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That is an obscene amount of money for something other than med school. I wouldn't do it. If you really want to learn, you can always buy the textbooks and work through them on your own.
 
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mw18

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Send me $75K and I'll pick activities for you to do for the next year and a half that will enrich your body, mind, and spirit and make you a much better med student when the time comes.

It will be a better use of your time and money and I won't spend all the money at taco bell. Promise.
 

joschar

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What your suggesting is not that uncommon, it's just not done for 3 semesters. In preparation for medical school, go an extra semester if you want to and then graduate a year early and work as a CNA in hospice for a year. This would improve your application, and career preparation, much more than than trying to study for step 1 in undergrad. Plus you would make ~$20k in that year.

Also, I have always been under the impression that the Ivy schools are grade inflating, not deflating. These quotes seem to suggest that even in your post:
I go to a rigorous, grade deflating Ivy so I'd like to think the information will be covered in dept
I've taken 5 sciences (Orgo, Physics, Biochem, PChem, Embryology) in one semester before and found it to be extremely pleasant (got a 4.0
Rigorous and thorough does not necessarily mean grade deflating. If you check out this link (National Trends in Grade Inflation, American Colleges and Universities), the highest GPAs are all at Ivy schools.
 

gonnif

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its ludicrious and silly to do this on so many levels:
1) get into medical school first
2) you need experience in those extra college years for clinical, research, shadowing or graduate early and take a gap year to accomplish them
3) when you have a top MCAT Score, then and only then should worry about something luke STEP 1
4) you should worry about your primary application, the 15 supplemental applications, researching each school that want to apply to, etc.
5) remember 40% of the applicants with 3.8 or higher dont get an acceptance and 50% of matriculating medical students get a single offer of acceptance.
 
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Goro

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Hey guys,

So I have the option of graduating 1.5 years early or double majoring. It seems that double majoring won't be beneficial career wise and I really want to stay another year in college for the experience (friends and social).

So here's my plan, I'm not going to get a double major, however I plan to take a bunch of upper level biology classes my last 3 semesters in college in hopes it'll help me get a head start on Step 1. Here are the courses I plan to take:

-Immunology
-Histology
-Pharmacology
-Anatomy
-Genetics
-Microbiology
-2 SEMESTERS of Cell Biology
-Biochemistry
-Endocrinology
-Neurobiology/Neuroscience
-Micro/Bacterial Pathology
-3 SEMESTERS of Physiology


I know it's weird but my college has 3 upper level mammalian/human physiology courses.

I go to a rigorous, grade deflating Ivy so I'd like to think the information will be covered in depth.

Overall it adds up to 5 upper level biology classes each semester for 3 semesters (17-18 credits per semester). It seems like a lot, but I've taken 5 sciences (Orgo, Physics, Biochem, PChem, Embryology) in one semester before and found it to be extremely pleasant (got a 4.0. Im just really good with and enjoy the sciences).

Would taking all these classes significantly help me with Step 1? I've found that the reason I did so well in my science courses and on my MCAT studying was because of constant repetition. For instance in high school I took honors physics, then AP Physics: Mechanics, followed by AP Physics: E&M. By the time I took Physics in college it was my 4th time seeing the material, thus making the class ridiculously easy for me. Now that I'm studying for the MCAT, things like Gen CHEM and physics come naturally to me because I have learned/seen the content so many times.

Does this repetitive phenomenon hold true for med school/Step 1 as well? Would taking physiology 3 times improve my performance in med school/Step 1? Is this a good way to spend ~$75k in tuition or should I just save the money and graduate 1.5 year early.

Also, I don't mean to come off as hypercompetitive. To be honest I've hated every college class I've taken besides the science ones. The only classes I truly enjoy and have a passion for are science courses. If I were to take these courses, it wouldn't be just for med school, but also because I truly enjoy them and they play to my greatest strengths.


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How about doing something that will enrich your life, or better yet, the lives of others, especially those less fortunate than you?

4.0 automatons are a dime a dozen.
 

Lawper

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Hey guys,

So I have the option of graduating 1.5 years early or double majoring. It seems that double majoring won't be beneficial career wise and I really want to stay another year in college for the experience (friends and social).

