MingLee

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Hey fellow forum-ers!!~* I have a situation that I need advice/help on... I am new to this website.. and it has helped me significantly in relations to PHARM D issues. :) This is my first year applying to the School of Pharmacy...I applied to a total of 12 schools... :rolleyes: and 4 of them I got invited for an interview ( and from 4 interviews: 1 reject, 2 alternate list, and 1 I haven't heard from) ... and I am assuming that the schools that I didn't hear from ... would be consider as rejected as well... I am soooo sadd.... :confused: but I just don't know where I went wrong.... here's a little more about me...

GPA: 3.45 cum (sci: 3.2) (math:3.1)
PCAT: Oct (57%) Nov (64%) Jan (78%)

- I have lots of experience in a pharmacy
- excellent recommendations
- possess most of the skills a RX students should have
- finished most of my pre-reqs ( 2 courses in progress )
- strong personal statement

........I am emotionally struggling through this :( .... I wonder if was my PCAT score that did it?....(and would it make me look badd by taking it an additional time?)... or it is because I came from a community college?.... No idea!!~* Anyhow... any additional information, thoughts, opinions, advice would greatly be appreciated....

By the way.. If everything doesn't go well this year... my backup plan is to attend a university to obtain my BS in chemistry and try to re-apply... and hopefully strengthen my weaknesses.... ( good luck to everyone in the same position as me)...

Please respond and tell me what you think...... :)
 

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MingLee said:
Hey fellow forum-ers!!~* I have a situation that I need advice/help on... I am new to this website.. and it has helped me significantly in relations to PHARM D issues. :) This is my first year applying to the School of Pharmacy...I applied to a total of 12 schools... :rolleyes: and 4 of them I got invited for an interview ( and from 4 interviews: 1 reject, 2 alternate list, and 1 I haven't heard from) ... and I am assuming that the schools that I didn't hear from ... would be consider as rejected as well... I am soooo sadd.... :confused: but I just don't know where I went wrong.... here's a little more about me...

GPA: 3.45 cum (sci: 3.2) (math:3.1)
PCAT: Oct (57%) Nov (64%) Jan (78%)

- I have lots of experience in a pharmacy
- excellent recommendations
- possess most of the skills a RX students should have
- finished most of my pre-reqs ( 2 courses in progress )
- strong personal statement

........I am emotionally struggling through this :( .... I wonder if was my PCAT score that did it?....(and would it make me look badd by taking it an additional time?)... or it is because I came from a community college?.... No idea!!~* Anyhow... any additional information, thoughts, opinions, advice would greatly be appreciated....

By the way.. If everything doesn't go well this year... my backup plan is to attend a university to obtain my BS in chemistry and try to re-apply... and hopefully strengthen my weaknesses.... ( good luck to everyone in the same position as me)...

Please respond and tell me what you think...... :)
Did you apply to any schools that don't require the PCAT? If those schools are rejecting you as well, then you would know it's not just your PCAT score. Your PCAT probably is hurting you if the schools put a lot of weight on it, especially since you have taken it 3 times and have not scored over 80% yet. I would advise buying the Kaplan PCAT review book, it has a great review for the biology and chemistry sections while other review books only have sample questions. You really need to score in the 90's if you take the exam again, so you really need to study hard for at least 2 months, maybe 3.
 

28657

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It's only the first of March, just relax! :) Your stats sound ok.....at least ok enough to get more interviews than you have so far. The other schools will definitely contact you. Maybe it's a good sign that they haven't contacted you yet. Just give it a little more time. I was one of the first to be accepted to the school I go to and I got my acceptance letter April 1.
If you don't get accepted this time around, I think it would be a good idea for you to get a B.S. in chemistry. Also, you should try to study a little harder for the PCAT. A little bit of studying = a big return.
Do you currently attend a community college?
 

dgroulx

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I think getting your bachelor's is a wise decision. Your math/science GPA is marginal and your PCAT scores are not good. I think it's the only way that you'll have a shot.

Is there a limit on the number of times you can take the PCAT? I thought it was 3, but if there is no limit then take it again after you've done some studying for it.
 

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dgroulx said:
I think getting your bachelor's is a wise decision. Your math/science GPA is marginal and your PCAT scores are not good. I think it's the only way that you'll have a shot.

