Should I take another gap year?

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Jul 20, 2019
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I graduated in 2019 and originally planned on taking 2 gap years.
At graduation, my cGPA was 3.45 and sCPA was a 3.35. I know these are low, but I have an upward trend. Also during this past gap year, I did a 24 credit DIY post-bacc with a 3.9 and 4.0 gpa - after this, my sGPA is now a 3.5.
These are the other general parts of my application:
  • MCAT 518
  • ORM
  • Top 10 undergraduate university
  • +900 hours at research lab, no publications but wrote a thesis
  • ~500 nonclinical volunteer hours
  • ~500 clinical volunteer hours
  • Leadership at school's sports club for three years (very active)
  • Camp counselor for kids whose parents/family have cancer (two years)
  • Medical scribe at ER for this past year (so about 1000 hours)
  • Generally okay LORs (some good, some eh)
  • Shadowing only 16 hours (I was planning on more shadowing, but COVID19 happened)
My debate now comes in because I was offered a 2 year clinical research job position at a large hospital. Obviously, if I apply this year, I would only be able to stay for one year which means I may burn some bridges (since I kept my plans vague during the interview) and which means I won't have any publications/clinical research experience. However, if I do complete the position for 2 years, the chances of having my name on a publication is very high and would have solid LORs from a large lab. Also, obviously, my application in general will become more solid. I'm not trying to get LORs from this lab if I apply this year, but I do see the advantage of 1) not burning bridges and 2) increasing my chances of acceptance to a medical school.
At the same time, I am kind of ready to move on with life and apply to medical school rather than take 3 gap years.

If anyone could offer some advice/suggestions/opinions, I would really appreciate it!
Thank you so much!!


Full Member
2+ Year Member
Jul 12, 2019
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Honestly, you sound like you have a solid application already, I would apply this cycle. The strong upward trend, your Post-Bacc GPA and your MCAT reflect a very strong improvement in academics!

Though the lab opportunity would be nice to have on your app, I don't think that your app is lacking by any means in regards to ECs. Weighing the opportunity cost to get your foot in the door this year vs. an additional gap year, I'd definitely apply this cycle.

Good luck!!