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Stay the Pre-Med course at Univ of Florida or transfer?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by m32837, May 6, 2008.

  1. m32837

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    Hi,

    1st post........

    I just completed my 2nd year at UF Bio Major...

    The stats to date-

    Overall GPA:3.51
    BCPM GPA: 3:55

    worry issues: Bio 1 Lab C+ and I got a C+ in Orgo 1+ 1 withdrawal (non-bcpm)

    64,000 Question: Do I stay at UF, lets say I prepare well for the MCAT nail a 31-32 in my Jr year...my GPA stays at roughly the 3.5-3.6 level or do I transfer to a less competitive FL state school (like USF or FSU) and finish my last 2 years with 3.7-3.9 GPA's..bring my overall GPA up to 3.7?Is orgo chem 2 and lets say genetics easier to get an "A" at a less competitve school than UF or is "A" in orgo chem tough everywhere?

    Right now I'm not on the path for UF med program (3.8 GPA/31-32 MCAT)...but I want to maximize my chances of getting into a Florida state run med school....

    are my two C+ grades and one withdrawal major issues?

    any sound guidance would be appreciated...
    Thanks Mike
     
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  3. 135892

    135892 Guest
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    Why would anyone leave the great U of F :smuggrin:
     
  4. Dendrite

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    The difficulty with transferring is that if you are going the traditional four years of undergrad, you will have a tough time getting to know professors that can write you strong letters of recommendation. Plus, USF and FSU, I believe, have established premed programs, and it may not necessarily be easier. If you want to go the easy route with upper-level science courses, perhaps a liberal arts college or one of the lesser-known schools may be a good route (like UNF, Stetson, etc.).

    If you just kick it into overdrive, and get mostly A's for the rest of your undergrad, a strong upward trend is a major plus. UF does a very good job of preparing students for the MCAT, and getting a 32-33 with a 3.6 GPA can get you a spot at a FL medical school - perhaps even UF COM.
     
  5. Particleinabox

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    How does liberal arts college translate into easy upper level science courses?
    That doesn't make any sense.
     
  6. G8rDan

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    Leave U of F!?

    Unless you're going to a more difficult school, I wouldn't leave. I'm going on my senior year and might be able to help you select the less difficult professors for the remainder of your pre-reqs. I think there would be too much pressure on you once you transfer because no adcom. wants to see a person's GPA decrease after going to an easier school (it's a double negative).

    Oh, and we're about to win another national champioinship! (well the SEC at least)
     
  7. kenmc3

    kenmc3 Senior Member
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    I would probably stay at UF if I were you. I am a UF grad now an MS3 (soon to be MS4) at Miami. I think that UF was a great school for my pre-med education and well respected (especially in FL). Your GPA is not that bad, and can easily be offset with a good MCAT score. This is what I think:

    1) UF is a great school and why would you want to transfer to a “lesser school” that just looks bad.

    2) Study hard and do well in your remaining science classes and even take upper level classes and do well in those to offset lower scores if you want. While I didn’t get any C’s I definitely had some B’s and I withdrew from calculus my first semester. It didn’t hurt me.

    3) I really don’t think science courses would be much easier at other schools – orgo is orgo – the only difference might be that the curve may be better.

    4)I agree with the aforementioned poster about the LOR issue – staying at UF would be easier.

    5) Study hard for the MCAT- important regardless of your GPA.

    6) Do some research or other extracurricular activities to help offset your GPA – this stuff really matters – especially here at Miami (although we seem to be getting more competitive). Also, UF is a great school for research and has Shands, the brain institute right there on campus.
     
  8. ufgrad00

    ufgrad00 Not ready to start.
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    Stay at UF. Orgo 2 will be very challenging at UF and genetics is doable. But genetics has A LOT of busy work which I feel shouldn't be necessary in the course. However, I would assume that at nearly all schools, courses like Orgo, genetics, and other pre-med courses are difficult. If you are taking Orgo 2 and genetics at the same time, it would help in your situation if those are your only science courses for that semester.

    You can overcome your C+ grades. Once you get better grades in courses like cell bio, physiology, and biochem your C grades will have less of an impact.
     