Is there a limit on the number of times you can take the PCAT? I thought it was 3, but if there is no limit then take it again after you've done some studying for it.
They only give them 3 times a year, by year that means the 2004-2005 is for admission in fall 2005 & 2005-2006 is for admission in fall 2006. The first test date for 2005-2006 is in June (?) somebody correct me if I'm wrong. A classmate of mine already registered for his.

Actually, should that be another topic? Do admissions committees view it negatively if you've taken the PCAT more than once, since Harcourt reports ALL your scores, ever, when they send score reports???
 

28657

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It's not necessarily true that adcoms would view multiple PCAT scores negatively. However, getting in the 90s on the third try would definitely be less impressive than getting in the 90s on the first try.
 

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I think it depends on what school you contact. I know Shendoah does not negatively if you retook the exam long as you are increasing. MCV will not count how many times you have taken it, but the highest in each individual section. So it would beneficial to take the exam over, unless you have a 99 composite lucky people
 

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In addition to what others have said if you aren't accepted anywhere this year I would contact some of the schools (especially those where you interviewed) and ask how you could improve your application for next year. Then try to take the advice given.
 
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MingLee

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Bob_Barker27 said:
Did you apply to any schools that don't require the PCAT? If those schools are rejecting you as well, then you would know it's not just your PCAT score. Your PCAT probably is hurting you if the schools put a lot of weight on it, especially since you have taken it 3 times and have not scored over 80% yet. I would advise buying the Kaplan PCAT review book, it has a great review for the biology and chemistry sections while other review books only have sample questions. You really need to score in the 90's if you take the exam again, so you really need to study hard for at least 2 months, maybe 3.

Hey Bob... Thanks for the advice hunn... All of the schools that I applied to required PCAT.... so there's no way out of it... and thanks for reccommending me to the KAPLAN... but I will be taking a prep class in preparation for the next pcat testing.. My only problem is that my verbal and reading are extremely low.... and the rest is good.... here are my stats....


Chemistry = 95
Quant = 92
Biology = 85
Verbal = 45
Reading = 18

Overall Composite = 78%

its kinda hard having english to be my second language... but I really need to keep focus... Hopefully i will get where I want to be.......
 
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MingLee

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AmandaRxs said:
It's only the first of March, just relax! :) Your stats sound ok.....at least ok enough to get more interviews than you have so far. The other schools will definitely contact you. Maybe it's a good sign that they haven't contacted you yet. Just give it a little more time. I was one of the first to be accepted to the school I go to and I got my acceptance letter April 1.
If you don't get accepted this time around, I think it would be a good idea for you to get a B.S. in chemistry. Also, you should try to study a little harder for the PCAT. A little bit of studying = a big return.
Do you currently attend a community college?
Thanks for the hopes hunn.... yes i am currently attending a Community college (which sucks ) because it makes me feel weak.... but anyhow... yeah... I hope the BS in Chemisty will work for me... Congrats on ur acceptance last year... How is school going 4 u so far?... yeah.... PCAT may be one of my issues... I definitely have to work on my verbal & reading....
 
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MingLee

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off2skl said:
In addition to what others have said if you aren't accepted anywhere this year I would contact some of the schools (especially those where you interviewed) and ask how you could improve your application for next year. Then try to take the advice given.

Hey off2skl, thanks for the advice... TRUST me... I have contacted them... and try to ask them WHY.....they don't seem to be giving me a st8 answer... all I get is "too competive this year, we had an outstanding number of applicants.. blah blah.... " I only wished they would take time out to explain...
 
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MingLee

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dgroulx said:
I think getting your bachelor's is a wise decision. Your math/science GPA is marginal and your PCAT scores are not good. I think it's the only way that you'll have a shot.

Is there a limit on the number of times you can take the PCAT? I thought it was 3, but if there is no limit then take it again after you've done some studying for it.

Hey dgroulx... I understand that my PCAT isn't competive enuff... but its kinda strange... b/c I knew someone who got admitted to RX school this year.... and only had scored 70%.... which sucks... where was I when that happened?... anyways.... hopefully I get a chance to improve.... and also.. I never knew there was a limit for PCAT... but I know that if each time I am incresing then... it maybe impressive to them.... anyhow... wish me luck......
 

