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Undergraduate student in need of advice

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Pre-Med Student Z, Jan 9, 2019.

  1. Pre-Med Student Z

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    Hello,

    I am currently an undergraduate student and have a very low GPA. I attended a community college and have an overall GPA of 3.03, I then attended a University (still a student there) and currently have a 2.60 GPA. I have already completed all the courses that I need to graduate with a B.S. in Biology and am working on re-mediating science courses that I performed poorly in. I applied to medical schools last year and have not been invited for an interview yet. My overall calculated AAMC GPA is 2.5. My BCPM GPA is 2.00 and AO is 3.16. My MCAT score was a 484. I do plan on re-taking the MCAT sometime this year. I have been looking into applying to a post-bacc program, one being California Northstate University College of Medicine.

    I have heard a lot of negative reviews about this school and their post-bacc program. In particular, issues surrounding federal loans not being granted for their students. Is there anyone out there that has personally experienced their federal loan status being affected because of their accreditation status, which is at the preliminary stage? I recently met with their admissions counselor and I received a lot of positive advice and was encouraged to apply to their program. I do not want to commit myself to a program for a year that ultimately may not guarantee me a spot in their medical school. I would also be relying on federal loans to pay for my tuition.

    I would very much appreciate any advice anyone has to offer me. Thank you.
     
    #1 Pre-Med Student Z, Jan 9, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019 at 11:25 PM
  2. jarednogeek

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    You should not have applied to medical schools with your stats because you had a 0 chance of interviews. Your first step should be finding a wise advisor. Your road to medical school will be long and difficult with a high chance of failure.
     
  3. chemdoctor

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    Let’s start with the first thing.

    Your GPA is nowhere near an acceptable level. Look into post bacs and retake ANY course where you got less than a C. Secondly, see how many credits you would need to raise your GPA to an acceptable level. You may not be able to do it with a post bac and may need an SMP (those are high risk high reward tho)

    The point isn’t to raise your GPA, but to show that the you of now is not the you of then. But you still need to obviously get the GPA up.

    Work on clinical experience, service to others, and research.

    Do NOT TAKE THE MCAT until you have done better in the sciences. Dedicate 6-8 months of prep and practice practice practice.

    Next, keep an open mind to DO schools. Read Goro’s guide to premeds that need reinvention. It’s a great guide.

    You’ve got a long road ahead of you but many people have rebounded and done well
     
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  4. subdermallight

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    Getting a plan together for approaching medical school is obviously important but really the most important thing here is to do some soul searching and figure out why you got such low grades and a low MCAT. Did you even take a single practice test? It seems like maybe you rush into things. Which is normal, we all do that and make mistakes. But figure out what the source of this is and figure a way to remedy it. You need to make sure this is resolved and thoroughly addressed before jumping into a special masters program. If you get bad grades in a SMP, you’re pretty much done for is my understanding.

    So do whatever you need to do. Ask your family and friends for help, maybe see a therapist to help you understand what’s holding back your potential. Maybe you had a traumatic event of some kind, or were in a bad/stressful living situation, or maybe you struggle with depression, or ADHD, or a debilitating physical illness, or lacked passion for your studies. I got no idea, there are some many possibilities. But remember they all have solutions and there is a road to getting better and meeting your goals. I hope you’re young though because it can take many years. Took me 4 extra years but I made it out.
     
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  5. samualjhatfield

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    My advice will be a little harsher: Apply to graduate, find a full time job with the BS in biology, work for 2-4 years and then reevaluate if you still want to do medicine. If you do, take the advice above - Spend 2 years retaking UNDERGRADUATE classes, then apply to an SMP if you are able to maintain a 3.5-4.0. If you cannot do that, then you will not have demonstrated that you are capable of going in to medical school. If you are able to do that, enroll in a true SMP (Your case is a little too far down to justify a DIY post bacc) and if you are able to do the same, 3.5-4.0, then MCAT. By this point, your MCAT should be able to reach the 508+ level. And if it does not, then I do not believe you can justify an application to MD programs. If your MCAT is not 500+, I do not believe you could justify an application to DO schools. If your MCAT is not 496+, I do not believe you could justify a podiatry application.

    Overall, you have a long hard road ahead of you if you are dedicated towards the pursuit of medicine.
     
  6. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast
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    Why on earth would you have applied with those stats? “Have not been invited to interview yet.” Did you actually expect that you would?

    Who has been advising you?

    Why would you plan on taking the MCAT again this year? Your GPA will not yet be improved. Even if you somehow (and it’s doubtful) could improve a 484 to be in the range of being competitive, by the time you got your GPA up, that improved MCAT would be too old.

    Is this a serious thread?
     
  7. JeSuisUnDoc

    JeSuisUnDoc SDN Gold Donor
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    Goro has a thread about this. Look it up and follow his advices. Stop rushing into things.


    Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
     
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  8. Angus Avagadro

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    Get some educational counseling from your undergrad to try and understand what your academic deficiencies are, and work to correct them before embarking on any further programs. Some things like test taking anxiety can be treated. You are not ready for med school.
     
