Maxprime

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I'm starting my post-bacc from scratch - no pre-reqs taken. I need a lot of hours to make up for my prior GPA (2.7). I know I shouldn't go overboard, but I am coming from a job where I work 80-120 hours a week and I have the brains to make straight A's in freshmen classes (chem I, physics I, etc.). So far I have:

Gen. Chem 1
Bio 1 (not @ HCP - but should I still take chem first?)
Physics 1

I have a BS in math and a BA in econ, so I didn't know if re-taking math or econ courses for an A would be worth it. I also considered:

Anatomy
Pharmaceutics
CS/Math/other Physics/etc.
Econ/Business/Finance

I plan on taking Arabic, but saving it for next year due to difficulty. Basically, do I need to show diversity in education or just go hardcore on science? i.e. do I need to throw in underwater basket weaving 101 or just keep piling on science for GPA points? I can afford to re-take a ton of math/econ classes and ace them (didn't ace them the first time around).
 

braluk

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how many years do you intend to do your postbac for? 2 years?
 

Esteban

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Maxprime said:
I'm starting my post-bacc from scratch - no pre-reqs taken. I need a lot of hours to make up for my prior GPA (2.7). I know I shouldn't go overboard, but I am coming from a job where I work 80-120 hours a week and I have the brains to make straight A's in freshmen classes (chem I, physics I, etc.). So far I have:

Gen. Chem 1
Bio 1 (not @ HCP - but should I still take chem first?)
Physics 1

I have a BS in math and a BA in econ, so I didn't know if re-taking math or econ courses for an A would be worth it. I also considered:

Anatomy
Pharmaceutics
CS/Math/other Physics/etc.
Econ/Business/Finance

I plan on taking Arabic, but saving it for next year due to difficulty. Basically, do I need to show diversity in education or just go hardcore on science? i.e. do I need to throw in underwater basket weaving 101 or just keep piling on science for GPA points? I can afford to re-take a ton of math/econ classes and ace them (didn't ace them the first time around).
Dude, bio I (I don't think chem I is necessary), chem I, and physics I will keep you pretty busy. You sure you want to overwhelm yourself like that?
 
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microgin

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I'm starting my post-bacc from scratch - no pre-reqs taken. I need a lot of hours to make up for my prior GPA (2.7). I know I shouldn't go overboard, but I am coming from a job where I work 80-120 hours a week and I have the brains to make straight A's in freshmen classes (chem I, physics I, etc.). So far I have:

Gen. Chem 1
Bio 1 (not @ HCP - but should I still take chem first?)
Physics 1
If you're going to Harvard Extension, I wouldn't take it for granted that you "have the brains to make straight A's" while simultaneously taking chem, bio, & physics. If you have to make up for a past low GPA, I would wade in very carefully. And I hope you're not planning to have a job in addition to these classes are you?
 
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Maxprime

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This is my course list if I don't go to HES - no doubt in my mind that the normal class load @ HES is plenty.

This is a course list for a branch of UNC - it's a relatively easy school. No job, but I will be doing either some work in a lab or some shadowing.
 
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Maxprime

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From my understanding, it must be 2 years (or 4 semesters) to get the gen. chem I/II and o-chem I/II sequence done - correct?
 
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Maxprime

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I took all the courses, just didn't have enough total hours for a physics degree - so my physics classes are going to be a joke. I've already taken Chem I (but it was 5 years ago) and got an A, so I'm confident I'll have no trouble in there.

I just quit my job as an investment banker to go back to school - so the idea of consistent 80-100 hour weeks between class, studying, & volunteering will (sadly) be lighter. My grades were bad in college b/c I never went to class or studied (go figure - apparently doing those things helps).

I can do the work - I guess I really want to know 3 things:

1) (Off-track I know) Do SMP admission people care where you did your post-bacc? I know it matters some (Harvard vs. UNC = big difference) - but how much? For example, if I can do 20+ hours of classes a semester @ UNC and still have good co-currics, is that better than a normal load @ HES?

2) Do admissions people care what classes your grades are in? Again, I know an A in underwater basket weaving is nothing compared to an A in statics, but do I need to just max out my Science GPA as much as possible?

3) Should I re-take classes I have bad grades in from my original degrees? For example, I got a C in freshman calc because I didn't do any of the homework (don't get me started - I know I was an idiot) and h/w was 30% of our grade (my test average was curved to over 100) - I taught calc as undergrad TA, no question I can ace it if I take it again.

I know that on the AMCAS all grades are counted. It seems like, unless it's frowned upon, I should retake courses I got bad grades in but can easily do well. I did poorly the first time around b/c I had my head up my @ss - like failing freshman econ 101 and ending up w/ a BS in econ.

One more thing - my grades in college went from a 1.5 or something insulting like that over the first 2 years and I pulled them up to a 2.7 - still not good, but my improvement year over year is huge. I know it's reported, but how much do they care about that?
 
