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MFA vs Postback for MD

WestHaven626

Full Member
10+ Year Member
Sep 8, 2007
75
5
236
  1. Medical Student
Hey guys, I'm in a bind here and wanted some advice.
Here's my life:
I graduated from with a 3.36 Neurobiology Major
MCAT Aug 2006: 23S
MCAT Sep 2007: 25S

I applied to med schools got rejected by all...(except the Caribbean ; ) )

Here's the new twist...
I've been into film and producing, and I am offered a spot
in a very prestigious film school...My long term goal is to balance both.

I plan on retaking the MCAT again
and getting a 30+ before film school starts. I've got about 6 months to
get serious...

My question is...

Is a post-bac necessary to increase my GPA? Or would it be just
as worth it to get an MFA from a great film school to be more well rounded?

I'd appreciate any kind of advice.
 
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notdeadyet

Still in California
15+ Year Member
Jul 23, 2004
11,777
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426
  1. Attending Physician
Is a post-bac necessary to increase my GPA? Or would it be just
as worth it to get an MFA from a great film school to be more well rounded?
No, you need a post-bac.

The initial cut that med schools make is based on MCAT and undergrad GPA. Med schools see graduate degrees as nice icing on the cake, but they won't compensate for a substandard GPA. The reason is that grad school grades tend to be very inflated, so they don't mean a whole lot. This is true for sciences and I'm sure that carries over to film.

Decide how much you want to go to medical school. If your heart is in it, you need to take a good two years of doing postbac work to repair your GPA and use that time to bring your MCAT up a heck of a lot.

Then you'll be in the running. Any shortcuts now and you'll be spinning your wheels.

Good luck with your decision.
 
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BluePhoenix

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5+ Year Member
Mar 17, 2007
468
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Hey guys, I'm in a bind here and wanted some advice.
Here's my life:
I graduated from Purdue with a 3.36 Neurobiology Major
MCAT Aug 2006: 23S
MCAT Sep 2007: 25S

I applied to med schools got rejected by all...(except the Caribbean ; ) )

Here's the new twist...
I've been into film and producing, and I am offered a spot
in a very prestigious film school...My long term goal is to balance both.

I plan on retaking the MCAT again
and getting a 30+ before film school starts. I've got about 6 months to
get serious...

My question is...

Is a post-bac necessary to increase my GPA? Or would it be just
as worth it to get an MFA from a great film school to be more well rounded?

I'd appreciate any kind of advice.

Are you sure that you want to go into medicine and that medicine is right for you? Coming from a science background and scoring low on the MCAT both times, saying that you're going to get a 30+ is pretty optimistic unless there's a good reason you scored so low TWICE before. If you're really interested in film, perhaps consider a PA or nursing job that might give you more free time and less debt to pursue filmmaking.

I'm not trying to be mean or discourage you from med school, it just seems like you've got a bit to overcome and you sound like you really want to go to film school. Go to film school, decide on medicine afterwards, then do a post-bac if you're still interested.
 
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WestHaven626

Full Member
10+ Year Member
Sep 8, 2007
75
5
236
  1. Medical Student
Thank you so much for all your thoughts. It's a very hard decision to make in that I can't do one without the other.

I thought about nursing and PA, I even checked out a few programs here, and I've never really had an interest. I love Emergency Medicine but I was just looking for a possible alternative to post-bac.

Many say post-bac isnt even needed. If you do well on your mcat and you have above a 3.0 you'll get into a low tier school no matter what, so thats why I thought an MFA would not hurt to help nurture the other side of m passion.

But again its not somethng that I can just decide over night.
Thanks again everyone.
 
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GreenShirt

Full Member
10+ Year Member
Feb 6, 2007
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If you really enjoy film you could complete your MFA now and then apply to a post-bac or med school down the road. It's not unusually to take some time off before medical school and you don't want to regret later on that you didn't take the opportunity to explore this interest.

You only have one more shot at the MCAT, so make it a good one. Of course, if medicine is something you really want to pursue right now, you do have a Caribbean acceptance in hand.
 
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Lshapley

Old Man Med Student
10+ Year Member
Jul 2, 2006
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Portland
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Unlike what a previous poster said, schools won't wonder what you were doing if you get an MFA and eventually end up applying to medical school. However, if you do this without having a career related to your MFA (i.e., go directly from MFA to applying to med school), that will likely raise red flags.

Getting the MFA and having a film related career would mean you would be applying (likely in your late twenties, early thirties) as a career changer, which is often viewed as a good thing. Getting your MFA and then immediately applying to med school would make you seem like you have no clue what you want to do with your life.

Maybe you need to take a year or two off and decide what you really want to pursue?
 
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notdeadyet

Still in California
15+ Year Member
Jul 23, 2004
11,777
1,996
426
  1. Attending Physician
Many say post-bac isnt even needed. If you do well on your mcat and you have above a 3.0 you'll get into a low tier school no matter what, so thats why I thought an MFA would not hurt to help nurture the other side of m passion.
"Many" people are giving you criminally bad advice. If you do well on your MCAT (say a 32) and have a 3.0, you will most likely not get accepted anywhere. Many applicants with 3.5 and 32 are not etting accepted anywhere.

I'm not trying to pi$$ in your cheerios. I had to fight an uphill battle to get in to medical school too, so I can relate. But I think that you are way undersetimating how competitive medical school admissions are.

Going from an MCAT of 25 to 30 is a huge leap and many/most folks are not going to be capable of doing this, unless they pretty much blew off the first MCAT. Maybe you can, but don't underestimate how hard it will be to raise an MCAT 5 points.

Even with a 30, your odds of getting in to any medical school with a 3.3 are very, very remote. If you're not willing to do a postbac (which would indicate a lack of drive anyway), I'd recommend not bothering.

Best of luck with your decision. Don't make it lightly.
 
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ChiDoc27

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Jun 26, 2007
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IL
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Also, you didn't say if you were solely interested in allopathic medical schools, but your stats would make you competitive for some DO schools. If your end goal is really to become a physician, this may be your best best even if you have a few slightly uphill struggles. Good luck with whatever you choose.
 
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