Oct 6, 2011
13
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Okay, here is my situation, I would appreciate any help provided very much. I am a paramedic and have been for the last six years. My current position is Field Training Officer. I am a BLS, PALS, and ACLS instructor, and I am a paramedic instructor at the local college. I have been published in a peer-reviewed journal (although it wasn't research). I am shadowing an ER physician regularly, and hope to get time shadowing an intensivist and cardiologist soon. I am also volunteering when I have time.

I didn't always know I wanted to be a physician, and recently came to terms with finally making the decision to take a venture towards medical school. I love the clinical aspect of my job, and I really do want to work towards having the autonomy a physician has. However, since I had no plans of going to medical school, and I was simply immature, my grades are not excellent. I have had a steep upward trend since reanalyzing my goals, and I hope to continue to achieve good grades.

I still have most of the pre-medical requirements to complete, and hope to be close to done by MCAT time next year. So what are my chances? I want to go to an MD school, and I am not against USUHS, or the Caribbean. I am a Florida resident, and UM would be top choice in state. So is this a pipe dream? I am 28 years old, so I would rather not do a graduate program.

I hope this is not in bad taste, but I have summarized my transcript below. Have a look, I know I have some tough grades to overcome, and my AMCAS GPA will be lower. Thank you in advance to anyone who has advice for me.

Transcript:
EMS 2119 MEDICAL CARE B
EMS 2119LFUND EMG LAB S
EMS 2411 EMERGE CLINIC A
EMS 2421 EMS FIELD INTERN S
Current Term:
3.25

ASE 1101 BODY SYS PM B
ASE 1102 PARA SCI I B
ASE 1103 PARA SCI I LAB S
ASE 1104 PARA SCI I FIELD S
Current Term:
3.00

ASE 1105 PM SCI II B
ASE 1106 PARA SCI II LAB S
ASE 1107 PM SCI II CARDIO B
ASE 1108 PARA SCI HSP I A
ASE 1109 PARA SCI II FIELD A
Current Term:
3.45


ASE 1110 PM SCI III TRAU C
ASE 1111 PARA SCI III LAB S
ASE 1112 PM SCI III MED C
ASE 1113 PARA SCI HSP II A
ASE 1114 PARA SCI III FIELD C
Current Term:
2.36

ASE 1115 PM SCI IV C
ASE 1116 PM SCI IV LAB S
ASE 1117 PARA SCI HSP III A
ASE 1118 PARASLINTERN A
Current Term:
3.33


Unofficial Transcript
INSTITUTION CREDIT
Term: Fall 2007
ENC 1101 CR COMPOSITION I F
PSY 2012 CR GENERAL PSYCHOLOGY D


Term: Fall 2008
MAC 1105 CR COLLEGE ALGEBRA A
Cumulative:
2.00

Term: Spring 2009
ENC 1101 CR COMPOSITION I A
PSY 2012 CR GENERAL PSYCHOLOGY C
Cumulative:
2.50

Term: Summer 2009
DEP 2004 CR HUMAN GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT F
HUM 2250 CR HUMANTIES:ROMANTIC TO PRESENT B
Cumulative:
2.60

Term: Fall 2009
ENC 1102 CR COMPOSITION II B
FFP 2720 CR FIRE COMPANY OFFICER LEADERSHP A
Cumulative:
2.85

Term: Spring 2010
ACG 1001 CR FINANCIAL ACCOUNTING I F
BSC 1093C CR ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY I B
Cumulative:
2.57

Term: Summer 2010
DEP 2302 CR ADOLESCENT PSYCHOLOGY B
MGF 1106 CR MATHEMATICS FOR LIBERAL ARTS I B
Cumulative:
2.64

Term: Fall 2010
BSC 1094C CR ANATOMY & PHYSIOLOGY II A
PHI 2100 CR LOGIC,REASON & CRIT THINKING A
Cumulative:
2.87

Term: Spring 2011
Deans List
PAD 3003 CR INTRO TO PUBLIC ADMIN A
PAD 4604 CR REG POLICY ADM LAW PUBLIC SECT A
SPC 1017 CR FUNDAMENTALS OF SPEECH A
SPN 1120 CR BEGINNING SPANISH I A
Cumulative:
3.14

