Dismiss Notice

Interview Feedback: Visit Interview Feedback to view and submit interview information.

Interviewing Masterclass: Free masterclass on interviewing from SDN and Medical College of Georgia

Question for those who: have taken POST-BAC, are taking POST-BACC, or will be taking

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by calbear2002, Jun 19, 2002.

  1. calbear2002

    calbear2002 Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi everyone, I am just graduated from undergrad without finishing my pre-med pre-requ's. I don't have a stellar GPA, but I plan on going into a post-bacc program after working for a year. I am wondering:

    1) Does it matter which school I go to to take the post-bacc courses? For example, if I go to Harvard vs. a small lesser-known state school.

    2) If I go to a bigger-name school, will my chances of getting in to med school be better (assuming I do well)

    3) Which programs do people recommend?

    4) Can it be done in a year (plus summer) if I still have to take a semester of GCHEM, a year of biology, and a year of physics? I want to take my MCAT in April.

    Thank you so much to anyone who can help me out and share your thoughts!!!
     
  2. WISC-ite

    WISC-ite Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2001
    Messages:
    231
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    There are a lot of post-bacc programs to sort through. My advice would be to look at the AAMC.org page for the list they have. Once you find that, sort through which ones meet you needs (course, minority status, goals of program, etc) and apply. Unfortunately many post-bacc programs have been accepting people for some time now. Hurry up and get you application in.

    I would recommend doing a post-bacc that has SOME affilation with a medical school and more importantly at a medical school that accepts people from that post-bacc programs.

    good luck
     
  3. calbear2002

    calbear2002 Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks!
    I also want to know if the school you go to makes a difference? LIke, well-known school vs. not so well know?
     
  4. Zoobaby

    Zoobaby Monkey Wrench
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2002
    Messages:
    959
    Likes Received:
    1
    Is an organized post-bac program really necessary? What's wrong with taking clases at a University as a "non-degree seeking undergraduate?" That's what I did - hopefully it'll work. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />

    I would guess that school status for a post-bac would be the same as for an undergrad. If you go to a super trendy school you may be able to get by with a lower GPA. On the flip side of that, a 4.0 from a middle of the road state school is very hard to argue with.

    I went to a state school because I could take the classes at night. The competition wasn't as fierce as it had been at my undergrad school, but I still learned the material very well. That part is up to you no matter where you go.
     
  5. banannie

    banannie Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2002
    Messages:
    368
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you're going to be in Boston anyway, I'd definitely recommend courses at the Harvard Extension School. You can work during the day and take one (or even two) classes each semester at night. Harvard Extension School classes are usually cheaper than the evening classes offered by other universities in Boston. No need to do an expensive post-bac program. Also, make sure to check out whether the place you're working will offer you tuition reimbursement.
     
  6. calbear2002

    calbear2002 Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    I was looking at the Harvard extension program, the Columbia U program, and the Georgetown program. Does anyone know about these?

    Also, if I just go to San Jose State, would that be ok too? I've researched these schools and they all seem good to me. I guess Harvard is a lot cheaper. Were the advising committee helpful there?
     
  7. calbear2002

    calbear2002 Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    If anyone is reading this and can give me any post-bacc advice at all, that would be so great! I plan on applying for next year. I am not familiar with how med-schools will judge the school and performance in post-bacc. So, if anyone has taken post-bacc, can you tell me if it was worth it, if it helped, are you in med school, etc....
     
  8. i did a year of classes as a non-degree-seeking student at a state school, too (UF). it was a little difficult getting approval to do it, but once i got in i could take anything i wanted and it was cheap. and the classes were undergrad courses, so they brought up my undergrad gpa. i don't think it really matters where you go, or at least it matters less than where you got your degree. except that i've heard that some med schools are partial to students who did postbacc work at that school, so if you have your heart set on a school where that is true, and you can afford it, i'd go there just in case. good luck!
     
  9. apocalypse3678

    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2002
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    1
    hey leila,
    isn't that a picture of jessica alba?
    me
     
  10. hpitup

    hpitup Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2002
    Messages:
    27
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    After graduating with a degree in psych i took science classes as an undeclared post-bacc at Cal St Fullerton. I didn't have a problem getting interviews or acceptances. So I don't think you have to enter an official postbacc program. Just make sure you kick ass wherever you go.
     
  11. calbear2002

    calbear2002 Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    That helps so much! Thank you for sharing your experiences with the post-bacc programs you took. I have been a little nervous about choosing one since it seems kind of non-traditional and not too many people ever talk about them. They're not even ranked! It helps to know that wherever you go, you can get interviews and acceptances.
     
  12. goldie

    goldie Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2001
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    I just want to plug the Harvard Extension School program...an excellent education at a cheap price. Good facilities and a very social crowd. And the sponsorship letter, if you qualify, is priceless.
     
