Discouraged and in need of a plan

I met with our school’s premed advisor today and had to hear out loud what I knew was true, that is that my chances of going to med school are nearly impossible because of my GPA.

I have over 130 hours of college credits with a 2.0 GPA. I’m just starting back this semester after a 2 years break with the goal of a 4.0 from here out. I’m finishing my 4 classes for my finance degree then starting my prereqs this fall. I know it’s an extreme uphill battle, but I’d like to think there’s at least a decent chance that a med school will look at my GPA after starting back and give me a shot, assuming I have a good MCAT to back it up. I got the idea that the advisor felt I’m just wasting my time though (not that I wouldn’t think any different looking at my past GPA).

So basically now I need to work for about 3 more years to raise my GPA, making all or almost all A’s. I’m excited about doing that. But, because I have so many hours from my past college experience about the best I can do in 3 years is improve my overall GPA to about a 2.65.

Would at least some schools look at my application at that time and say, “Okay this guy did pretty bad, but he took a few years off and now for the past 3 years he’s made all A’s. Yes his overall GPA is still not good at a 2.65, but his science GPA is a 3.8 and his MCAT is a 32 (±2), and he has over 500 hours volunteering in an ER, we’ll take him?” Is that even possible or am I dreaming?

Thanks for your alls help and advice!!!

If you haven’t read the stories at this site - OldManDave’s in particular, as he had an even lower GPA when he was asked to leave his UG institution - I’d strongly recommend it.

The answer is I think what you already know: yes, it’s going to be hard, and yes, it’s possible.

I took my MCAT this past August. The day before I took it, I found out I hadn’t gotten into a particularly competitive class at my post-bacc school (Clinical Gross Anatomy, only class with a longer waitlist than enrollment list). I was really motivated for this class, was literally the first person to put my name on the list, and so I was disappointed to find I didn’t get in.

The Chair of the college was nice enough to meet with me to answer a few questions. Not only did she tell me that I didn’t get in because of my meager GPA (2.5 when I graduated, probably up to about 2.8 at that point) - but…

Well, she was very sweet about it. But she looked at my GPA, looked at me, and said “You want to get into an allopathic school with that GPA? Good luck!”

I took the MCAT the next day, and I’m now fortunate enough to have multiple allopathic acceptances. My UG GPA was similarly crappy, and even 2 years of 4.0 postbacc only brought it up to something like 3.05.

To make a long story short (though I suspect I’m far too late) - you’re damn right it’s possible. Now go face the beast and kick its butt >:D.

Congrats on your multiple acceptances! And, thanks for the great reply, that’s really inspiring! I’m really greatful for this website. Without all of these inspiring stories from others who have done or are doing what I want to do I’d probably be tempted to give up. I really appreciate the advice and information everyone here gives.

Thanks again!!!

RB -

I’d just like to echo what Adam said. Yes, it’s possible. My ugrad GPA wasn’t quite so low (2.7ish), but I also had multiple allopathic acceptances. My combined GPA was just over a 3.0 after getting nearly a 4.0 in the pre-reqs.

The problem with most pre-med advisors is that they aren’t used to dealing with non-traditional students. So, they can only advise you based on what they know. For a traditional student, your GPA would probably be a death knell. However, MOST med schools WILL look at your entire academic record and give you some consideration if you have done extremely well in recent coursework, indicating that your prior GPA was more a matter of immaturity than ability. You may have to do some calling to get schools who have screening cutoffs to look at your application, but I have heard of people who did so and ended up getting not only interviews, but acceptances with a GPA lower than the school’s typical “cut-off”.

Good luck!

I think I would have to agree with the group as well. I had a horrible Undergrad experience graduating with a 2.06 from my bachelor’s degree at Va. Tech. I started back at George Mason in 2005 and spoke frankly with the pre-health advisor. He told me it will be tough and that I need to prove that I have the academic ability to do this.

I chose to get another degree completely with a BS in Biology and a minor in chemistry. I am taking the chance to take biochemistry I & II as well as Histology and Immunology. It can be done if you are willing to fight for it. Just stay focused and do the best you can in everything.

Yes, it can be done - with a lot of hard work. Med schools do look at a gpa trendline, and now you want yours to be straight up. :slight_smile: