UPenn Post Bacc Program

Discussion in 'Postbaccalaureate Programs' started by premedw, Jan 28, 2009.

  1. premedw

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    2
    Has anyone gone to this program, and if so how hard is it to get in?

    any information would be most appreciated!
     
  2. Thread continues after this sponsor message. SDN Members do not see this ad.

  3. thenewgre

    thenewgre Test Prep Exhibitor
    Exhibitor

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2008
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    bump...

    any information
     
  4. plausible

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    0
    I applied to the drexel ims, pcom's biomed, and upenn's special post bac. I didn't get into upenn's program. I was surprised since uPenn's program involved nothing more than taking upperdiv courses. I ended up deciding to go for PCOM. It's been great at PCOM so far :)
     
  5. thenewgre

    thenewgre Test Prep Exhibitor
    Exhibitor

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2008
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    what were your stats, if you dont mind me asking?
     
  6. premedw

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    2
    anybody know what kinds of questions they ask in the upenn pre health interview?
     
    WhittyMD17 likes this.
  7. Teal08

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Post Doc
    I applied and got in to UPenns program. The interview is actually the easiest I've had in comparrison to others like Bryn Mawr and Johns Hopkins. We ended up spenging the whole time talking about my volunteer experience, why I got involved, how I liked it, what I did, etc.
     
  8. thenewgre

    thenewgre Test Prep Exhibitor
    Exhibitor

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2008
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    oh yeah? thanks so much!
    so which school did you end up choosing in the end?
     
  9. SAEbrodel

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    i spoke with penn on the phone, and they said for the fall entry, you can't apply til about march/april time, right now theyre still taking applicants for the summer program
     
  10. Teal08

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Post Doc
    I haven't decided yet. I have an interview with Scripps this week. I'm leaning towards Johns Hokpins thouhg. When I was visiting, it felt like I would really enjoy it there. Plus they have some cool things like the tutorials which seems like a great opportinity.
     
  11. premedw

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    2
    anyone have any more experiences to Share about the UPENN Post Bacc Pre-health program?
    - how were the classes? facilities?
    - Did the curving really affect you?
    - the linkages being a realistic option?
    - the staff and support during the medical school application process?
    - do they help you study for the MCAT?
    - how is living in philadelphia?

    any information would be most appreciated!
     
    lamt1220 likes this.
  12. mss4

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2008
    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Hey everyone! I just applied to Upenn as well, and wanted to know more about the students they accept?
     
  13. akhilles604

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2008
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    To be honest the Special Science Penn post bac is a lot of overheated puffery, living off the name of Penn, which i presume b/c it is an ivy league status. My classes are often packed and crowded into small classrooms. As someone in the program, i would say it is a huge waste of money and sort of in disarray at present.
    The director who I interviewed with took a better job at Temple University at the end of the summer so there was essentially an interim director, I believe she was charged with starting their post bac programs through the actual school of medicine, and that program offers a degree. I have yet to schedule a time to meet with the new director.
    My advisor sucks, to date I have enjoyed all my classes except one. I have no malice or bitterness toward the program, it is serving its purpose. I am currently waiting to hear from the schools i interviewed at. You are integrated into campus life quite nicely, but truthfully classes are classes no matter where.
    I believe there is a difference in the Special Science and the actual post bac for ppl with little or no science. If you fall under that umbrella I believe the program is better, and more competitive with respect to class curves and such. So as a result only the top % of those classes actually link. 3.6, and i believe a 9-11 on each MCAT subset depending on the school. Linking is not easy.
    At all the schools i interviewed at said a "formal" post bac program was not needed. These sorts of things differ from person to person, but i would urge everyone to call the schools they are interested in attending and have somewhere there give you an honest appraisal of their application strengths and weaknesses, and what you can do to improve. Some may suggest post bac, some may not. I would say if you are going for special science don't do it, the post bac for ppl with no science classes is very competitive, but a good program.
    Good luck, I would be happy to discuss anything regarding the program to the best of my knowledge.
     
