I am new here and I am just reading all the wonderful posts. This is such a wonderful website. I just wanted to give a little background and see if anyone can help me. I am a nurse and I am 32 years old. I just decided that I wanted to go to med school after 14 yrs. I was pre-med back then but I had my son and life happened. Well I decided to do nursing and it is not what I want at all. My gpa back then was not really good at all being a single mother, working and trying to go to school. Anyway, with my nursing and my other schooling it is about a 2.8. I am doing Physics I, Bio I and Chem 2 now. I plan on taking Orgo I and Physics II and Bio II in Spring 08 and tackle Orgo II in the summer. I wanted to take my MCAT’s in the summer time right after orgo II. I am studying for the MCATs now as well. Anyway, because of my low gpa, I wanted to try to do a Special Masters Program. Can I apply to med school for 2009 and try to get into a masters program in Fall 2008. Will med schools still accept my application when I am still doing a 1 year masters program??? Any input will help me… Thanks!
I’m not sure why you would do a Special Master’s Program WHILE you are applying to med school. I don’t know that much about how those programs work, but it’s been my impression that one of their main purposes was to buff up your application so that you could present a competitive application. If instead you’d be submitting your application before really diving into the SMP, what would be the point?
Med school isn’t going anywhere. You sound like you’re in a hurry, and I appreciate how you feel that way, but it is better to do this very deliberately so that you don’t have to repeat any of the steps. If at all possible, you only want to take the MCAT and do the application once, because both those things are a royal pain in the a$$.
Tell us a little more about your timeline and what you’re thinking and – as you know if you’ve been checking out this site for awhile – we’ll give you our thoughts if you’re ready!
This is why I am asking about the SMP and why I was confused about the timeline. I saw on studentdoctor.net that some people were still in the SMP program and had applied to med school and the med school were waiting for their last transcript. I did not know if this was really the correct way of doing it or not. I really wanted to apply next year for 2009 admittance. I am somewhat a little behind like I said before because I was supposed to do this 14 yrs ago. But I don’t know if I should do the SMP or just take more advanced undergraduate classes. This is my question.
It’s not usual to do the special master’s while applying, but some people do. I think the first thing I’d like you to think about is that you can’t have those 14 years back. Don’t make yourself nuts trying to “catch up”. Rushing can cause you to mess up in your classes or burn out. Try to set a reasonable pace for yourself. If you do well in your prerequisites, I think taking advanced science classes like biochem can help you as much as a special master’s program. See how things go this semester (I hope you’re not working while taking that courseload!) and then decide what to do next year.
I started med school at 42 and I’m the oldest one in my class. And you know what? No one cares.
Take your time and try to enjoy the journey as much as you can. Every step!
Thank you very much samenewme. I think I will do that instead of applying to a SMP. I just wanted different opinions because although I do read the forums, it is just so many responses people have for different circumstances and I figured I should just post mine to see what responses I get. I am working full time as well. I run the special medical program for children with special needs. It is hard, but I think when I take more advance classes I will work per diem in the hospital.
Well, if you can handle that courseload while working full time, you’re smarter than I am! Good luck!
- RNNursetoDOC Said:
You may have been seeing conversations about SMPs with linkage programs. I don't know a ton about these but basically, you take a year-long program at the end of which you are guaranteed admission to one of the linked medicine programs if you achieve a certain GPA and MCAT. It is NOT easy to do.
To gain admission in 2009, you need to be thinking *now* about a whole lot of stuff related to applying next year (schools to apply to, letters of recommendation, etc.). Make sure you are thinking ahead and planning carefully. There are a lot of steps in this process and rushing any one of them could set you back a whole year.
Something to consider: yes, you do have a sub-par GPA from way back when, and nothing is going to change that. If you apply next summer, will you have accumulated enough stellar credits from recent coursework to overshadow that old stuff? You can't average in just a few new courses and expect it to budge the GPA much, but you can make sure the new grades are top-notch. If you are going to apply with just a few semesters of science courses, and incomplete prereqs (e.g. applying at the beginning of the summer when you plan to take o-chem over the summer, more on that in a minute), you have NO room for anything but As on these prereqs. I don't say that to put pressure on you, just to point out how your tight timeline IS putting pressure on you.
O-chem in the summer is pretty tough and will consume ALL your time. Add work hours and MCAT prep to that and whoa, that's intense.
I am NOT telling you that your timeline is too tight, because each individual can do different things, but it is one that would've made me uncomfortable. Good luck!
Thanks for the advice. I know it is really hard to bring up my gpa. The 2.8 is with my BSN and my BSN grades were a 3.5. I have other stuff such as A&P I and II and Micro which I got A’s in. But even if I take 12 classes it won’t even bring it up to a 2.95. It is horrible having too many credits can do to someone. I have to try to take some more upper level sciences to show that I can handle the work. I tell you how I was then and how different with studying I am now is a big difference. Plus I have more support with my children. It makes a difference about the time I have to study. I am taking all that you say and heed your advice. Thanks to you and samenewme for the advice. Off to Physics class!!!