BH07

10+ Year Member
Apr 3, 2009
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Hey everybody,



Sorry if I am little new on the SDN board but I was wondering if anybody is applying to UCSF. Its my first choice school (like many others) but I have many other reasons for attending there. I just have some questions for any out there for fellow applicants/other members

1.) I know UCSF admissions bases their decisions on the whole applicant and not like a huge emphasis on GPA. Anybody knows if there has been applicants that had stellar GPAs, ECs, volunteer activities, above average-excellent interview and STILL get rejected. I know there are no guarantees but there has to be a reason why some applicants are rejected?

2.) I have two withdrawals in a summer three years ago, but my GPA is pretty stellar (between 3.6-4.0). Will this still look bad event though they are not pre-pharmacy prerequisites

3.) Any past UCSF applicants or current UCSF students have any advice on how to best approach the application

4.) What is the maximum number of prerequisites that can be in progress in fall 2010 to spring 2011? (sorry if this a dumb question)

I have more questions to ask as the application nears

But feel free to add any questions if you are interested in applying to UCSF im pretty sure fellow members will help you out
 

sungieality

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Oct 26, 2008
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1) Yes. Sometimes there are just circumstances beyond your control and you can't really predict what you messed up on, if anything. It can all come down to the simple factor of "fit" with the school.
2) I think since you already know that UCSF looks at the whole applicant that you've answered your own question. There are stellar all-around applicants who get rejected and there are those who barely scrape a 3.0 and get accepted. I doubt your W's will attract too much attention.
3) Start early. Do multiple drafts and get multiple opinions. Fill as many of the optional statements that apply to you as you can.
4) I'm not sure this is a set number. I think you can have as many incomplete as can possibly be completed before matriculating in the fall (if that makes sense). The obvious catch is that you want to show that you have taken on heavy courseloads over time and this probably requires that you have had most of your prereqs completed at the time of application.
 

busyizzy

lalala~
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2. I had a couple of Ws (I don't remember how many but I think it was ... 3-4?) with a lower GPA (~3.2) and I got accepted. I think as long as you don't make Ws a bad habit (ie. 1-2 every semester for 4 years), you should be fine. They understand there are circumstances and that you're only human.

3. Take the supplemental seriously. Don't try to start it Oct 31. You'll miss out on Halloween and you'll be hugely stressed - two big big negativeees!
 

AntiviralsRule

Student Pharmacist
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1. One of the things that UCSF stresses during the entire application process is authenticity. So be sure that you are true to yourself in your application. This includes your supplemental, your personal statement, and your interview. Don't give answers you think UCSF wants to hear. The admissions committee will see right through that.

Good luck! :D
 
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BH07

10+ Year Member
Apr 3, 2009
85
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Pre-Pharmacy
Thanks for the responses guys. they're very useful


1.) I am planning to take organic chemistry this fall along with physics and calculus. those are my remaining pre-pharmacy courses needed for me to complete. do u guys think it looks bad on my application that i still havent finished organic chemistry while the application is in progress. my grades for fall would be posted by the first of january, just in the middle of UCSF application process

2.) During the interview process, an essay is required but deals with scenarios or other stuff and doesnt ask anything pharmacy related. anybody have any recommendations on how to tackle the essay section.

3.) Does UCSF have any scholarships for entering pharmacy students? I know there are independent pharmacy scholarships but any merit based by UCSF would be nice as well.

For any UCSF hopefuls out there/applicants please feel free to post any questions or comments. the more the merrier
 

AntiviralsRule

Student Pharmacist
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2.) During the interview process, an essay is required but deals with scenarios or other stuff and doesnt ask anything pharmacy related. anybody have any recommendations on how to tackle the essay section.
The topics vary, but they're often NOT health care or pharmacy-related. This year, they gave us three topics, and we chose one to write on. It was pretty tough -- I was not all that familiar with any of the three, so I chose the topic I felt most strongly about.

My essay came right after my interview, so it was tough to stay focused on what I was writing b/c I was going over my interview answers in my head.

Just try to focus on the topic, and block out everything else. The essay is pretty important -- don't underestimate it. Take a stand, and back it up! GL! :D
 

sungieality

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I think the pharmacy scholarships are few and far between, if any. I remember going to the info sessions and Joel mentioned that due to the earning power upon graduation, there just aren't that many "free" money options for professional school students.
 

