Post-Bac suggestions for acceptance??

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by rhatam, May 31, 2000.

  1. rhatam

    rhatam New Member

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    I go to UC Berkeley, which is a really difficult school to do well when you have 500-600 hardcore pre-meds in all of your science classes and 60% of the class gets a C or worse. I've had over a year of research experience, I've shadowed a doctor, volunteered at a hospital and I got a 35 on my MCATS. My GPA however, leaves a lot to be desired. I really screwed up my first two years in almost all of my undergraduate science courses (except gen. chem=B+ and Physics 8B=A-), but almost all of the others were C's except a few. During my junior and senior year I "woke up" and got almost all A's and a few B+'s and one A-. My overall GPA is like a 3.1-3.2 right now and I need to do something for a year or so in order for my senior year grades to be counted in my GPA when I apply. Should I work in a lab doing research, take a post-bac program and get A's, or would they be most impressed if I did something like join the Peace Core and volunteer (in a medically-related way) in some third-world country?
     
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  3. whynotme?

    whynotme? Senior Member
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    I think all of the things that you suggested sound like an excellent idea, but I also think you need to do something that you will enjoy and that you can get enthusiastic about! Life is too short to do something just for the sake of doing it! Besides your enthusiasm for whatever you want to do will show through when you interview with Admt. com.- I guess I should also say that when I say" do something that you enjoy" I mean...in a volunteer capacity, school, or working. I don't think hiking through Yosemite will help much on admissions ( but then again, what do I know) [​IMG]
    Just my $.02 [​IMG]
     
  4. 1918

    1918 Member
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    My primary concern would be that your GPA could preclude you from being reviewed thoroughly as many schools initially screen applicants using GPA and MCAT numbers. If this is the case, no matter what you do in terms of volunteering/activities, it may not even be acknowledged by the adcomms.

    I would urge you to contact the admissions office (dean or assistant deans) of some of the schools you are interested in and ask them for their opinion.

    While I don't know your complete situation, my concern is that a 3.1-3.2 may allow you to be weeded out before serious and complete review of your file.

    The good news is that you have improved your grades over the four years at Berkley -- that is looked upon favorably by adcomms.

    Good luck.

    [This message has been edited by 1918 (edited 05-31-2000).]
     
  5. rangers1

    rangers1 Member
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    I agree whole-heartedly with the last post. All the touch-feely, good natured volunteering in the world is not going to get you into medical school. I don't mean to discredit the importance of having these things on your resume/application, but nothing can take the place of undergrad GPA and MCATs.

    It sounds like you have done very well on the MCATs, so you have to address the GPA. Unfortunately, once the undergrad degree is conferred, you can do nothing to boost the undergrad grades. The only option is to fortify your grades with graduate work. I would strongly advise entering a graduate pre-medical oriented masters program such as the ones that exist at Georgetown and Boston University. I just completed the Master's program at BU. I have similar undergrad GPA as yours but from a MUCH less prestigous and lesser known school. I did very well in the graduate program and will be starting med school this fall. It was an expensive undertaking, but it put me over the top and filled the the final piece of the puzzle needed for acceptance. I'm sure it would do the same for you. Good Luck.
     
  6. zolie

    zolie Member
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    I am a big believer in assessing your weaknesses and then addressing them. In this case: your undergrad GPA. I'm a Berkeley kid myself, so you don't need to justify your GPA to me, I completely understand. What I would suggest doing if you want to get into med school as soon as possible is to do about 24 units of post-bacc coursework, even if you're not in a post-bacc program.

    If you want a post-bacc, California has many which are geared towards individuals that want to practice shortage-area care. UCI, UCSD, UCSF, and UCD all have programs that are a year long, and inexpensive relative to private programs. All the volunteering and peace corping in the world aren't going to bring up your GPA... only classes will.

    Now, having said that, your numbers still give you somewhat of a shot. Are you going to apply this year? It might be worthwhile, then if you don't get in switch to plan B, or even start taking post-bacc classes while you're applying. That way you can send them grade updates while they are reviewing your ap.
    Good luck. If I made it, you can too!
     

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