  9. mdgator

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    1. Even if you made a 3.8, 31-32, that would by no means guarantee you a spot at UF. There are many other factors. I had a 3.94 and a 33, and didn't get in. Others with better stats than myself don't get in each year as well. You need to work as hard as you can, get good clinical experiences, etc. to maximize your chances of getting in to any Fl school.

    2. Don't transfer. You can, in theory, finish with a strong enough GPA to get in anywhere you want to go, provided that you do well enough on the MCAT. IMO, you can't ask for a better pre med program than UF. It will prepare you for the MCAT, assuming you put in the necessary work, and med programs all over the country, but especially in Fl, know and respect the quality of UF's pre med program.

    3. Some classes may be somewhat easier at other schools, but orgo is orgo, biochem is biochem, genetics is genetics. If you work hard enough, you can do well. I actually found that I had the most difficulty early on at UF, despite the fact that my courseload got progressively harder. This is because it took me some time to adjust to the difficulty of science courses at UF. It may be the same with you. By my final semester, I was able to take virology, immunology, analytical lab, Latin, and 4 additional electives hours, and I actually found this to be my easiest courseload because: a) I progressively got better at studying the longer I was at UF and b) I found the courses to be much more interesting than orgo, physics, gen chem, etc.

    Go Gators.
     
  10. Dendrite

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    And another point to why you should stay at UF: other schools don't offer courses like these, or if they do, it is not at the same quality as UF. I have a feeling you will generally learn more there.
     
  11. Wylde

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    Don't transfer: DO BETTER!

    Seriously, You haven't completed your 3rd and 4th year yet, so why don't you get ~3.9 in those semesters?

    If you go to an easier school, you will be FORCED to do better. If you don't, you'll be completely screwed. You have to be dedicated towards this and willing to do better, you are more than capable of getting almost all As at UF... turn your last years around and do well.

    Period.
     
  12. UGAmkw

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    UF sucks
     
  13. Maxx4

    Maxx4 Have I annoyed you yet?
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    Blasphemy! :eek:

    Gators all the way, baby! :smuggrin:
     
  14. 135892

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    :eek:

    This calls for an immediate ban! Mods, where are you?
     
  15. nlax30

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    I'm an FSU grad, but I agree with others here..... stay at UF and finish out the degree. I'd say the same if you were at FSU or USF and asking the same question, stay and finish.

    I really doubt that there's going to be a large difference in just the difficulty of the upper level sciences amongst those schools. All are large research schools with large science programs. Overall perceived competitiveness doesn't always equate with difficulty level of classes.

    The BIGGEST reason why I would stick it out there is that you are already comfortable with the school and, hopefully, have started forming relationships with professors for future letters. As someone who took some time off and then came back a few years later to finish my last 2 years of undergrad, I can attest to how difficult it can be to try and get a decent letter from a professor in a limited amount of time, especially sitting in large sciences where everyone seems to be gunning for med school.

    I don't think the 2 C's will break you, but change whatever habits you have to in order to excel from here on out.
     
  16. Innokus

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    Just stay at UF. It's not going to be significantly easier by switching to another undergrad. Plus you'll be miserable at a school that you don't like.
     
  17. Anand17

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    Hey buddy, Im at UF and...wierd..I have the EXACT same situation. almost. I have a 3.63 overall, 3.55 bcpm..I have a C+ in bio lab, a C in organic 1, and a W. (The W wasnt academically faulted). I just finished my 2nd year, and am taking orgo 2 and genetics this summer. Im concerned as well, but dont quit!! Your gpa is acceptable by a lot of medical schools. Its not the best, but plenty of people get in with it! I will say itll be hard at uf, but remember, UM, FSU, UCF, FIU, USF, ALL LOVE US UF PREMEDS!! The way i see it, one C/W isnt too bad, although it hurts..but your gpa is your gpa at the end of the day..and there not gonna punish you for a C that much because your gpa is punished enough! Just explain the W, move on, but DONT TRANSFER. ITS GREAT TO BE A FLORIDA GATOR!!
     
  18. m32837

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    Wow!....Surprised at the unanimous position...Yes, you guys bring up good points. I like UF...I will stay at UF....I'm capable of stepping it up one notch from the first 2 years...(Cut back on world of warcraft)

    For this Summer, I'm back home in Orlando moping around.....

