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Just go caribbean first time around?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by 1poq46hrprnpain, Mar 28, 2007.

  1. 1poq46hrprnpain


    Mar 27, 2007
    Hello. I am totally new here, and am in a horrible situation. At the begining of this academic year the thought of being a physician was
    clear to me. I've done some shadowing and also volunteer at an adult family home once a week for disabled people, and plan on continuing with it. I am currently a junior, but will graduate as a fith year undergrad. My major is called "B.S in Biochemistry/Cellular and Molecular Biology." I will not apply medical schools until after I graduate. Hence, there will be a one year gap, during which I am even considering doing a good solid SMP (ie Barry, Gtown, etc)
    After high school i went to a community college for a year to get certified as a pharmacy technician. I could have finished it in two quarters but was part time. Then I continued my freshman and sophmore years there, got an associates. I ended up getting accepted to a state university with a 3.1 but ended up with a total of 2.7 my last quarter becaus I totally slacked off.
    I was not pre med at all during these times. I was therefore not really focusing on getting super good grades, but I enjoyed learning, and was happy with B and B- grades and didn't really fret about a C or even C- here or there.
    Plus, I was also working 15-23 hours a week. Now, I just work in the pharmacy during breaks.
    What was i up to in freshman and sophmore years? Well, I just wanted to get a B.S in some biochemistry related degree and work as a resarch associate or the know have a nice lab job and just be in a lab all day...i wasn't even aiming for graduate school! My CC also had research opportunities that I participated in. I also partied a little to much especially during my last quarter. At one point I was having alot of emotional issues/family problems and ended up with 2 W's in one quarter. I believe my (SCIENCE!) CC classes were still challenging. I already took a year of organic chemistry with all B grades. The exams I took were also much harder than the ones at my university. Almost all questions on the exam were "propose a mechanism," or applying our knowledge to very very new situations using mechanisms that were similar to ones we already learned. They took so much thinking time that they were also scheduled in the evenings. I see the exams at my current school and they consist mosty of "this plus this = what?" questions. I know that CC's may already cary a bad stigma before med school adcoms. At least I'll be at this university for three years total including one summer quarter.
    Anyways, my first junior quarter here went good. Three classes, grades= B, B+, A-, could be better, yes. This past winter quarter sucked. My girlfriend broke up with me, for about two weeks I got into my old senior year of high school habit of smoking out...(pot) grades= C, D, B-!!! This is going to raise flags, especially since it is a transition from a CC to a university!!
    Has anyone ever experienced a change of plans to be a doctor in the middle of undergrad to adcoms? How do they take it?
    I am even considering sometimes just applying to a more well known carib school like SGU in order to marticulate(hopefully....i know SGU is getting somewhat competitive now...not just accepting everyone) upon completion of undergrad -I'll b just a little over 24!!! Sometimes I don't even think an SMP will accept me.

    Have not taken MCAT yet. Will take it summer 2008, during which I have all June through Sept to study for it and am determined to kick its ass past the caribbean islands and back 45 times!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:mad:

    :) giving up pot, again:thumbup: my friends are helping me.
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  3. polycon7

    polycon7 Junior Member 5+ Year Member

    Aug 19, 2006
    Las Vegas
    Well, you already know yours grades are going to raise red flags in your application. But, since you're thinking of getting an SMP, then that changes things. You still have another year and a half still of school which you can excel in even if your past academic record isn't too stellar. If you're serious about going into this field, then work at it. The MCAT studying will happen later when you're finalized in your plans to take it. At the mean time, enjoy what you have left of college while working hard. And then do the same with your SMP to get your science gpa back up. It's hard to gauge ADCOMS reactions to your undergrad gpa, but you can help that by doing well on your MCAT's to prove that you can definitely keep up with the material in med school. I wish you well:thumbup:
  4. Droopy Snoopy

    Droopy Snoopy 7+ Year Member

    Apr 3, 2006
    The Alamo
    So basically you're asking what your chances are? I only scanned this (you'll get better responses if you're more succinct), but from the info listed -- poor grades even with a light load at a CC, drug habit, unstable social life, family problems, etc. -- I can confirm your suspicions that you have an extrememly uphill battle in front of you for US allo. Well if you are willing to move out of the country I'd say there's bound to be somebody out there willing to take your money. But I can't really tell anything without an MCAT score or gpa info. Buy and MSAR and read the wealth of info contained in the stickies at the top of this page.
  5. Law2Doc

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

    Dec 20, 2004
    Just FYI, a lot of the better SMP programs will want you to have a 3.0 ug GPA for admission. From my quick read of your post, you are starting with a 2.7.

    You can turn things around, but don't expect it to be so quick. I wouldn't count on a hail mary high MCAT to help you much -- with a 2.7 you won't get looked at even with a top MCAT score. You probably need to get a couple of year track record of stellar grades for a realistic US application. That being the case I would hold off on the MCAT because it might expire by the time you are actually ready to apply.

    While there are caribbean schools that will take you, a search on SDN should give you numerous detailed threads discussing the positives and negatives of "just going caribbean".
  6. MadHopsMD

    MadHopsMD 10+ Year Member

    Apr 22, 2006
    make sure you check out DO schools.
  7. Steve203

    Steve203 5+ Year Member

    Jan 26, 2006
    To the OP

    When I graduated (way back in 2003), a friend of mine decided that if he didn't get accepted to medical school the first time around that he would just go to the caribbean right away. He didn't want to wait to "start his life" as he put it. He tried to convince me to do the same and join him. I applied to both SGU and Ross, and got in (The interviewers pretty much told me if you have a pulse, that you'll get in). I sat down and talked to some physicians and people I knew who gave me pretty much a consensus will not have priority when it comes to residency. To me, it seemed like a no brainer...why would I do all the same work as a US grad just to be considered second class? For me it was better to take my time and do things the right way. Fast forward to 2007 and my friend is finishing up his 4th year, and match day came and went without him matching. He is absolutely devastated. From what he has said, it is very difficult to match into a competitive residency out of the caribbean. You are considered a foreign grad, and are second priority after all the US grads. He regrets his decision and wishes he had just worked on his application and re-applied.

    Currently, I am about to start med school in the fall (most likely at Pitt), and whenever we talk he says that he wishes he had done things the right way. It's all about perspective I suppose. If you just want to finish and don't really care what you specialize in, then yeah I would go to the caribbean. If you really want to have all your options available, then I would try to get into the best school possible.

    I was kind of in your position with low grades (but under different circumstances)....what I would do if i were you is try to get the highest grades possible for whatever classes you have left. Knock out the MCAT, and do a post-bac to raise up that GPA and show admissions committees that you are serious. To be honest with you, you still have plenty of time and might not even need a post-bac. Most people on admissions committees really don't care about community college grades, and are more interested in what you do at a university level. They also will forgive a bad transition quarter, if you can follow it up with great grades. Just try to get straight A's from now on and you'll be fine.

    Does it suck to do all that extra work? Well yeah, of course...but in the end you get what you work for. You still have a great chance, but you need to really decide if you want to put in the effort.
  8. I also went to a CC and will also graduate as a fith year with a similar major! However, I am not having a downward trend of grades. For sure, stop smoking pot. Focus focus on your studies. Just DO it (and dont forget to check out the osteopathic schools, no pun intended). Good luck to you.

    You still have the rest of this academic year in addition to 2007-2008, and 2008-2009! DO NOT MAKE THE SAME MISTAKES. GET AS MANY A's AS YOU CAN, DON'T EVEN LOOK AT YOUR GPA

    Like others say, it's going to be a rough road. If you really want to, do it.

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