So here's my plan, I'm not going to get a double major, however I plan to take a bunch of upper level biology classes my last 3 semesters in college in hopes it'll help me get a head start on Step 1. Here are the courses I plan to take:

-Immunology
-Histology
-Pharmacology
-Anatomy
-Genetics
-Microbiology
-2 SEMESTERS of Cell Biology
-Biochemistry
-Endocrinology
-Neurobiology/Neuroscience
-Micro/Bacterial Pathology
-3 SEMESTERS of Physiology


I know it's weird but my college has 3 upper level mammalian/human physiology courses.

I go to a rigorous, grade deflating Ivy so I'd like to think the information will be covered in depth.

Overall it adds up to 5 upper level biology classes each semester for 3 semesters (17-18 credits per semester). It seems like a lot, but I've taken 5 sciences (Orgo, Physics, Biochem, PChem, Embryology) in one semester before and found it to be extremely pleasant (got a 4.0. Im just really good with and enjoy the sciences).

Would taking all these classes significantly help me with Step 1? I've found that the reason I did so well in my science courses and on my MCAT studying was because of constant repetition. For instance in high school I took honors physics, then AP Physics: Mechanics, followed by AP Physics: E&M. By the time I took Physics in college it was my 4th time seeing the material, thus making the class ridiculously easy for me. Now that I'm studying for the MCAT, things like Gen CHEM and physics come naturally to me because I have learned/seen the content so many times.

Does this repetitive phenomenon hold true for med school/Step 1 as well? Would taking physiology 3 times improve my performance in med school/Step 1? Is this a good way to spend ~$75k in tuition or should I just save the money and graduate 1.5 year early.

Also, I don't mean to come off as hypercompetitive. To be honest I've hated every college class I've taken besides the science ones. The only classes I truly enjoy and have a passion for are science courses. If I were to take these courses, it wouldn't be just for med school, but also because I truly enjoy them and they play to my greatest strengths.


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Step 1 studying should have been done in freshman year. Right now, you should be studying for Step 2 CK after having studied for and completed the shelves. And just before you graduate, you should be ready to take the board certifying exams.

Sorry OP, but you're behind the game. I recommend a different career.
 

Goro

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I hate when people say this. Just because I take a science heavy course load doesn't mean I'm not enriching myself.

-I volunteer at hospice
-I'm a staff volunteer at a free clinic
-I tutor and mentor low income kids to get them into college.
-I volunteer at a homeless shelter.
-I have personal hobbies that I've excelled at on a national level.

Just because I'm not torturing myself in non-science coursework doesn't mean I'm not living life. For me I spend twice as much time on non-science classes than I do science classes. Taking so many science classes is in a way allowing me to help others and improve myself since I perform so much better in science coursework and can therefore spend less time studying.

And at the same time it seems adcoms like to see applicants take numerous upper level science classes at the same time, so it's a win-win every way you look at it.


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Context is always important.

Your words: To be honest I've hated every college class I've taken besides the science ones. The only classes I truly enjoy and have a passion for are science courses. If I were to take these courses, it wouldn't be just for med school, but also because I truly enjoy them and they play to my greatest strengths.

They paint a picture opposite of your service record.

Do what you love, and love what you do.
 
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Gilakend

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I feel as if med school will teach you everything you need to know on step 1. So since everyone takes it at the same time, I don't think it would be a head start.
For example: Taking AP Chem in high school to get a head start. After gen chem 2 students who got an A probably know the same amount of gen chem regardless of if they took AP chem.
From what I've read a med school course on any of those subjects will dwarf an undergrad class by comparison. So at the end of the class if you and a peer the same, you'll probably know similar amounts of material, regardless of if you took the extra classes. Just my inexperienced opinion.
 
OP
The Broccoli Industry

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What your suggesting is not that uncommon, it's just not done for 3 semesters. In preparation for medical school, go an extra semester if you want to and then graduate a year early and work as a CNA in hospice for a year. This would improve your application, and career preparation, much more than than trying to study for step 1 in undergrad. Plus you would make ~$20k in that year.

Also, I have always been under the impression that the Ivy schools are grade inflating, not deflating. These quotes seem to suggest that even in your post:



Rigorous and thorough does not necessarily mean grade deflating. If you check out this link (National Trends in Grade Inflation, American Colleges and Universities), the highest GPAs are all at Ivy schools.
I completely agree that schools like Harvard, Yale, Brown etc. grade inflate. However there are still 2 ivies that are notorious for grade deflation. Unfortunately (or fortunately) I happen to be at one of those schools ;).


