NRAI2001

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THinking about defering before starting my smp. But I dont have any thing inparticular to do, besides party and relax.

Would you do with a year off if you could take a year off?
 

go lakers

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i'm taking a year off and plan to get a masters degree :)
 

sara3426

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thing to think about: a year off before your smp isn't a year off before med school, and it's another year that you would have to account for on your app. if you want a year off, it's better to take it if you defer, after you get in.
 
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Travel, maybe with the right funding. Otherwise I'd spend the entire year on SDN. :oops:
 

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sara3426 said:
thing to think about: a year off before your smp isn't a year off before med school, and it's another year that you would have to account for on your app. if you want a year off, it's better to take it if you defer, after you get in.

I agree. If you were in to a med school that would be a different story. But right now you still need to look like a gunner on your applications. Dominate your SMP year, get in, then defer.
 

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Mperor said:
I agree. If you were in to a med school that would be a different story. But right now you still need to look like a gunner on your applications. Dominate your SMP year, get in, then defer.
Agreed.

I've had enough years off just by the fact that I haven't gotten in yet. I'm ready to go now.

Get in first then think about relaxing...

NOTE: Any white out of state males, holding an EVMS seat, feel free to defer a year, I'll buy you a pizza.
 

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I don't recommend taking a year off just to party and relax. You may very well need to explain this to adcoms later. If your going to wait, do something productive that helps your application.
 

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Maybe if you attach some greater cause to your biking, like getting pledges for medical research or free public clinics. Otherwise I can't see it being much more than at most a few minutes worth of interview fodder. Be warned, a lot of secondary applications will make you explain what you've done since graduation and a few months of menial work and an extended vacation--no matter how much your sanity needs it--won't be that impressive.
 

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If you take a year off, go travel and volunteer somewhere, work in a hospital, work for a company, teach .....do whatever you need to do. Don't worry too much about what they ask you, just be honest about what you do. The only thing I would not recommend doing is sitting on the couch watching TV

If you need to run away to Cali to surf for a year, then do it. Just do something you are happy with, and try to do something that will allow you to relax and mature before medical school. I don't think you really need to "pad" your resume during your year off by doing the typical pre-med stuff. Do whatever comes natural to you or something you are passionate about- just make sure it is something you can fully explain and elaborate on when they ask you. Sometimes a yea off traveling around the world is more interesting to medical schools than staying in your home town working and volunteering.
 

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cbr said:
Would riding my bicycle across the U.S. and back be considered productive? Of course that wouldnt be the whole year only about 4-5 months, then I would work.

Thanks
I think this would be pretty cool actually. It might be like a "personal journey" for you. Don't worry, you have the rest of your life to be productive, and this 1 year could shape that rest of your life.
 

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cbr said:
I have always wanted to and in reality taking a year off before starting would be the only chance I would have to do it. I just hope the adcoms will understand.
Go for it! I think you are going to have great interviews, something different from the run-of-the-mill topics.

Plus, how can you start medical school being "unfulfilled" :)
 
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NRAI2001

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I wouldnt just sit around and do nothing. I would probably take a few classes each semester at the state school near to me (SF state) which wouldnt take too much time. But with my free time I could do other stuff.

I know an SMP isnt med school, but when your take 3 to 4 med school courses a quarter its pretty close to being in med school.
 

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I graduated this past May. Got my degree in 3 years, felt like I wanted a break from school, so I'm taking a year off. Since my degree is Econ, I started to apply for jobs after gradation to save up some money for med school. Had a few interviews, no offers 2 months after graduation. I stopped that, now I'm focusing on MCAT in August. After the MCAT is done, I'll apply to a few more jobs and probably volutneer some more at Habitat for Humanity (I enjoy that a lot actually). I would like to travel, but funds are currently too tight.
 

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Take a year off and do whatever you want, if you can afford to...no need to rush into med school, and don't listen to people who tell you that you always have to be doing something medicine-related.
 

drwannabe44

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what do residency programs really like to see??? maybe i can take my year off and do something to improve my chances of getting into a great residency program
 

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drwannabe44 said:
what do residency programs really like to see??? maybe i can take my year off and do something to improve my chances of getting into a great residency program
You're in the wrong forum for that question. That's a few more years down the road for us.
 

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Dr Durden said:
You're in the wrong forum for that question. That's a few more years down the road for us.

No i mean before med school if i take a year off....what should i do to impress the residency programs out there...ie research, volunteer etc?
 

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drwannabe44 said:
No i mean before med school if i take a year off....what should i do to impress the residency programs out there...ie research, volunteer etc?
residency programs wont care what you do with that year off really. what residencies WILL care for, are your step scores (step 1 is apparently the best indiciator), your clinical recommendations, and what your med grades are. Think of it this way...When you applied to med school, did they ask what you did between high school and college? But if they see that you didnt matriculate right away, and deferred they might ask why you did that. If you did something fantastic, great, but it wont put you over another applicant. A good reason is just an explanation of why they should consider you an equal to another applicant.

Stick with school and use your summers in between as your time off
 

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To the OP -

I guess the question is why you are doing a Post-bac program to begin with. If your GPA is low, then med schools can easily assume, right or wrong, that you did not work hard in undergrad. It then begs the question as to why you need more time off.