    What to do?
    1. volunteer at a Orlando hospital?
    2. shadow an Orlando doctor?
    3. grab a random $7/hr job (what I always have done in the past)
    Note- I'm starting off with no immediate family medical networking connections..

    How do I go about items 1. or 2. to build up the extras?

    I will PM some of you Gator boys when I get a chance.....

    Thanks for the help so far....keeping me straight ahead!
    Mike
     
  19. SwampGator

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    I think I had about a 3.6 (at UF), after sophomore year. Then I started to see that MCAT, and applications were just a year away. I thought I had been trying hard all along, but I kicked it into overdrive my final two years. It's weird but I made better grades in the upper-level science classes than I did in the entry-level ones. I'm not sure what your class schedule is like but I'm sure you will have plenty of science classes left to make A's in (they don't all have to be A's, but its the fastest way to raise the GPA); Bio major classes, biochem, physics, genetics, microbio. If you can squeeze in anatomy or physiology, those even count towards sciGPA too. I was able to finish with ~3.8. You'll be fine. As for what to do this summer, I would volunteer or shadow a doctor. Whatever you do, make sure it's something meaningful. Volunteer and/or medical experience is what came up the most during my interviews. Good luck.
     
  20. gujuDoc

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    I agree with this. UF has sooooooooo many opportunities in things I've never heard being done at USF that I just wouldn't sacrifice if I were in your position. Also, they'll ask why you transferred schools and see right through the wanting the easy way out. You are more likely to get attention by taking the harder more difficult course and doing well in it. Study harder, figure out why it is you are not doing well and change study habits, and then move forward and do well in your later years at UF. Do some great ECs that UF gives the opp. to do and do well on the MCAT and you'll be set for a Fl. school or US school.
     
  21. gujuDoc

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    ORMC and Fl. hospital system is now part of UCF and has always been academic hospitals, so getting to shadow and volunteer there might be a good experience. If you are near Kissimmee, I'd even recommend trying to volunteer at Give Kids the World or doing Camp Boggy Creek up in Eustis, not too far from Orlando if you are into that kind of stuff.

    Even if you get a job, I think vol. one day a week is good.
     
  22. nlax30

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    FSU also has affiliations with FL Hosp and ORMC b/c of their regional campus in Orlando. And now UCF starting up....

    I'm originally from the Orlando area so before I moved area to finish school I spent some time shadowing in ORMC's ED and it was really a good experience. You'll most likely end up watching the residents and it was nice because they were closer to my age and for the most part eager to "teach" and have someone tag along.
     
  23. gujuDoc

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    I thought FSU's affiliations extended only to ORMC and that Fl. hospital was not affiliated with any MD school prior to UCF. I thought the Fl. hospital affiliations were with NOVA. I'm confused.

    Nevermind. I looked it up and you are right. :)
     
  24. gujuDoc

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    I agree with the part about quality being better at UF but not the part about other schools not offering these courses. USF offers both of those courses and as a micro major i took both of them. furthermore, the school with the best courses is actually UCF which allows ugrads to take gross anatomy, classes like endocrinology, hematology, and other such courses not offered. Even Histology which is offered every year at UCF and every 2 years at USF is not offered at UF. But UF has more amazing opportunities that are non-academic as well as better thought academic courses.
     
  25. bodonid

    bodonid Dr. Spaceman
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  26. nlax30

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    I had to look it up also. I was familiar with the ORMC but not FL Hosp one. Of course, there are a bunch of separate FL Hosp sites scattered around central Florida so I guess I shouldn't be surprised.
     
  27. Innokus

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    I'm not sure about the quality but we also offer those some of those classes at FSU. The three that I know of are virology, immunology, and histology. I wish I knew about those classes at UCF. I might have considered going there if I knew about that. UCF is definitely the school with the best variety of premed type classes. Good thing you intend to stay at UF. Years from now you'll look back and be glad that you didn't take the easy way out.
     
  28. KnuxNole

    KnuxNole Sweets Addict
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    Rest assured, those classes do have their quality :D I dunno about histo, but I took virology and immuno, and those were amazing. Although they were hard as hell, I did not regret taking both of those(strangely enough, i did awesome on them despite my senioritis).