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MingLee:
Did the 12 schools you applied to have strong(er) applicant pools (i.e. California, East Coast?). If so, and if you have to reapply (let's hope not...you're back-up sounds like a wise option though), try to apply to some "easier" schools - i.e. one's with a smaller (or the smallest) applicant pool. Your GPA and PCAT aren't bad and you should be considered for admission at many schools. I hope the schools see your high scores in chem, bio, and math. Hope you get good news soon! Don't be discouraged.
-skp :thumbup:
 

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MingLee said:
Hey Bob... Thanks for the advice hunn... All of the schools that I applied to required PCAT.... so there's no way out of it... and thanks for reccommending me to the KAPLAN... but I will be taking a prep class in preparation for the next pcat testing.. My only problem is that my verbal and reading are extremely low.... and the rest is good.... here are my stats....


Chemistry = 95
Quant = 92
Biology = 85
Verbal = 45
Reading = 18

Overall Composite = 78%

its kinda hard having english to be my second language... but I really need to keep focus... Hopefully i will get where I want to be.......
Hey MingLee,
You seem to write English fairly well, so I'm surprised you did so low on reading and verbal. I had almost the exact opposite result of you on each section of the PCAT except for biology. Here was my PCAT breakdown:

Verbal Ability = 84
Biology= 83
Reading Comprehension = 99
Quantitative Ability = 55
Chemistry = 52
Composite = 86

I'm not sure you really need to take the PCAT again since you scored high on the science and math sections, and those are the hardest sections for most students. What I would do if I were you is to sign up for an English as a Second Language class and maybe a vocabulary course of some sort. If you are having trouble speaking English in the interviews, that is probably hurting you more than your PCAT or GPA. I hope this helps, and best of luck.
 
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MingLee

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Bob_Barker27 said:
Hey MingLee,
You seem to write English fairly well, so I'm surprised you did so low on reading and verbal. I had almost the exact opposite result of you on each section of the PCAT except for biology. Here was my PCAT breakdown:

Verbal Ability = 84
Biology= 83
Reading Comprehension = 99
Quantitative Ability = 55
Chemistry = 52
Composite = 86

I'm not sure you really need to take the PCAT again since you scored high on the <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=science&v=56">science</a> and math sections, and those are the hardest sections for most students. What I would do if I were you is to sign up for an English as a Second Language class and maybe a vocabulary course of some sort. If you are having trouble speaking English in the interviews, that is probably hurting you more than your PCAT or GPA. I hope this helps, and best of luck.


Hey Bob... thanks for the compliment hunn... yes I may not sound like English is my 2nd language.. but I honestly really work hard on it... thats why I speak/write the way I do.... anyhow... your overall composite is fairly good... I wish u best of luck as well hunn.....

I just really need a GOOD studying TOOL for the verbal and reading part of the PCAT.... i need to target those two areas.... and I will be okay... :oops:
 

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if your verbal/reading scores are that low, it may just be plain difficult for you to improve quickly. unless you feel that you can improve your scores a lot, i would try looking into applying to schools that don't require the pcat.
 

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I think it's best to get your BS. Can anyone agree with me on this? Because I read some threads here and people said it's getting more and more competitive and Pharm schools are looking for students who will have their degree by the time they graduate. There should be a thread about community college transfers somewhere I think... :confused:
 
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MingLee

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DrEaMeRcHiCk said:
I think it's best to get your BS. Can anyone agree with me on this? Because I read some threads here and people said it's getting more and more competitive and Pharm schools are looking for students who will have their degree by the time they graduate. There should be a thread about community college transfers somewhere I think... :confused:

yea.. if nothing goes well for me.. than I am aiming for a BS (chemistry)... I am not sure ... but does it take 2 years to earn a BS as well?... a counselor I spoke to said I can get it within 1 year... since I already have 100+ credits.....???
 

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go with what your counselor says, since you have already completed the pharm requirements you're good to go with that and most of them cross over with a Chemistry BS anyways so it'll be only a matter of time before you have your BS. Don't sweat you should be fine... :) Good luck!
 

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I wouldnt completely trust your advisor. You should look up the requirements and make sure you are meeting them and taking the right courses. I have seen advisors make mistakes with course selection or not tell people they need to take this course. Make sure to look at the chemistry requirements online or in the course catalog, just to be safe. Is your counselor at the community college or the college you plan to attend. If not, try and speak with someone at the college about your credits transferring. All 100 credits may not transfer, schools have limits on what they will accept generally.
Andrea
 
