Lack of Extracurriculars?

This forum made possible through the generous support of SDN members, donors, and sponsors. Thank you.


New Member
10+ Year Member
Feb 8, 2009
Reaction score

Members don't see this ad.
MCAT - 31M (BS-12; PS-10; VR-9)
GPA - 3.51
Science GPA - 3.51 (Note: No non-science courses taken. There isn't any room in my major to do that and if I go over the credit limit those elective courses do not count toward my GPA)
Program - Honors Immunology and Infectious Disease
School - US Top Tier but not Ivy
Maine Resident

ECs -
Research two summers, two labs, no papers
Local hospital volunteer
1 year writing a section for a non-medically-related comedic magazine.
Shadowed a surgeon for a day (exciting); Shadowed a DO (he told me to apply for MD instead); Shadowed a DPM (only one patient came in; nothing interesting)

I'm thinking about some of the low tier US schools or more likely Ross in the Caribbean. Any thoughts?


Full Member
10+ Year Member
Apr 4, 2007
Reaction score
I'd suggest you go DO over going to Ross. There are many searchable threads on the reasons why. Mean allopathic acceptee's stats are GPA 3.66 and MCAT 31. You might have a shot at an low-selectivty MD school if your extracurriculars were less average. You didn't specify your time with hospital volunteerism, but the average person has about 150 hours over 1.5 years, and DO schools have an expectation of this type of community service/clinical experience too. At least you have something to list under "Publications" and "Research." Do you have a leadership experience? Sports? The Arts? Interesting hobbies? Employment?

Why not spend an extra year beefing up your extracurriculars and GPA? It doesn't matter what your school does in regards to "going over the credit limit" so that "courses do not count" in elective courses, as AMCAS and AACOMAS will refigure your application GPA using all your coursework grades.


Full Member
10+ Year Member
Jan 22, 2009
Reaction score
Your EC's are definitely lacking but your GPA isn't that bad. Getting a 3.51 with only science classes over your entire college career is far more impressive than getting a 3.6 in just the pre-reqs. Of course that depends on the science class you took. But I agree with the above poster. You should definitely wait until the next cycle and beef up your EC's. Do something like tutoring little kids or coaching a little league team to get leadership. Make sure you volunteer and shadow. Also, if you can, find someone to do research with. You don't have to have a publication, all you really need to do is go in and help out in anyway with a post-doc doing research. That alone will bolster your application, and you will definitely get into at least 1 school next year.