sendwich

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i have a dilemma. (not one of those "i have a 3.9999 gpa and 45 but..." problems).

i graduated with a bio degree from ucla a couple years ago with a pretty poor gpa (think around 2.7ish). after working for a few years at a lab and taking some night classes at csun, i know that i want to pursue medicine despite my poor academic past. i'm deciding to do a DIY postbac. but my problem is where? i can go back to ucla and take a load of upper divs but i live around pasadena and thought about going to csla instead.

there's been a few posts about this in the past. i know going back to ucla (and more importantly, doing WELL) is going to help me convince adcoms that my turn-around is "for real " but my family is near pasadena right now and with a family member being sick, i want to stay as close as i can and help out...bringing me to want to stick closer to home and go to csla.

my goal ultimately is, since a year worth of postbac classes can only do so much (without repeating), i'm planning on applying to the SMP program (or other 1 year programs) for next fall, furthering my come-back).

any honest but encouraging advice? thanks
 

sendwich

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another note, my family may move down to irvine, so attending UCI is a possibility.

ANY advice would be appreciated!!!!! thanks!
 

scooter31

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Well, UCI does have a postbacc program, as does another school in SoCal, the name of which I cant remember. Also, you can always do the DIY thing, as youve said, and that can be easily done at any school- I would imagine places like CSULA, CSUN, and Fullerton would be places to look into, given your situation. I dont think you can go for a second major anymore at a lot of places, so keep an eye out for that. I think if you did the a la carte route, go for some upper division courses, like immuno, physio, biochem, things like that, and be sure to thoroughly prepare for the MCAT, you'll be in a position to succeed.
 
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LoneCoyote

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I am not sure how much the name of the school where you do a DIY post-bac matters. Some could argue that it would help to have done well in ucla classes to bring up your gpa. I know when i was looking into the program at CSUH, there were a lot of people there who were Cal students with low GPAs and they seemed to get into med school and the fact that the better grades were from CSU wasn't held against them. If going to UCLA is going to add a dimension of stress to the experience it could hurt your grades so that is also something to think about. Good luck :)
 

flighterdoc

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gh said:
i have a dilemma. (not one of those "i have a 3.9999 gpa and 45 but..." problems).

i graduated with a bio degree from ucla a couple years ago with a pretty poor gpa (think around 2.7ish). after working for a few years at a lab and taking some night classes at csun, i know that i want to pursue medicine despite my poor academic past. i'm deciding to do a DIY postbac. but my problem is where? i can go back to ucla and take a load of upper divs but i live around pasadena and thought about going to csla instead.

there's been a few posts about this in the past. i know going back to ucla (and more importantly, doing WELL) is going to help me convince adcoms that my turn-around is "for real " but my family is near pasadena right now and with a family member being sick, i want to stay as close as i can and help out...bringing me to want to stick closer to home and go to csla.

my goal ultimately is, since a year worth of postbac classes can only do so much (without repeating), i'm planning on applying to the SMP program (or other 1 year programs) for next fall, furthering my come-back).


any honest but encouraging advice? thanks
If you have the pre-reqs (chem/orgo/physics/bio) I'm not sure a post-bac pre-med will do you much good. If you need to buff your GPA, then perhaps a masters in Bio or something will work better?

And what about the MCAT? Taken it? If you get relatively high scores (35?) you can get into medical schools (just not California schools).
 

Scarlet_Fire

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I was in a similar situation as yourself when I finished undergrad. It took me 5 years from graduation until I *started* medical school. I'm about to start my residency in Internal Medicine this summer at a major university medical center. This has been discussed elsewhere, and I understand that there are instances to the contrary, but your primary focus should be towards increasing your overall undergraduate GPA. Graduate degrees, in my experience speaking to Directors of admissions, are not important for medical school admission. The conventional logic suggests that because it's "graduate" it is somehow more challenging/difficult/demanding/whatever. But remember this: you will be applying along with students who are, by and large, fresh out of undergrad. You have to play the numbers game. It would be best, at a minimum, to try to get your GPA above 3.0. You can figure out just how many credit hours of A's (@ 4.0 a pop) it will take to do so...I can tell you it takes more than you might be willing to do. However, if your ultimatum is nothing short of becoming a physician, then the number of credit hours shouldn't scare you. It didn't scare me a bit. My GPA in 70 hours of post-bac courses (yes, 70) was above 3.8, with my hours roughly split between (2) different universities. If this is what you want for your life, it's worth it. It doesn't matter where you've gone as much as it does improving your numbers and getting in the low 30's on the MCAT. Good luck!
 

sendwich

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thanks for your encouragement everybody!

scarletfire-could you pm me about exactly where you came from, which institutions (2, wow) you took your classes (was it a formal or DIY). did you work at all at the time? did you also take your mcats at the same time you did your postbac? how did you balance that all out?

thanks!!! :)
 
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