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MingLee

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dontworry said:
I wouldnt completely trust your advisor. You should look up the requirements and make sure you are meeting them and taking the right courses. I have seen advisors make mistakes with course selection or not tell people they need to take this course. Make sure to look at the chemistry requirements online or in the course catalog, just to be safe. Is your counselor at the community college or the college you plan to attend. If not, try and speak with someone at the college about your credits transferring. All 100 credits may not transfer, schools have limits on what they will accept generally.
Andrea

Thanks andrea.. but yes... I got all this information from the School that i will be going to... but i will certainly double check again... :oops:
 

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Just to note one thing, someone mentioned that there is no real point to taking the PCAT again because your science and math scores are high. I really don't agree with that. Over the past several years there has been an increasing focus on patient couseling and the ability to communicate well with others. In part this is due to the fact that many of the previous graduating classes, while quite intelligent and knowlegable, had a high proportion of individuals that could not communicate this information to their patients due to poor english skills. As a result, there has been a much greater focus in accepting well rounded individuals that upon graduation will be able to effectively counsel their patients. With the increasingly large applicant pool, an admissions committee is far more likely to take somone with comparable or even a bit lower science scores as long as they have shown the ability to read, write, and communicate well in English.
 
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MingLee

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Tuck said:
Just to note one thing, someone mentioned that there is no real point to taking the PCAT again because your science and math scores are high. I really don't agree with that. Over the past several years there has been an increasing focus on patient couseling and the ability to communicate well with others. In part this is due to the fact that many of the previous graduating classes, while quite intelligent and knowlegable, had a high proportion of individuals that could not communicate this information to their patients due to poor english skills. As a result, there has been a much greater focus in accepting well rounded individuals that upon graduation will be able to effectively counsel their patients. With the increasingly large applicant pool, an admissions committee is far more likely to take somone with comparable or even a bit lower science scores as long as they have shown the ability to read, write, and communicate well in English.

Good Point Tuck... thanks.. but the only thing that I am concern about is that ... would schools look at me badd... if I took the PCAT sooo many times?.... will I get pentalized because of that?
 

eddie269

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Here is my opinion. Pharmacy school admissions to any school is almost cut throat competition. Every little thing can make you or break you. I have been consistently doing research for 2-3 yrs as far as the admissions process. I am finally applying this year with very low stats but I have a chance (I am waiting for my interview results).

Anyways, judging by your stats, I would have to say the culprit is your GPA. Sure 3.4 (3.1 and 3.2 sci and math or whatever) SOUNDS great, but you did get it at a community college. I took 4 yrs at UC Davis and did 80% of my pre-req's there and I am finishing up a few at JC's. And let me tell you, JC's are a joke. I worked literally 1/3 as hard as I did at UC Davis and I still got an A easily. I work my butt off at UC Davis and end up with mostly B and B-'s. Hence my science GPA is horrid (2.8-ish) but the effort was there. (I can't complain because I know many of my UCD classmates still got those A's and set the curve :mad: ). And if people get mad and say "o-chem is o-chem, whats' the difference? They teach the same things, right?" Well, sure, but they TEST differently. And that is a fact. And the Adcom's for every pharm school knows this.

My main point is, your PCAT is good, so is your experience and letters of rec I'm sure. However, if your whole JC career netted you a 3.4 GPA w/lower sci and math GPA's, that is what makes school think twice.

A wise man told me that if you attend a JC, you better be sure you are getting A's in majority of your classes. And in this day and age of pharm competition, a Bachelor's is definitely a HUGE plus.

But don't lose hope. There are still many schools that have yet to respond and you still have one interview result waiting. GOOD LUCK!
 

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MingLee said:
Hey fellow forum-ers!!~* I have a situation that I need advice/help on... I am new to this website.. and it has helped me significantly in relations to PHARM D issues. :) This is my first year applying to the School of Pharmacy...I applied to a total of 12 schools... :rolleyes: and 4 of them I got invited for an interview ( and from 4 interviews: 1 reject, 2 alternate list, and 1 I haven't heard from) ... and I am assuming that the schools that I didn't hear from ... would be consider as rejected as well... I am soooo sadd.... :confused: but I just don't know where I went wrong.... here's a little more about me...

GPA: 3.45 cum (sci: 3.2) (math:3.1)
PCAT: Oct (57%) Nov (64%) Jan (78%)

- I have lots of experience in a pharmacy
- excellent recommendations
- possess most of the skills a RX students should have
- finished most of my pre-reqs ( 2 courses in progress )
- strong personal statement

........I am emotionally struggling through this :( .... I wonder if was my PCAT score that did it?....(and would it make me look badd by taking it an additional time?)... or it is because I came from a community college?.... No idea!!~* Anyhow... any additional information, thoughts, opinions, advice would greatly be appreciated....

