11 C's, 6 years undergrad, 3.5 gpa

I am a URM global biology graduate with sgpa of 3.38 and cgpa of 3.57, 513 MCAT. Due to many family circumstances [such as taking care of my brother who went through addiction and getting him back into school, my mother who has an untreated mental illness, experiencing a year of homelessness, etc], I have gone to 3 different colleges (due to needing to move to become closer to my family and financial reasons) resulting in 6 years of undergrad and receiving 11 C’s in main science courses such as chemistry, biochemistry, genetics, etc. In the last year of my coursework, I only took science courses in an attempt to boost my GPA. I had A+s in many of those science courses, such as Entomology, and an upward trend in my last 60 units. I have never received a C- or failed any courses. After that, I could not take any more courses for undergraduate, because I capped at 250 units.

I have very good extracurricular stats with:
-1,403 hours clinical [chair position at a student-run clinic, EKG technician, emergency radiology intern, front-desk for cardiology department]
-290 hours shadowing [cardiology, surgery, infectious disease]
-991.5 hours non-clinical [community service award at my university for my work with the URM community for empowerment and public health interventions]
-2,783 hours working [homeless shelter, and event planner]
-1,218 paid teaching [science museum]
-1,560 paid research hours [dermatology lab with 1 pub as second author, 3 poster presentations: 2 at an international conference and 1 at a cancer conference]

I understand I have an excess amount of activity hours, which is a red flag compared to my lower GPA’s and 11 C’s. However, I had no other option but to pull payroll for my family working full-time [many times picking up excess shifts on-top of that] and to be a role model for my brother [I really wanted to show my brother that if I could do it, he could do it too]. Disclaimer: I did beg the schools for financial help and even cal fresh but I was constantly turned down, so I just kept chuggin’ :frowning:

Right now, I am taking a gap year to work. When graduating, I did not have enough money for the application process and I did not qualify for fee assistance. Do you guys think I have a chance for this next year cycle? Or will I need to do a masters or post-bacc? When I talk to my school counsellors, they all laugh and tell me I have no shot because of my low gpa and many C’s. I am really crossing my fingers that this isn’t the case.

I know this is long, but thank you for taking the time to read and help! I really do appreciate everything and I am very thankful for this community. It continues to inspire me everyday :slight_smile:

Hello!

I have not applied to Medical School yet but being in a position that is far worse than yours (lower cumulative GPA, 8 years to graduate, no success shadowing especially now, 4 years out of school, 2 kids and a FT job that has no set schedule) I have done A LOT of research on the topic and have spoken with a lot of schools and a few consultants on this topic. Given my focus has been DO schools because I really like the philosophy and have an interest in family medicine, So take this for whatever its worth. If you aren’t on SDN yet I’d recommend checking out Goros post on re-invention. In your case your ECs are stellar and I honestly don’t think your GPA is terrible. I’ve also read that DO schools are more accepting of re-invention that MD schools are, have you considered the DO route?

From what I have gathered from your post you got all or almost all Cs on your pre-reqs (orgo, gen chem, bio, biochem)? Cs in Pre-reqs will not look good. Have you considered doing a DIY post bacc and retaking all the pre-reqs you’ve gotten a C in? Just my opinion but a formal post bacc seems a bit overkill for your situation and the more expensive route to take. Given you are working FT like I am it will be difficult but a DIY would consist of a full time load for at least 2 semesters, maybe 3 in your position if you have 11 Cs and they are pre-reqs. Getting As in all of those would be the first step if you go the DIY route.

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I really appreciate your input and time to read my post! Thank you so much for the great feedback. I have started looking into the DO route, and you have given me a lot to think about. Seriously thanks for all your help!

side note, front desk duty and holding a chair position at clinics/medical offices don’t really count as clinical hours for the amcas, just letting you know so that it doesn’t hurt you later!!

Thanks for letting me know. I worked with patients, took vitals, etc. It was a student run clinic so I actually worked in the clinic. I was trying not to make the post longer than it needed to be, but also give a sense of my experiences along with expressing my leadership in them. I appreciate the heads-up for the front-desk position :slight_smile: I’ll take that off and put another of my activities there :))))

Thanks again for the note!

Thanks for letting me know. I worked with patients, took vitals, etc. It was a student run clinic so I actually worked in the clinic. I was trying not to make the post longer than it needed to be, but also give a sense of my experiences along with expressing my leadership in them. I appreciate the heads-up for the front-desk position :slight_smile: I’ll take that off and put another of my activities there :))))

Thanks again for the note!