babooforboo

2+ Year Member
Aug 21, 2016
9
1
Status
Pre-Veterinary
Hello everyone,

After getting my GRE scores recently (150 on quant and 154 on verbal), I am considering skipping this application cycle in favor of taking a gap year to study for the GRE, get more experience, and maybe pull up my GPA. My main question is: is there a downside to applying just to go for it, or is it more beneficial to wait once my scores/GPA/experience are a little higher?

I know that the GRE is not all important, but my GPA is nothing stellar (around a 3.6-3.7 depending on what is being counted), and I have about 800 vet hours at a small animal clinic, about 50 hours at a large animal clinic, and not very much animal experience (only a handful from a shelter and cat sitting...). (No research hours.)

I am a student athlete, if that makes any difference.

I just don't want to apply if I'm likely going to be rejected and then make a bad impression so that my second time around is less impressive (assuming I pull up my scores and experience during the year after being rejected). So is it harder the second time around? If so then I'll save my first application for after my gap year. If not then I guess there is no reason not to go for it.

Any advice is greatly appreciated!

PS I have browsed some threads and seen the benefit of a gap year from lots of users, so I have no doubts about that. My real dilemma is whether I should apply despite my below average GRE score.
 

Bottle of Bear

Warning: Harmful if swallowed
2+ Year Member
Jun 20, 2016
2,910
6,798
GPS not enabled
Status
Pre-Veterinary
Whatever you feel comfortable with. First of all, your GPA is great. Your hours are great. It sounds like you've got solid if not spectacular extracurriculars (the sports are great but I can't speak for anything else you may have done). GRE's the only thing holding you back but schools tend to lump GRE and GPA together so they balance each other out.

Vast majority of schools don't hold previous applications against you. If anything applying a second time after beefing up your application makes you look better since it shows perseverance and sincerity in your desire to be a vet.

The only thing you have against you right now is time. Do you have your transcripts/GRE scores sent in to VMCAS/schools. Do you have strong letters of rec handy, and people/veterinarians who are able to write wonderful things about you. Is your personal statement done, do you know what schools you want to apply to. It's a lot of things to get together before the deadline (doable, but again time isn't on your side). Also, not cheap.

I think applying would expose you to the process and you'd be better prepared to handle it next year if you don't get in. Best of luck!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Devastating

TrashPanda

Class of 2021! (accepted)
2+ Year Member
May 12, 2016
831
1,072
Status
Pre-Veterinary
I think you have a strong chance of being admitted this cycle. @Bottle of Bear has a good point about time, and I'll add two other things to consider: 1) cost of applying and 2) what your chances are at your IS.

If your in-state school weighs GRE heavily or really wants a lot of diverse experience, it may be better to wait and reapply. If you apply broadly and wisely you'll probably get in somewhere, but you may end up paying expensive OOS tuition. Another option is to only apply to your IS and then take a gap year if you don't get in.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Bottle of Bear

wildlifer

LVT hopeful
2+ Year Member
Sep 12, 2015
195
114
Status
Non-Student
I started the process back in May like most people and I'm still trying to finish my personal statement and other supplemental essays. If you have not started the process at all with less than 4 weeks left of the application cycle, I would suggest the gap year. The gap year will allow you to have the time to really get your "ducks in a row" so to speak without the time crunch that you would be facing if you were to try to apply during this cycle. You could also try to save some $$ for the next cycle during your gap year. It's an expensive process and every little bit helps!
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Devastating

Liquid_Phoenix

MWU c/o 2021!!
2+ Year Member
May 14, 2016
278
372
Arizona
Status
Veterinary Student
Hello everyone,

After getting my GRE scores recently (150 on quant and 154 on verbal), I am considering skipping this application cycle in favor of taking a gap year to study for the GRE, get more experience, and maybe pull up my GPA. My main question is: is there a downside to applying just to go for it, or is it more beneficial to wait once my scores/GPA/experience are a little higher?

I know that the GRE is not all important, but my GPA is nothing stellar (around a 3.6-3.7 depending on what is being counted), and I have about 800 vet hours at a small animal clinic, about 50 hours at a large animal clinic, and not very much animal experience (only a handful from a shelter and cat sitting...). (No research hours.)