UES Girl

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Thanks for the responses guys. they're very useful


1.) I am planning to take organic chemistry this fall along with physics and calculus. those are my remaining pre-pharmacy courses needed for me to complete. do u guys think it looks bad on my application that i still havent finished organic chemistry while the application is in progress. my grades for fall would be posted by the first of january, just in the middle of UCSF application process

2.) During the interview process, an essay is required but deals with scenarios or other stuff and doesnt ask anything pharmacy related. anybody have any recommendations on how to tackle the essay section.

3.) Does UCSF have any scholarships for entering pharmacy students? I know there are independent pharmacy scholarships but any merit based by UCSF would be nice as well.

For any UCSF hopefuls out there/applicants please feel free to post any questions or comments. the more the merrier
There are scholarships but there are usually pretty small 1-2k in amount and they were too much hassle for me personally to apply. There also some avaible throughout schooling for 1-2 k again that are intrinsic for specific training for example - compounding scholarship to learn how to compound. These are usually pretty hard to get though and usually are awarded to 1 specific student only.

There are school specific grants that are given based on your financial situation and level of income. I know some people in my class who weren't working the year before starting school, dependent on their parents, and were awarded up to 10 k in grants. Average people got around 4-5 k in grants.
 

busyizzy

lalala~
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In response to 2., regarding the essay questions, I really didn't prepare at all. Just practice how you would for any test essay - I'm sure you've had to tackle some whether it be in the PCAT, the SATs, history classes or whatever. You just gotta remember to have an organized essay, with a thesis and support for your thesis. The five paragraph essay rule is good to follow. You don't HAVE to have 5 paragraphs btw, just stick to the principles of the 5 paragraph essay. The three essay choices are so varied, I'm sure you'll have something to write about for at least one of them.
 
Feb 27, 2010
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hey everyone!
this is my top choice school and would like to see who else is interested this year!
just want to check with people on app and such!
 

RDuran

Member
Jul 8, 2010
155
1
Fremont, CA
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Pre-Pharmacy
hey everyone!
this is my top choice school and would like to see who else is interested this year!
just want to check with people on app and such!

I'm applying for 2011 too.....this is also my top pick... here are my stats:

BA in Psychology w/ a minor in Biology
Certified Pharm. Tech.
Worked in a retail pharmacy 2 years
PharmCAS GPA: 3.70
Science GPA: 3.50

My PharmCAS app is complete but my supplemental is not. I'm not sending it in until the end of this month since this is not a rolling admissions school.

Good luck to all those who are applying :xf:
 
Feb 27, 2010
15
0
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Pre-Pharmacy
I'm applying for 2011 too.....this is also my top pick... here are my stats:

BA in Psychology w/ a minor in Biology
Certified Pharm. Tech.
Worked in a retail pharmacy 2 years
PharmCAS GPA: 3.70
Science GPA: 3.50

My PharmCAS app is complete but my supplemental is not. I'm not sending it in until the end of this month since this is not a rolling admissions school.

Good luck to all those who are applying :xf:
i am applying with
BS in biology (2011)
cgpa 3.8
sgpa 3.65 =this is so bad!!! :(
but i rarely have much experience..been volunteering at a pharmacy but with no pharmtech..this is going to hurt me! i wont send in my supplemental soon either! i wonder what ucsf is looking for specifically in an applicant because some schools value gpa alot more than anything else
 

musicman123

UCSF c/o 2014
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Jul 19, 2007
229
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Pharmacy Student
i am applying with
BS in biology (2011)
cgpa 3.8
sgpa 3.65 =this is so bad!!! :(
but i rarely have much experience..been volunteering at a pharmacy but with no pharmtech..this is going to hurt me! i wont send in my supplemental soon either! i wonder what ucsf is looking for specifically in an applicant because some schools value gpa alot more than anything else
Why do you say your sgpa is bad..? You don't have to be a pharmtech.. as long as you have exposure and some experience in pharmacy so you can write/talk about.
 
