Dec 18, 2013
Hey guys,

I should start off by saying that I am in my current position because I was not very smart about choosing classes or a career path throughout most of undergrad. I was originally a Biology (Pre-Med) major for 2 years at Elmhurst College before transferring as a Chemistry major (Pre-Pharm) to UIC last year. My cumulative GPA is currently ~3.1 (don’t even wanna find out what my science GPA is) and that's after 4 W's (however, the pharm school that I am applying to isn't concerned unless it's 8+ W's). I have approximately 150 hours of volunteer work at a local hospital (~50 hours being in an outpatient pharmacy as a volunteer pharm tech). In addition, I worked for UIC’s campus housing as a summer housing assistant this summer (only for a month, ended up resigning due to summer classes).

I am going to be a regular senior at UIC this coming semester and I am working on a BA Chemistry degree. I am hoping to start pharmacy school at Midwestern University CCP in fall 2016, if I get accepted. Here is my dilemma:

1. I am registered to take the PCAT on Friday, September 18th, 2015. I have been studying on and off for the past week but am hoping to study more intensively for the remaining days leading up to the test date.

2. There is a very good chance that I will not be able to graduate on time if I do not take 5 classes/semester. This may not sound so bad but I have to study for the PCAT concurrently and the classes are as follows (note: ALL of these are required for the degree EXCEPT for Intro to Communications, which is a Midwestern CCP prereq):

Fall 2015

PChem I (I hear it’s easier at UIC but still a tough subject)
Intro to Communications (easy)
Anatomy & Phys I w/ lab (moderate-hard)
Music History (easy)
Italian 3 (probably easy)

Spring 2016

PChem II (different professor than PChem I, probably a great deal more difficult overall)
PChem I Lab (can't be taken concurrently with PChem I, unfortunately)
**Analytical Chem w/lab (only 1 professor, 2.0 average on based on 19 reviews)
Chem Elective (it’s a toss-up)
Italian 4 (probably alright)

Summer 2016 (MAYBE)

**Inorganic Chem w/ lab (it’s a toss-up)

** denotes substituting one course for another

With all of that being said, would it be worth it for me to continue on and get my BA Chemistry degree or should I just complete the pre-reqs for Midwestern CCP and take additional, somewhat easier classes to boost my cGPA/sGPA, so that I don’t kill myself with the tentative schedule that I listed above? My parents would definitely not be happy if I stayed an extra semester, and I really do not want to make them pay more for my own stupidity. They have been fully supporting me financially throughout college, so I already feel terrible for all of the mishaps that I have had. I should mention that the only semester that I took four classes was first semester of freshman year. Ever since then, it’s been three classes per semester (one semester was two classes >_<). I offset this a little bit by taking a summer course each year (but two this year, actually). Like I said, I was not very smart about choosing classes… Anyway, please let me know. Thank you!
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5+ Year Member
May 26, 2015
Many people get into pharmacy school without any degrees. Some people even take their courses at community college where the coursework is less rigorous.
No need to lower your GPA and PCAT score just so you can get a degree.

Your GPA is low so you should really use that extra time to study for PCAT. I hope you don't waste your time.
Consider retaking a course that you got a C if it will help you study for PCAT like general bio, chem, ochem, etc. Most schools will average or replace the grade which will boost your gpa and hopefully your PCAT score. Find out for your school. Make sure you get an A if you retake the course.

Tell them its a good decision for YOU and if they are not stupid (I am sure they are not) they will accept it.
Just know, if you don't get in after this, your parents will be very disappointed. If your GPA is that low, that means you weren't trying hard enough before. It is a great disservice to your parents that are paying for your school. You better study your ass off.
good thread to look at and ask question to the op. Since he goes to Midwestern, I am guessing he may better assist you if you ask him question.
Last edited:
Aug 18, 2015
I say to not worry about the BA because your main goal is pharmacy and you don't want to use your back up plan first. If you don't get in then you can take your time getting the degree but yes a lot of people don't have a degree and get into pharmacy. So what if your not going to graduate on time there's no limit to how long you should stay in school. It's not a race even so many people don't get in and try the following year again for pharmacy or take the pcat 4x to get a good score
Don't worry and don't stress yourself more then you need to
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