MSTPbound

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I'm trying to figure out when I should begin the application process for the MSTP admissions cycle. My original plan was to begin pulling my apps together right after the MCAT (registered for April exam), following advice I've picked up about time lines for the MD admissions cycle. However, I have also been advised to delay the application as long as possible to maximize the amount of basic research experience I get under my belt before then (have only worked in my current lab for a month).

My question: Does the MSTP admissions process follow the same cycle as the MD process, or is it independent? In other words, do MSTPs start making decisions about applicants before the application deadline (which seems to be in the October-November neighborhood for most programs), or is an applicantly "as likely" to get full consideration regardless of timing of the application submission?

Please let me know if my question appears unclear; its been a long day.

Thanks for your input!

-MSTPbound
 

GoinBack2Cali?

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I didn't send in my primary until the middle of July, and wasn't complete at schools with secondaries until the end of October. (I did everything a lot later than I should have).

I wouldn't wait to submit. If you are thinking about waiting because you might be publishing soon, don't. You can always send in additions to your application later or even bring reprints with you to the interview.
 
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However, I have also been advised to delay the application as long as possible to maximize the amount of basic research experience I get under my belt before then (have only worked in my current lab for a month).

This is bad advice as far as I can tell. You want your apps in early. Secondaries usually begin arriving in late August/early September, and you want to submit them as soon as possible after you get them. If you've only been in your current lab for a few months just say you will be continuing until you hopefully matriculate in 2008. See if you can still get your mentor to write you a good LOR anyways.
 

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oh to give you an idea - look at this year's interview thread. it seems most interview invites are given in sept-dec. turning things in at the deadline is cutting it close and gives them less of a chance to review your file. i know of one person who got an MD interview at his top choice in January, and when he called about not getting MD/PhD they said they had already given out all their invites before they even reviewed his file.
 

MSTPbound

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Wow... thanks for the input/warning everyone. I've actually started soliciting some opinions of adcom's from some of the schools I'm looking at, and they pretty much advise the same thing: get it done by July.

Really appreciate the feedback.:thumbup:

Take Care,

MSTPbound
 

hawkeey

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A few more months of research experience are not going to help you now. If that is the concern, then wait until the next application cycle. If you are going to apply, then submit the application as soon as possible while making sure to have proofread it (and have other people proof read) it.
 

MSTPbound

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A few more months of research experience are not going to help you now. If that is the concern, then wait until the next application cycle. If you are going to apply, then submit the application as soon as possible while making sure to have proofread it (and have other people proof read) it.

Right... I hear what you're saying. Perhaps my original post made it sound as though my primary concern was about getting "a few more months of research experience"... it wasn't that at all. It was more about time required to establish enough of a rep in my current lab to get a strong LOR (my two previous lab mentors shouldn't be an issue, but ideally I'd like to have a 3rd LOR from the current lab). In any case, all points well taken.

Thanks for responding.
 

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LOR's happen later than primary apps. Usually, you don't get specific instructions about where to send MSTP LORs until the secondary application. You can easily submit the LOR from your new lab in August. My school's premed committee policy was to send LOR packets in early September, which seemed late to me with SDN hoopla, but I still got the first MSTP interview possible at quite a few schools =).
 

MSTPbound

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LOR's happen later than primary apps. Usually, you don't get specific instructions about where to send MSTP LORs until the secondary application. You can easily submit the LOR from your new lab in August. My school's premed committee policy was to send LOR packets in early September, which seemed late to me with SDN hoopla, but I still got the first MSTP interview possible at quite a few schools =).

Awesome. I think this is probably about the best scenario I was hoping for - and improves likelihood of getting a publication out beforehand.

Thanks again, :thumbup:

MSTPbound
 
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