1. Dismiss Notice
  2. Download free Tapatalk for iPhone or Tapatalk for Android for your phone and follow the SDN forums with push notifications.
    Dismiss Notice

Postbac! HELP ME!

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by T-shirt, Apr 3, 2001.

  1. T-shirt

    T-shirt Junior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2001
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    0

    Hi. I'm deciding between Postbac programs right now and looking for any advice out there. PLEASE.

    Currently I live in Boston, and I was accepted to Tufts Postbac, and I also have the option of attending Harvard Extension Postbac.
    I could also move to SUNY (where my family is). I know I'd be happiest at SUNY, but I'm not sure if I'm giving up a good opportunity by passing up on Tufts and Harvard. ANyone have any advice for me. Would going to SUNY make things that much tougher for me in terms of medical school admissions. Please let me know.. I need to know soon since I'd be moving out to NY in May and I need to take care of moving out stuff like by the beginning of next week. PLease help. I just would love to hear what others have to say. Thanks
     
  2. Note: SDN Members do not see this ad.

  3. I would need to know a lot more information about what type of medical school you were going for, where you did your undergrad, your MCAT, etc. to give you a good answer for this one. I can say this, I would go wherever you think that you can do well and you think would be good for. I don't think that med schools are going to be any more impressed just because you went to a post-bac program at Harvard as opposed to some other school if you get straight As there, also if you go to Harvard and get B's and C's, it would have been better to go to another program and get As. However, if your goal is to go to HMS, then you should enroll in the Harvard program. Hope that's helpful.
     
  4. Tim Duncan

    Tim Duncan Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2001
    Messages:
    46
    Likes Received:
    1
    Here's the scoop, Harvard Extension has easier classes than Harvard College (along with added grade inflation), but the medical adcoms turn a blind eyes towards it.

    In addition to a reduced tuition, the Extension school has an excellent placement rate into medical schools and it's not too difficult to perform really well there.

     
  5. T-shirt

    T-shirt Junior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2001
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks for the advice. I actually went to Harvard for undergrad and I knew the extension school was a bit easier than the college.

    Does it really make that much of a difference in completing a postbac at Harvard versus SUNY. the second reply (i think) implies this.
     
  6. omores

    omores sleep deprived
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2000
    Messages:
    571
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    Hi.

    I'm just wrapping up post-bacc work at a small SUNY school. The school had no official post-bacc program (although I believe they are trying to start one); I just found out what courses I needed and took them. This is my experience:

    Teachers and administrators have been extremely welcoming of me as a post-bacc student, likely because they assumed I'd be extra motivated to work hard and do well.

    Because the classes were pretty small and I was one of the few older students in them, I was able to forge solid relationships with teachers. This translated into plenty of advice, individual attention -- and ultimately, strong, personal letters of recommendation. Very important.

    This place is not exactly a research powerhouse -- not much funding; not many students involved. I used this to my advantage, however: I was able to have a central role in one of the projects and was granted lots of autonomy.

    Because SUNY's a state school, it's much MUCH cheaper than official post-bacc programs at private schools. I've been able to finance it myself without taking out any loans. It will be nice to enter med school without any debt, because that surely won't be the case when I graduate!

    The more I learn about this process from pre-med advisors, people I know who have served on adcoms, and so on, the more I hear that the undergrad/post-bacc school you attend DOES matter, particularly to "top" schools. So it's a trade-off. I did post-bacc work at a school with zero reputation, but I did well there and was able to really stand out, and I did not incur any debt. I also told myself that any school that was concerned more about SUNY's lack of reputation than about my performance there was NOT a school I would be comfortable at.

    All's well that ends well: I applied to four top-ten schools (among others) and got into two of them. I did a quick check of the "undergraduate schools represented" lists of these two schools and seemed to be the only SUNY person at either of them. But it will be nice to be a pioneer.

    Good luck!
     
  7. gower

    gower 1K Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2000
    Messages:
    1,031
    Likes Received:
    0
    While both the Harvard and Tufts postbac programs are expensive, both have excellent advisors with long experience, well-known to and well regarded by medical schools across the country. In any case, YOU have to have excellent grades and competitive MCAT scores.

    The previous poster was both very capable and lucky to have done so well. Grade for grade, MCAT score for MCAT score, the odds are much better with Tufts and Harvard, and likely to have generated more choices of where to go. You will have to make a cost/benefit analysis.
     
  8. omores

    omores sleep deprived
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2000
    Messages:
    571
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    I have to agree with gower's very diplomatic assessment of my situation. Although I'm delighted to have gotten quite a few acceptances, I do honestly feel that if I had attended a prestigious and official post-bacc program instead of the "do-it-yourself" state school variety, I would have had a few more. It would be disingenuous of me not to mention that I had an extremely high MCAT score, which is an excellent playing-field-leveller.