    CeramicLight likes this.
  14. DROFPAIN

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2009
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Medical Student
    I believe the last poster has had a very different experience than I did in the Penn Special Science program. I came in with a 3.0 undergrad GPA and many years of science related work experience(returning student). After 9 classes with mostly A's, I was accepted to the med school of my choice and offered interviews nearly everywhere I applied. The program is especially well respected with the Philly area Med and Dental schools. True, the basic sciences (physics, bio, chem etc.) may be impersonal. What are these 101 classes like at any big school? In the Special Science program, you can take remarkable neuro classes, a class on research in Emergency Medicine which puts you in the HUP ER 12 hours a week as well as interesting upper level BBB and Bio classes. There is not much in the way of direct MCAT prep. Do it on your own or take Kaplan or Princeton. There is help with the app. process and essay writing etc. I never took advantage of these services. In the SS program, I felt like I was part of a community of students who all had similar goals but were not at each others throats. Also, I don't want to sound like one of those people, but lets face it when people see Penn, they immediately think of a higher cadre of students than some other schools.(NO BS, this was my direct experience with admissions committees.) As you will find out almost all med schools asign higer wait(there is actually a point value) to a high GPA from a top tear school than to less competetive schools. PS thats not how I think, I know other programs are probably just as if not more difficult. I will say I was impressed with the intellegence of most of the post bac students. There is noone admitted that is not smart enough to go to med school. It becomes about drive after that. Remember your goal in any of these programs is to get all A's. And... they are not going to just give them to you. PS there is a lot of great stuff that your Penn ID will get you into and Philly is a great town. Sorry for any typos, I'm getting used to this Mac keyboard.
     
  15. streudels

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    Messages:
    125
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    I'm interested in UPenn's Special Sciences program. What's the probability of linking to UPenn's SOM after taking the program? Do you have to have an especially high level of credentials?
     
  16. Thread continues after this sponsor message. SDN Members do not see this ad.

  17. premedw

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    2
    UPenn's special science doesn't link to UPenn Medicine, unfortunately the only linkage agreement they have is with UMDNJ.

    The linkages listed on the site are for pre-health students. In other words, for students who join the program with little or no science

    For special science, they primarily want to see your dedication to medicine through volunteer experiences, shadowing etc.

    Overall, they have a very solid program and has a ~60% acceptance rate into medicine. The science classes are also not on a curve which is helpful for special science students.

    hope this helps!
     
  18. DKLA

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    Messages:
    30
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Medical Student
    As a Special Science student, do they allow you/encourage you to retake prereqs you didn't do stellar in?

    How would you compare this program to an SMP? Specifically, BU's?
     
  19. RoadRunner17

    RoadRunner17 Fleet of feet
    Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    May 12, 2007
    Messages:
    2,803
    Likes Received:
    3
    This program helped me far more than BU's SMP would have had, IMO. The key is to do very well in your classes (which is very possible as long as you put your mind to it) and do well on the MCAT. As far as I can tell, most of the kids I know in my classes who have gotten into medical school had strong MCAT scores (above 30).

    If you have any specific questions about this program, post it here and I'll be sure to come back and look at this thread every now and then to answer these questions. If you want a faster answer, PM me.
     
  20. lashley02

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    Messages:
    16
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
    I'd like to know the answer to this too. Thanks!
     
  21. SAEbrodel

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    to all those who have applied for the fall, have u received notification, i found out my application is complete last week, and was wondering how long after your file was complete, did you get an invitation for an interview. thanks
     
  22. Nuggles

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2009
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    I received an interview request about a week after the application was completed. I'm still waiting to hear back about whether I got rejected or accepted though
     
  23. mss4

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2008
    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Hey nuggles, at least your one step closer. I applied for fall, and I received and email that my application was complete. Did you receive the interview request through email? If you don't mind me asking, what were your numbers? I am anxiously waiting ..but I am not sure.
     
  24. Nuggles

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2009
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Yes, the interview request was sent via email. Too bad I butchered my interview though, I would've liked to get in :(

    As for stats, I had a 3.72 cGPA, and a 1310 SAT score.

    Hopefully you'll do better than I did
     
  25. fireflygirl

    fireflygirl The Ultimate Blindian

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2007
    Messages:
    889
    Likes Received:
    22
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
  26. Nuggles

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2009
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Just another question: what are the research opportunities like at the Pre-Health program? I know there are two hospitals on campus, but how easy is it for students to get a volunteer research position there?

    The interviewer I talked to mentioned that it's easy for its students to shadow there; but he seemed unsure about the research aspect. Thanks!

    Edit: Another question: all of the classes at the UPenn program are taken at night or on the weekends... are the professors still from the university? Or are they professors from other schools? In other words, what is the quality of instruction at UPenn (compared to, say, Harvard Extension)? Thanks guys
     
    #24 Nuggles, Mar 26, 2009
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2009
  27. SAEbrodel

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    on the aamc website about this program, it says that upenn has linkages to med schools around the area, is this true?
     
