Dec 18, 2020
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Hello! I'll start with the bad stuff: I've dropped chem 1 twice in undergrad. As a non-trad this time, in my first post-bacc semester I had to drop a chem 1 lab portion because a B- wouldn't be possible after I missed early deadlines on some detailed lab reports.

The good part: I have A's in the other 3 classes (11 credits) this semester-- even an A in chem 1 and likely A- in physics 1 this time! I'm very certain I can get an A in the lab next semester. I will have 4 more semesters (spring, summer, fall, winter) of premed coursework after this.

Background:
Major: Computer Science (CS). cGPA: 2.99. sGPA: 2.5. Mixed GPA trend, down in the beginning and end. Graduated 2019.
- 7 W's on the transcript from 4 classes (dropped chem1+lab twice which made 4 of the W's; other 3 W's are from non-science classes with labs).
- 3 F's on a pass/fail scale (1 in physics 1; 2 in non-science classes).
- 1 real F in a non-science class during summer semesters. Trigger warning for those uncomfortable w/ sexual assault: The 1 real F occurred in my last semester, I had monthly interviews to testify against a professor who sexually assaulted me and several other students during his required office hour sessions. We won the case finally, with a lot of mental anguish. A good newspaper wrote about the case, my name is in it. I made a website with resources to assist other victims after that.

Reflecting:
First, I definitely underestimated the difficulty of CS coursework with premed classes in undergrad. Taking care of 1 sick parent and affording school+housing+food became a new requirement after high school. It's no excuse since the GPA is still hurt. Undergrad was a hole -- I knew I needed a break to work on myself and finances--- but my financial aid would be cut if I took a leave of absence or went under 12 credit hours.
After graduation, I think I learned better lessons on time management and realized my priorities from working full time.

TLDR: Does 1 W in the first lab of my post-bacc year kill me for MD/DO schools? Should I just do SMP considering undergrad mistakes? Also, if you were me, should I mention the true reason for my 1 F in undergrad in applications?
 
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candbgirl

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The W isn’t going to hurt you. Better a W than a D. Nail it next time. I think a SMP is probably in your future, but I’m not sure when. Your sGPA is so low, it’s not at all competitive for MD or DO. If you don’t have issues with applying DO you might want to focus on that. At this point it’s going to be hard to get your sGPA anywhere near 3.0. It’s more about stringing together several semesters of excellent grades and proving to ADCOMS you are up to the rigors of Med School. As to the one F it’s up to you, but if you retook the class and did well, there might not be a reason to even mention it. Are you going to talk about the assault elsewhere on your application? If so maybe you can mention it there as almost an afterthought. One F in those circumstances is surprising. Most people would have many more bad grades. Don’t take your MCAT until you are very ready. At this point you probably have big holes in your scientific knowledge. Good luck.
 
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Goro

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Hello! I'll start with the bad stuff: I've dropped chem 1 twice in undergrad. As a non-trad this time, in my first post-bacc semester I had to drop a chem 1 lab portion because a B- wouldn't be possible after I missed early deadlines on some detailed lab reports.

The good part: I have A's in the other 3 classes (11 credits) this semester-- even an A in chem 1 and likely A- in physics 1 this time! I'm very certain I can get an A in the lab next semester. I will have 4 more semesters (spring, summer, fall, winter) of premed coursework after this.

Background:
Major: Computer Science (CS). cGPA: 2.99. sGPA: 2.5. Mixed GPA trend, down in the beginning and end. Graduated 2019.
- 7 W's on the transcript from 4 classes (dropped chem1+lab twice which made 4 of the W's; other 3 W's are from non-science classes with labs).
- 3 F's on a pass/fail scale (1 in physics 1; 2 in non-science classes).
- 1 real F in a non-science class during summer semesters. Trigger warning for those uncomfortable w/ sexual assault: The 1 real F occurred in my last semester, I had monthly interviews to testify against a professor who sexually assaulted me and several other students during his required office hour sessions. We won the case finally, with a lot of mental anguish. A good newspaper wrote about the case, my name is in it. I made a website with resources to assist other victims after that.

