Back in 1998 when I couldn't get into dental school on my first try...
Got a job during the day to put bread on the table, and did masters courses in biology at night. Day job at a university ensured I didn't have to pay tuition for the masters, and I got to bolster my GPA at the same time so I could get into dental school on my next attempt (and did).
Killed 3 birds with 1 stone. I've always been a strong believer in Von Clausewitz's principle of Economy of Force.
I understand how you feel. My stats are nowhere near the tops and I don't interview well.
If I knew it would come out this way, I would have went to a community college, taken all easy courses, and gotten all A's instead of paying a premium and getting it the hard way at my struggle-for-a-C school.
I'm in danger of not getting in anywhere.
My backup plan would be to go a Carribean medical school, preferably SGU, Ross, or AUC, and then try to transfer to a US med school and then become an oral/dental surgeon. I know that med school is not dental school but this is what I'd choose instead of going to a grad school for 2-3 years just so you can see if you can get in the second time.
Sorry, but your back up plan isn't going to work for becoming an oral surgeon. To be an oral surgeon, you have to attend dental school first and earn your DDS or DMD. Some residency programs award a medical degree during the oral surgery residency but all oral surgeons are either DDS or DMDs before they earn the MD.
It doesn't work the other way. You can't go to medical school and then apply to an oral surgery residency because oral surgery is one of the nine dental specialties. Not all oral surgery programs award MDs either. About half of the program are six year programs where you get an MD and residency training, the other half of the programs are four year programs where you get residency training, but no MD.
You might want to consider that before you sign up for med school in the Carribean; if you really want to be an oral surgeon, you'd probably be better off improving your stats for a year or two and applying to dental school again.
Before you start thinking about attending a foreign dental school and then returning to the US to train in oral surgery, remember this. Some oral surgery residencies will train foreing dentists, only because they expect them to return to their home country. A foreign dentist with oral surgery training in the US can't practice oral surgery in the US because you need to have a DDS/DMD from an American school to practice here. That would mean enrolling in a US dental school for two or three years because a foreign dental degree means very little to the ADA.
Sorry to hear that things don't work well for you. It happened to me 3 years ago and I was very pissed off. Many people with scores less than mine got admitted. I was so upset. So I decided to put d-school aside for a while. I did research, published 2 papers. Then, I applied for ucsf post-bac program and I'm currently in the program and do very well. Now, I know that I'm near to getting in. And the 3 years taking off serve me well. I worked hard and made lots of money, own properties and stuff. Besides, I landed in good lab and was trained by very smart people. Now, my brain works differently than 3 years ago. If I went to dental school 3 yrs ago, I would be a B and C student. But now, doesn't matter where I go, I will still be in the top 10%. So, don't be all sad if you don't get in now. You may get in the top school next year. It might meant to be this way.
Best of luck.
I think I will go into a depression for a month, then get motivated to beat the odds again, and start gearing up to reapply next year. In the meantime, I will work on my Masters and concentrate on completing it. How many times can dental schools refuse a persistent applicant?
In my situation I know I am not getting in this year, because I am not applying till next. My question is, what will admission committees see as the best use of that year off. My stats are average, but will improve a bit this upcoming year. I have two options:
1) Through my current school I will be able to complete a masters in biology, in a lab I am currently working at. It is an alcohol withdrawal study which really has nothing to do with dentistry, and also cost another $17,000 including living expenses.
2) My other option is to move back to my home town (free rent), work in a dental office for a family friend who said he would teach me the entire art of running a practice, from treatment plans and working with patients, to dealing with labs and all business related matters. I would also be close to my #1 choice dental school where I could see about getting a job in a lab, or doing some kind of work there as well. This option is all dental related and I would not be out more money that could be used for dental school.
I?m just curious if the Masters is too significant to pass up. Also! Specialties want to see research done by their applicants. Does the masters bio work count, or do they mean strictly dental research?
Well, from an Economy of Force point of view, if I was in your shoes I would choose option #2, but only if I am able to actually get a job in the dental school or otherwise make myself a familiar face to them. Otherwise, reinforcing your academic record in a masters program in biology might be the better bet despite the cost.
Hey Hysteria, if you are sure your stats will get you into dental school with your year off, then go with option #2. You mention specializing in your post and by working for a year for a dentist, you will have the chance to learn what the specialties are all about in the real world and make a better decision as to which one you might want to pursue someday. I am currently a third year and am thinking about specializing, but I barely have time to shadow/assist practitioners to make an educated decision as to which one I definitely want to apply to at the end of this year. What we learn about each specialty in school is not enough at all to really know what they do on a daily basis in a private setting. Even though you will be working for a general dentist, you will be familiar with dental terms and procedures and learn so much more working for him than you will doing alcohol research. It will also keep you motivated to finish school b/c sometimes it is hard to see if it is worth it in the end when you are struggling as a dental student in Anatomy lab.
Yes, specialties want to see research. But how much they want to see and whether or not research done before dental school "counts" is a very difficult question to answer. Here's why I don't have a good answer. Last year, three seniors applied to ortho from our school, top ten students. They did 4 or 5 weeks of research junior year summer and all got in. That was the only research they ever did - "resume research." When I asked these students about their research committment, they said "oh, programs just want to see that you did something, they don't care how much." One of these students was in my lab and didn't even know how to use the automated pipet and didn't put in even half the time I did on my project for 8 weeks. But he is now in an ortho program, which was his ultimate goal anyway. I'm sure there are specialty programs that might look for more substantial research than 4 weeks, but students at my school have been doing "resume research" and getting into specialties for many years now.
We have students in our class who did option #1 or #2 prior to starting dental school. With #2, if you hang around your first choice school and eventually get in, you will have an advantage over your classmates by knowing the faculty and upperclassmen and how policies and procedures work.
Unless you need the masters to bolster you credentials to get into dental school, save 17 grand and earn some spending money for first year. Good luck with your decision!
If I do not get in, I think I will move somewhere and work in a dental office. That or actually go to school and the certificate to be a dental assistant.
I could also work with things that have nothing dental related?
What do you guys suggest?
What can I do for a year while I wait to reapply?
I am in a similar situation right now, except that I opted to not apply for this year. I really felt that I didn't jave my sh* together enough to apply for next year with letters of rec, and the DAT, etc. I'm spending my time right now living back at home, and found a job where I could make as much money as possible over the next year. I'm studying extra long for the DAT now, since i'm waiting till next year to apply, and there is no rush now. I really need to do well with my GPA being right around 3.2. Anyways, once I take the DAT, I'm going to spend time observing at a dental office. We'll see how it works out, I just know there are some things I want to do with myself before I go to school. I just hope I do enough work in the meantime to get accepted.
First of all, do you know how to boil peanuts? Assuming you do, you can't do it for long because peanuts season is short (it's this time of the year). And you will find out whether you get rejected or not at around february. So, peanut plan doesn't work. You better find some other ways to clear your head, babe.
At least around here boiled peanuts are sold almost all year round. You can buy them all summer even though fall is the biggest time of the year. Anyways that was a joke about living on the beach. I would go back to Russia for awhile and teach english.
I was thinking I might go the crack-***** route. . .
I will probably keep working full-time in a lab and taking classes. I graduated in '01, and although I'd like to be in the classroom full-time next fall, I will have to accept what I cannot change and do what ever it takes to make the next application cycle work for me. In the meantime, I will hope for the best