SonX

2+ Year Member
Aug 5, 2017
4
7
Status
Pre-Medical
I'm looking for some helpful advice as a current applicant interested in MD/PhD.

This cycle I was only planning on applying as an MD due to my low stats, but after reevaluating the strengths of my application and talking to some friends, I think I might be a better fit for an MD/PhD program.

My cGPA is 3.5, sGPA is 3.4. MCAT is 509, even scores across the board. The average academic requirements as an MD/PhD are higher than what I have. Regardless, the majority of my extracurricular activities are research based, and that is why I believe that I might be competitive for MD/PhD. I have 1500+ hours working in a research lab at a top tier institution with a paper as a contributing author, 2 summer grants awarded to me, and a poster that I presented at SFN 2016. I also worked in another lab under work study during my freshman year for 250 hours. In comparison, I only have 150 hours of volunteering and no noteworthy community volunteering experiences. I've shadowed only one doctor significantly, so I don't feel that I would be a good candidate for alot of service oriented schools in my percentile range.

Currently, I've applied to 20+ schools through the MD program, but is it too late to apply as an MD/PhD? Should I even bother since my stats are so low?

I'm also unsure how the application process changes since I already submitted my app and completed secondaries to many schools, including all my in-state schools, as an MD already. Can I resubmit as an MD/PhD or do I have to find other schools to apply to altogether?

Any help/advice would be appreciated. Thanks!
 

moggat

MudPhud
2+ Year Member
Oct 14, 2015
168
207
Hive of Scum and Villainy
Status
MD/PhD Student
You would probably have more luck asking in the MDPhD forum, so hopefully one of the mods can move this there for you (@Lucca ?)

I will say though that although your research is good, it's probably more like "above average" for an MDPhD program, and likely not out-of-the-box-stellar enough to make them overlook the other deficiencies in your application (you still need volunteering and clinical experience for MDPhD, just not necessarily as much as MD). If you're passionate about MDPhD I would consider targeting the strong non-MSTP and more regional programs as they are sometimes more forgiving. Good luck!
 

Lucca

Will Walk Rope for Sandwich
Staff member
Administrator
5+ Year Member
Oct 22, 2013
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City of the Future
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GPA and MCAT are probably too low for MD/PhD. Research experience is good. I don't know whether or not it is possible to check the box for MD/PhD on a school you have already submitted your primary to. Maybe contacting the school directly and asking to be considered would work?

In any case, I don't think you are competitive for most MD/PhD programs. You could still have some luck at MD/PhD programs associated with lower ranked institutions and not on the coasts, but even that would be an uphill battle. That doesnt mean it's not worth trying. There might be a program that would be willing to take you on because of your research background and be more willing to forgive your states. There might be.

Moving to PS forum
 
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s_med

2+ Year Member
Sep 14, 2016
77
50
Status
MD/PhD Student
is it too late to apply as an MD/PhD?
Not yet, but time advances steadily.

1500+ hours working in a research lab at a top tier institution with a paper as a contributing author, 2 summer grants awarded to me
These are the strongest parts of your application. Unfortunately...

My cGPA is 3.5, sGPA is 3.4. MCAT is 509
...these numbers will probably screen you out of most funded MD/PhD programs. Not just the top-ranked ones. Most of them. This is really unfortunate, because a screen-out is a t=0 rejection. No adcom member will get to read about your research accomplishments if this is the case.

Should I even bother since my stats are so low?
You can definitely bother. The questions are: (1) how much should you bother? and, (2) where should you bother? Question (1) is complicated by your prior MD-only submissions on AMCAS and secondaries. @Lucca 's suggestion of contacting schools directly is good, but then this leads to Question (2). I would not waste time and money trying for MD/PhD at programs with high median GPA/MCAT. You are better off applying directly MD/PhD to lower-ranked programs to whom you have not already sent applications.

I would wager that, if you really want both degrees, the best strategy in your case is to secure MD admission into a research-oriented medical institution. These institutions happen to be higher ranked due to the funds allocated to research. As a result, they often have larger MD/PhD programs since each seat is worth $$$. Investigate the options for internal transfer into the MSTP or MD/PhD program at these institutions. If you gain admission into one of these places, and work hard on finding a thesis lab during the M1 year, you can have a good shot of a successful transfer.
 

Fencer

MSTP Director
10+ Year Member
Oct 10, 2007
1,582
1,996
TEXAS (Eden)
Status
Attending Physician
Every year, someone with these qualifications and terrific research experiences/LORs gets into a funded MD/PhD program... You need to apply broadly to many MD/PhD programs particularly those with low number of applications per slot. There are many programs that training resilient and successful clinician-scientists between the coasts that can be interested in an applicant like you. PM me if you need...
 
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Reactions: loveforsciencemed
Aug 6, 2017
27
27
I'm looking for some helpful advice as a current applicant interested in MD/PhD.

This cycle I was only planning on applying as an MD due to my low stats, but after reevaluating the strengths of my application and talking to some friends, I think I might be a better fit for an MD/PhD program.

My cGPA is 3.5, sGPA is 3.4. MCAT is 509, even scores across the board. The average academic requirements as an MD/PhD are higher than what I have. Regardless, the majority of my extracurricular activities are research based, and that is why I believe that I might be competitive for MD/PhD. I have 1500+ hours working in a research lab at a top tier institution with a paper as a contributing author, 2 summer grants awarded to me, and a poster that I presented at SFN 2016. I also worked in another lab under work study during my freshman year for 250 hours. In comparison, I only have 150 hours of volunteering and no noteworthy community volunteering experiences. I've shadowed only one doctor significantly, so I don't feel that I would be a good candidate for alot of service oriented schools in my percentile range.

Currently, I've applied to 20+ schools through the MD program, but is it too late to apply as an MD/PhD? Should I even bother since my stats are so low?

I'm also unsure how the application process changes since I already submitted my app and completed secondaries to many schools, including all my in-state schools, as an MD already. Can I resubmit as an MD/PhD or do I have to find other schools to apply to altogether?

Any help/advice would be appreciated. Thanks!
There is a lot of great advice already. I think you should give it a try. It sounds like you enjoy research and if you truly can see yourself working in academic medicine and using new scientific knowledge to apply to the clinic for medical advances, then what is to hold you back? I understand your stats are an obstacle for you, but like Fencer said... it isn't impossible to get in somewhere. Not to be cliche, but "we missed 100% of the shots we never took." It would be a shame for this to be one of them.

Go for it.
 
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Reactions: BlueEyez
Oct 1, 2017
511
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New York
Doesn't hurt to apply to MD/PhD but you have to be more diligent with MD/PhD. You're committing 3-5 years in a research field so you must make sure they have a faculty who researches what you're interested in. If not, apply to their MD program so you can cast a wide net.

As for letters, if MDs catch wind you're applying to MD/PhD through your letters, it may or may not affect their decision to accept you, so make sure your letter writers don't give hint you're applying to both programs or they may need to submit 2 letters for each program, depending on who they are, such as PI and science professors.
 

bluelamin

2+ Year Member
Oct 20, 2015
198
130
Status
Pre-Medical
if you want to apply next cycle i would suggest crushing the mcat to be your first goal
 
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