Here's my dilemma: I've worked the past few summers lifeguarding a beach. I love it. My time there has been the best part of my life so far. I didn't get into medical school this round. My MCAT was low, and my interview didn't go so well. I'm addressing the MCAT score with study and a Kaplan course this summer--I've got a plan, the beach won't distract me like it did last year (see the 24). And I'm shadowing so I'll have more to talk about at interviews. A relative of mine is an MD/PhD at an Ivy-league associated teaching hospital. Two years ago he offered me a position in his lab--a chance to get a name on a paper and a recommendation letter--possibly even a boost to my chances to get into the said ivy-league med school. I turned him down b/c I couldn't give up the beach. Now that I didn't get in, I'm giving it a second thought...but I still can't give up the beach! I wish I had never experienced it! Curses! My question: If I work with him in the fall, (Aug-Oct) will it still help get me an interview if he sends the LOR in with my secondaries sometime in late Oct? Or do I have to give up the beach and work in the lab all summer in order to get the LOR and secondaries in early enough for me to gain an interview? Help! My stats: MCAT 1: 11V, 8P, 7B MCAT 2: 9V, 7P, 8B GPA: 3.97 EC's: Volunteer at local Hispanic Center for 2yrs., leadership positions, shadowing, minor research - one publication, but on an online journal etc. I've sampled it all--well, most things.