A

adarrell

Im starting this medical process alittle later then most people, as i am 26 now and finishing paramedic school

my GPA from the 20 credits i got when i was 18 yr old was low, like 2.50? maybe 2.75?

Im finishing my paramedic degree then going to take my pre-med in the next year / 2 years.

I hope to get my GPA to 3.0 after all is said in done, hopefully by next year ill be close to 3.0

not excellent i know, but with my extensive EMS background and getting good letter of references, will i not be able to get into 2nd tier med schools?
 

Makati2008

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With those stats you have a lot of work to do. Luckily you only have 20 credits that this accounted for. If you cannot get your GPA higher than this as well as a good MCAT, most medical schools will screen you out.....

Also being an Allied Health Professional is a good thing to have help you on your resume but it is by NO means a shoe in.

PS-3.0 is wayyy to low to get into the majority if not all of medical schools. I had a much higher GPA than that and got a handful of interviews.(MD/DO both). If all else fails I would consider offshore medical training if you can do this.

Also why are you doing more EMS school work if you want to be a doctor?
Just wondering.
 
A

adarrell

With those stats you have a lot of work to do. Luckily you only have 20 credits that this accounted for. If you cannot get your GPA higher than this as well as a good MCAT, most medical schools will screen you out.....

Also being an Allied Health Professional is a good thing to have help you on your resume but it is by NO means a shoe in.

PS-3.0 is wayyy to low to get into the majority if not all of medical schools. I had a much higher GPA than that and got a handful of interviews.(MD/DO both). If all else fails I would consider offshore medical training if you can do this.

Also why are you doing more EMS school work if you want to be a doctor?
Just wondering.
- I hope my GPA during my upcoming pre-med classes will be in the low to mid 3's, but ill admit that i dont love sitting in classes learning vs actually doing something useful. I hope i can pull my GPA up to the mid 3's....

- As for why am i in paramedicine, it took me to go through my advanced EMS training to realize i wanted to keep going in the field. Also, id love to do a few hours a week as a paramedic while in med school... make some money and keep my emergency medicine experience up.
 

SLC

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Go for it. I know a ton of Allopathic students who got in with GPA's in the low 3's and MCAT's in the mid to upper 20's.

One of my friends had a low GPA and a mediocre MCAT, now he's a 4th year at the University of Utah School of Medicine (great school). He applied 3 times before getting in, but he got there, and he's done great in Med-School. He got good grades, great USMLE score, and do you know what he's elected to do? Primary care, because that's where he feels he can make the biggest difference. He's just the type of med student that schools are clamoring for, but he almost wasn't given a chance. The key is showing that you are the right person for the job.

I had another neighbor who is in residency now after graduating from UUSOM who had a 3.9 or so from MIT and got an MCAT in the upper 30's, he didn't do so hot as a med student and ended up scrambling for a family medicine residency in rural Idaho after not matching in Anesthesia.

Getting into Med School is a crapshoot really, but you have a good background for this type of thing and that's a lot more than most pre-med's can say. Sure your grades don't scream "I'll be a great med-student cause I was a great undergraduate student" but you don't have to get great grades to be a great doctor, and academics don't always translate into good practice. You know about treating people who are going through tough circumstances, that's huge. Build up your EC's, get the best grades you can, get good letters, and make sure your personal statement is very strong. Then if you can score an interview, be prepared to show them that you are very aware of what you're wanting to get into as a physician, you will probably be surprised what happens.

SLC
 

DrMidlife

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- I hope my GPA during my upcoming pre-med classes will be in the low to mid 3's, but ill admit that i dont love sitting in classes learning vs actually doing something useful. I hope i can pull my GPA up to the mid 3's....
I think it's a mistake to be aiming for a low-to-mid-3.x GPA in the prereqs, and to expect to then succeed in med school, regardless of whether you can get into med school. I doubt that you're aware that 60% of med school applicants are rejected, not because they don't know what they're doing, but because med school admissions are highly competitive. Unfortunately your EMS experience against a 3.0 GPA isn't going to trump a squeaky-clean naive kid with a 4.0 and lab experience. It doesn't work that way.

