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very nervous

Discussion in 'Medical Students - DO' started by sa, Jul 26, 1999.

  1. sa

    sa

    I am in the process of applying to nearly every osteopathic school, no MD schools. I have a 28 MCAT (9V, 10P, 9B, M). I have a 3.5 science and 3.5 non-science. However, I had made a huge mistake back in Feb. of this year. I was convicted of driving with a ba of .1. This is a vehicular misdeameanor, and so I spoke about it on my accomas. I would never lie about it. I expect questions on it should I receive any interviews. Without question, it is the biggest mistake of my life, I am deeply regretful. I have been doing volunteer work for 4 years. I am applying early, and I worry every night that I may have threw everything away because of one BAD mistake. I would welcome any comments on whether or not I have a decent chance of gaining admission. I'm sorry its such a long letter, but I am deeply worried. Thank you for listening.
     
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  3. turtleboard

    turtleboard SDN Advisor
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    I certainly can't give you a definite answer on your situation since I've never encountered anything like that.

    If it was a lapse in judgement at the time, come clean during the interview and explain it to them. Judging by your numbers, at least, I'm sure you'd get interviews under more normal circumstances.

    Though driving under the influence of alcohol could have potentially injured or even killed another human being, see yourself as lucky to have been caught in time so that you didn't hurt anyone. I'm not saying that this should be your excuse -- it is most certainly not -- but your situation could have been a lot worse.

    Tim of New York City.
     
  4. drhenderson

    drhenderson Senior Member
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    SA,

    Whatever you do, don't even let it look like you are making excuses or vows! That is not atypical of someone who really does have an alcohol problem.

    You may want to seek counseling to show you are a responsible person. Otherwise, how
    is a medical school application committee to know if you are serious. You may be asked
    whether you have ever sought counseling in the future on various forms, but this may
    help you make the best of this situation... even if alcohol is not really a problem with you.

    As physicians, we are taught to suspect that DWIs are a sign of a larger problem, not a
    momentary lapse. And physicians will be interviewing you!

    Given what you said so far, I?d grant you an interview if I were on the comittees at the
    schools you are applying for. Be ready for some tough questions though. You may want
    to see a counselor for you anxiety about the situation too!

    I wish you success, SA!

    Jim Henderson, MD of Medicalstudent.net
    [email protected]

    [This message has been edited by drhenderson (edited July 26, 1999).]

    [This message has been edited by drhenderson (edited July 26, 1999).]
     
  5. TP

    TP Member
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    sa-
    I went to an interview where one of my fellow interviewees had an arrest record. I forgot what the actual charge was but I believe that he was charged w/ assault b/c he was in a fight with his girlfriend in public. Anyways, he talked about it on his personal statement as well as his secondary. After his interview, he told me that they grilled him about his arrest. They kept probing about whether or not he had an anger problem or not. Needless to say, it wasn't a kick back interview. He was on the defensive the whole time. I don't know if he got accepted or not but the fact that he was given a chance to interview is something. He did tell me that he recieved about 3 DO interviews in all.

    [This message has been edited by TP (edited July 27, 1999).]
     
  6. justwannabadoc

    justwannabadoc Senior Member
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    I agree with Dr. Henderson when he says that you MUST demonstrate that this alcohol is not a problem. If you do receive an invitation, be prepared to be grilled about it. Forget the friendly atmosphere that DO schools are supposedly known for because if I were interviewing you, I'd be really concerned and I would grill you too. Even if alcohol is not a problem and your DUI was the result of just extremely poor judgement, going to counseling, volunteering for AA or MADD, might be worth considering. It's one thing to say you're sorry and another to show it. As Dr. Henderson said, the admissions committee and your interviewer may not want you because they may think you have a problem with alcohol. Just playing devil's advocate here but given that the suicide rate of physicians is 3 times higher than that of the general population and substance abuse, particularly of alcohol, is so prevalent among physicians, would you accept someone that you BELIEVE might become another of these statistics? Probably not. Therefore, you have to prove at that interview that you just didn't use your head that night and that you won't ever show another potentially deadly lapse of judgement. I know my words sound harsh but that's the truth of the matter.
     
