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CTNeuro20

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Hi everyone...It's funny how mind-boggling the life of an MD/PhD applicant can get. To get to the point:
1) I know what I want 15 years from now, I know where I want to be and I know how to accomplish it. I see myself starting my own lab at a competitive school, doing neuro-related basic science and attempting at successfully bridging the gap into clinic. Patient-oriented and disease-oriented research (as Brown & Goldstein define it in their JCI article) both appeal to me - and I know the path to a being a good MD/PhD doing 'good' science is pretty arduous. So now the question is: can I get accepted with my credentials for 2005 matriculation?
2) I'm a junior @ UConn - GPA 3.9, University Scholar, majoring in Literature & Molecular/Cell Bio. I have loads of medical experience (both parents MDs). Senior year of high school I did some NMR-related protein work, but my first semester in college I switched to molecular neuro for research. I did a summer worth of work @ Harvard Med, a semester worth of work @ the European Institute for Molecular Biology (Drosophila) - participated @ 2 Neuroscience SFN conferences, 1 regional conference. I have been involved with research for about 4 years now. But out of all these experiences, I've got only ONE second-author publication (the paper itself had only the one other author plus the PI on it). I'm hopeful for maybe a first-author publication by graduation time. I have excellent references from the places I've interned at, but most importantly - my UConn PI loves me, and she's a great mentor. I am very passionate about what I do, and I tend to interview very well in sciences. I do decently well in standardized tests, but I am not totally optimistic about the MCAT - I took a practice and scored a 30. I think I could get around a 34 or higher on the real test.
2) I also opted to take the August MCAT (finishing physics, orgo work this semester). I did research on this and I figured that the schools I really wanted to get into didn't care about August MCAT. For some reason, I always manage to avoid MCAT-practice-time and rather read an interesting paper pertaining to my research work.
3) I am not a US citizen or a permanent resident yet (it should happen in the upcoming years).
4) I'm applying to some top-notch schools (and they do fund). If I don't get in this year, I'll reapply next year. But, I'm wondering what some more 'experienced' people out there think about my chances of getting a fully funded position at any of the following (keeping in mind the August MCAT / my citizenship status): Cornell, Harvard, Columbia, Duke, UPenn, WashU, Yale, Chicago - Pritzker, Baylor, UT Southwestern. Additionally, I may apply to Albert Einstein, Mount Sinai & Tufts.
5) finally - I think this is a great website - and I wanted to thank everyone for putting the time in, as some comments were really useful to me.
:)
 

coldchemist

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I don't think you have anything to worry about. I'm not an expert on matters of citizenship, but from what I know of some other SDN applicants to MSTP's, your in pretty good shape. I'd even venture to say that, with your resume, your MCAT score will be all but irrelevant in terms of admission to middle tier programs. A high score will just be another nail in the coffin. Good luck.
 

mentoz

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at UT Southwestern, i know for sure that citizenship doesn't matter (because Uncle Ross Perot supports the MSTP) .. i got into the program there so i can tell you a bit about it .. i'm glad you're considering it because it's a great program .. Brown is the director, you probably know, and Goldstein's on the committee .. i'm sure you'll do well on your MCAT .. you'll have NO PROBLEM .. PM if you want any contact info of MST students at UTSW who aren't citizens ...
 
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tofurious

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CTNeuro,

If you are still finalizing your list of schools, I recommend you to look at Mayo where you can do your med school at the good ol' Mayo Clinic Rochester but neuro PhD in Jacksonville FL where a lot of excellent Alzheimer and Parkinson work is being done.

Mentoz: you're cute ;) I should have gone to UCSF instead...
 

CTNeuro20

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mentoz said:
at UT Southwestern, i know for sure that citizenship doesn't matter (because Uncle Ross Perot supports the MSTP) .. i got into the program there so i can tell you a bit about it .. i'm glad you're considering it because it's a great program .. Brown is the director, you probably know, and Goldstein's on the committee .. i'm sure you'll do well on your MCAT .. you'll have NO PROBLEM .. PM if you want any contact info of MST students at UTSW who aren't citizens ...
Hey Mentoz,
Yeah, I'd love some UT Southwestern contact - Brown and Goldstein seem like great fellows. It's just that when I looked through the website, most of the students came from Texas, so I was wondering if non-Texan applicants simply run away even though MSTP should have no preference for in state vs. out of state. Or am I wrong? UT Southwestern and Baylor both seem good - it's just that I'm a New England-kinda guy - but to quote my advisor: "if a great medical school was on the moon, you should go there!". I probably won't get to see much of the world in most of those 7 years. :)
CTNeuro20
 

CTNeuro20

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tofurious said:
CTNeuro,

If you are still finalizing your list of schools, I recommend you to look at Mayo where you can do your med school at the good ol' Mayo Clinic Rochester but neuro PhD in Jacksonville FL where a lot of excellent Alzheimer and Parkinson work is being done.