Jumping through hoops is a huge part of getting to be a doctor, and there are a boatload of science classes and day-long exams, forever, between you and getting/staying licensed. If you get B's in undergrad science, it's an uphill battle to get in (despite anecdotes that it's a piece of cake no matter how low your grades/MCAT are), and you might seriously hate your life during the pre-clinical years of med school. I encourage you to be skeptical about whether you're going to be happy in med school and whether the pain will be worth it on the other side for you. I give the same advice to 4.0's btw.

One thing you can do to find out where you're at, academically, is to take a practice MCAT (www.e-mcat.com) and see how you do on verbal. IMHO if you can score 10 or better on verbal now, then you're in good shape to score 10 or better on the science sections (and thus have a competitive MCAT score). Improving your verbal score is extremely difficult - it's a measure of your ability to comprehend, analyze and judge concepts presented in writing. Getting good at that starts in 5th grade.

Definitely look into DO, regardless.

Best of luck to you.
 

DitchDoc73

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Im starting this medical process alittle later then most people, as i am 26 now and finishing paramedic school

my GPA from the 20 credits i got when i was 18 yr old was low, like 2.50? maybe 2.75?

Im finishing my paramedic degree then going to take my pre-med in the next year / 2 years.

I hope to get my GPA to 3.0 after all is said in done, hopefully by next year ill be close to 3.0

not excellent i know, but with my extensive EMS background and getting good letter of references, will i not be able to get into 2nd tier med schools?
I'm probably the closest person to your position that you are going to find on this site. You are where I was 3 years ago. I first went to college right out of high school, and did not want to be there / partied way too hard! I left school (academically dismissed) with a ~ 2.4 cGPA (about 60 hours credit). I completed my Paramedic, and worked as a FF/PM for approx 5 years before I decided that I truly wanted to go to medical school. I went back to school full time (15+ hours/semester) while continuing to work 2 jobs (about 60 hrs/week average). I was told by everyone that I was wasting my time and money...I would never get in because of my old grades...etc etc. I worked my *** off, and I completed my B.S. in Molecular Biology and Microbiology while managing to bring up my cGPA to 3.0 and sGPA to 3.4. I screwed up on my MCAT and got a 26P (B10, V10, P6), but I decided not to take it again due to getting a couple of interviews right after getting my scores back. I applied broadly to both MD and DO. My 26 killed me in MD, but I remained somewhat competitive in DO. I have multiple acceptances, and I will be attending NSUCOM in the fall.

Bottom Line....Don't let other people tell you what you can and cannot do. Only you control your destiny from this point on. Work hard, perform well in school, and don't screw the MCAT(!). Your experience only helps your application, you will still have to prove (through your grades/academics) that you are capable of performing at the med school level. I wish you the best of luck in your endeavors! Feel free to PM me if you like about your situation!

Also don't forget about the grade forgiveness for DO (AACOMAS application)!
 
A

adarrell

Thanks @DitchDoc and @SLC for your input.

I will be starting my pre-med in May (summer Gen Chem 1&2) and will make sure i put my nose to the grindstone to at least get a B+ in all my pre-med classes.

@DrMidlifte

I was also recommended to take a M-CAT review class (from Kaplan?) before taking the M-CAT. Ive heard its a big help for getting a decent grade. I imagine I should be aiming for the 30's?
 

DrMidlife

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One thing you can do to find out where you're at, academically, is to take a practice MCAT (www.e-mcat.com) and see how you do on verbal. IMHO if you can score 10 or better on verbal now, then you're in good shape to score 10 or better on the science sections (and thus have a competitive MCAT score). Improving your verbal score is extremely difficult - it's a measure of your ability to comprehend, analyze and judge concepts presented in writing. Getting good at that starts in 5th grade.
The above comment is a suggestion for assessing your aptitude. You could do this now.

I was also recommended to take a M-CAT review class (from Kaplan?) before taking the M-CAT. Ive heard its a big help for getting a decent grade. I imagine I should be aiming for the 30's?
Doing MCAT prep is not appropriate until you've completed most (if not all) of the prereqs. Think about this next year.
 
A

adarrell

just took the verbal and got a 9 on it. I'll start taking a few of these a week to brush up on the reading comp skills.
 

DrMidlife

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just took the verbal and got a 9 on it. I'll start taking a few of these a week to brush up on the reading comp skills.
I think that's a great sign. I was afraid to say "go for it" until now. Go for it.

Is your paramedic degree a bachelors?
 
