepare to apply to med school.

    Here are my stats/ECs:
    sGPA 3.99
    cGPA 3.99
    Major: Biology
    Minor: Russian & European Studies
    I plan on taking the MCAT in August.

    Research:
    300 hours lab summer after freshman year on ion channel receptors.
    1,000 hours in my current lab (15-20 hours per week since sophomore year) on acute myeloid leukemia. Most likely will have at least a 2nd author publication. Writing an honors thesis as well.

    ECs:
    75 hours Vice president of an art club where we do art projects with incarcerated youth
    40 hours Philanthropy chair of a medical brigade club
    300 hours President of a committee that planned events for accepted students days; I also present/work at information sessions for visitors.

    Work Experience:
    400 hrs TA for a prefreshman summer chemistry course for underrepresented minority students who were preselected by the university as lacking in sufficient preparation to take general chemistry.

    Medical Experience:
    Brigade to Honduras
    Shadowed an Oncologist (6 hours)
    Shadowed an Orthopedic Surgeon (15 hours)

    Clearly, I have to work on my medical experiences. Currently, I am planning on applying for Fulbright to teach English for a year in Russia (I will be applying to matriculate in 2017). The program is designed so students have time for a side project (usually around 15 hours/week). I was hoping to volunteer in a Russian hospital. Also, the Fulbright program doesn't start until late September, so I was wondering if anyone had suggestions for what I should do during that summer. Thanks.
     
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  3. AquiVoy13

    AquiVoy13

    Joined:
    05.10.13
    Messages:
    302
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    You definitely need more clinical experience. Get more shadowing and volunteer in a hospital and/or hospice.. in the U.S. You need to familiarize yourself with U.S healthcare. It's cool to see how other healthcare systems work, and I think volunteering in a Russian hospital would be a neat experience, but I wouldn't have that as the bulk of your clinical experience.

    Everything else looks great though. Awesome research and sweet gpa.
     
    chemguy79 and nemo123 like this.
  4. Catalystik

    Catalystik Providing herd protection SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

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    I agree. Otherwise, you're looking good.
     
  5. asw98

    asw98 2+ Year Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    MDApps:
    Status:
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    Thanks. I was thinking about volunteering at hospice the summer after graduating. How much clinical experience do I need to have?
     
  6. Catalystik

    Catalystik Providing herd protection SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

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    Hospice is a great choice.

    A few schools have stated requirements. From my observation, the average applicant lists 150 hours of clinical volunteering over 1.5 years (duration is more important than total hours) and 50 total hours of shadowing (can be done in large blocks of time over a school break, or on a weekly basis).
     
  7. AquiVoy13

    AquiVoy13

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    Status:
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    I personally would recommend trying both hospice and hospital. They can be very different experiences, but they're both good insights into working with patients. If you do both, you'll have a good variety of clinical experiences and you could rack up hours a little bit faster. I would aim for at least 100 hours.

    If you can, I would start at least one position this semester, so your volunteering can be a little bit more spread out.
     
  8. asw98

    asw98 2+ Year Member

    Joined:
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    MDApps:
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    Medical Student (Accepted)
    Unfortunately, I don't think I will be able to start this semester between my research, clubs, and classes. Also, there aren't very many opportunities at my university as there is only one small hospital in town. Last year I tried to volunteer there, but they already had too many volunteers. Alternatively, I can start volunteering at hospice senior year and then work in a hospital the summer after. What kind of volunteering/work in a hospital would be worthwhile?
     
  9. asw98

    asw98 2+ Year Member

    Joined:
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    Status:
    Medical Student (Accepted)
    Update:

    Just got my MCAT score
    38 (14PS/10V/14BS)

    Also, I started volunteering at a local hospital 6 hours a week in the emergency and endoscopy departments. I'm up to 60 hours now. I am going to keep doing it until I graduate so I should have at least 200 hours over the course of a year. I've had several of meaningful experiences so far.
    In terms of my research, I will most likely be attending a large conference in the spring to do a poster presentation and I should have a first author on a paper in a respectable journal, as well as an honors thesis.
    I am now co-President of my volunteering club and co-President of Phi Beta Kappa (inducted as a junior after placing in top 3% of my class). I am also the vice-president of my medical brigade club. I started TAing introductory physics this semester and I recently joined the club roller hockey team. Lastly, I up to over 40 hours of shadowing (cardio-thorasic surgeon) and I plan to get to 60 hours before applying.

    In terms of my gap year(s), I applied to Fulbright to go to Russia. I was told that my application was very solid.
    I'm considering applying to Peace Corps to teach English in Kosovo, or potentially biology/chemistry in Mozambique (in Portuguese). Lastly, I was looking into the NIH IRTA research program. I'm leaning towards Fulbright, but I won't know/decide until April or May.
    How am I looking?
     
  10. Heplayer92

    Heplayer92 2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    06.25.13
    Messages:
    571
    Status:
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    Congrats on a ridiculously high score =D

    Write some good essays, apply as early as you can, and you'll probably be set for anywhere you want to go. Aim high, and good luck!
     
  11. Afford

    Afford

    Joined:
    07.29.14
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    610
    Status:
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    Very strong. You stand a chance at every medical school.
     
  12. asw98

    asw98 2+ Year Member

    Joined:
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    MDApps:
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    Thanks a lot!!
     
  13. asw98

    asw98 2+ Year Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    MDApps:
    Status:
    Medical Student (Accepted)
    How is this school list?

    Buffalo
    Stonybrook
    Downstate
    Stanford
    UCSF
    UCLA
    Vanderbilt
    UChicago
    WUSTL
    Duke
    Pitt
    Penn
    Cornell
    Yale
    Columbia
    Harvard
     

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