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Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by davril, Mar 28, 2000.

  1. davril

    davril Junior Member
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    help. i am a student trying to get into medical school. I have applied twice and was put on an alternate list the first time and denied the second. i have graduated with honors in chemistry with a boichemist option(B.S), and biology (B.S).(and a minor in math). i also have a masters in biochemistry and molecular biology. i realize that my mcat score is on the low end (25) but i have work around medicine in many ways since i was 15 and i have several papers published from all the research i have done. some advisors (friends) tell me to give up but everything i have done in the last ten years was directed in becoming a doctor. i truly believe i would be a better doctor than most of my friends that are already in med school. what options do i have?
     
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  3. Smile

    Smile Senior Member
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    Retake the MCAT and kick some serious a$$.

    You did not mention your grades in undergrad and graduate school. Are they 3.5 or better? If not, you may consider taking some post-bacc courses through a formal program to demonstrate your ability to do well in a structured and rigorous courseload.

    Besides all your biology/chemistry academic background, do you have any experiences in dealing with medicine first-hand? (ie, shadowing with physicians, lab technician, nurses aide, hospital volunteer, etc.) If not, you should pursue such experiences to strengthen your application.

    You did not provide enough information to allow one to estimate how competitive you truly are. Though your academic coursework is impressive, it is not the end-all be-all in gaining admission to medical school. Art and english majors get into medical school with a balanced application.
     
  4. davril

    davril Junior Member
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    yes, i have a lot of first-hand knowledge of working in the medical field. i was an atheletic trainer for 4 years during my undergraduate program. there, i worked about 50-60 h. a wk working with athletes in preventing, treating, and rehabilitating injuries. i also got to attend surgeries, take atheletes to their post-op apponintment, and of course visit the er more times than i can remember. also, my father is a thorasic cardiovascular surgen and he took me to surgeries and in the summer i would work in his office and assist him in doing lots of little office procedures. as for my grades, they are not what i would like them to be (undergraduate-3.6 w/honors and graduate 3.4)
     
  5. Besyonek

    Besyonek Senior Member
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    Davril,

    A few questions:

    How many schools did you apply to?
    When (what month)were your applications completed?
    How did you prepare for the MCAT?
    What kind of schools did you apply to? (top-25, mid-tier, public, private, etc.)
    Have you asked the schools how your application could be strengthened?

     
  6. davril

    davril Junior Member
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    i took the kaplan course to prepare for MCAT plus i took every practice test i could find in study guides i bought at barnes and noble.
    i applied to two schools the first year i applied when i was put on the alternate list. one private-tulane (my dad went there) and my state's med-school. tulane didn't give me an interview and as i said the other one put me on the alternate list. i completed all applications in august for both years. i figured that i had a better chance at my state's school then any other so i haven't tried anywhere else.
    i asked both times how to improve my application and they said both times that i could improve my gpa and my mcat score. during an interview one of the guys told me that they didn't know why i didn't get in the first time. also, the guy that i talked to about improving my application said that my interviews and my letters of recommendation could not get any better. he just suggested improving my mcat and gpa and building on my research and do some clinical research (my past research was on protein chemistry-undergraduate; and cancer research-graduate but nothing with actual patient contact)

    any suggestions on improvment?
     
  7. Besyonek

    Besyonek Senior Member
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    A few comments:

    1. Two schools is FAR TOO FEW. Most applicants apply to >10; many apply to 20.

    2. You have to get your application in sooner -- June 1 is the first day that AMCAS and AACOMAS accept them. August is already putting you back in the queue.

    3. You should try to get that MCAT up, ideally to at least 28-29 (10 on each section will strongly improve your chances)

    4. Consider osteopathic schools. They're a bit more lenient about low MCATs, though their average scores in recent years are approaching those of allopathic schools.

    5. Don't waste your time considering foreign schools; these are a scam and will break your heart while leaving you in deep debt.

    6. You may want to consider a post-bacc program to boost your science gpa.

    7. Be patient, work hard, take the long view.

    Good luck.
     
  8. Andre

    Andre Member
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    Hello Davril:
    You still have a chance at US schools, which should be your first choice, including DO schools.
    I say you need at least 30 on MCAT. Everything else looks fine.
    But, you did ask us all your options.. then I must tell you that a few select Caribbean schools are good alternatives. St George's is the best, then AUC, maybe ROSS. Out of any of these schools, after 2 years, you come back to USA for clinicals. Most their grads get good residencies, even though 60-70% go for FP and IM, rest enters surgery, psych, etc..
    Their excellent match results are readily available through internet.
    My own darling wife just finished MS-2 at AUC, and is now starting her USA clinicals.
    Besyonek's Comment #5 is absolute BS, he doesn't know much about IMG's. I do.
    PS. My wife had several friends at AUC, and some of their fathers are practicing doctors in USA.
    If you decide on going to Caribbean, I can tell you more.
    Good luck in your medical career,
    Andre Houston 281-554-4524 weekends only.
     