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Gilakend

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Going off your AP CHEM theory, I actually took Chemistry honors and AP CHEM in high school. I can 100% without a doubt say the reason why I got A+'s both semesters of General Chemistry while studying less than I did for my intro SOC class was because I had already seen and mastered the material 2 times. Now studying for the MCAT, I don't even have to look at chemistry stuff since it's been engrained so deeply into the back of my head like the English language.

I'm well aware that everyone learns the content at the same pace in medical school, but it's not about the content, it's about the repetition. Studies show relearning (or reviewing) material you've already learned before tremendously decreases the amount of time it takes you to learn the material again. I've found this especially true of premed courses and the MCAT and one of the only reasons I believe I performed so well in my premed prereqs while studying less than 10 hours per week was because I had taken and aced all those prereqs and their respective honors classes in high school.

Even though I'm good at science I still struggle through it like everyone else. I spent countless hours trying to understand AP CHEM and AP PHYSICS in high school. However when I relearned the information in college I was more or less reviewing which took far less time since I had already struggled through the information. This gave me more time to volunteer, socialize, do research etc.

I'm trying to create the same advantage I had going into med school as I had going into premed. Having more time in med school not struggling through or looking at the information for the first time would allow me to spend more time studying and seeing how that information applies to STEP 1. It also gives me more time to build those connections and do research with faculty.

Another advantage now is that all those science classes would help with the MCAT, which is a nice bonus.



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I understand what you're saying now. While I wouldn't necessarily recommend "prestudying" if you were dead set on getting a head start I would save my 75K and just buy whatever books you'd learn from in med school. It sounds like you're a diligent student, so why not just do it on your own time, save the money and use the time to get more life experience? Again, not saying you should do it, but to spend 75K just seems crazy to me. That's more than my entire undergrad costs w/o financial aid.
 

VincentAdultman

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Just because I don't enjoy reading some abstract 17th century literature or learning about random social science theories doesn't mean I don't like helping people. I hate non-science classes because to me they seem like a waste of time and the material looks all the same making it difficult for me.

I know a large number of people who love the humanities/social sciences but are absolutely socially inept when it comes to communicating with those from a different background than them.

You don't gain social skills/compassion for others by reading books on how to relate to people, you gain those skills by actually going out into a homeless shelter and talking to those people face to face. At least that's how I see it.
I might be wrong, but med school adcoms like to see students with a little breadth to their studies.
 
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VincentAdultman

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I mean, I did complete my Gen-Eds, which includes 2 semesters of English, 1 semester Psych, 1 semester Soc, 1 semester History and 1 semester of Econ. Combined with AP credits that does satisfy Hopkins' 24 credit Humanities/Social Sciences prereq. I couldn't imagine torturing myself with more of those kind of classes to appeal to what adcoms want to see.

Fun fact, the only 3 classes where I didn't get an A or A+ in were of those 6 classes listed above. To me those classes are what Physics and Orgo are to other premeds in terms of difficulty and time intensiveness.


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I mean, ultimately you're gonna do you and that's fine.

But you obviously came here seeking validation for your plan and it didn't go well. No one (including someone who I'm pretty sure works in admissions) thinks it's a good idea. Frankly I think you should do literally anything else besides study stuff you're going to see in med school anyway but like I said, you're gonna do you.
 

joschar

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I completely agree that schools like Harvard, Yale, Brown etc. grade inflate. However there are still 2 ivies that are notorious for grade deflation. Unfortunately (or fortunately) I happen to be at one of those schools ;).


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Yeahhh I'm not really buying it. If they were notorious for it then everybody would be able to say who they are, similar to how it's a pretty common notion that the Ivies you mentioned are guilty of inflation. If you are able to graduate in 2.5 years, take that example semester you provided with a 4.0, and ace your premed pre-req with less than 10 hours of studying each week, then your school is not guilty of grade deflation. I don't care how many high school honors classes you took, or how smart and good at science you claim to be.

Judging by your responses, you came to this thread for affirmation for the decision you have already made, not to receive advice. Stay in college for another 3 semesters if you want to, but don't claim it's for self growth or to study for Step 1. Just own that it's to have more fun and to delay entering the real world at the expense of your parents bank account. College is traditionally a 4 year experience, so it's not necessarily a waste to enjoy the four years, but recognize it's only for enjoyment because a medical school application can be improved much faster outside of your bubble.

the only 3 classes where I didn't get an A or A+ in were
Another example of how your university is not guilty of deflation. LOL.
 