  13. smid

    smid Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2002
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi,
    I don't know that I would actually MOVE somewhere just to do4 classes. I did mine at Berkeley (Go BEars). Through Extension, you can enrolll in the CAMPUS courses (Bio 1A-B, etc). It was recommended that I take classes at a University rather than extension classes, for whatever that's worth. bio 1A at Cal is excellent (in my opinion). The labs are fantastic and so are most of the instructors. Take it in the FALL if you do that. If you have more questions, let me know. you can PM me.

    Go Bears!
     
  14. Anath

    Anath Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 28, 2002
    Messages:
    314
    Likes Received:
    0
    ZooBaby -- is an organized post-bacc program necessary? Absolutely not! :D

    However, what a good "Program" will do is that they have support services for preparing you for the MCAT (perhaps even outside "classes" for this), they counsel you on applying to medical school.

    Another thing that I don't think anyone here has yet mentioned is that when you apply to medical schools, most of them want a "committee letter" so to speak that sorta takes the place of 3 or 4 individual LOR. Usually, these committees will base their letter on LORs that you submit to them (and not to the med schools). If you do not have a committee letter, many med schools will ask you, on the secondary, why you do not have a committee letter. They make it sound like it's such a no-no to send in individual letters sometimes (although I think that would be unfair of them if that was true). Anyhoo ... these so called organized programs can provide you with a committee letter.

    Also, organized programs, as opposed to just taking classes at the local university as a part-time student, will sometimes have affiliations with a medical school. Ie, if you make certain grades or pass all the classes, you will gain admittance into their medical school. This will save you a lot of time and energy! I'm not even sure if you have to do the MCATs for these sorts of programs, but I wouldn't be too surprised if some didn't require it, or if they did, it was more of a technicality.

    When you look at programs, be sure to pay close attention to the % of students in their program that they get into medical school.
     
  15. edmadison

    edmadison 1K Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2001
    Messages:
    2,086
    Likes Received:
    70
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    I'll add my too cents worth...

    Is an organized post-bacc a necessity, of course not. However, if you go to one of the top programs, it is a virtual guarentee of medical school admision. I recommend the Bryn Mawr program. It is considered one of the best if not the best and it has some distinct advantages over some of the other programs. The big disadvantages are that it is very expensive and the classes are not easy. Here are the advantages:

    1) It's quick. You go to school full time. If you have no prereqs you can finish in one year and one summer.

    2) The program is held in very high regard by medical schools

    3) It has linkage programs with several medical which allow you to avoid a "year out" for applying to med school after mcats. These school are Rochester, Dartmouth, Brown, Temple, MCP, Jefferson, Stonybrook and Downstate.

    4) The program is dedicated to getting you into medical school. They help you with recommendations, placement advice, volunteer opportunities, et cet.

    I can't say enough good things about the program. I considered the Columbia program, but the way it is structured it takes longer.

    Ed
     
  16. vixen

    vixen I like members
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2000
    Messages:
    5,760
    Likes Received:
    1
    hey calbear...if you go to a structured program (columbia, penn etc), it'll cost a lot more...I did mine at a state school, and you can just go to the premed advisor at the school to give you advice. If you really don't care about spending the money, I'd go to a structured program (but all you get is a certificate)...my opinion is that you actually get nothing (no degree or anything) from any of these programs, so go register yourself as a non-degree student at your local state school and enroll in the prereqs. Just use the premed advisor there from the beginning to give you advice on which school you should apply through (getting your premed advisor to write you a recommendation from either your degree school or your postbacc school)...good luck :)
     
  17. burlypie

    burlypie Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2002
    Messages:
    238
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    Hi,
    I was just about to go the the program at Mills College in Oakland, but then just about choked when I realized how much it was going to cost me. I thought about it, realized that SF State was just a bike ride away from my house, checked it out, and decided to go there. I was surprised--there were TONS of other pre-med post bacc students in the general science classes, enought that I felt bad for the regular undergrads having to compete with us for grades! There is great support for premed students, and I know several who have had no problems getting into top schools (stanford, full ride @ Michigan, UCSF, etc.)

    Though the formal programs have a lot going for them, I was really happy to save $48,000 on tuition (vs. 2 years at Mills.)
     
  18. goldie

    goldie Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2001
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    If cost is an issue, know that the Harvard program is an unbelievable deal. Each 4-credit class (including lab) costs around $660. Doing all eight premed classes will run you between $5-6000. And the quality is tremendous (especially Dr. Rubio's organic chemistry class).

    And if you're curious about the success Harvard post-bacc students are having, know that everyone I knew in the program is in somewhere, including Ivy League and "Top 50" schools.
     