Feb 27, 2010
15
0
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Pre-Pharmacy
Why do you say your sgpa is bad..? You don't have to be a pharmtech.. as long as you have exposure and some experience in pharmacy so you can write/talk about.
i am glad you are looking after this thread!
how were your stats like? what do ucsf look for most in their essays..interviews..etc! i am quite nervous. i am reading the forum from ucsf! very helpful
 

UES Girl

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i am glad you are looking after this thread!
how were your stats like? what do ucsf look for most in their essays..interviews..etc! i am quite nervous. i am reading the forum from ucsf! very helpful

If you have some extra time on your hands, browse through the old app threads from previous years - you may find them helpful with a ton of people posting their stats/Ecs. :)
 
Feb 27, 2010
15
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If you have some extra time on your hands, browse through the old app threads from previous years - you may find them helpful with a ton of people posting their stats/Ecs. :)
i tried! from 2009-2010 i dont see any stats. everyone pretty much talked about their app and interview then acceptance..i am so nervous
 

RDuran

Member
Jul 8, 2010
155
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Pre-Pharmacy
i tried! from 2009-2010 i dont see any stats. everyone pretty much talked about their app and interview then acceptance..i am so nervous

me too....I didn't find anything in regard to STATS....in fact I didn't see a lot of threads for UCSF at all :confused:
 

OldPharm

Accepted!
Jan 28, 2010
116
1
Status
Pharmacy Student
me too....I didn't find anything in regard to STATS....in fact I didn't see a lot of threads for UCSF at all :confused:
As I already mentioned in 2010 thread read Joel's (UCSF Admissions Director) entire blog entries. Here is an excerpt from his blog:

“Could some of you post your stats?”

This always fascinates me. Really, it does. I guess people think we narrow an applicant down to a set of stats (GPA, pre-pharm GPA, length of time working in a pharmacy, number of extracurricular activities, etc.) Gosh! I wish it were THAT easy. Then we could just plug the info into a database, print a report, and admit students based on the report! I hope the complexity/length/depth of our supplemental application supports the argument that we look for well-rounded applicants who make the best fit for our program. A stellar set of stats means nothing if an applicant can’t articulate their ideas, display strong communications skills or distinguish themselves as a good fit for UCSF.


Joel's blog: http://pharmdadmissions.ucsf.edu/2010_01_01_archive.html
 

socalgirlie

PharmD
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I agree completely, just BE YOURSELF. Don't write/say what you think they WANT to hear. They see right through it :) And make sure to CAREFULLY FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS! I know someone who got rejected for not getting his AP scores in on time....yikes...
 

RDuran

Member
Jul 8, 2010
155
1
Fremont, CA
Status
Pre-Pharmacy
I agree completely, just BE YOURSELF. Don't write/say what you think they WANT to hear. They see right through it :) And make sure to CAREFULLY FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS! I know someone who got rejected for not getting his AP scores in on time....yikes...

Thanks for the advice!!!! I finally have realized that my approach to applying to UCSF was all wrong......I have been thinking about how to answer the supplemental questions and my ideas keep turning to what I think they want to hear--which is all wrong. Like you said, if I answer the questions with my own thoughts instead of just stating what I think they want to hear, my answers will come across as being more genuine and thoughtful....thanks for helping me realize this!!!! :thumbup:
 
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musicman123

UCSF c/o 2014
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Jul 19, 2007
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this questions confuses me! what do they exactly mean by the "nature of humanity" or human condition?
I know, it's pretty vague. They leave it up to you to decide what to write. What do you think about human nature, based on your experiences? For further information and, hopefully, clarification, refer to Joel's blog and his past entries about the application.
 

pharmacyinlove

5+ Year Member
Aug 6, 2010
59
1
I know, it's pretty vague. They leave it up to you to decide what to write. What do you think about human nature, based on your experiences? For further information and, hopefully, clarification, refer to Joel's blog and his past entries about the application.
thanks for your advice! i do need to take some time to ponder~~

by the way, how long did it take you to finish your supplemental app?
 