Gilakend

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Because having a gap in my resume where I do nothing but study medical school books makes me look neurotic and is disadvantageous.

In a way, staying in school and studying those classes gives me an excuse to prestudying for med school, since no one will bat an eye for me taking so many upper level sciences in college.


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I never said do only that. You can volunteer, travel, work, do whatever you want. You don't have to (and shouldn't) tell the adcoms you're prestudying in my opinion. I have never heard any positive remarks about it. I would say broaden your experiences and if you cannot do anything else, then study if you want on top of that, not instead of that. I graduate early too, not 1.5 years but at least 1 semester, I still plan on living at the same place with my roommates who are in school, I'll just be doing other things. 0% of my social life in college revolves around me taking classes, it's usually people I want to hangout with when I'm not studying. I think you can find a medium that would make adcoms and you happy and save yourself 75k. I don't know your financial situation but if that's 75k in loans, by the time you pay that back that's probably a lot more.
 
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VincentAdultman

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I'm a national level physique competitor.

I'm an avid cinematographer.

I'm in a social fraternity and do enjoy partying and hanging out with friends (which is a main reason why I want to stay the 1.5 years in college lol- trying to find a reason to justify my social life since I have such a close knit group of friends at college).


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You mentor low income kids, volunteer at a hospice, volunteer at a homeless shelter, have multiple publications, extensive shadowing experience, have a science gpa of 4.0 at an Ivy league college (that DEflates their grades) and are a national competitive bodybuilder.

Ok I'm done here.
 

ciestar

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The reason I'm studying it is BECAUSE I'll see it in med school.

I'm honestly very shocked at how different the response I got on here was to how all the med school students, residents and physicians responded when I asked them about this.

Either way, thanks for your opinion, I'll take it into consideration along with all the other people I've asked in regards to what I should do.


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Until you're in med school, don't pretend to KNOW what you'll see in med school. UG courses only cover a fraction of what they throw at you in med school. I took numerous physio/anatomy courses (upper level) and they didn't help much at all. I can recommend extra exposure to biochem. I know immuno majors that have said their major didn't help them a ton for the actual course.

I totally get the wanting to stay in college for four years thing, but I think your money is of better use elsewhere.
 
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Gilakend

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You mentor low income kids, volunteer at a hospice, volunteer at a homeless shelter, have multiple publications, extensive shadowing experience, have a science gpa of 4.0 at an Ivy league college (that DEflates their grades) and are a national competitive bodybuilder.

Ok I'm done here.
And has a thriving social life.
 
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ciestar

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You mentor low income kids, volunteer at a hospice, volunteer at a homeless shelter, have multiple publications, extensive shadowing experience, have a science gpa of 4.0 at an Ivy league college (that DEflates their grades) and are a national competitive bodybuilder.

Ok I'm done here.
Based on the responses here, I feel like OP would be a treat to interview. No offense OP, but you sound super arrogant. Great grades and ECs only get you so far... confidence is great but there is no guarantee at an acceptance and you have to nail your interviews...
 
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PreMedMissteps

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Step 1 studying should have been done in freshman year. Right now, you should be studying for Step 2 CK after having studied for and completed the shelves. And just before you graduate, you should be ready to take the board certifying exams.

Sorry OP, but you're behind the game. I recommend a different career.

I was going to ask him for his match rank list.
 

DBC03

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Who is paying? I went to a notoriously grade-deflating Ivy school and I had to pay for at least half of it myself after I graduated. I LOVED being there, but paying $75k is no walk in the park. If you are taking out loans, then it is totally NOT worth it. It took me 10 years to pay mine off - and I did that before applying to med school. If your parents are footing the bill and they have already agreed to pay for med school as well, then go for it.

FWIW, I knew at least two people who got all As and A+s at my school and they were some of the nicest, most down to earth people. So it can happen - it just means that only 0.01% of the people who attend are getting those grades.
 

ciestar

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I'm fortunate enough that my parents have agreed to pay all 4 years of my undergrad as well as foot part of my medical school tuition. I just feel guilty for using their money for something that doesn't have an objective payoff. I don't come from an extremely wealthy family so I don't want to just toss money out the door unless it's for a good reason.


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Use that extra money for med school. As I said, I don't think it's necessary.
 
