WAMC? First-time applicant c/o 2029, GPA Concerns (Whole Application + Lots of Questions!)

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Pre-Veterinary Student
Dec 14, 2023
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Would this increase my chances since they look at me twice?
No. Considerations for dual degree programs are not really "looking at you twice" as much as looking at you from 2 different aspects. They are not a way to increase your odds of admission.
- I seem to have a hard time with academic transitions/change, I plan on maybe writing about this to explain these two years, but will also add how I can prepare myself/change so this doesn't happen the first semester of vet school. Wondering if this would hurt or help me?
I would probably avoid this more than just acknowledging it and moving on. You don't want to draw attention to a deficiency and if you've noticed a pattern, but don't have a clear example of your plan being put into action, that would concern me a little bit. It's fine to mention the one rough semester in an explanation statement - one bad semester due to COVID learning is not unusual.
Overall: I have an upward trend but I'm worried I might get cut off because my overall is low. Does anyone know if they at least look at improvement/last 45 before making GPA cut-offs?
This will depend on the school. Programs that look at last 45 include UMN, ISU, KSU. There are some other programs that have a GPA cutoff where if you're over that, they don't really evaluate your GPA further (Illinois, Michigan State). So targeting your apps that way will be good.
Veterinary Experience: ~1,000+ hours by the time I apply
- Small Animal (Employment/Volunteer/Shadowing): ~800+
- Large (Shadowing): ~50
If you're going to write about wanting to be a large animal vet, you need to get more large animal experience to back that up. This amount of difference in your small vs large animal experience, if you want to be a large animal practitioner, would raise some questions for me.
Q?: I worked on a horse farm almost every day from the time I was 12 to 15, probably a couple thousand hours (no way to calculate besides estimating). Should I include this even if I don't have the exact number of hours recorded?
Yes, estimate them.
- Wondering if it'd be better to ask a grad student that's known me for 3 semesters and hope that counts rather than asking a prof who doesn't know me? Or should I try and bond with a professor this spring and use them?
No. A graduate student is not a professor and it's not appropriate to ask them for a letter.
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Were you working at all under a veterinarian as a kennel assistant? If you are cleaning up and restraining animals in a hospital, I would consider that to be veterinary experience.

Plan on writing about my interest in the large animal field as I have been working on farms since I was ~12 and grew up in a pretty rural/farm area. Very interested in working in rural areas that are in need of vets.
You mentioned the horse-aspect of your experience. What about the LA aspect? I don't see experience that makes you compelled to go into LA.

Avoid talking about childhood or early teen experiences. Talk about your experiences as an adult and you can briefly mention that you've been involved in your area of interest for X amount of years if its important to mention. Make a one or two specific experiences focal points in your essay.

Your GPA explanation raises some red flags. I would figure out how to make it concise and putting a positive spin to it or letting your last 45 speak for itself.