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School list: top heavy?

Discussion in 'What Are My Chances?' started by saa09, Jun 18, 2008.

  1. saa09

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    I would appreciate any input on my school list. I'm trying to cut down to 20 (althought my parents are pressuring me to do even fewer b/c of $). I have a 38 MCAT, 3.85, but my writing score is only an N :(, and I do not have the best ECs (1.5 years of clinical volunteering for a few hours a week, tutoring for 5-6 months, 4 quarters research- but it was kind of a shallow experience, and a summer job for 3 summers that is unrelated to medicine)

    I'm planning to apply 2 two most selective school max, probably:
    Johns Hopkins
    Stanford

    And I'm planning on doing 2-3 easier to get into schools:
    Jefferson
    Drexel
    GW
    BU

    I was thinking of Jefferson and Drexel, b/c of their similar location, but at the same time I think it would be interesting to go to BU, because of the location, but I don't know if it's a good enough reason to apply

    I'm also applying to all of the UCs -UCLA, UCSF, UCD, UCI, UCSD

    this brings my total to appx 9 schools

    my problem is that the rest of the schools I was planning to apply to have similar statistics of 3.8+ and 35Q MCAT, is it bad if I apply to 10-12 schools that are so similar in numbers? (also for a few of them, my N is in the lower 10% and my bio score of 12 is below their average of 13)

    The schools are:
    USC
    Yale (althought probably not)
    Emory
    Northwestern
    U. of Chicago
    Tufts(probably not)
    Dartmouth (probably not)
    Albert Einstein
    Columbia
    Cornell
    Mount Sinai
    NYU
    U. of Rochester
    Wake Forest
    Case Western (Probably not)
    U of Pittsburg
    U Penn
    Vanderbilt
    Baylor
    Mayo

    is this a bit top heavy and should i get more "safeties"? (Sorry for the long post!)
     
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  3. Dulcina

    Dulcina =)
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    i struggled with this exact same issue. we have really similar stats and ECs actually, and I only have a few "safeties"--BU, Tufts, some of the UC's might be considered safeties, and jefferson. You can look at my mdapps if you're interested.

    and dont stress about the writing, they dont give a rat's a$$ about that =p
     
  4. JLC

    JLC
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    You have higher numbers than the avg of any top 10 school, you've got standard EC's, I think you'll have no problem getting into a top school. In fact I think you don't need many safeties at all and I def don't think Hopkins is a reach although Stanford is super research oriented.


    Good luck
     
  5. phillySASer08

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    I would not stress about the writing sample, just make sure you take the time to really polish your personal statement and secondary essays. Not sure how you arrived at some of your list criteria though (ex: how on earth do you consider Penn/Yale/Columbia/Baylor to be easier to get into the Stanford or Hopkins). Again, whittling away some of those schools on this high end might be a good idea, because your application outside of your numbers doesn't necessarily have the 'hook' that some of the very selective schools are looking for. I am, however, a big advocate of applying to as many as you can afford though, as to a very large extent the process is incredibly random, and if for whatever reason you really want to be a top school, you should try to apply to as many as possible, as they do look for slightly different things.
     
  6. saa09

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    I was going based on MCAT alone for that (37 for JHU and Stanford, 35 for the others)
     
  7. phillySASer08

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    not sure where you got those numbers, the only school with an average matriculant MCAT of 37 is WashU (this is from USNews, which supplies the average MCAT of those students that actually matriculate at a given program). If your numbers are from the MSAR, keep in mind that they are the median numbers for those admitted, not those who actually enroll. Also, the MSAR only supplies section scores, and adding them up to reach a total is not appropriate, as most students have sections their stronger in than others.

    Truth be told, there is essentially no difference in difficulty of admission between the top 10-13 schools (Michigan may be oh so slightly easier, and UW has lower numbers but is incredibly instate-focused, but again, little differences). You are much better off looking at the programs themselves in deciding which of the major reach schools to apply to (they're reaches for everyone, even someone like you with excellent numbers). For example, Stanford, Yale, and Duke are incredibly research-oriented, and if you don't want to do academic medicine, you might not be happy there. Penn and Baylor start their clinical rotation a half a year earlier than the others, which a lot of students like. Hopkins and Columbia have been known to have very competitive environments, while others, like Harvard/Yale/Stanford/WashU for one year, pride themselves on a Pass/Fail grading system for at least part of the four years (all for years in Stanford's case, no grades at all for the first two at Yale). The point is, your numbers are good, so don't go on numbers alone, look a bit deeper in deciding where to apply, it could save you some money down the road.
     
  8. saa09

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    So after looking at a bunch of people's profiles, is 18-20 schools even enough? I do have a better mcat, and often, gpa, than a lot of the profiles (except for the N in writing), but i feel like my ECs are weaker
     
  9. phillySASer08

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    Don't spend too much time on MDapps, small, self selected sample and all that. 18-20 schools should be plenty. My premed advisors told people at my school to apply to 15 at most when I applied last year, and maybe a couple more if your were from a tough state like CA. I applied to 21, and in hindsight could have definately cut a few if I research a little deeper into their program offerings.
     
  10. rowerlauren

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    Don't worry about applying to too few schools... look at my mdapps profile and you will see that I'm only applying to 14 schools.

    Note: I'm a Texas resident to Baylor is a lot easier for me to get into than OOS.
     
  11. saa09

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    how many safety schools do I really need? If I apply to all of the UCs, can I cut Drexel and apply only to Jefferson (no BU or GW)?
     
  12. saa09

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    Here's my updated potential list of schools, but I need to cut down to 20 max ($), it would be nice to do like 18-19. Tell me what you think and if i have enough schools from different tiers

    1.UCLA
    2.UCI
    3.UCD
    4.UCSF
    5.UCSD
    6.Stanford (not sure, wouldn't want to live at home, but they would make me b/c of $
    7. Johns Hopkins (most likely not applying)
    8. Emory
    9. Northwestern
    10. U of Chicago
    11. Albert Einstein
    12. Columbia
    13. Cornell
    14. Mount Sinai
    15. NYU
    16. U. of Rochester (not sure, but probably, b/c need a safer school)
    17. Wake Forest ( has slightly lower stats)
    18. U.Penn
    19. Vanderbilt
    20. Baylor
    21.Drexel (although if I could cut a safety, I would probably cut this one)
    22. Jefferson

    I'm most likely cutting Johns Hopkins.
    I would also like to get rid of either Albert Einstein, Rochester or Wake Forest, but I'm afraid because most of the other schools I'm applying to have higher stats than them, so can I afford to cut one of them?
    Also, can I afford to cut Drexel or would that leave me with too few safeties?
     
  13. iduwanna

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    So you're the gold standard? Don't worry about applying to less than 14 because you only applied to 14?

    Get over your self! I looked at your mdapps and I didn't see any acceptances.

    Seriously, you don't have many friends, do you?
     
  14. JLC

    JLC
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    She's got higher numbers (she and the OP both do) than the average for any top 10 and she's got very good ec's

    and seeing how early she's applying, I don't know how she won't get in to her schools
     
  15. rowerlauren

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    I wasn't saying that I am the Gold Standard. I was just using myself as a reference, and most of the people from my school were recommended to apply to 12 schools. This what why I was using 14 as a sufficient number.

    Yes you don't see any acceptances... do you want to know why? Because I am applying to med school now. I don't know where I will get into, only time will tell.

    And I do have friends... there's no need to try to personally attack me and I would appreciate it if you didn't try to insinuate that I am a horrible person. You don't know me.


    JLC thanks for backing me up and I really appreciate your faith in my application.
     

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