    I should also mention that I saw just about zero state school folks at any of my interviews, but an abundance of students from Harvard, Yale, et al.

    I also have no regrets about the route I followed, because I think I'll be very happy at my chosen medical school -- especially since I know that it was NOT put off by my lack of a pedigree.

     
  9. T-shirt

    T-shirt Junior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2001
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh my goodness, thank you so much for the advice!

    I actually went to go visit Tufts today, and the program seemed very good, but my heart is in SUNY.

    I totally know what you meant in terms SUNY having smaller classes, etc.. I visited the campus (at SUNY-Purchase) and totally loved it! I actually went to Harvard for undergrad and was totally turned off to science because it's just seemed to cut-throat and i didn't want any of that at the time.
    To be honest, as far as med school goes, i aspire to go to a SUNY med school. I dont care about top 10 or anything. I just want to be a primary care doctor and to me, i really dont care where i get my degree from?

    Also.. can i ask you one more question. did you do your post-bac in one year? Like, I plan on doing chem over the summer and then the other 6 courses in fall/spring with mcat in april. did you do that? am i crazy for doing this?

    also, awesome with your med school acceptances and mcat's ,etc. THANK YOU AGAIN.
     
  10. omores

    omores sleep deprived
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2000
    Messages:
    571
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    Hi T-Shirt.

    Go where you'll be happy. I loved it at SUNY. I plan to get a SUNY New Paltz shirt before I leave here, and I'll wear it with pride at med school as a means of countering all the Ivy-labelled shirts I've seen.

    I did the courses in a year and a half by taking a few courses over the summer (not all of the ones I needed were offered, so I couldn't do it in a single year.) The summer version of Gen Chem 2 nearly killed me -- I hadn't taken high school chemistry, and all that new information compressed into a month was really hard, but I survived. Just be careful of summer courses -- the one I took was overwhelmingly compressed, but at least it taught me everything I needed for the MCAT. Sometimes summer courses really water down the material and you end up at a disadvantage.

    But if the courses are good, and you want to take them all in one year, why not?? Just be prepared not to have much of a life outside of school, and don't take the MCAT unless you're sure you know the material (since it's not something you want to go through twice). Also, try to squeeze in some time for clinic work/volunteering/community service kind of stuff, since that's an extremely important part of your application.

    Thanks for your congratulations. SUNY did a great job of transforming me from a practicing artist with no science background into a med student (well, someone who'll be a med student in three months.) I'm very grateful for that.

    Good luck!
     
  11. red fish

    red fish Junior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2001
    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    T-shirt,
    I am a firm believer is going where you feel comfortable and happy (and this sounds like SUNY, for you). I did the post-bacc at Harvard Extension, and I'd like to add a couple comments just to clarify the details of the program. First, Harvard Extension is super INexpensive. A 4-credit class w/lab (Bio, Chem, OChem, Physics) is $660. A 4-credit class w/out lab (Biochem, Immuno, Physio) is $450. Thhe bonus: some of these classes are taught by the same faculty the teach for Harvard College (e.g. Jim Davis teaches Chem) which equals top-notch instruction. Another (hidden) bonus is that the Extension school caters to adult students, and the profs really know how to respect that we are a little older. That being said, I enjoyed the program, found it challenging, and was accepted both in-state and out-of-state. I think there are some medical school that favor Hvd Ext. students, as evidenced from high accept rates in the past (like Einstein and Hahnemann, to name a few).
    Best wishes to you........good luck at SUNY!!
     
  12. Challenge

    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2000
    Messages:
    135
    Likes Received:
    1
    Hi Just wondering how much it costs to attend Harvard Extension College as an out-of state individual?
     
  13. I am finishing up 2 years of post-bac classes at Harvard Extension school and I have been very happy with them. The teaching has been excellent. The cost is reasonable as well, about $650 for each lab class. The tuition is the same for in or out of state.

    It sounds as if you have made up your mind, but one factor that you may want to consider is residency when you are applying to medical school. To qualify as a resident of Massachusetts, you must have either graduated high school in Mass, or have lived here for 5+ years before starting medical school. I am now in the situation that I have no state school to apply to. I have only lived here 3 years, so I cannot apply to UMASS (they don't take out of state applicants.) However, I cannot apply as a resident of any other state because I have been living in and paying taxes to Mass for 3 years. As I'm sure you know, applying as an in-state candidate to a state school is quite an advantage which I won't have anywhere.
     
  14. together

    together Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2000
    Messages:
    206
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dear All:

    Great thread T-shirt!

    Does anyone have any information about Boston University's MA in Medical Science program? I was recently accepted into the program and am curious about how students fare in terms of getting into medical school upon completion of the program.

    Thanks!

    Together
     

Share This Page