Mentoz: you're cute ;) I should have gone to UCSF instead...
Mayo takes only US citizens & permanent residents - they sent me a bitchy reply back. For some reason, they all expect me to be one of those off-the-boat people and I even went to high school in the US...
 

coldchemist

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I have a good friend that was raised in the US but is a British citizen. He's not an MD or MSTP applicant, but he faces the same sort of difficuties in his area.

My impression is that MSTP applicants tend to spread their applications around, regardless of location. None of the UT's are short on applications from out-of-staters.
 

tofurious

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CTNeuro20 said:
Mayo takes only US citizens & permanent residents - they sent me a bitchy reply back. For some reason, they all expect me to be one of those off-the-boat people and I even went to high school in the US...
What is your citizenship if you don't mind me asking? Since you have been in the US for 4 years of high school and 4 years of college, when would you be eligible to become a PR?
 

mentoz

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CTNeuro20 said:
Hey Mentoz,
Yeah, I'd love some UT Southwestern contact - Brown and Goldstein seem like great fellows. It's just that when I looked through the website, most of the students came from Texas, so I was wondering if non-Texan applicants simply run away even though MSTP should have no preference for in state vs. out of state. Or am I wrong? UT Southwestern and Baylor both seem good - it's just that I'm a New England-kinda guy - but to quote my advisor: "if a great medical school was on the moon, you should go there!". I probably won't get to see much of the world in most of those 7 years. :)
CTNeuro20
that reason is because more Texans (who are aware that UTSW is a great school) apply .. i have a list of who got in this year and it's pretty diverse (i suppose word is catching on) .. the student i know who isn't a citizen is from NYC, and he really loves it at UTSW ... you might not like it, but it doesn't hurt to apply and come on down and check it out :)
 

mentoz

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tofurious: no one on SDN has ever said i was cute :) thank you ..
so where did you end up going?
 

hockebob

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to the op,

your mcat score may be restrictive, particularly at the top tier schools, so if you could at least get a 34 that would probably be good. other than that, you sound like a fine candidate... good luck!

best,
aaron

ps- make sure you get your apps in as soon as possible after you get your mcat scores back.
 

tofurious

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mentoz said:
tofurious: no one on SDN has ever said i was cute :) thank you ..
so where did you end up going?
Oh I made the decision to go to the midwest 7 years ago and made another decision to stay for residency in January. In 4 years though, I'll see you in SF.
 

surge

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CTNeuro20,

I was essentially in the same situation as you. PM me if you have any specific questions.

If you get a good MCAT score you have nothing to worry about. If you don't you still stand a chance. It's all about the interview.
Good luck.
 

nothingman

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I absolutely concur with Surge, and likewise was in a similar situation last year. It's a good set of choices given your GPA and record. Study hard for the MCAT - you should have a very good shot if you're 34+.

Feel free to get in touch with questions, likewise. Good luck!
 

adesua

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My background is similar to yours if not worse:
International student (F1 visa holder)
Took MCAT August of my Junior year
Even less research experience (2 years)
No publication

But I just finished with the whole application process successfully.

So with your credentials I will say don't worry (don't translate this to mean "take it easy" but rather "don't stress"). The schools you have decided to apply to were all schools that funded international students when I was applying. You might want to check up with UChicago again however. When I was applying they told me they fund only about 1 spot every couple of years. Be mindful also that Harvard has a single funded spot per year for international students.

In addition to studying hard for the MCAT (schools tell you they don't dwell on MCAT scores but take it with a pinch of salt because having a good MCAT score can really get you places), spend quality time on your essays.

All the best
 

nothingman

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As of last year, Harvard had two international funded spots (Presidential Scholarship). But re-check if that has changed for this cycle.

Once again good luck!
 

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CTNeuro20 said:
Mayo takes only US citizens & permanent residents - they sent me a bitchy reply back. For some reason, they all expect me to be one of those off-the-boat people and I even went to high school in the US...
They also INSIST that your undergrad. degree be completed in the U.S. It's pretty sad......
 
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