  28. Nuggles

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2009
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
  29. RoadRunner17

    RoadRunner17 Fleet of feet
    Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    May 12, 2007
    Messages:
    2,803
    Likes Received:
    3
    It's not the Pre-Health program per-se that provides you with research opportunities. You take the initiative to find yourself a research position within the many different institutions on or around campus. You can find positions at Penn, HUP, CHOP, the VA and the other institutes like Wistar and Monell. Lots of positions available, and a lot of it is word of mouth from former post-bacs who are leaving to go to medical school (like me). I'm sure that if you find some professors, you can volunteer to do research work for them as well.

    You can also take BIBB 320/321, the clinical research in emergency medicine course. Lots of clinical exposure and you get to enroll/consent patients in the ER at HUP. But generally, it's up to you to take advantage of the many, many resources in the area (just like everywhere else; that's life).

    Almost all of my classes were taken in the evenings during the weekdays. I remember just one class that had a lab session on Saturday morning (Microbiology). Some professors are still from Penn, particularly for the pre-health courses, but the upper-level science classes vary. There are some professors/post-docs from the vet school or med school who come to teach the classes but otherwise there are people who come from Drexel or Temple to teach the classes. You do have the choice of taking the day classes with undergrads taught by Penn professors but that isn't necessarily better, and it is definitely more expensive.
     
  30. Nuggles

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2009
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Thanks Roadrunner!
     
  31. SAEbrodel

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    roadrunner a few questions, if u dont mind

    1. how much is tuition for the program?
    2. how challenging was the coursework, and were u free to choose your own classes?
    3. in regards to the linkage programs, how many are offered seats into those schools, and what are the general stats.
    4. how's the cost of living?

    thanks much
     
  32. RoadRunner17

    RoadRunner17 Fleet of feet
    Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    May 12, 2007
    Messages:
    2,803
    Likes Received:
    3
    You can find the up-to-date information on the website.

    Free to choose your own classes, unless you're in the pre-health program then you have to take all the pre-reqs... which is what you're there for. You can also take the other science classes of your own choosing if need be, particularly in your second year.

    I don't know how many actually link, but I do know it can be pretty difficult to do so. You have to meet specific criteria. I've pasted a few below, which was for this past winter. You will see that you need to do particularly well on the MCAT. I don't know how competitive the linkage process itself is, per se; I do know that not everyone gets their choice. Note that this is mainly for the pre-health people, except for the last one.



    Not great, it's an east coast city so it depends on where you live. Expect to spend $500+ a month on rent.
     
  33. SAEbrodel

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    just got an interview for the SSP program, has anyone interviewed for the program so far?
     
  34. robflanker

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Messages:
    3,031
    Likes Received:
    72
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    I jsut got offered an interview too - anyone have any advice or insight to share?

    Thanks
     
  35. SAEbrodel

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    had the interview on monday, really good experience, those who have had interviews, how long after were u contacted regarding whether you were accepted or not?
     
  36. hwpo

    Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2008
    Messages:
    86
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Pre-Medical

    I just received an interview from upenn special sciencs program....I have become very skeptical about the program from post like yours. I have 3.3 gpa overall and 3.15 science. From your experience and talking with others if I do well in the program after 1 year what are my chances of getting accepted somewhere. I am curious becuase my grades seem lower than many others in the program to begin with.

    Appreciated!
     
    p12034 likes this.
  37. SAEbrodel

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    anyone here been accepted for the fall 09 special sciences program?
     
  38. ali20685

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2009
    Messages:
    89
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical


    I interviewed a week ago for the Post bac pre health program. My interviewer stated that they would be discussing and making a decision yesterday. So the decisions should come soon. I hope this helps!!
     
  39. robflanker

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Messages:
    3,031
    Likes Received:
    72
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    I just got my acceptance email this morning. Good luck to all those who interviewed on 4/13!
     
  40. SAEbrodel

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Just got my acceptance letter as well, congrats rob! best of luck to everyone else!
     
  41. ali20685

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2009
    Messages:
    89
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    I just got my acceptance letter today, too!! I am excited, yet nervous to start in the fall. I was really starting to worry with how long it took to receive an answer. Oh well!! Congrats to all who got accepted!!
     
  42. robflanker

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Messages:
    3,031
    Likes Received:
    72
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    Thanks banu and congrats to you and ali as well.
     
  43. DukeDoc

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2009
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Are there any people currently or recently enrolled in the UPenn Pre-Health program that I could speak to? I've applied for the program and would like to get a little perspective on it.

    PM me if you can chat.
     
