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Texas A&M. expectations? career outlook? etc.

Discussion in 'Pre-Veterinary' started by jaylynn, Apr 15, 2007.

  1. jaylynn

    jaylynn [[resident optimist]]

    Apr 15, 2007
    i just wanted to get in touch with some people who are attending or who have attended Texas A&M University seeking a verterinary career.

    i'm 21 years old. i graduated from my TX high school with the highest class GPA in '05 (my school didn't rank students) and a SAT score of 1560.

    from high school i received several scholarships and ended up attending a private, largely libral arts affiliated college in PA.

    i knew that i always wanted to be a choice of college reflected the scholarship package, the size of the school (i'm from a very small town, and believed that i would fair best in a small college), and the apparent 'exclusivity' the college boasts. however, when i started studying there...i was highly disappointed in their science departments and math department...there was only one professor that tought all math courses...the level of academic integrity of that college was severely misrepresented to me...however, i figured i was stuck there for at least two semesters.

    my stay there ended prematurely though, when a death in the family required me to come home in mid december and financially support my younger siblings. i've been working as a manager of a retail store ever since.

    recently, i've been very fortunate and i will now be able to return to school without worry of financial burden.

    my hope is to attend Texas A&M University, major in biomedical science and then go onto Vet-School...most likely at A&M also.

    i would like to know about anyone's experience with the University pertaining to this major, academic integrity of the courses, difficulty of acceptence to A&M vet school, and any other helpful information anyone may possess.

    thank you.


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  3. InfiniVet

    InfiniVet 5+ Year Member

    Oct 17, 2006
    College Station, Texas
    Sure =)

    I've been attending A&M since 03, and my major is Animal Science, Science option (which means it has all the pre-reqs, science/math wise for Veterinary school). So far I have really enjoyed the pre req classes, and the Animal Science classes I had been a little disappointed in, theyre not QUITE blow off classes but not far from it either, I did learn quite a bit about production/livestock/agricultural issues, especially in Meat Science, and if you take honors section that seems to help a bit to get more out of your classes. I chose Animal Science because I felt it would prepare me more in an animal career. My concern is the BIMS would only prepare me for the 1st two years of vet school, and I had zero interest in research or biotechnology...I just wanted to do private practice small animal medicine.
    Point being: Choose the major that you are interested in. They told me over and over again "choose the major that you would be happy with if you didn't get into vet school." Well thats the hardest question I could ever answer because I had no idea what that would be, I never had a plan B, I wanted to be a vet, and that-was-that. Thats just me.
    The vet I work for says that if he could do it over again, he wouldve gotten a bachelors in business, and taken all the pre-reqs for vet school. Thats his .2 cents.
    The difficulty of acceptance into A&M undergrad depends on the major, and thus college, you are interested in. For example, Animal Science is in the college of Agriculture, and the GPA pre-reqs is like 2.5 of something...very easy to get into. If you wanted a biology degree, that would be a different story, or BIMS, or journalism, etc. I believe BIMS has a substantially higher GPA pre-req, and you can contact them and ask: [email protected] Phone: 979-845-4941.
    The academic integrity at A&M, I have found to be lackluster in the Math/Science department. It seems that since they maintain a phenomenal reputation for research in virtually every science department, they hire researchers and then make them teach. And grad students are forced to TA. This, in my experience creates a lot of: "Figure it out yourself/No, I'm busy/I don't know, look it up" responses, when students ask questions. This is only in the math/sciences dept...unless of course you talk to them about their research interests, then they'll chat..So, in short its not a very supportive environment in the math/sciences. Be prepared to kinda teach yourself all the sciences.
  4. jaylynn

    jaylynn [[resident optimist]]

    Apr 15, 2007
  5. jaylynn

    jaylynn [[resident optimist]]

    Apr 15, 2007
    thank you so much.

    your post actually helps out a lot.

    funny thing is that i've thought about taking the path your vet wishes he would have a just in case precaution.

    however, my dream is to have a private small animal practice...much like yours, my instinct is to major in something that would prepare me for that...and i do indeed enjoy my sciences and maths

    as far as getting accepted into undergrad...i have little concern. my GPA in out of high school was 3.99...and i was heavily involved in my school and community. so getting in as an undergrad shouldn't be much of a problem.

    though i wonder if it would be beneficial for me to retake my SAT so i have a more current score? the last one i took was in Dec '04...

    what you've said about your major vs. biomed also gives me something to think about

    i really, really appreciate your response!

