Newcomer to the boards


Junior Member
15+ Year Member
Mar 5, 2004
    Hello all, this would be my first post on these boards. Like so many of you, I'm going to be trying to get into med school in the next year or two. I've been looking over the posts and generally I have hope about my chances of success, although with a renewed sense of gravity about my situation.

    I graduated a comp sci major from Stanford - at the height of the tech bust. My grades were no better than average, mostly Bs and Cs. After that, though, I got into a radiology tech program at a community college and am about to finish that up now. I am doing pretty well in that.

    Essentially, I intend to retake a full year of bio with lab, physics, and ochem with lab (I believe I have already covered the chem requirements), plus a couple of calculus and english classes. Then I'll hit up the MCAT in April 2005 (I am aware I won't be finished with all the necessary material, but I have already begun studying.) I realize the key to a successful admission at my point is probably doing well on the MCAT.

    My question - probably the same as many other newbies to the board - is how feasible is this? Am I just wasting my time? Let me just say I am serious about this - if I have a chance at getting in, I'm going to take it. I don't want to regret anything later by not trying. Also, where would the best place to find an official premed advisor be, since I have already completed undergrad?

    Thanks for your time in reading this long post and any replies you have.


    NOR * CAL
    10+ Year Member
    15+ Year Member
    May 19, 2003
    Bay Area
    1. Fellow [Any Field]
      we probably dont have enough information to judge your competitiveness. However, applicants with sub-par undergrad GPAs that aced their MCATs and postbacc programs tend to fare well in the application process.

      In fact this person seems to be exactly like you (tech from stanford, subpar undergrade gpa, did a postbacc, aced mcat)

      i think he's the guy that created that site.

      good luck.
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      10+ Year Member
      15+ Year Member
      Nov 25, 2002
      1. Attending Physician
        in all honestly...i think sdn can be your premed advisor.
        ive never had to go see a premed advisor ever and i have gained tremendous amounts of information on sdn.

        outside of some of the people who post stupid unproductive posts, for the most part there will be people here to answer your question.

        good luck on the prereqs...


        Caramel Gollum
        10+ Year Member
        15+ Year Member
        Apr 24, 2001
        KY, The Jelly State
        1. Medical Student
          Hmmm, let's see. This sounds familiar.

          I had a less than spectacular undergrad GPA, so I retook my prereqs & got a good MCAT score. Is it feasible? Look down at my sig. Go for it!!! :clap:

          Oh, and welcome to SDN! Stop by the lounge -- I swear we're not insane.


          Senior Member
          7+ Year Member
          15+ Year Member
          Sep 28, 2003
            Hi yawmin,

            I would say be wary of paid premed counselors. I haven't heard that many good things, and at the very least, the community here knows just as much, if not more, than they do, plus it's free.

            Is there any way you can still deal with Stanford's premed/career planning office? I know at my undergrad, they will do almost everything they do for undergrads for alums too.

            SDN + Stanford premed office = solid gold.


            7+ Year Member
            15+ Year Member
            Feb 5, 2004
            Somewhere between hither and yon
              I did this very thing, as a post-bac, and let me speak to it a bit. I would recomend that unless you are naturally very adept at science and can really take a ****ter of a workload, do the post bac thing as two years, or at least a year and a half. It takes awhile to adjust to the "vocabulary" of science work. I got my butt kicked initially, and it hurts my chances of being able to apply to the Dartmouths, Stanfords, etc, the only reason I got in anywhere was because of exceptional undergrad grades and a boatload of clinical experience. Get this, if you can. So be ready to get your butt whupped up on, because taking even a couple of these classes together is hard, there is a reason most pre-meds stretch them out over four years. And as for the MCAT in April, that's a patent absurdity. You'll still be working on electromagnetism and circuits in physics, and most all of your O-Chem syntheses and reactions in O-Chem. My pre-med advisor said that every post-bac who has taken the April MCAT while in the process of their yhear has not only failed amazingly, but screwed up their classes as well. I promise you, I am giving you my own hard earned advice here. If you can deal with stretching it out, do so. Its a big patience game, this getting into med school. I think you'd be much better served beforehand making sure your basic algebra skills are pretty solid, cause Gen Chem is all calculations.

              All that said, if you have passion and drive, forget everything which I've said. Work your tushy off, stay focussed, take good care of yourself. But please, I beg of you, don't do the MCAT at the same time!

              Good luck!!!!!!


              Full Member
              10+ Year Member
              15+ Year Member
              Jul 2, 2003
              1. Resident [Any Field]
                Originally posted by jlee9531
                in all honestly...i think sdn can be your premed advisor.
                ive never had to go see a premed advisor ever and i have gained tremendous amounts of information on sdn.

                outside of some of the people who post stupid unproductive posts, for the most part there will be people here to answer your question.

                good luck on the prereqs...

                On the other hand, if you have a good premed advisor, they are worth their weight in gold. My advisor at the University of Chicago was incredible and I attribute much of my success in this process to his good advice. It was a lot more solid than SDN since he knew his stuff when it came to admissions. I met with him at least once a month from the day I started my postbac work.


                Senior Member
                7+ Year Member
                15+ Year Member
                Oct 20, 2003
                  I also have to give props to my pre-prof. advisor. She's been incredibly helpful and supportive throughout this process.
                  I did a post bacc thing of sorts, and took the mcat before i finished everything (i was in the middle of physics) I'd suggest deferring english and calc until after the mcat, and take at least physics and a physiology class (I literally finished my physio class about an hour and a half ago, and i think it would have really helped me on the mcat.) try to get some of the ochem in as well, because it is well represented.

                  I have to agree with the other poster--do this over the course of two years to maximize your success...maybe take the august mcat so that you can sqeeze a bit more course work in. of course people will say it hurts your chances, but I'll offer antectdotal evidence to the contrary (along with a grain or two of salt)...i took the aug test and have gotten into four schools so far. I think how you do on the mcat matters more than when you take it.
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