WAMC/School list! ORM REAPP! 3.74 cGPA/3.53 sGPA, 516

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dazedandconfused__

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Hi! I'm back after a gap year. I had an unsuccessful first application cycle (my post history says it all lol) and just wanted a quick sanity check to make sure that my app is strong enough to apply this coming summer.

1. 3.74 cGPA, 3.53 sGPA. Generally a very strong upwards trend (averaged 3.9x cgpa/3.8x sgpa my last 2 years)

2. 516 (128/129/129/130)

3. MA

4. Asian/ORM

5. T10 private undergraduate. Humanities major

6. ~50 hours as an EMT before my university shut down during COVID and I went home to MA. That's likely the extent of my real clinical work (look into research and volunteering- technically worked with patients, but not necessarily involved in their care) until my gap year post-1st application cycle, where I work as a medical assistant in dermatology. I work 50 hours a week and I'll likely have upwards of 2500 hours done by the time I apply again.

7. I did research 3 out of 4 years of undergrad!
International research internship in China studying cancer epidemiology- 400 hours and one publication
RAing in a social sciences lab, matching my major- 450 hours, no pubs
Clinical research- I spoke to high risk/low income patients monthly regarding their interactions with their PCP, their sense of empowerment regarding their health, and unmet social needs. The research investigates how a strengthened connection with their PCP empowers them to make healthy decisions, advances their medical literacy, and improves their mental and physical health overall. 650 hours

8. not too much shadowing here, hopefully made up by my gap year?
~10 hours shadowing in oncology
~10 hours shadowing in holistic traditional medicine in China during my internship

9. one volunteering experience with a cancer nonprofit- I spoke with cancer patients and assessed their treatment, diagnoses, and their needs and anxieties as cancer patients. I did the same with cancer survivors that wanted to become mentors and give back to the cancer community! Then, I matched patients with mentors who have similar treatments, journeys, experiences, etc. 650 hours interspersed through 2021-present.

10. not too much here! Some casual hobbies.

11. Deans' List 2/4 years

12. Not much to say here. I will say that I'm feeling a LOT better about my LoRs than I was last year- I've worked extensively with two physicians (both fairly accoladed- one is on the state board, the other is highly established in research) during my gap year, both of whom are writing LoRs for me and mentoring me in the process, coaching me in interview prep, reading my personal statement, etc. They're invested in me and I'm hoping it'll show. I'm really grateful for them and feel very supported :,) Shout out to them!

Since my first application, I've gained 2500 (lmao) clinical hours and the 650 hours of volunteering (I started the volunteering just after submitting my application so although they were in the secondaries, there wasn't much mentioned in the primary app). I think those clinical hours have changed me radically in terms of the type of physician I want to become and how I envision myself treating my patients. I'm clinically focused and have little interest in institutions that are super research focused.

And now- here is my primitive list. I went to school in Chicago and am in love with the city, its people, and its culture. That's why literally every medical school in Chicago is on the list. I'm hoping that it's not too far off the mark, but let me know either way! I've hesitantly decided on applying to just MD schools (I don't have any exposure to the DO field whatsoever), but if that needs to change, I'm happy to do so. I feel like my list is a little top heavy and at 23 schools I can definitely afford to add more!

UMass (in state)
NYULISOM (my only II last year- I was placed on post-II hold and then rejected)
Rosalind Franklin
Loyola Chicago
Northwestern
Rush
UI
Quinnipiac
UChicago (my undergraduate)
Cooper Rowan
Drexel
Dartmouth
Geisinger
Georgetown
Hackensack Meridian
Mt Sinai
Kaiser Permanente
Temple
Mayo
Rochester
Tufts
GW
UWI

thanks so much ! :)

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Great job getting in-person clinical experience. It definitely helps give your application a better chance.

If I can be picky, I can see cancer and oncology is prolific in your activities. What I worry about is that you don't show your service orientation outside of this passion or health very clearly. Basically it seems if that the cause isn't about cancer, you don't have any interest. What am I missing?
 
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Great job getting in-person clinical experience. It definitely helps give your application a better chance.

If I can be picky, I can see cancer and oncology is prolific in your activities. What I worry about is that you don't show your service orientation outside of this passion or health very clearly. Basically it seems if that the cause isn't about cancer, you don't have any interest. What am I missing?
Thanks so much for your feedback! I just realized I completely forgot to include a fairly important research experience in there so I've edited the original post.

You're entirely right that there's a good amount of oncology represented in my application- strangely enough this was completely unintentional and I had little to no interest in cancer before participating in these activities! I've tried to supplement it a little with other fields- ER medicine was a massive interest of mine prepandemic, which unfortunately took the backburner when I needed to return home where my sibling is immunocompromised. I'm currently in dermatology, but my clinical research was most relevant to primary care.

A lot of my application centers around medical literacy and patient empowerment through effective communication, active listening, etc (I studied linguistics in college so I'm very communication/language based as a whole!). While I think that definitely applies well to oncology, I've found that it's relevant to any field of medicine, and especially applicable to the research I did in primary care. Do you think there's a way to express that in my application without sounding disingenuous?
 
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