  44. SAEbrodel

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    so, I've decided I'm going to go to UPenn in the Fall over any of the other programs i got into, anyone else for sure going going to the SSP or Pre-Health program this fall?
     
  45. hwpo

    Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2008
    Messages:
    86
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    SAEbrodel,

    I got into this program and also others, and am still somewhat undecided. What are your reasons for choosing UPenn SSP over others? What other programs did you get into?
     
  46. ali20685

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2009
    Messages:
    89
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical

    I will be doing the Pre Health Program beginning in the Fall 2009.
     
  47. SAEbrodel

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    i liked UPenn in comparison to the other programs I got into because 1) its an ivy league school, 2) program is well known, and is respected as a SMP, 3) I really like the Philadelphia area 4) success rate is good, and experiences from people i've talked to are good
     
  48. hwpo

    Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2008
    Messages:
    86
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Well I guess the main reason why I wouldn't choose UPenn is that you do not get a degree and it is meant to be 1 year of classes followed by a glide year for a total of 2 years before entering medical school.

    1. So you would choose UPenn over BU MAMS?

    This is a tough decision for me.

    2. Which is Cheaper?
    3. What is the success rate for UPenn SSP after 1 vs 2 years?

    Also another major factor that needs to be weighed in on is that with the UPenn SSP you pretty much have no shot of getting into UPenn Medical School, even with a 4.0. At BU and Georgetown (both top 50 Med Schools) a successful SMP means a good likelihood of being accepted to the respected school. But I could me wrong because UPenn could get one farther than I am aware of.

    4. With a 3.0 to 3.3 undergrad GPA before entering UPenn SSP what medical schools are you aware of people getting into after completing the UPenn SSP and what GPA in the SSP?
     
    #46 hwpo, Apr 26, 2009
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2009
  49. tacolvskh

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2008
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    I finished the Penn Pre-Health program in August.

    I'm not sure if this has been addressed yet but the director of the Pre health program either got let go or left for another position in April/May/June-ish (no one knows the exact story), RIGHT when we actually needed her i.e. when we began to apply to med schools. She did write our committee letters but was not there to give any advice. When I emailed her about what schools I should be looking at with such and such GPA and MCAT in late June/July, I received a short and frankly, unhelpful response. She obviously had already moved on and had little vested interest in the students she left in the dust. :mad:

    Not sure if the leadership up top has been solidified since but be aware, over the past 3 years there have now been 3 different directors. This is the person who is going to write your committee letter to AMCAS so it is important that there is some continuity in your relationship.

    With all that said, I did get into a couple top 10 med schools :); I'm not sure how my classmates did. I do know they felt the same way about the whole situation though. It is frustrating and a bit scary to have the director of your program leave during application time. We were not even formally notified.

    Other than that, the teachers and atmosphere were awesome. Make an informed decision before you choose.
     
    #47 tacolvskh, Apr 27, 2009
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  50. hwpo

    Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2008
    Messages:
    86
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Well I guess the main reason why I wouldn't choose UPenn is that you do not get a degree and it is meant to be 1 year of classes followed by a glide year for a total of 2 years before entering medical school.

    1. So you would choose UPenn over BU MAMS?

    This is a tough decision for me.

    2. Which is Cheaper?
    3. What is the success rate for UPenn SSP after 1 vs 2 years?

    Also another major factor that needs to be weighed in on is that with the UPenn SSP you pretty much have no shot of getting into UPenn Medical School, even with a 4.0. At BU and Georgetown (both top 50 Med Schools) a successful SMP means a good likelihood of being accepted to the respected school. But I could me wrong because UPenn could get one farther than I am aware of.

    4. With a 3.0 to 3.3 undergrad GPA before entering UPenn SSP what medical schools are you aware of people getting into after completing the UPenn SSP and what GPA in the SSP?
     
  51. Hi, I just discovered the UPenn Special Sciences program. My undergrad GPA is a 2.85 (science is 2.5 OUCH) For the price of the program, isn't it better if I just take courses on my own where I'm from? Would a post-bacc be better for me or an SMP? I already have a Master of Science in Microbiology from a top-school. GPA there is about 3.5.
     
  52. robflanker

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Messages:
    3,031
    Likes Received:
    72
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    I dunno Kristy. An SMP won't help you that much as you already have a MS. I wouldn't do a Post-Bac either as you've already done Grad School coursework and going back down to undergrad wouldn't be wise.

    Did you do ok on the MCAT? Why not just apply? a 3.5 from a top school would go a long way to balancing off your low UG gpa
     

Share This Page