  19. Pinki

    Pinki Sassy Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2001
    Messages:
    278
    Likes Received:
    2
    Status:
    Medical Student
    CalBear2002-
    Everyone is telling you where to go, here's HOW to go - I did it one year. I went to the state school where my husband is doing graduate work, which I think is great. You get to be with the "younger" peers who will be your peers in medical school, and it makes you super competitive to say you can compete with the best your state has to offer.
    So here's how I did it in a year:
    Took Gen Chem in the summer, with lab.
    Took Physics, Organic and Bio and the accompanying labs in the "regular" year and then the April MCAT.
    YES, it will the busiest year of your life, I surmise. Especially that spring, studying for the MCAT just weeks before finals. You do have the advantage that the entire year is a prep for the MCAT, and many other premeds haven't seen gen chem for 3 years or so. Also, that way you can prove to med schools you can handle three labs and three lectures and the MCAT, which is, by most opinions a tough load.
    Just my method...we'll find out this year if it worked. (AMCAS goes into tonight!!!)
    Good luck!
     
  20. </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by apocalypse3678:
    <strong>hey leila,
    isn't that a picture of jessica alba?
    me</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">yep.
    but i'm much better-looking.
    :p
     
  21. FU....CMS

    FU....CMS Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2002
    Messages:
    128
    Likes Received:
    0
    i sincerely recommend the Finch/CMS post-bacch/masters in AP prgram, with full confidence. find the threads and read about it. or look up the recent posts on my profile. i think it's the best risk/gamble. b/c one year and all that tuition is not a thing i like to gamble with. i like the odds in my favor. and at CMS, the odds are with you....

    good luck
     
  22. coolwaters

    coolwaters Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2002
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    The organized post-bacc programs can be expensive, however there are ways to get around the cost. I do not recommend the G'town post-bac premed program. It's a cash cow, the evening teachers aren't as qualified as normal G'Town professors, and there is a lack of academic advising. I spent a semester in the G'town program and they transfered into Columbia's program for want of greater structure and advising. Columbia's program has been great - it is competitive, the classes are challenging, however you're getting a great education along with sound academic advising. The program is the oldest of its kind, so the school has very good relationships with medical schools, as well as linkage programs with some schools. A way to get around the cost at Columbia is to work in a clinical research position, or really any position at the university while taking two classes per semester. This way your tuition is FREE, and you're gaining clinical research experience. The class is big too - 100 each year, so there is a sense of community which is nice. I've found it a really great opportunity and feel that I am much better prepared and competitive for applying to med school.

    Hope this helps.
     
  23. calbear2002

    calbear2002 Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    I would want to do a program that would save me money. But spending more money on a better program is a consideration as well. I just don't want to be in HUGE classes where I become another face in the crowd to the professors. Are these programs generally pretty small in size? or does it depend on where?

    Also, do you take classes alongside the undergrads? That is kinda unclear.

    Any other yay's or neh's for a particular program?
     
  24. reesie0726

    reesie0726 Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2001
    Messages:
    221
    Likes Received:
    0
    You have heard the pros and cons of doing a structured vs unstructured postbac program. I registered as a degreed undergrad and took science courses. I earned all A's and a competitive score on the mcat and did well in the application process while saving alot of money. I had the full use of the premed committe at my postbac school and all of their services. It was a positive experience for me.
     
  25. jintonic5

    jintonic5 Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Messages:
    518
    Likes Received:
    1
    does anyone know if the harvard extension school classes are held with actual harvard undergrads?
     
  26. goldie

    goldie Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2001
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    The Harvard post-bacc program does not lump in with Harvard undergrads. The classes are in the evening and are solely for Extension School people.

    Once again, I highly recommend the program.
     
  27. sjordan

    sjordan Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2001
    Messages:
    69
    Likes Received:
    0
    i am interested in the harvard extension program and have several questions:
    1) do you get any financial aid?
    2)how many courses do students take per semester (on average)?
    3) was it difficult finding a job in the area?
    i'm would be coming from cali...

    thanx for any info!
     
  28. jintonic5

    jintonic5 Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Messages:
    518
    Likes Received:
    1
    here's the link to harvard extension school's premedical studies program:

    <a href="http://www.extension.harvard.edu/2001-02/programs/hcp/diploma/default.shtml" target="_blank">http://www.extension.harvard.edu/2001-02/programs/hcp/diploma/default.shtml</a>
     
  29. goldie

    goldie Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2001
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    Regarding questions about Harvard Health Careers:

    1. Financial Aid: They do give out a little money, and I would definitely talk to the people at the Extension School about it. On the other hand, the courses are very inexpensive, so you may not need much help. If you work 17.5 hours at Harvard, you are not only eligible for health benefits, but also TAP, which allows you one free course per term.