  6. Tiraka

    Tiraka Texas A&M 2012 10+ Year Member

    Jul 7, 2006
    Infinivet gave some great advice

    I'm a Biomedical Sciences major, and like any other, it has its pros and cons. One nice thing is that if going to vet school is absolutely what you want to do, almost all of your pre-reqs are covered in the BIMS degree plan. With electives, you also get the opportunity to take classes that are very similar to the ones offered in the pre-clinical years of vet school. I've talked to several students who feel that this made the transition from undergrad to vet school a lot easier for them.

    On the other hand, if you're not absolutely sure that you want to do this, it is a very focused degree plan (plus your classes are full of hyper-competitive premed students, but we won't go into that...). Like the previous poster said, you run into quite a few classes which prove that brilliant researchers do NOT always make brilliant teachers, and though it's certainly not the case with all classes, there are enough that it can get frustrating. The upside is that there are lots of opportunities to get involved in research as an undergrad.

    Animal Science is nearly as common a major for pre-vets, and it offers far more hands-on experience with animals. But if you want to go into small animal, know that it is extremely production/livestock oriented. Most people in the major really seem to like it (not the case with BIMS) and I've heard very good things about the faculty and advisors. You can also be a BIMS major and take quite a few ANSC classes that count as electives.

    I'll be applying for vet school in the fall, so I don't have any input on that yet (though I think A&M has something like a 40% in-state acceptance rate, which is great)

    As for retaking the SAT, you'd have to contact the school. You score would be nice to keep, but I'm not sure how the changes that they've made to the test in the past few years would affect you. Also, if you did receive any grades from your college in PA before leaving, I'm pretty sure they won't look at the high school stats.

    Good luck with everything!
  7. InfiniVet

    InfiniVet 5+ Year Member

    Oct 17, 2006
    College Station, Texas
    You are very, very much welcome and I am happy to help you out in any way that I can.

    By the way, I never even took the SAT - so, I couldn't say if it would be beneficial to retake it just to have a current score.
  8. aggiegolf

    aggiegolf 2+ Year Member

    Apr 1, 2007
    Both of these A&M students have provided excellent responses to your question.

    I graduated from A&M in Biomedical Science in December 2006. My experience overall was very positive. I learned a lot and made great friendships.

    Even though I really enjoyed this program because of its thoroughness, I often wonder if it was the "best" decision. Biomedical Science is based heavily on the molecular sciences, not so much on the clinical "hands-on" approach. Infinivet made a very good point by stating that Biomedical Science (BIMS) will prepare you for the first year or two of veterinary school. However, when it comes to the more practical aspects of the profession, it will not.

    If I could go back, I probably would have majored in something a little more practical and relevant to what I want to do (private mixed practice). There's little doubt that majoring in animal science or a similar degree would most likely result in a higher grade point average and fewer headaches. And with a higher GPA, your chances for admission into our vet school will also be higher. It ultimately depends on what your personal goals are.

    The professors in animal science seem to care a lot more about the students too. I loved the animal science courses I took and learned a lot. Many of the BIMS professors don't care what you do.

    jaylynn said:
    "i've thought about taking the path your vet wishes he would have a just in case precaution."

    Follow your instincts buddy. You can't lose as long as you do. You may be one of those highly gifted Biomedical Science students who finish with a 3.8, but you might not be. I graduated in the top 5% of my high school class, and I'm still in awe at how difficult biomedical science was for me. Then again, out of the 130ish students who graduated in BIMS in December, only a very small few had above a 3.5. I think that says alot.

    Good luck!

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