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Maxprime

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You learn something new every day - I just saw where someone suggesting taking pre-reqs in one year in an all-out frenzy, although they had 1 summer session that I've already missed - is it still possible? I assume it'd be:

Fall:
Chem I
Bio I
Physics I

Spring:
Chem II
Orgo I
Bio II

Summer:
Orgo II
Physics II

Is this a possibility? Would GT SMP accept me if I did all that w/ a 4.0? I figured it's not possible without a second year because you won't have pre-reqs or an MCAT done by Spring - the application deadline being June 1st (IIRC).
 

jlr18

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Maxprime said:
From my understanding, it must be 2 years (or 4 semesters) to get the gen. chem I/II and o-chem I/II sequence done - correct?
For HES, it definitely takes two years (or one year and a summer intensive course) to take both, because the school schedules GC and OChem in conflict... :/
 
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Maxprime

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Do you need gen. chem II to take o-chem I ?
 

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Maxprime

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Do I need Chem I to take OChem I?
 

Neha25

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Maxprime said:
You learn something new every day - I just saw where someone suggesting taking pre-reqs in one year in an all-out frenzy, although they had 1 summer session that I've already missed - is it still possible? I assume it'd be:

Fall:
Chem I
Bio I
Physics I

Spring:
Chem II
Orgo I
Bio II

Summer:
Orgo II
Physics II

Is this a possibility? Would GT SMP accept me if I did all that w/ a 4.0? I figured it's not possible without a second year because you won't have pre-reqs or an MCAT done by Spring - the application deadline being June 1st (IIRC).

Hold up. How are you going to take orgo II and physics II in the same summer session? I'm not familiar with HES's specific schedule, but I think in summer I they offer orgo I, physics I, etc, and then summer II is orgo II, physics II, etc. so that people can take the whole sequence in the summer. And you DONT want to take both at the same time. SMPs will not accept you without an MCAT score. I would say try to do it in 1.5 years, and then spend a semester studying for MCATs then apply to an SMP. You NEED to do well on the mcats, don't underestimate them.

maybe something like:

Fall:
Chem I
Physics I
volunteer/research

Spring:
Chem II
Physics II
Bio I (if you can handle it after getting a taste of the coursework)

Summer:
Orgo I
Orgo II

Fall:
Bio II
Upper-level bio course (bchem or genetics)
volunteer/reseach

Spring:
The infamous 'CATs
Volunteer/research or an upper level bio course
Apply to SMPs

Or something like that. You already have diversity in that you were an econ major and an investment banker. You need to focus on the science now. I was told that its not worth it to retake courses that you got C's in, just take upper level science courses instead (maybe consider biostat?). Also, I think calc isn't as important as the other sciences (ask an advisor about that though). Just my 2 cents. Good luck, you sound really motivated and I think you'll get in if you work hard!! ;)
 
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Maxprime

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Neha25 said:
Hold up. How are you going to take orgo II and physics II in the same summer session? I'm not familiar with HES's specific schedule, but I think in summer I they offer orgo I, physics I, etc, and then summer II is orgo II, physics II, etc. so that people can take the whole sequence in the summer. And you DONT want to take both at the same time. SMPs will not accept you without an MCAT score. I would say try to do it in 1.5 years, and then spend a semester studying for MCATs then apply to an SMP. You NEED to do well on the mcats, don't underestimate them.
I haven't said it in this thread yet - but as always, thank you all SO much for your help - you guys save months of unnecessary mistakes.

I am looking at the option of not going to HES because of the number of hours I can take at an easier school to get my GPA up. My GPA is horrid - 2.7, but the good news is that I came up to a 2.7 after a 1.4 in my first year and a half.

The timing of the MCAT is a great point - I am now planning to take it in Fall of 2007 because it'd be the first semester I would have all my pre-reqs done if I follow your schedule. I fear the MCAT purely from a respect standpoint, but I am looking forward to (what I consider) my shot to set myself apart from 2 bad years of college.

Neha25 said:
Or something like that. You already have diversity in that you were an econ major and an investment banker. You need to focus on the science now. I was told that its not worth it to retake courses that you got C's in, just take upper level science courses instead (maybe consider biostat?). Also, I think calc isn't as important as the other sciences (ask an advisor about that though).
Math major too :). New courses it is - biostat is definitely one I was looking at - anywhere I can leverage my previous knowledge of math & econ will help. I am going to try to push my diversity in interviews - what other med student can tell you where the market's going? :)

Neha25 said:
Just my 2 cents. Good luck, you sound really motivated and I think you'll get in if you work hard!! ;)
Thank you again.
 

LauraDO

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Not sure where you are in this process but just so you know I'm taking bio, chem, physics and orgo all at the same time, so this might be something for you to consider and then you can take another science class during the summer if you want

L
 
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