    Actually, the virology teacher(who is one of my favorite Bio professors ever) is retiring, so i don't know if it will be offered anymore. It might though, you never know.
     
  29. Dendrite

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    I know that a particular major FL school has not really offered lately a variety of courses as are offered at UF, UCF, or FSU (not sure of UM). In fact, at a particular institution, virology has not been offered recently, histology and immunology are offered once/year, and next year, they are not even offering Anatomy & Physiology.
     
  30. nlax30

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    I know who you're talking about. I had him for virology about 2 years ago and he would mention about retiring in the next couple years.

    Forget who I had for immuno, he was a little soft spoken but a great teacher, really enjoyed that class. Also had a good teacher for Genetics there.
     
  31. mdgator

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    Other schools really do respect UFs pre-med program a lot. I had no idea exactly how much this was true until an adcom at another school made some very flattering comments about UF's program.

    If it were me, I would do 2 and 3. Several adcoms seemed to like that I had so much non-medical work experience, and it was a major point of discussion at most of my interviews. Also, it's nice to save some money...the application process is expensive.

    IMO, in most cases, shadowing is better than volunteering for clinical experience. If you volunteer, you rarely have all that much contact with doctors and/or patients, (although there are exceptions.) I had no trouble gaining shadowing experiences. My approach was to call a primary care doc in a rural area outside of my hometown...I spent a couple of weeks at his office, and then he called up several of his former classmates/colleagues in the surrounding area and told them about me, and kind of advocated for me to help me get hooked up with some of them. I eventually shadowed physicians in 5 different specialties that he put me in touch with. This was the bulk of my clinical experience. You don't have to try to shadow everyday. I just tried to get somewhere between one day and one week with each physician. I felt like having been exposed to multiple specialties was helpful with interviews, because I had shadowed one of each kind of doctor that interviewed me. I also felt like I was better able to articulate my understanding of what physicians do, because it seemed like each shadowing experience kind of opened my eyes to something a little different.
     
  32. gujuDoc

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    Otherwise known as USF??? hmm I get the feeling from your post that is what you are referring too. I'm sorry you didn't get to take some of these classes, but I got to take the above. The other option is to get a permit if you have enough grades to take the class with the grad students at the med school for immunology in spring and also same for virology. If you are a bright student with a high GPA, yu might be able to convince them to let you take these courses by eailing Dr. Barber. However, they were offered when I was on the other side of campus.
     
  33. lucybug

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    The FSU professor who taught Prokaryotic Biology and Virology is Dr. Reeves and he will be missed :(.
     
  34. cinematographie

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    lucybug, do you know who will be teaching these in the future? i wonder if bates would teach prokaryotic, i loved him for genetics!
     
  35. nlax30

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    Bates! I've trying to remember. I really enjoyed his genetics class as well.
     
  36. ankit999

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    i went to uf and graduated from bio degree in 3 years. When i applied, after my sophmore yr i had a bcpm of 3.6, and overall 3.7. I thought uf was very difficult, but it really does prepare you well for mcats. I got a C+ in orgo 1 and B in orgo 2. Your gpa is not bad at all, just improve it a little bit and you'll be fine with a 31 mcat. Make sure you have good volunteer opportunities in clinical and community settings. Med schools, esp those in FL, look for both types. PM if you have any questions. Go gators

    On a side note: I think UF will start implementing "minus" grades. Maybe this would be a good time to transfer. Just kidding!
     
  37. m32837

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    Does AMCAS count UF B+ grades as 3.5 or 3.3?
     
  38. Fp02c

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    as a 3.5 I called and they said they do it based on the schools grading scale which is found on the back of the transcript. To the OP: I am a gator grad. HOwever i didnt do the regular premed.. I did Engineering and my last 3 pre med courses (organics and biochem ) I am taking at FSU becuase my parents are here. I would suggest you stay at UF. I feel that despite the fact that UF doesnt care about their undergrads and that most premeds there have inflated egos the pro's the school offers cant be overlooked. Remember we have the .5 system which will help you gpa and I 98% feel that you will be bettered prepared for the MCAT at UF than some of the other florida schools. Plus... UF LOVES UF grads. I know a girl that graduated with a 3.4 and 29 and got an interview.
     

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