    2. Most people I knew took two courses per term (Physics & Chemistry, then O Chemistry & Biology), so the whole thing would take two years. If you're more keen, you can take summer Chemistry at the Summer School, then do physics, O Chem and biology over one year. I think this is nuts, but it does take less time.

    3. Jobs were relatively easy to find a couple years ago...with the job market a bit tough I don't know if this has changed. If you go to the Harvard website, or websites of the various hospital systems in the area (Partners, et al), you'll get a reasonable idea. Also, volunteer spots are quite easy to get.

    Hope this helps....we had a few people from Cali in our class!
     
  30. calbear2002

    calbear2002 Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey SJordan,

    I will be coming from Cali too! Do you still need to take all of your pre-requ's? Are you going this year or next year?

    Goldie,
    You've been super helpful.
    Question: what is the average age (or range) of students in the extension program.

    And, about how many participate in it?

    Is there a high acceptance rate into med-schools?
     
  31. goldie

    goldie Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2001
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    The age range at the Harvard program spans from 22 to late 30's. I started when I was 29, and had absolutely no trouble getting along with everyone.

    Some people do all eight classes, some do a few and some are taking courses for other purposes (pre-reqs for MPH, environmental science, et al). I would say about 60+ people are doing the full-on pre-med program.

    Everyone I know from my class got in somewhere...many to Ivy League and "Top 20" schools. I think this year's acceptance rate was over 90%, but you should contact the Health Careers office for more info.

    And finally, you just can't miss Dr. Rubio's O chem courses.
     
  32. jintonic5

    jintonic5 Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Messages:
    518
    Likes Received:
    1
    i haven't filed the amcas yet(i'm not applying for a while), so i dunno exactly how they catagorize the classes you take, but are all the harvard extension classes counted as undergrad? or is there a different section?
     
  33. sjordan

    sjordan Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2001
    Messages:
    69
    Likes Received:
    0
    calbear!
    yes, i plan on going this year. i don't need to take prereqs just some extra courses to raise my science g.p.a. are you going this fall???
     
  34. conure

    conure Master Distiller
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2002
    Messages:
    227
    Likes Received:
    2
    I would like to second goldies praise of the Harvard program. I'm applying this year and just finished the program in one year. I did gen chem last summer and then phys,bio and orgo over the year. i didn't work. It was tough but doable the problem comes when taking the MCAT do you do it in april or wait till august when you have finished everything, I opted for the later and we will see what happens.

    The best thing about this program is the people. They are all intelligent and friendly and not as cut throat as the harvard undergads tend to be.
    Also three of the four profs are harvard undergard profs.

    Goldie is right Dr. Rubio rocks!
     
  35. goldie

    goldie Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2001
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    Conure:

    "It's a chicken foot!"
    "Backside attack! Is that legal in this state?"

    Oh, Harvard days....
     
  36. FU....CMS

    FU....CMS Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2002
    Messages:
    128
    Likes Received:
    0
    FINCH/CMS!!!

    read the other threads, and then apply and go there!!! it's not a matter of money when it comes down to your DREAM, and the rest of your LIFE.
     
  37. calbear2002

    calbear2002 Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    SJordan : I was thinking about doing the post-bacc this fall, but then I think I'm going to go next fall since I am opting to work first. You can keep me posted on how your year goes at Harvard!

    Conure: Since you've finished the Harvard program as well, how was taking gen-chem in the summer and then those three courses? Was it too much? It seems like it would be. Also, courses in the summer are year-long courses condensed right? (for example, gen-chem a/b in one summer)
    Also, do you know people who took the april MCAT while still finishing up some of their pre-requ's I think I would do that.

    Thanks!!!
     
  38. bostonchick

    bostonchick New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm taking classes at the Extension School now, and I'm pretty sure some of the kids in my class are Harvard undergrads. I graduated a year ago (not from Harvard) and I've noticed the people in my class seem pretty young, like freshman and sophomores. I think most of them attend Harvard though...
     
  39. bostonchick

    bostonchick New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    ooops, I think I replied to the wrong thread....I'm still new at this. sorry!!!
     
  40. calbear2002

    calbear2002 Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
  41. CoffeeCat

    CoffeeCat SDN Angel
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2001
    Messages:
    1,041
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Anybody have that link to the list of post-bacc programs? Can't find it, thanks!
     
  42. calbear2002

    calbear2002 Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    Here are a couple of links:

    <a href="http://www.aamc.org/students/considering/postbac.htm" target="_blank">http://www.aamc.org/students/considering/postbac.htm</a>

    <a href="http://www-hl.syr.edu/hpap/LISTPB.HTM" target="_blank">http://www-hl.syr.edu/hpap/LISTPB.HTM</a>

    When do you plan to apply?
     

Share This Page