AntiviralsRule

Student Pharmacist
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i am applying with
BS in biology (2011)
cgpa 3.8
sgpa 3.65 =this is so bad!!! :(
but i rarely have much experience..been volunteering at a pharmacy but with no pharmtech..this is going to hurt me! i wont send in my supplemental soon either! i wonder what ucsf is looking for specifically in an applicant because some schools value gpa alot more than anything else
FWIW, I didn't have any paid tech experience either (although I did have 200+ hours volunteering at a local hospital). Also, my cGPA was only 3.35 -- so don't let GPA be your guide. UCSF values much more than "just" your GPA!

You can see the type of applicant that UCSF looks for, on this page:
http://pharmacy.ucsf.edu/pharmd/admissions/aboutstudents/ It lists average "stats" along with a typical candidate profile.

Good luck to all applying this year -- hope to see you at UCSF in 2011! :D

P.S. PharmacyinLove -- I worked on my supplemental off and on for a few months (August through October). Overall, I probably spent 10-20 hours on it.
 
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busyizzy

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Just another support that GPA isn't everything, I got in and my GPA was pretty bad. 3.2, both overall and science. And if that wasn't bad enough, I had a downward trend in my GPA. :laugh: But I spent a lot of time on my supplemental - I thought about it for most of the summer, and talked about the questions with my friends. I got a lot of food for thought from them with regard to the unique and human condition question.
 

Project2015

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Apr 24, 2009
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Just another support that GPA isn't everything, I got in and my GPA was pretty bad. 3.2, both overall and science. And if that wasn't bad enough, I had a downward trend in my GPA. :laugh: But I spent a lot of time on my supplemental - I thought about it for most of the summer, and talked about the questions with my friends. I got a lot of food for thought from them with regard to the unique and human condition question.
Well I'm starving! Been thinking about it a lot, but haven't had any good leads or anyone that knows how to begin.
 

pharmacyinlove

5+ Year Member
Aug 6, 2010
59
1
Well I'm starving! Been thinking about it a lot, but haven't had any good leads or anyone that knows how to begin.

Exactly! So hard to just start a word on human condition~
but it should not be an ""ESSAY" question like the one in PHARMCAS, just a short answer, right?
 

OldPharm

Accepted!
Jan 28, 2010
116
1
Status
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Exactly! So hard to just start a word on human condition~
but it should not be an ""ESSAY" question like the one in PHARMCAS, just a short answer, right?
I wrote a short essay about it. I filled out the entire space that was given.
 
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RDuran

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Jul 8, 2010
155
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Pre-Pharmacy
Almost finished with my supplemental app....I feel like my head is going to explode...hahahaha :bang:
 

DGgirl

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Almost finished with my supplemental app....I feel like my head is going to explode...hahahaha :bang:
ugh i haven't started yet... i'm really not looking forward to those essay questions
 

RDuran

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Jul 8, 2010
155
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ugh i haven't started yet... i'm really not looking forward to those essay questions
What I did was approach the questions from unique angles and made them more personal. I think the key is to just be yourself and you'll find that their really not that difficult to answer....good luck!!!
 
May 25, 2010
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To any current UCSF students,

I'm applying to UCSF out of state and I was wondering if any other out of state pharmacy students found it difficult/alienating since you are not from the area like most of the other students.

I'm very interested in their clinical pathway system because it seems very unique and will help to narrow in on my specific goal as a clinical pharmacist. Does anyone have helpful insight on this program? Is UCSF everything it's cracked up to be?

Thanks!
 
Jun 25, 2010
142
0
Status
Pre-Pharmacy
For educational background section, if I go to CC to for summer session or for pre-pharm pre-req, should I leave the major, degree, and date degree received/expected boxes blank? What should I put on those boxes?

Thanks.
 

kmoogs

NEVERMIND I FOUND IT
Jan 10, 2010
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Even though I'm not applying to UCSF right now ... can someone fix the title? :confused:

Maybe get rid of the !!!'s (Most definately get rid of them!)

And the redundant University of California, SanFrancisco

Or at least add a space between the San and Francisco :rolleyes:

"UCSF 2010-2011 Application Cycle" work's just fine
 

busyizzy

lalala~
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To any current UCSF students,

I'm applying to UCSF out of state and I was wondering if any other out of state pharmacy students found it difficult/alienating since you are not from the area like most of the other students.

