I thought that the collective 'you' would like to hear this because it made me feel better. I work as a research assistant in a psychiatry department. It is affiliated with a decent med school, not what anyone would call top ranked," but do we really care? We are in a large eastern city, which makes many people apply due to desireable location. I applied to med school this year and have not been accepted and have been down and discouraged, but studying for the MCAT so I can reapply this year. I have been talking to a few of the residents in the department, who I think are fabulous, and several have said to me that they had the same experience and had to apply twice or 3 times. Now, there are people who would say that this is not a "top" program, but I am friends with the residency coordinator and we get tons of applications for just a few spots. I have seen these residents present grand rounds and case conferences to the larger community and they are always well received and complemented. I would send a friend to any of them. The point of all of this is that they have achieved what everyone here wants and are doing extremely well, and not getting accepted the first time did not matter. The other residents who I know in the program, in 9/10 of cases, did not go to "top" med schools, but more often to their state school. I don't know about academic medicine, but for people in this program who end up with clinical careers, the school they attended does not seem to matter either. The PGYIII's who applied for fellowship ALL received their first choice and are going into excellent programs. So, this is my take on reapplying and choosing a school. You can be successful as long as you can get in eventually and the quality of the doctor, I think, is largely based on the individual, not the school ranking.