I am a student athlete, if that makes any difference.

I just don't want to apply if I'm likely going to be rejected and then make a bad impression so that my second time around is less impressive (assuming I pull up my scores and experience during the year after being rejected). So is it harder the second time around? If so then I'll save my first application for after my gap year. If not then I guess there is no reason not to go for it.

Any advice is greatly appreciated!

PS I have browsed some threads and seen the benefit of a gap year from lots of users, so I have no doubts about that. My real dilemma is whether I should apply despite my below average GRE score.
I say go for it if you have the funds to apply again next year if you don't get in. You will never know unless you try! If you don't get in this year, ask for application reviews from the school(s) you apply to so that you can better yourself for the next application cycle. Many schools don't put as much emphasis on the GRE as you think and you have a pretty decent GPA to help offset.

Which schools are you applying to?
 

Coopah

2+ Year Member
Dec 28, 2014
6,791
6,427
Status
Veterinary Student
Hello everyone,

After getting my GRE scores recently (150 on quant and 154 on verbal), I am considering skipping this application cycle in favor of taking a gap year to study for the GRE, get more experience, and maybe pull up my GPA. My main question is: is there a downside to applying just to go for it, or is it more beneficial to wait once my scores/GPA/experience are a little higher?

I know that the GRE is not all important, but my GPA is nothing stellar (around a 3.6-3.7 depending on what is being counted), and I have about 800 vet hours at a small animal clinic, about 50 hours at a large animal clinic, and not very much animal experience (only a handful from a shelter and cat sitting...). (No research hours.)

I am a student athlete, if that makes any difference.

I just don't want to apply if I'm likely going to be rejected and then make a bad impression so that my second time around is less impressive (assuming I pull up my scores and experience during the year after being rejected). So is it harder the second time around? If so then I'll save my first application for after my gap year. If not then I guess there is no reason not to go for it.

Any advice is greatly appreciated!

PS I have browsed some threads and seen the benefit of a gap year from lots of users, so I have no doubts about that. My real dilemma is whether I should apply despite my below average GRE score.
Absolutely! Definitely try if the only thing you are worried about is the GRE and some animal experience hours. Your GPA is great as far as I'm concerned. If you can get the application done, and feel good about it, why not?
 

Staffie

5+ Year Member
Aug 27, 2014
119
134
Status
Veterinary Student
If I were you, I would apply to my in-state (or whatever your cheapest option is) this year. If you get in this year, great. It would be pointless applying to other schools in addition to your cheapest option because you can easily improve your stats a bit for next year and try again. If you got into a more expensive out of state school this year but not your in-state, you might feel pressured to go to it and regret not waiting another year to apply to your in-state again and save yourself thousands down the line.

So, apply to your in-state school. You'll either get in and be set, or you won't get in but you'll feel even more prepared for the next round of applications. If you're comfortable going out of state, you can apply to a few of those next year as well.

Good luck!
 
  • Like
Reactions: TrashPanda
OP
B

babooforboo

2+ Year Member
Aug 21, 2016
9
1
Status
Pre-Veterinary
Hello everyone,

Thanks so much for all of your advice - I greatly, greatly appreciate it and hope I can give back to this community one day (hopefully by counseling some greenhorn like myself)!

While it seems that the consensus is to just go ahead and wing my application (after all, there are really no downsides), I think that I have simply waited too long to be able to construct a solid application. I still think that all of you are right, however, and that if I had my ducks in a row, then I should go ahead and apply. Seeing how this is not the case, I think the gap year is my best option (which is still fine, since, again, there is really no downside to this either).

I also failed to mention a very large caveat to my situation that would no doubt have influenced many of your responses: I'm not really sure that I want to go to my in state college. There are a number of reasons for this, chief of which is that I am in a relationship with someone who may go out of state after my gap year anyway.

I am concerned about the financial burden of going out of state, however, but that's a topic for another post!

Thanks so much, and good luck to all of you!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Bottle of Bear