Term: Summer 2011
DEP 2004 CR HUMAN GROWTH & DEVELOP A
PAD 3113 CR EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP A
PAD 3393 CR PRIN CRISIS & EMERGENCY MGMT A
SPN 1121 CR BEGINNING SPANISH II A
WOH 1030 CR HIST WORLD CIVIL: 1815-PRESENT B
Cumulative:
3.30

Term: Fall 2011
Deans List
PAD 3711 CR TECHNOLOGY IN PUBLIC SECTOR A
PAD 3820 CR PUB SAFETY SYSTEM INTEGR A
PAD 3874 CR COMMUNITY RELATIONS THEORY/PR A
PAD 4034 CR PUBLIC POLICY A
PAD 4332 CR STRAT OPERATIONAL PLAN A
PAD 4414 CR HUMAN RESOURCES PUBLIC SERV A
Cumulative:
3.44

Term: Spring 2012
Deans List
HUM 2510 CR HUMANITIES THROUGH THE ARTS A
MAC 1114 CR TRIGONOMETRY A
MAC 1140 CR PRE-CALCULUS ALGEBRA A
PAD 3204 CR FIN MGMT IN THE PUBLIC SECTOR A
PAD 4426 CR PUBLIC SECTOR LABOR RELATIONS A
Cumulative:
3.52


Unofficial Transcript
TRANSCRIPT TOTALS (COLLEGE CREDIT)

Total Institution:

3.52

Total Transfer:

3.06

Overall:

3.38
 

AlmostJesus

5+ Year Member
Mar 11, 2011
158
0
Midwest
Status
Pre-Medical
Keep up the good upward trend in grades, especially if you can take them from a challenging institution, explain yourself in your personal statement and rock the MCAT and you should be competitive for low tier MD, or DO school. For residency purposes, Id look DO before Caribbean.
I am a paramedic too, while I have no evidence to back this up, if you present yourself well, I think the paramedic background will serve you well in getting into medical school.
Also, you can take advantage of the DO grade replacement if you have some low grades in science classes.
Good luck!
 

alexrgross

7+ Year Member
Jan 17, 2010
613
0
los angeles, california
Status
Pre-Medical
It is how you finish not start. That said, completing the pre-reqs manageable for you. Your GPA is not beyond repair, I suggest you find the AMCAS GPA calculator and make sure your GPA will be above the 3.0 auto-reject for some schools. Begin by finding a program that will let you take classes informally, not towards a degree. Your first priority is to get your grades up and keep them up, also I would advise against planning for a 2013 MCAT, you will have only finished some of the pre-reqs and not all of the MCAT material. I think a realisitic timeline is to apply for the 2015 entering class.
 
OP
P
Oct 6, 2011
13
0
Status
Pre-Medical
It is how you finish not start. That said, completing the pre-reqs manageable for you. Your GPA is not beyond repair, I suggest you find the AMCAS GPA calculator and make sure your GPA will be above the 3.0 auto-reject for some schools. Begin by finding a program that will let you take classes informally, not towards a degree. Your first priority is to get your grades up and keep them up, also I would advise against planning for a 2013 MCAT, you will have only finished some of the pre-reqs and not all of the MCAT material. I think a realisitic timeline is to apply for the 2015 entering class.
Thanks for the advice! I am in Calc 1 & Chem 1 now.

Planning on the following:

Fall 2012
- Calc 2
- Chem 2
- Bio 1

Spring 2013
- Physics 1
- Orgo 1
- Bio 2

Summer 2013
- Physics 2
- Orgo 2
- Cell bio or genetics

I am only going to take the MCAT if my practice score is 30 or greater; I know I have to kill it to make up for the GPA. I then plan on finishing the B.S. in Biology after that. If I don't score well next year, then at least I will have a second bachelors the next go around, and another year of studying. I am starting my MCAT studying now actually. My roommate is another paramedic who is taking the MCAT on Thursday this week. So I'm picking up on the stuff here and there. Hopefully it will help me get better grades in the actual classes.
 