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  9. OP
    OP
    Pre-Med Student Z

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    Hello everyone,

    Thank you to everyone for their responses, especially, *chemdoctor, and *subdermallight.
    I spent my whole summer last year studying the Kaplan MCAT prep material. Does anyone have any advice as to which MCAT prep they preferred or helped them best? I am going to be spending this Spring semester improving my grades in two science courses that in the past I had performed poorly in, and that should also help me prep for the MCAT.

    I will be working on academic deficiencies before I apply to a post bacc program, and then medical school. I read Goro's thread and will follow his advice as well. Thank you.
     
  10. subdermallight

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    You are still at least 1 to 2 years away from the MCAT. It might be good to review things as you take your classes but I don’t think now is the time to get all into MCAT prep. That said, I like reddit.com/r/mcat, they can direct you a lot of resources. My favorite prep company is ****** but it costs a lot of money and now isn’t the time..

    Focus 100% on your courses and make sure you finish strong with A’s. It won’t really help the GPA but it will show you that you can do it. Then eventually do a SMP or some kind of program like those when you are ready, and only then do you take the MCAT. The worst thing you can do is rush into the MCAT again and get a bad score. Give it time. Stop running before you can walk. Take it slow and focus on your classes and understanding why it didn’t work out in the past. Then afterwards you take it from there. Getting into medical school is like a marathon, you need build a foundation over time at a steady pace until finallly you are ready to cross the finish line. Pace yourself or you risk tripping over your own feet.
     
    #10 subdermallight, Jan 10, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2019
  11. PreMedMissteps

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    No.

    It is way too soon for you to be taking the MCAT. When will you be applying to a postbacc?

    You need some time between that very low MCAT and hopefully a much better one.
     
  12. gyngyn

    gyngyn Professor
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    This school could have made federal loans and payback mechanisms available to their first med school class (because they had a pre-existing pharm school). They chose not to do so.
    This is only one of the inexcusable behaviors that have distinguished this school.
     
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  13. solitarius

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    Be realistic and aim for a mid-level career, which is itself competitive these days.
     
  14. golfman7

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    He should retake classes and ace them and apply DO if he is dead set on medicine or go back for another degree. I had high gpa and decent MCAT and did not get in after interviewing with both MD and DO programs. Its extremely competitive field and his past grades would kill his app at desirable DO schools. He also needs medical exposure to on top of high grades.... it will be a long and painful road if he wants to go into med
     
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  15. Dagrimsta1

    Dagrimsta1 Current Representation of MS-2
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    Other than everyone saying improve grades, study harder, post bac, etc..

    LOOK INTO A DIFFERENT PROFESSION!

    Not saying it's impossible to get into med school but are you sure you want to?
    Maybe you'll find that your simply better and enjoy something else. It's never too late.

    If your dead set on medicine, consider a mid-level position or just grind your way to better scores.
    Don't do carribean. They will steal your monies and kick you out if you don't do well.
     
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  16. golfman7

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    Yeah he should look into another career.... medicine is extremely competitive and his app would get thrown out at every US school. People struggle to get in with high GPAs MCATs etc he has no shot of getting in. MD is out of the question... hell DO schools are very competitive and fewer people are applying now with retakes etc... alot of people in DO school had high stats.
     
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  17. OP
    OP
    Pre-Med Student Z

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    Hello,

    Thank you everyone for your feedback, I appreciate it.

    As a back-up I am going to apply to Dental school this year. This is mainly because the dental school I plan on applying to does not count repeat courses as individual courses, only the second attempt is factored in GPA calculations. My true passion is medicine though, I want to be a physician. I am dedicating this Spring and upcoming Summer re-taking science courses I received a C- and below in. Very soon I plan on applying to pre-med post-bacc schools that have reasonable requirements. It is my understand that a post-bacc program GPA will increase my BCPM GPA which is something I am in need of.
     
  18. golfman7

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    Dental is hard to get into also.... know one friend of mine who got in and he had very high grades and was a smart and dilligent student who planned on it from day one. It is far from a backup plan its very competiive.What state do you live in? Has the dental admission office say your competitive?
     
    #18 golfman7, Jan 11, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
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  19. samualjhatfield

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    Dental school is just as competitive as medical school...If you are an 8th percentile student on the MCAT after an entire summer of studying, why would you think you will be a higher percentile (you need 70th AT LEAST, preferably closer to the 85th) on the DAT? One full semester and a half semester will not be enough to make up for your extraordinarily poor performance. You need to not just retake the lower division courses you failed, you need to take a significant number of upper division courses with As to show a change in who you are. And then, an SMP or post-bacc will still be needed. And it will not by any means fix your GPA to an acceptable level, the best it will do is show that you have changed IF you can basically get a 4.0 or 3.7. Even then....that MCAT needs more work than seems manageable if an entire summer of studying only gets you the 8th percentile. At best, your numbers will be useful for DO schools or podiatry schools. At worst, you will be 4 more years behind on the career you could have already started with your BS.