  7. mightymouse

    mightymouse Member
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    I have a story along the smae lines as yours except to a much lighter degree. As a freshman in college, i drank way too much in one incident and ended up in the hospital. I attributed this to immaturity of youth and made my case as just that. I did not and do not have any alochol problems but I was asked about the incident in my interviews. I was not however GRILLED about it as everyone thus far has suggested will happen. I acknowledge that your mistake put others at risk and was more sever than my lapse of judgment, but Dont be discouraged by others saying that it is a major hindrance. Its about time that responders drop their holier than thou attitudes and realize that all people make mistakes. this was a terrible lapse and is cause for concern, but i am shocked by the attitude of some responders here in their condescending. Over and over again we here that its ok to make mistakes with grades and life experiences and the MCAT, i argue that thiswas a mistake that fortunately was learned from and will never be repeated. Come down off of your pedastals and realize that weve all made our errors and stop the judgemental attitudes. As to the original author, as you know, you were lucky and did do something truly unwise and dangerous. Never put others at risk like that again, but be upfront and honest with the committees. You will receive offers, bring the subject up rather than waiting for them to do it and be frank and humble in your error. As to going to AA or some sort of counselling, i would not advise it. If you do not have a problem with alcohol, then going to these groups would suggest to the committees that you do even while youre telling them that you do not. these groups are for those with genuine problems and not simple lapses in judgment. They shouldnot be used as a means to gain acceptance to medical school and anyone who advocates such does not have a forgiving nature or the true sprirt of medicine and patient concern at heart. Give it your best shot and confess your mistakes openly and LEARN from them. As for the rest of you, genuinely support the rhetoric that you preach about learning from mistakes as all human beings must face.
     
  8. mightymouse

    mightymouse Member
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    oh, and by the way, i was accepted to every school I interviewed and am now beginning my first year of medical school. Good luck to you and remember this and always look out for others in everything you do. God Bless.
     
  9. justwannabadoc

    justwannabadoc Senior Member
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    With all due respect mightymouse, there are significant differences between your situation and sa's. First, your actions endangered pretty much only yourself. It is one thing to do something foolish like overdrink as a college freshman and another to take possession of a potentially deadly weapon, in this case, a car. Your actions did not place others at risk whereas sa's did (I'm not trying to attack you, sa). sa got lucky this time because no one was injured or killed but remember, it only takes one incident for an innocent life to be lost.

    Second, your incident happened when you were a college freshman. Even if you are now a graduating senior from college, your mistake took place a long time ago whereas sa's happened just 5 months ago. I don't doubt that he's sorry for his mistake but face it, it occured fairly recently and admissions folks may not feel that he's had enough time to "wise up." Hopefully for his sake, I'm wrong, but you have to at least consider the possibility. Besides, I think it is understood that many people will make mistakes as college freshman. As long as the errors were not serious and the individual matures by the time he/she graduates, I think people will overlook it. I think if your incident occured within the past few months of your applications, you would have had a more difficult interview experience.

    You are correct about not going to counseling if there is no alcohol problem. I hope this isn't the case. But, I do consider DUI/DWI a serious offense and many interviewers may feel the same. Therefore, I think it is important for sa to show somehow that he is truly sorry for his actions. How, I don't know.

    SA, it sounds like you are sincerely about the mistake you made and fortunately, the only consequence was a ticket. It will without a doubt make getting in more difficult, though not by any means impossible. If you are being truly honest about your regret, then I wish you the best.
     
  10. turtleboard

    turtleboard SDN Advisor
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    mightymouse,

    No one here is up on any pedestal and no one here is saying mistakes don't happen. What we're all trying to accomplish is telling SA that his mistake was a pretty bad mistake, and unlike yours, his packed a "deadlier" potential.

    Can you honestly tell me that admissions committees would see your mistake with the same eye as SA's? I'm not trying to bring his or anyone's spirits down, but from a completely objective viewpoint, your mistake pales in comparison to his.

    SA: I'm not sure if putting yourself into an AA group would be the greatest thing. While Dr. Henderson may be right in that your interviewer will take you to be a prospective alcoholic, enrolling yourself into one of those groups only confirms this with the committees. Don't let them capitalize (if that's even the right word) on your mistake and play it honestly and sincerely.

    Tim of New York City.
     
  11. drhenderson

    drhenderson Senior Member
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    I agree... I wouldn't go to AA. I'm just suggesting a counselor, like a psychologist, for stress, anxiety, etc where alcohol can be addressed to. I don't think AA would go over well with an admissions comittee.

    Jim Henderson, MD of Medicalstudent.net
     
  12. OldManDave

    OldManDave Fossil Bouncer Emeritus
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    Not only will you have to show that you regret what you've done, but also unequivically that you have learned your lesson and grown/matured from this experience. If you manage to do this, you probably have as decent a shot at getting in as the next Joe. However, the question becomes time...is 5-mos adequate, in the eyes of the AdComs?

    Whatever the case, if you want it bad enough, you can make it happen. Best of luck and success to you!

    [​IMG]

    ------------------
    'Old Man Dave'
    KCOM, Class of '03


     
  13. dragonking

    dragonking Member
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    One mistake will ruin your life, sa. I hope you will never ever do that again.

    Do you know any influential people that really know you for a long time, such as priest, pastor, physician, or community leader, etc? If they can write you a letter by explaining that particular incidence is not your "usual self", maybe, you chances will increase.

    Good luck
     

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