Can I recover from this? Any advice/input would be appreciated!


I apologize for the lengthy post but thank you in advance for helping me out.

I recently graduated with a B.S in Biology with a minor in Applied Statistics with a very low GPA. Honestly, I did not build up study skills that were actually helpful to me until towards the end of my undergraduate career. At some point, I became too focused on building my ECs rather than my GPA. In terms of my GPA trend, I have an upward trend throughout my last two years of my undergraduate.

cGPA: 2.71
BCPM: 2.69

As of right now, I am planning to take some classes at the local community college to boost up my GPA to around 2.75/2.8 to apply to a formal Post-Bacc/SMPs in 2019. (Anatomy/Physiology Series and any additional classes I think might be interesting/helpful)

My general plan is to:
-Fall 2018 : A&P Part 1/3 + Sociology
-Winter 2018: A&P Part 2/3 + Additional Class
-Spring 2019: A&P Part 3/3 + Additional Class

  • Apply to Post Baccs in Jan 2019- June 2019 (any programs where I think would be a good fit for me/ meet GPA requirements)
  • Work on ECs: Volunteering at local clinic and community center. I am kind of starting from scratch because I moved back home after graduation.

Any advice/input would be appreciated.

How good is your GPA from your last two years, and how confident are you that your study skills have improved enough to get As from here on out? If you aren’t totally confident in your ability to ace your classes, you might want to consider taking a few years to work, get some life experience (maybe you have some–I interpreted your post to mean that you went straight from high school to college and just graduated), and improve your study skills. You can work on your study skills for free and without risking a hit to your GPA with courses on Coursera.

There’s a great podcast episode of a woman in a very similar boat who got into an MD school with a similar GPA! If you haven’t listened to it already, here it is: Search for episodes 261. Episode 263 profiles another low-GPA student. You’ll probably find some good advice in those episodes. Good luck!

Thank you so much for responding!

In terms of my GPA, I had a steady upward trend during my last two years of college. I went from a 2.5 to 2.76. There is a discrepancy in my GPA on my transcript compared to my AMCAS GPA because I have taken some GE classes at a local community college and I had to retake a class that I had received a D in during my second year. During the last two quarters, I ended up with a 3.5 and a 3.9 GPA for each quarter. I feel confident that I have improved my studying skills enough to ace my classes. I realized that I wasn’t actively learning/studying the material so my studying techniques has changed drastically. I will definitely check out Coursera to see if there is anything I can take as well as the podcasts!

I have been thinking about working for a while but I thought it might be best to focus on academia and volunteering at the local clinic so I won’t get too distracted. Also, yes, you are correct! I went straight to college right after high school. I have had some work experience but the only one work experience that was involved in the health care industry. I worked as a Department Coordinator where I was in charged of training (Tasks similar to a CNA/PCA) and supervising interns.

First, congrats on turning things around! I don’t see any reason that your plan wouldn’t work as long as the post-bacc programs you’re applying to–and med schools you’re considering–take CC credits. Some don’t, so just check. My only suggestion would be to add full-time work while you take your next year of classes. That should be possible if you’re only taking two classes, especially if you might be able to live at home. Work shows maturity and responsibility. Having work experience and learning to prioritize and manage my time really well (I worked in a deadline-driven industry) made me a better student. Others may have better suggestions for how to proceed. Best of luck to you.

I answer this on the podcast that comes out on 9/26- 145!

Thank you Dr. Gray! I can’t wait to hear your thoughts about my situation. I appreciate it!