Columbia post-bac...what are my chances?

Hi All, I’m new here and looking for advice. Basically I’m planning to apply to Columbia’s post bac this fall but my story is complicated and I’m wondering if anyone can tell me what chance I have of being accepted.

I graduated from San Francisco State in 2005 with a 3.49 gpa dual majoring in psychology and art. My concentration was physiological psyc and after graduating went into clinical psyc working at a psychiatric counseling center for youth and children in california. I then moved to New York and took a job in finance for salary reasons, but left that job 3 years later to be a stay at home with my infant.

So you might be saying okay you have a pretty good chance but here are my skeletons…freshman year I suffered from anxiety and depression. I finished the year with a 2.6 but sophmore year I withdrew from all classes. I then left school for 2 years before returning to a 3.2 gpa year. Just when I was starting to build momentum, I got booted out for 1 semester because I had not fufilled a math requirement. So I took the class at a JC getting an A++ and that’s when I had a total turnaround. Having long since conquered all of my anxiety & depression I decided to major in psych to help others do the same. I returned to my 4 yr school to 3 solid years of dean’s list and 3.7-3.9 gpa etc. Working my butt off, sometimes taking 22 units at a time.

So now I’m 30 and a happily married mom and contemplating columbia’s post bac as my next step towards an eventual career in psychiatry (or pediatric psychiatry) and wondering what are the chances they will look at my backround favorably? Will they just look at my 3.49 cumulative and my personal statement or will they eye the details of my undergrad record with suspicion?

Additional facts: the only science I had was freshman year bio (got a B). Math always As. My high school GPA was 3.1 and SAT 1160.

PM’ing you now …

I am in the post-back program at Columbia and think you have a great chance of getting in. But it would be worth your time to explore all of the options available to you in NYC and talk to students in both programs. Personally, I really like the program. It is very challenging. But I so know lots of people who feel that it would have been easier to go to a less competitive school. Because everything is curved, and it is a fairly selective program, you are literally “competing” with some very strong students for the high grades in the class. I did extremely well in my undergrad, and have a masters from Columbia, and still find that the courses are insanely rigorous. Also, it is very expensive. In the end, it all depends on what you feel would help you get into the MD program you want to get into.

I’m not sure how to message on this site, but send me a note if you want any more info on the program.

PS - by “both programs” above, I meant Columbia and the programs at CUNY.

Hey! Guess what I had a similar story. I had bad depression during college due to a number of external circumstances and I did graduate with a 3.4 but I had a couple of Withdraws that I fear don’t look too good. Sometimes I really doubt myself with this whole medicine thing because although I KNOW I can do it, I really feel that colleges only look at your grades and if I defend myself my excuse isn’t really a great one, not like I was in the military or took care of my sick mom. But I’m going to try anyway…

Columbia is all gunners. And way too expensive considering the debt you’ll go into going to med school. If you are already extremely strong in the hard sciences, can deal with administrators who see you as a stat, ready to drop you when you’re not showing yourself to be a good stat, and have a trust fund, do it. Otherwise, not worth it, IMHO. I was there for undergrad, had started premed there, and was totally dispirited by the attitude of my premed advisors there. A friend of mine, who was told by the Columbia premed advisor that she would not get in anywhere, got into Robert Wood Johnson-UMDNJ.

Hunter is a supportive community, ivy-league level education, cheap, and tons of postbaccs get into top schools. It is also viewed as a top postbacc program by med admissions officers. I have been extremely happy with my experience there, esp as compared to my experience at Columbia.