OP
P
Oct 6, 2011
13
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Keep up the good upward trend in grades, especially if you can take them from a challenging institution, explain yourself in your personal statement and rock the MCAT and you should be competitive for low tier MD, or DO school. For residency purposes, Id look DO before Caribbean.
I am a paramedic too, while I have no evidence to back this up, if you present yourself well, I think the paramedic background will serve you well in getting into medical school.
Also, you can take advantage of the DO grade replacement if you have some low grades in science classes.
Good luck!
Thanks man. I have heard the paramedic experience will only work in your favor, and depending on the ADCOMs experience with paramedics and their knowledge of their scope of practice, it may be very helpful. I have heard from many docs I know that the medics tend to be the best in the class and go on to great residencies. If the ADCOMs have noticed such a trend, I'd imagine it would be very helpful. Then again, I have no personal experience to base this off of either.
 

FrkyBgStok

10+ Year Member
Aug 7, 2005
4,730
600
Midwest
Status
Resident [Any Field]
Understand that you are walking a fine line. You have a low GPA and you NEED As. You don't want to overload yourself but you need to maintain a high level. If you can get through it with all As, you should be sitting pretty. But don't get lazy. You need to get that overall GPA is high as possible.
 

alexrgross

7+ Year Member
Jan 17, 2010
613
0
los angeles, california
Status
Pre-Medical
Thanks for the advice! I am in Calc 1 & Chem 1 now.

Planning on the following:

Fall 2012
- Calc 2
- Chem 2
- Bio 1

Spring 2013
- Physics 1
- Orgo 1
- Bio 2

Summer 2013
- Physics 2
- Orgo 2
- Cell bio or genetics

I am only going to take the MCAT if my practice score is 30 or greater; I know I have to kill it to make up for the GPA. I then plan on finishing the B.S. in Biology after that. If I don't score well next year, then at least I will have a second bachelors the next go around, and another year of studying. I am starting my MCAT studying now actually. My roommate is another paramedic who is taking the MCAT on Thursday this week. So I'm picking up on the stuff here and there. Hopefully it will help me get better grades in the actual classes.
I highly advice against studying for the MCAT during your academic terms. That will cost you grades, definitely. I also advise against applying and waiting on scores, having schools view your app in August or Spetember for the fist time. You are going to need every advantage you can, high grades, high MCAT, and early app....why the sense of urgency and "have to do all at the same time" attitude. Just spread next summers courses over the following year, and study all summer for the MCAT. Or study two months over the summer and use one for courses, depending on the calendar for you summer school....
 
OP
P
Oct 6, 2011
13
0
Status
Pre-Medical
I highly advice against studying for the MCAT during your academic terms. That will cost you grades, definitely. I also advise against applying and waiting on scores, having schools view your app in August or Spetember for the fist time. You are going to need every advantage you can, high grades, high MCAT, and early app....why the sense of urgency and "have to do all at the same time" attitude. Just spread next summers courses over the following year, and study all summer for the MCAT. Or study two months over the summer and use one for courses, depending on the calendar for you summer school....
Well, I turn 29 this year. That means if I apply next year, I will be 31 my first year of med school. If I stay with the emergency medicine mind set, I will be 38 by the time I finish residency. If I do HPSP/USUHS, I will be up there in age by the time I finish pay back. If I end up deciding on some other residency or a fellowship, that could tack on some serious time too. I know its not unheard of or anything, I am eager though. If I have to wait another year its not that big of a deal. Next semester will be a big test. If the course load is too much I will spread the rest out a bit better. My priority is A's, I do understand that. Thanks for the advice! I really appreciate it.
 
OP
P
Oct 6, 2011
13
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Understand that you are walking a fine line. You have a low GPA and you NEED As. You don't want to overload yourself but you need to maintain a high level. If you can get through it with all As, you should be sitting pretty. But don't get lazy. You need to get that overall GPA is high as possible.
Right on. I appreciate it. I know I can get the A's, and it is just what you said, not getting lazy. Thanks!
 

tigers2007

5+ Year Member
May 26, 2012
39
5
Status
Pre-Medical
Paramedicine can't be bad to have in your dossier. I just attended the graduation of a third paramedic-to-MD friend and former co-worker of mine. A very proud moment to see them hit the peak of their medical education goal; almost a tear jerker. What I do know is that commitment to studying must be treated like a sick baby, NEVER leave it alone, NEVER give up. In the 11 years of working EMS, I believe the company I worked for graduated over a dozen MD's, several PA's, countless RN's and even many CRNA's. Everyone worked their butt's off to bring in a paycheck and to pass the exams.

Personally, I don't know how people can work and study so much without losing it. Maybe they're in an unstoppable groove?
 
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