A

adarrell

sadly not, combining my pre-med classes with a few others i hope to obtain a "Public Health" degree.

It seemed interesting and related greatly to ER medicine. Maybe a Human Bio degree, ill have to talk to the college on the quickest path. Id prefer to enter Med-School around 28, not 30.
 

SLC

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I'd never taken a practice MCAT section either, just took the verbal and got a 10.

Is that good for a first try?

It's the humanities that killed me!

SLC
 

DitchDoc73

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Yes a verbal of 10 is a good score...

@adarell...As fas as review classes go. I took Princeton, but had friends that took Kaplan (they didn't care for it). You can do most of this on your own, and you can usually find some of the old materials from someone. If you like the class feel and don't like to study on your own take the class.
 

MSmentor018

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I did a combo, used princeton for the verbal and kaplan for the sciences. its' an uphill battle but definitely do able so hang in there. as for working during med school...that might not happen. chances of pulling a 12 much less a 24hr/shift is slim to none, even if you're at a PBL school. maybe in your 4th yr. after while coasting. also when you have some time off, take the time off! the books are demanding and every hr you get off is well earned. I've taught both med/paramedic students, both skills are very diff so put it in the back of your mind and look ahead. good luck! :thumbup:
 

PharMed2016

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Thanks @DitchDoc and @SLC for your input.

I will be starting my pre-med in May (summer Gen Chem 1&2) and will make sure i put my nose to the grindstone to at least get a B+ in all my pre-med classes.

@DrMidlifte

I was also recommended to take a M-CAT review class (from Kaplan?) before taking the M-CAT. Ive heard its a big help for getting a decent grade. I imagine I should be aiming for the 30's?
I would not recommend Kaplan, just go buy the practice test and a bunch of examkracker books ~ that's what I'm going to do this summer during my rotations.
 

PharMed2016

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- I hope my GPA during my upcoming pre-med classes will be in the low to mid 3's, but ill admit that i dont love sitting in classes learning vs actually doing something useful. I hope i can pull my GPA up to the mid 3's....

- As for why am i in paramedicine, it took me to go through my advanced EMS training to realize i wanted to keep going in the field. Also, id love to do a few hours a week as a paramedic while in med school... make some money and keep my emergency medicine experience up.
For an EMS/Paramedic... is it usually a 6/12/24 shift? I was thinking about working a little bit during medical school... to keep up to date with all the drugs out there and make rent/food money.
 

GoodmanBrown

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I would not recommend Kaplan, just go buy the practice test and a bunch of examkracker books ~ that's what I'm going to do this summer during my rotations.
I agree. For a better MCAT score just buy some of the books, then purchase 4-5 of the old tests directly from AAMC. They're like $30 a piece.

For a solid MCAT it's paramount that you practice in the same format as the test itself. Don't go into the actual test having only done paper tests. The computer tests are different and have a different feel, so you'll be at a distinct disadvantage if you go in without having done a handful of practice MCATs on the computer.

Re: your GPA, why are you only shooting for a 3.0? If you have only 20 credits, you've got about 100 more before you graduate, right? You'll have plenty of time to pull that up.
 

kristieb1

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Re: your GPA, why are you only shooting for a 3.0? If you have only 20 credits, you've got about 100 more before you graduate, right? You'll have plenty of time to pull that up.
Yes I agree. I have about 28 credits that I completed with a much lower GPA than what you have (years ago). I calculated it out and if I were a perfect student (4.0 for the next 100 credits) I could get about a 3.65 GPA. So you should be able to get higher than that if you put in the effort.

Don't shoot for a low 3.0!
 

DrSmooth

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More specifically, why is your goal B+'s??? If you want an attainable, yet stretching, goal, how bout "more A's than B's"? Or better yet, how about "straight A's"? At least that way if you miss your goal you end up w/ a B (not the end of the world) rather than a C (close). Good luck, you are a lot younger and in a lot better position grade-wise than a lot of us old-fogies!
 

DitchDoc73

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For an EMS/Paramedic... is it usually a 6/12/24 shift? I was thinking about working a little bit during medical school... to keep up to date with all the drugs out there and make rent/food money.
Shifts depend on where you work and what type of environment you are working in. ER shifts are usually 8-12 hours. Field shifts are usually 24/48s (24 hours on duty, 48 hours off duty). But all of this varies widely based on region and call volumes...