By the way.. If everything doesn't go well this year... my backup plan is to attend a university to obtain my BS in chemistry and try to re-apply... and hopefully strengthen my weaknesses.... ( good luck to everyone in the same position as me)...

Please respond and tell me what you think...... :)
Your science GPA (3.2) in community college is low. Your previous PCAT score (64%) is OK (as for a new immigrant). I surprise that you got so many interviews (up to 4!). You now have two alternates and an unknown. Your new PCAT score (78%) is so good (again as for a new immigrant). All of your science subtests are above 90%. I believe these three schools still haven’t received your new score yet. I do believe you now have a great hope for acceptances.

You now should write them a letter about your new score. You could say that as a new immigrant your two English subtests hurt your overall score. Your overall GPA (3.4) is very good and greater than your science GPA (3.2). It indicates you did well [English] on social and humanities studies (but you are an Asian!) Your new PCAT score backs up your low science GPA. You could bring up any of your achievements in your country.

MingLee said:
...
My only problem is that my verbal and reading are extremely low.... and the rest is good.... here are my stats....

Chemistry = 95
Quant = 92
Biology = 85
Verbal = 45
Reading = 18

Overall Composite = 78%

its kinda hard having english to be my second language... but I really need to keep focus... Hopefully i will get where I want to be.......
 

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Hey MingLee, i am attending COmmunity college too..and most of community college students I knew got into Pharmacy School (i.e. Howard, Temple, Massachusett Northeastern) ..anyway u really need Volunteer work girl! you need to volunteer at a hopistal!!! and im not saying all the people in here are wrong but the best thing u should do is GO VISIT THE SCHOOLS and talk to the Admission Office!! show them u really want to be in the school man...just dont sit and wait!! no good!! I'm sure you will get in man..I am from the East by the way!! holler...try to apply New Mexico..VERY less applicants pool and no PCAT requirement ^^
 
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MingLee

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CuRy said:
Your <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=science&v=56">science</a> GPA (3.2) in community <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=college&v=56">college</a> is low. Your previous PCAT score (64%) is OK (as for a new immigrant). I surprise that you got so many interviews (up to 4!). You now have two alternates and an unknown. Your new PCAT score (78%) is so good (again as for a new immigrant). All of your <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=science&v=56">science</a> subtests are above 90%. I believe these three <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=schools&v=56">schools</a> still haven’t received your new score yet. I do believe you now have a great hope for acceptances.

You now should write them a letter about your new score. You could say that as a new immigrant your two English subtests hurt your overall score. Your overall GPA (3.4) is very good and greater than your <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=science&v=56">science</a> GPA (3.2). It indicates you did well [English] on social and humanities studies (but you are an Asian!) Your new PCAT score backs up your low <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=science&v=56">science</a> GPA. You could bring up any of your achievements in your country.

Hey CuRy, thanks hunn I've already sent them a letter in regards to my new PCAT scores. Yes the two sub parts of the PCAT (reading/verbal) hurt my score. But hopefully the schools can reconsider me.... I hope my new scores can compensate for it. thanks for the advice!
 
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MingLee

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PharmDster said:
Hey MingLee, i am attending COmmunity <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=college&v=56">college</a> too..and most of community <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=college&v=56">college</a> students I knew got into <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=Pharmacy&v=56">Pharmacy</a> <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=School&v=56">School</a> (i.e. Howard, Temple, Massachusett Northeastern) ..anyway u really need Volunteer work girl! you need to volunteer at a hopistal!!! and im not saying all the <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=people&v=56">people</a> in here are wrong but the best thing u should do is GO VISIT THE SCHOOLS and talk to the Admission Office!! show them u really want to be in the <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=school&v=56">school</a> man...just dont sit and wait!! no good!! I'm sure you will get in man..I am from the East by the way!! holler...try to apply New <a href="http://www.ntsearch.com/search.php?q=Mexico&v=56">Mexico</a>..VERY less applicants pool and no PCAT requirement ^^

Hey PharmDster... coming from a Community college sucks hunn, I know that there is hope out there but.. but for them to really consider us we have to have competitive STATUS... so it can back us up as coming from a community college.... anyhow.. I wish u the best... Hopefully we can be like your friends and get accepted to the College of Pharmacy... =o)