    It is good to be optimistic in the face of danger....but there is a fine line between optimism and ignorance.
     
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  20. PreMedMissteps

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    I don’t intend to sound mean, but there seems to be a real disconnect with reality. If you scored in the 8th percentile on the MCAT, goodness knows what your DAT score would be. And your heart’s not in becoming a dentist. You won’t even have an appropriate resume even if you had the stats.

    You need to stop. Stop. You’re misusing time and wasting money.

    And I don’t think you understand how being a reapplicant, especially so soon, is an additional negative. My friend’s daughter applied two cycles ago and didn’t get any interviews with a 3.5 GPA and a 504 MCAT. She spent a gap year building her resume, taking a few more BCPM courses (A’s), and getting a 509 MCAT. As a reapplicant, no MD school interviewed her. She has one DO acceptance. You wouldn’t even be close to her situation.

    Are you unaware how much stronger successful applicants are?

    You need to spend a few years repairing, but only do so if you have what it takes to get your MCAT up to a reasonable level. Curious...what were your ACT/SAT scores?

    Others here may know of such instances, but I’ve never seen anyone who’s scored in the 8th percentile on the MCAT (after completing the prereqs), and then studied more, and then got a MCAT that was 500+ (preferably higher).
     
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  21. OrgoWizard

    OrgoWizard Pre-med is the name of the game

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    Do an SMP and nail your next MCAT. Then you might have a chance.

    Sent from my SM-G930V using SDN mobile
     
  22. Trollest

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    lol, this guy is the trollest!!!
    No way he is being serious. lol 484 on his MCAT and decided to apply.
     
  23. samualjhatfield

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    The average applicant MCAT is a 505. If the average of people who get in is a 512 and they make up 40% of the applicant pool, the. 505=512*0.4 + X*0.6 —> X=500.3 ie. The average of those who aren’t accepted is a 500 on the MCAT. There are a lot of people applying that really shouldn’t be, but poor advising and tunnel vision makes for a great source of secondary application revenue for MED schools.
     
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  24. MacBee

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    In the last two cycles, nearly 3,000 applicants applied with an MCAT under 486 apparently...
    https://www.aamc.org/download/321508/data/factstablea23.pdf
    Kudos to the 13 that actually got in, though :laugh:
     
  25. Tenk

    Faculty 10+ Year Member

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    Find a new career.
     
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  26. chemdoctor

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    In addition to that, those applicants that shouldn’t be applying, apply and skew the number of those not accepted. 60% of applicants are rejected each cycle, is a common SDN notion. While true, it doesn’t account for the fact that many applicants apply with the stats you described
     
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  27. chemdoctor

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  28. golfman7

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    Yeah he needs high gpa for dental and will require retaking classes and not sure if dental schools would like that. And the DAT is a hard exam... my friend studied alot for it and requires strong science skills which you do not have. Dentistry is very competitive and you should go back and do something else. I spun my wheels for years on pre med pharmacy and should have cut my losses sooner. Study accounting, engineering, etc and get hired and start building future.
     
  29. golfman7

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    Medicine is extremely competitive.... not trying to be mean but he has no shot. People with high scores and experience get rejected waitlisted. He needs to cut his losses.
     
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  30. Dr.Gains

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    And 3 of those had a sub 3.0 GPA, I wonder what kind of app they had. Convincing a medical school to accept them with a < 8% MCAT + < 3.0 GPA, seems like a recipe for disaster.
     
  31. samualjhatfield

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    Could be an LGBT, URM female amputee Veteran retired after 14 years of service and 4 tours of duty as a combat medic that won a Pulitzer Prize for her autobiography.
     
  32. Goro

    Faculty Verified Expert 7+ Year Member

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    If test taking anxiety issues exist, those need to be fixed.
     
  33. The Nibbler

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    I echo what everyone else has said. You are years out from being ready to apply. There is a 0% chance that you would receive an interview at any school in the country. 484 is extremely low......once you get a 5 as your first number on practice exams, then you'll be in a good spot to try again.
     
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  34. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast
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    When I see successes like that, I can’t help but think that there’s a backstory, such as: those students are in an assured BS/MD program and are just required to take the MCAT and score doesn’t matter. That may not be the answer, but there has to be a story...
     
  35. PreMedMissteps

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    I suspect terrible grades from years before, but can’t imagine also having < 8 percentile MCAT.

    Could any of these people be transfer admits from abroad?
     
  36. golfman7

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    Yeah nursing PA etc are all tough to get into also. They don’t accept people who have low GPAs. This guy really should go back to college and study something that will get him hired. It’s going to take him many years of high grades medical experience and good MCAT for DO schools to think about taking him. Top DO ones probably won’t ever consider him... they are really hard to get into and most people I talked to at DO interviews had high GPAs and equal if not better MCAT scores along with more impressive accomplishments. I ended up going back for engineering and have done well in class and dont regret it... OP needs to consider other careers before wasting his life on something that wont happen.
     
    #36 golfman7, Jan 12, 2019 at 9:38 PM
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019 at 3:27 PM

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