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vernhart

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I hope I'm not coming across as a troll because I'm not. I just manage my time extremely efficiently. While other premeds are crying about how hard orgo is I'm always doing something productive.

You can do a lot more than you think if you manage your time effectively. I never procrastinate and am always either doing something productive or socializing.

And just to note: what you just said is the profile of most T10 medical school acceptees.





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NotASerialKiller

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Anyone can hop on here and claim they're a med student.
And is there something wrong with being proactive and well-planned?
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So either none of the med students who use SDN think that this plan makes any sense at all, or everyone here listing themselves as med students and posting about medical school for years are just frauds here to bamboozle you. I guess you can believe whatever you want.

A freshman in high school studying for the MCAT isn't being proactive, they're being ridiculous. That's why you're getting these responses
 

joschar

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Looks like I'll have to spell it out for you.

I go to Princeton or Cornell.

I don't want to get anymore specific as it might reveal my identity.

And tons of my friends and peers struggle immensely with the prereqs. Science just so happens to be an extreme forte of mine.


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How many participation trophies are on your dresser?

Even though claim to be Einstein reincarnate and an Ivy leaguer, let me explain this one more time since my other super understandable explanations have been too weak to pierce your pride. I do not care what the name of your school is. In this very thread you have given MANY examples on how your university does not deflate grades. I cannot open the website provided by my link for some reason, but according to Princeton's own website the average GPA is 3.42. I could not find another source for Cornell's but I do remember it was well above a 3.3. Your school does not have a problem with deflation. Both of those GPAs are well above the average GPA for any other university in the nation, outside the likes of Duke (3.51). Your school does not have a problem with deflation. Just because they do not have the same problem with inflation as the other Ivies does not mean they have a problem with deflation. Your school does not have a problem with deflation. To have a problem with deflation, your grade actually has to have been deflated. Your school does not have problem with deflation.
 

DBC03

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How many participation trophies are on your dresser?

Even though claim to be Einstein reincarnate and an Ivy leaguer, let me explain this one more time since my other super understandable explanations have been too weak to pierce your pride. I do not care what the name of your school is. In this very thread you have given MANY examples on how your university does not deflate grades. I cannot open the website provided by my link for some reason, but according to Princeton's own website the average GPA is 3.42. I could not find another source for Cornell's but I do remember it was well above a 3.3. Your school does not have a problem with deflation. Both of those GPAs are well above the average GPA for any other university in the nation, outside the likes of Duke (3.51). Your school does not have a problem with deflation. Just because they do not have the same problem with inflation as the other Ivies does not mean they have a problem with deflation. Your school does not have a problem with deflation. To have a problem with deflation, your grade actually has to have been deflated. Your school does not have problem with deflation.
It's not Princeton. They're giving this person the option of graduating early, and this person took two English classes - The first is not allowed at Princeton and the second is not required.

EDIT: Also would require two senior theses to double major.
 
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Dox4lyfe

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You mentor low income kids, volunteer at a hospice, volunteer at a homeless shelter, have multiple publications, extensive shadowing experience, have a science gpa of 4.0 at an Ivy league college (that DEflates their grades) and are a national competitive bodybuilder.
Building off of this:
You mentor low income kids, volunteer at a hospice, volunteer at a homeless shelter, have "Large number" of publications, extensive shadowing experience, have a science gpa of 4.0+ at a DEflating Ivy league college (apparently a cGPA of 4.06 on another thread), national competitive bodybuilder, cinematographer and active in a social frat. Oh and a rising junior.

(Shoulda just applied this cycle imo)
 
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dr.Breezy

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Building off of this:
You mentor low income kids, volunteer at a hospice, volunteer at a homeless shelter, have "Large number" of publications, extensive shadowing experience, have a science gpa of 4.0+ at a DEflating Ivy league college (apparently a cGPA of 4.06 on another thread), national competitive bodybuilder, cinematographer and active in a social frat. Oh and a rising junior.

(Shoulda just applied this cycle imo)


Too late OP, already found out your identity


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Isoval

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You mentor low income kids, volunteer at a hospice, volunteer at a homeless shelter, have multiple publications, extensive shadowing experience, have a science gpa of 4.0 at an Ivy league college (that DEflates their grades) and are a national competitive bodybuilder.

Ok I'm done here.
Hey, you forgot that every practice MCAT OP's ever taken is over 520.

Don't sell him/her short!
 
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