Reflecting:
First, I definitely underestimated the difficulty of CS coursework with premed classes in undergrad. Taking care of 1 sick parent and affording school+housing+food became a new requirement after high school. It's no excuse since the GPA is still hurt. Undergrad was a hole -- I knew I needed a break to work on myself and finances--- but my financial aid would be cut if I took a leave of absence or went under 12 credit hours.
After graduation, I think I learned better lessons on time management and realized my priorities from working full time.

TLDR: Does 1 W in the first lab of my post-bacc year kill me for MD/DO schools? Should I just do SMP considering undergrad mistakes? Also, if you were me, should I mention the true reason for my 1 F in undergrad in applications?
Nope.

And explanations in app simply come off as either excuses or exercises in poor judgement
 
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Dec 18, 2020
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The W isn’t going to hurt you. Better a W than a D. Nail it next time. I think a SMP is probably in your future, but I’m not sure when. Your sGPA is so low, it’s not at all competitive for MD or DO. If you don’t have issues with applying DO you might want to focus on that. At this point it’s going to be hard to get your sGPA anywhere near 3.0. It’s more about stringing together several semesters of excellent grades and proving to ADCOMS you are up to the rigors of Med School. As to the one F it’s up to you, but if you retook the class and did well, there might not be a reason to even mention it. Are you going to talk about the assault elsewhere on your application? If so maybe you can mention it there as almost an afterthought. One F in those circumstances is surprising. Most people would have many more bad grades. Don’t take your MCAT until you are very ready. At this point you probably have big holes in your scientific knowledge. Good luck.
The sGPA 6 of those credits are in applied math classes and I will definitely take more down the line.
The W isn’t going to hurt you. Better a W than a D. Nail it next time. I think a SMP is probably in your future, but I’m not sure when. Your sGPA is so low, it’s not at all competitive for MD or DO. If you don’t have issues with applying DO you might want to focus on that. At this point it’s going to be hard to get your sGPA anywhere near 3.0. It’s more about stringing together several semesters of excellent grades and proving to ADCOMS you are up to the rigors of Med School. As to the one F it’s up to you, but if you retook the class and did well, there might not be a reason to even mention it. Are you going to talk about the assault elsewhere on your application? If so maybe you can mention it there as almost an afterthought. One F in those circumstances is surprising. Most people would have many more bad grades. Don’t take your MCAT until you are very ready. At this point you probably have big holes in your scientific knowledge. Good luck.
If sGPA means science GPA (Math, Bio, Physics, Chem?), that is based on 13 credits in undergrad. Wouldn't 30+ credits of science work from next 4 semesters jump the sGPA to about 3.3- 3.4?
If we're talking about Semester GPA, mine in undergrad is 2.96. Would that adjust the future SMP prediction?
I'm looking at DO, definitely. Some part of me wishes MD was a possibility.
 

candbgirl

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Well if your are starting your DIY post bacc with 13 hours your sGPA will go up. But you didn’t mention that in your post. For DO schools, math courses aren’t included in the sGPA. So keep that in mind.
 
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Nope.

And explanations in app simply come off as either excuses or exercises in poor judgement
Gotcha. I was not going to mention the assault on me* specifically. I would only mention that I volunteered as sexual assault advocate for a local org (~550 hours) and later published a database of legal material and resources for sexual assault victims, specifically for those in college. Thank you both of you @candbgirl 🙏
 

Goro

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Gotcha. I was not going to mention the assault on me* specifically. I would only mention that I volunteered as sexual assault advocate for a local org (~550 hours) and later published a database of legal material and resources for sexual assault victims, specifically for those in college. Thank you both of you @candbgirl 🙏
Save that for the greatest challenge or resilience prompts. You should also have a LOR writer discuss your travails
 
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Mr.Smile12

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The withdrawals will make it challenging, but it's not the end. You have some personal challenges and needed to take a bit more time.

Astute application screeners will note what your original major is and take note that your low grades came with a challenging analytical major. You'll need to find out which schools are out there that will take that into account and weigh your biomedical postbac coursework in proper context.
 
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