  9. davril

    davril Junior Member
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    besyonek,

    what schools should i apply to. private shcools aren't going to give me a chance and my state's school will not either. if other states are like mine they will not consider out of state applicants unless they are alot more outstanding applications then mine.

    does it really matter when you get your application in unless it is after the due date. i thought all the med-schools did not have a rolling acceptance anyway. besides i also thought that the schools don't make their final decision until all applications that will be considered are in. for example my state school has a 1st cut in dec. for exceptional students, another in jan. and then they decide on the remaining spots and the alternats in feb and everyone will recieved their letter (if they are lucky in dec and jan) on acceptance, alternate, or denial after that.

     
  10. TQL

    TQL Member
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    Davril,

    I was in similiar situation like you last year. I have good GPA, good volunteer experience and good letters, the only thing that I needed was good MCAT. I took Kaplan review class and did well in the practice tests, but I didn't do well on real MCAT. I think the pressure I felt made me so nervous. I only got 24. I applied to both DO and MD schools. I ddin't make the MCAT cut-off at most MD schools. I got a few interviews at DO schools and got accepted to three schools. I think DO schools look at your application as a whole and don't have a cut-off for GPA or MCAT. I'm glad to be accepted and will attend one school this Fall. To me, both MD and DO schools will give you good education and a chance to pratice medicine. I think you should apply early to more schools (both MD and DO). To select the right school to apply to,you can look at the statistics from AACOMAS and AAMC for out-of-state applicants. Good luck!
     
  11. nontradstudent

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    As what I know, most medical schools have rolling admission. The earlier you apply, the better chance you have. I recommend you to look at DO schools. They review your whole application and tend to accept well-rounded applicants like you. Don't let your MCAT bothers you. I was accepted to DO schools with similiar credentials.
     
  12. davril

    davril Junior Member
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    is this wrong? i was lead to believe that the DO schools require (or look very highly upon) you to have recommendations from other DO doctors.

    also what other post-bac stuff can i do. i already have a masters in biochem and i am tired of taking classes that seem to be getting me nowhere. (i also took several unrequired classes that i thought would benefit me for med-school in both undergrad and grad) don't get me wrong i love the science courses (especially anything having to do with viruses) but it feels like i am spinning my wheels and getting further away from doing exactly what i want to do-become a doctor. i had over 125 h of science and math as an undergrade with 5 graduate level courses and as a graduate i have 45 h. all because i wanted to take for my benefit when i get in med-school.
    everybody keeps telling me get a phd do research since i have so much background and a descent cv, but they don't understand that i want to be a doctor that takes care of and talks to their patients not sitting at a bench all day talking to pipets or epi-tubes and especially not writing grants. that is just not what i want to do.
     
  13. TQL

    TQL Member
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    Davril,

    I got exactly the same advice last year when I was unsuccessfully getting admission to medical schools. I talked to a lot of advisors and they told me that people usually take more classes (post-bac or gad level science courses), do more volunteer work, or retake MCAT... to improve application. They recommended me to retake MCAT and do some more volunteer work. I followed their recommendations and got accepted this year.
    I think you should continue your volunteer work, talk to DOs and learn more about osteopathic medicine. If you're interested in osteopathic medicine, you can shadow a DO for a few months and ask for letter later. You'd have a chance to learn more about osteopathic medicine as well as getting good recommendations. You can take some more classes, but I don't think you should take post-bac classes.
    If you want to talk more about his, email me.
     
  14. WYDO

    WYDO Junior Member
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    I almost feel as if I'm looking back on my past while reading your post, Davril. Coming from a state that does not have a medical school, my only options were to apply to out-of-state and private schools. My grades were good, 3.5 gpa, and my MCAT great, 30 total. Yet, my first year, i was granted one interview (wait list) and the rest were rejections (15 others). My second year, after trying to improve my MCATS (another 30, advice from wait list school), I was granted another interview at a different school than the first year. Another rejection and the first year interviewing school did not even interview me again. I was about to give up and go to grad school to get a phd in embryology. Then I found out about osteopathic medicine (I'm from WY, total 23 D.O., none in my college town.) I was worried because all the D.O. schools said that they wanted D.O. letters of recommendation.
    After reading more about osteopathic medicine (about 2 months worth of research on the subject), i completely fell in love with the field and decided to find a D.O. near me to shadow. I found one, applied immediately, and was accepted to my first choice of schools and had two other interviews which I did not go to. The difference was;
    1. It is a private school
    2. They looked at my whole application, not just my grades and MCAT.
    3. I did a lot of research on the subject and was able to answer questions about why I wanted to be a Doctor and why I choose Osteopathy.
    Just Keep trying, and don't close any doors. Apply to a many schools as possible (both M.D. and D.O. if you want).
    Many residents I know (both M.D. and D.O.) have told me that they applied for more than 2 or 3 years and finally got into U.S. schools. They keep saying, "In Medicine, Persistance is the key." Great advice if you ask me.
    Good luck and don't give up.
     

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