While taking classes during this upcoming year isn't a bad idea, it is essentially like doing a Post-bac program. I was able to work at a university doing research after undergrad, and then I was able to take classes at the school for free (free for undergrad classes, needed to pay the taxes on grad school courses).

Just remember, that if you are only taking a 'few' classes, you will NEED to get all A's (again, assuming your GPA is low), since all you have is 'free time' on your hands.

I suggest that whatever you do, go at it 100%. Don't do anything half-assed, as adcoms will see right through you.

Good luck!
 
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albinomidget said:
To the OP -

I guess the question is why you are doing a Post-bac program to begin with. If your GPA is low, then med schools can easily assume, right or wrong, that you did not work hard in undergrad. It then begs the question as to why you need more time off.

While taking classes during this upcoming year isn't a bad idea, it is essentially like doing a Post-bac program. I was able to work at a university doing research after undergrad, and then I was able to take classes at the school for free (free for undergrad classes, needed to pay the taxes on grad school courses).

Just remember, that if you are only taking a 'few' classes, you will NEED to get all A's (again, assuming your GPA is low), since all you have is 'free time' on your hands.

I suggest that whatever you do, go at it 100%. Don't do anything half-assed, as adcoms will see right through you.

Good luck!
My GPA is decent ~3.4 but I could probably bring it up a bit while still having some free time to do other things (travel, visit friends i havent seen in a while, joins some clubs, go out....).

I did take biochem at sf state and it was very easy compared to the courses I took at Berkeley. Its not like its a complete easy A, but its fairly straight forward and if you put in the time u ll get an A; where at Berkeley you can study an entire week before the exam and still end up getting a B.

I need to decide by tonight. :(
 

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NRAI2001 said:
I wouldnt just sit around and do nothing. I would probably take a few classes each semester at the state school near to me (SF state) which wouldnt take too much time. But with my free time I could do other stuff.

I know an SMP isnt med school, but when your take 3 to 4 med school courses a quarter its pretty close to being in med school.
what is an SMP?
 

Januine

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what is an SMP?
special masters program


Braluk said:
Stick with school and use your summers in between as your time off
Braluk: Are you talking about during medschools? Or before? In the OP case, do you recommend taking a year off?
I'm in a similar situation, GPA 3.5, BCPM 3.55, Good ECs, August MCAT, and wondering if I should wait a year to improve my apps (so that they see my senior year Courses + ECs too)...
 

laurenem

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my premed advisor suggested anyone with less than awesome grades freshman year should take a year off. By taking a year off, adcoms will see your senior year grades and be able to see that you actually have done well in school. If you don't take that year off and your freshman year grades aren't great then they only have 2 years of good grades to go by... Just something to keep in mind. Also taking a year off helps you with your ec's, gives you time to study for mcats, gives you time to write 23498732 gazillion essays :) and gives you time to mature before med school.
 

Januine

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laurenem said:
my premed advisor suggested anyone with less than awesome grades freshman year should take a year off. By taking a year off, adcoms will see your senior year grades and be able to see that you actually have done well in school. If you don't take that year off and your freshman year grades aren't great then they only have 2 years of good grades to go by... Just something to keep in mind. Also taking a year off helps you with your ec's, gives you time to study for mcats, gives you time to write 23498732 gazillion essays :) and gives you time to mature before med school.
I feel like most premed advisors say that. That's exactly what mine (kind of strongly) recommends (she didn't exactly said that but she keep repeating how she thinks that might be a preferrable option for me), that's why I'm torn between waiting and applying now...

I've heard that it's just that they all only want to help with the school stats...

i hope if I go ahead and apply still, she'd be okay with it, because i think my composite letter relies partly on her since I think she (either her or another committee head--hopefully) does the final editing (my interviewer of choice / faculty writes it though). If she doesn't approve of my decision, I hope she wouldn't do anything bad to my application? though i guess if we reasoning along this line, she'd still wish me well right?
 

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Januine said:
I feel like most premed advisors say that. That's exactly what mine (kind of strongly) recommends (she didn't exactly said that but she keep repeating how she thinks that might be a preferrable option for me), that's why I'm torn between waiting and applying now...

I've heard that it's just that they all only want to help with the school stats...

i hope if I go ahead and apply still, she'd be okay with it, because i think my composite letter relies partly on her since I think she (either her or another committee head--hopefully) does the final editing (my interviewer of choice / faculty writes it though). If she doesn't approve of my decision, I hope she wouldn't do anything bad to my application? though i guess if we reasoning along this line, she'd still wish me well right?
I would hope she wouldn't sabotage your lor :) I think advisors discourage any borderline apps (like myself) becasue they want their stats to be good, as you said. But on the other hand, using that same theory, once you decide to apply they're going to do everything in their power to get you into med school.
Look at your transcript from college and decide for yourself if you had a freshman year that was on par with the rest of your app. I knew for sure that mine was awful compared to the rest of my years and so it was cut and dry that I would wait another year. I am currently in that year off and I am really glad I did it... but its totally dependant on your own situation.
 
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