School List Help Please (526, 4.0, ORM)

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applicant349

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Hey everyone, I wanted to get some help on my school list because it feels way too long and there's not enough mid tier schools I'm applying to. People keep telling me that my stats will carry my application which is true to some extent, but my advisor told me that yield protection is also pretty big and encouraged me to apply to more schools. Additionally, I feel like my narrative is relatively weak and difficult to connect with all my activities. It's mainly focused on how through improving my sister's quality of life while dealing with a disability, I've learned that QOL and each persons' unique circumstance (which I've also learned through my volunteering) are important factors in my future role as a physician.
  1. cGPA and sGPA as calculated by AMCAS or AACOMAS
    1. cGPA: 4.00 sGPA: 4.00
  2. MCAT score(s) and breakdown. Include all (non-voided) attempts.
    1. 526 (131/131/132/132)
  3. State of residence or country of citizenship (if non-US)
    1. North Carolina (ORM)
  4. Ethnicity and/or race
    1. Asian (M)
  5. Undergraduate institution or category
    1. Duke
  6. Clinical experience (volunteer and non-volunteer)
    1. Free clinic volunteer for underserved populations (300 hours)
    2. Hospice volunteer (50 hours)
    3. Patient care tech -paid (200 hours)
  7. Research experience and productivity
    1. 2000+ hours basic science research - 1 low-author pub in revision, 3 posters, couple of grants
    2. 150 hours basic science research - no productivity, 1 grant
  8. Shadowing experience and specialties represented
    1. 20hrs- primary care at the same free clinic above
    2. 20hrs- cardiology
    3. 20hrs- pediatric palliative care
  9. Non-clinical volunteering
    1. 200 hours housing insecurity quality of life volunteer
    2. 120 hours advocacy/financial help with underserved area
    3. 150 hours Crisis Text Line
    4. 100 hours animal welfare volunteering
  10. Relevant honors or awards
    1. Phi Beta Kappa
  11. Anything else not listed you think might be important
    1. LGBT, but nothing else in my application is really related to it
    2. 150 hours paid tutoring elementary/middle school kids
*Avoiding Florida for personal reasons, so will not apply to any schools there

School List:
Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Boston University
Case Western
Columbia
Duke
Emory
Harvard
Dartmouth
Icahn
Johns Hopkins
USC Keck
Mayo Clinic
Northwestern
NYU Grossman
Ohio State University (cousin went here, does it help?)
UPenn Perelman
UChicago Pritzker
Stanford
Brown
Tufts
UCLA
UCSF
University of Michigan
University of Colorado
UNC Chapel Hill
Wake Forest
Georgetown
UPitt
UVA
Vanderbilt
WashU in St Louis
Cornell
Yale

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You have (as far as I can see) a pretty bombproof/rockstar application as far as I can tell, so congrats!

Others will probably ask you about mission fit — i.e. what types of populations do you wish to serve, how does that fit with your career as a physician, etc.

If you're looking for further networking, be sure to reach out to MSPA (Med Student Pride Alliance).

And honestly your list looks solid given your stats, though you could always drop a few of T20 types and replace with others again depending on your mission fit. Either way, great work and you can shoot for the moon if paired with good LORs, writing, and timely submissions.
 
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You can print your ticket anywhere as long as you know what you're doing once you're there. (TL/DR: What's your mission fit?)

I think you have a strong list of schools in general. Your list of activities is like a checklist, so connecting them with your purpose will help you pare down this list and pick up others.

Networking: MSPA, APAMSA too.

If you like Ohio, I suppose you can keep Ohio State and Cincinnati. Vermont if you really like Dartmouth.

I would check the list about student insurance and health care coverage as LGBTQ+, given the state politics. You have your clear advantages with NC in-state, but do your homework with the other states (the Ohio schools, Vanderbilt, WashU, Mayo Arizona, Emory). It might not be enough to not include them, but think seriously about the community support. I would have thrown in Miami, but Florida...

Go to the recruitment events and flash your metrics badge to make them recruit you.

Any feedback about your Duke committee letter?
 
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Out of curiosity, how do you plan to tie your activities into your narrative? (Fellow duke student here)
 
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You can print your ticket anywhere as long as you know what you're doing once you're there. (TL/DR: What's your mission fit?)

I think you have a strong list of schools in general. Your list of activities is like a checklist, so connecting them with your purpose will help you pare down this list and pick up others.

Networking: MSPA, APAMSA too.

If you like Ohio, I suppose you can keep Ohio State and Cincinnati. Vermont if you really like Dartmouth.

I would check the list about student insurance and health care coverage as LGBTQ+, given the state politics. You have your clear advantages with NC in-state, but do your homework with the other states (the Ohio schools, Vanderbilt, WashU, Mayo Arizona, Emory). It might not be enough to not include them, but think seriously about the community support. I would have thrown in Miami, but Florida...

Go to the recruitment events and flash your metrics badge to make them recruit you.

Any feedback about your Duke committee letter?
Are there still a lot of recruitment events going on now? Feel like I haven't seen much and I never really went to any in the past either.

As for the committee letter, I should be getting one since our advising office is pretty good about it. They said it tends to be pretty generic though and strongly advised to add individual LORs. I'll have the committee letter + 2 science prof + 1 non-science prof + 1 P.I. Is that a combination most schools take?
 
Out of curiosity, how do you plan to tie your activities into your narrative? (Fellow duke student here)
I think I have a decent tie with the volunteering with marginalized communities (both clinical and non-clinical portions) with the idea of taking into account each person's individual circumstances rather than one-size-fits-all medicine. With the goal to ultimately improve not just their direct symptoms but also overall quality of life. Not sure if that's too convincing though
 
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Mr. Smile seems a bit optimistic; the OP is an excellent candidate, towards the strong end of pack fodder by top-20 schools' stratospheric standards. They'll get several T20 interviews unless there's some glaring red flag like several IAs or recent criminal history we don't know about. However, they still need to do well in the interview; they're not the type of person where Harvard calls YOU and asks if they'd like to matriculate. That's very rare. They'd need ECs like military service, Olympic or professional athletics, or stellar research productivity for that.

Your list is fine. Rock stars need to aim high. You're not golden, but platinum...but not unobtainium.
 
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