I'm very interested in their clinical pathway system because it seems very unique and will help to narrow in on my specific goal as a clinical pharmacist. Does anyone have helpful insight on this program? Is UCSF everything it's cracked up to be?

Thanks!
I'm out-of-state, though I can't really help much because school doesn't start for another month. From what I can tell, a lot of the students while from CA are not from the SF area. There's a lot of people from SoCal, which, don't yell at me if I'm wrong about CA culture because I'm an east coast girl, but I hear has a fairly different culture from SF/that area. So I can't imagine it'll be too alienating since a lot of people are coming from areas outside of SF.

The most difficult thing about out-of-state is the moving so far... :laugh: and the OOS tuition fee, but I hear it's fairly easy to switch to residential status in CA, unlike other states.

Get back to me in a few months though, and I'll have a more concrete answer on my actual experiences there.

For educational background section, if I go to CC to for summer session or for pre-pharm pre-req, should I leave the major, degree, and date degree received/expected boxes blank? What should I put on those boxes?

Thanks.
I think I just put "N/A" last year for my summer school. I think leaving it blank would be okay too.
 

Project2015

5+ Year Member
Apr 24, 2009
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There's a lot of people from SoCal, which, don't yell at me if I'm wrong about CA culture because I'm an east coast girl, but I hear has a fairly different culture from SF/that area. So I can't imagine it'll be too alienating since a lot of people are coming from areas outside of SF.
:thumbup:

California can basically be three states. Northern, central, and southern.
 
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BH07

10+ Year Member
Apr 3, 2009
85
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Pre-Pharmacy
Does UCSF admissions look down upon not having completed your bachelor degree yet. I wont have mine finished till June 2011.


Also when do most students get notified of their interviews. Does sending my app in Sepetember help to get an earlier interview or is everything review immediately after November 1, 2011.


Anybody know any applicants with high GPAs and decent interview got rejected to UCSF. I looked at the past boards but couldnt find anything.
 

kmoogs

NEVERMIND I FOUND IT
Jan 10, 2010
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Does UCSF admissions look down upon not having completed your bachelor degree yet. I wont have mine finished till June 2011.
Look down? probably not. But keep in mind you're competing with thousands of other applicants who will have completed their bachelor's degree. It's best to make yourself as competitive as possible

Also when do most students get notified of their interviews. Does sending my app in Sepetember help to get an earlier interview or is everything review immediately after November 1, 2011.
I believe my interview letter was postmarked ~Dec 22... so late December. IIRC, everyone received their letters around the same time. Rejection letters may have gone out first then some invitations ... or something like that. Either way, late december/early jan.

Anybody know any applicants with high GPAs and decent interview got rejected to UCSF. I looked at the past boards but couldnt find anything.
Shrug. Probably. You never know what they're thinking. If they think you don't fit with the program, they won't send you an invite.
 

musicman123

UCSF c/o 2014
10+ Year Member
Jul 19, 2007
229
1
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Pharmacy Student
Does UCSF admissions look down upon not having completed your bachelor degree yet. I wont have mine finished till June 2011.


Also when do most students get notified of their interviews. Does sending my app in Sepetember help to get an earlier interview or is everything review immediately after November 1, 2011.


Anybody know any applicants with high GPAs and decent interview got rejected to UCSF. I looked at the past boards but couldnt find anything.
They probably don't look down on students not having completed a bachelors degree, but look at the statistics. UCSF will not review their applications before their November deadline. I'm sure there are people with high GPAs who got rejected after the interview. It's not all about numbers. Good luck!
 

Project2015

5+ Year Member
Apr 24, 2009
823
2
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I always thought that the matter of having a degree or not depended on whether it will be finished prior to matriculation rather than at the point of application.

Winter break is when they send all letters. According to the blog, they actually begin reviewing applications before November.
 

musicman123

UCSF c/o 2014
10+ Year Member
Jul 19, 2007
229
1
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Pharmacy Student
I always thought that the matter of having a degree or not depended on whether it will be finished prior to matriculation rather than at the point of application.

Winter break is when they send all letters. According to the blog, they actually begin reviewing applications before November.
You're correct about having a bachelors by the time of matriculation. Well, they don't send out interview invites before the November deadline. My point was that sending in your application early to UCSF does not mean you have a higher chance of an interview invite.