Getting pre-reqs from more than one school

I work at a small high ranking liberal arts college which has a pre-med post-bac program, because of this, I am not permitted to take the classes that I would need in order to get my pre-reqs. Considering I don’t plan to start applying for another 3-4 years, I started working on the future required classes, like psychology. I can take upper level bio classes and chem classes here, but not the intro classes.

I am considering taking the intro classes at the local community college (not California) and taking upper level science classes here. I could, though I don’t want to, take the intro class at my alma mater at night, but the cost makes me want to avoid it, at 3K a pop. I have a family, 2 small kids and am paying 2 daycare bills right now. The classes I take at my current institution are free (except for books). The class at my alma mater would be about 3K for one class, which I just find insane.

I know I commented on other threads that I used to work for a med school, and I don’t have any old friends in that department that I could ask how this looks on an application. And I worked at an allopathic school, and am more interested in attending an osteopathic school myself.

Basically my question is, do you think it will reflect negatively with pre-reqs taken at two schools during the same time period? What if the intro classes taken at the intro level at a CC, and the upper level classes taken at the LA school? I could easily explain this in an interview, but I don’t want to be ruled out of the interview because a CC appears on my transcripts.

You are on the right track

The Persistent dilemma on CC vs. 4-year school often gets the FUD factor (fear, uncertainty and doubt) going in new oldpremeds. Very generally and overall applicants with CC college are perceived to have slightly worse odds than when directly compared to other applicants. Call this the school “prestige” factor.

However, this journey and marathon of being an oldpremed must have all factors taken into consideration

  1. there certainly have been many successful applicants with some or even all prereqs from CC, though again, odds are worse for them.

  2. The logistics of where to take classes (schedule, cost, geographic location, etc) must be taken into consideration. For example going to a better school that is further away and costs more gives not only adds financial stress but adds to your own personal energy stress, meaning less time to study.

  3. taking classes at two schools at same time does not present any issues or negative factors that I can see. Indeed, a comment in your narrative implying that you wanted to be a take so much you went to multiple schools to get what you needed to sounds like some nice motivation on your part.

  4. Having the upper level at a 4-year is what most people recommend to CC students. It is as important to show a continuous successful pattern from CC to 4 year to MCAT.

  5. an application is taken on as a whole and your GPA is as well. Having one piece in CC seems be at worst a minor negative. Imagine your application is a bunch of data points on an graph. Some are below and some are above the trend. It is much more important of the overall slope of the data line than underlying points. Doing well is much more important than where for most.

Thanks for your advice.

Funny thing is that I spent most of my adult career working in higher ed administration, where part of my benefits package was free tuition at night. I had zero interest in medicine at my prior workplace, so I never bothered to take any science classes. Now, of course, I work at a small liberal arts school where there are no evening classes. Figures, why do I always have to do things the most expensive way?

At least some of the Psych and Soc classes here have classes directly related to medicine, so it satisfies my Psych and Soc requirements, while still having the pre-med flavor. (My undergrad was in business and I only took 4 non-business classes)

That’s exactly what I’m doing. I took Gen Chem and Gen Bio I and II at a community college, because I work full time and needed the night classes.

Now that I’m in Orgo and Physics, I’ve moved to a 4 year state school…

I’ve run that plan by all the schools I am applying to (including a top 15 allopathic program), and they all said, basically, “Two thumbs up. Just get the classes however you can.”

The funny thing is that, in all honesty, I think I’d be more challenged in Orgo and Orgo lab had I stayed at the CC. Ah, well…

It seems like there are new questions and new opinions about the CC route every day on this forum, and it makes sense… because as non-trads, we often have to take unconventional journeys. Some of your schools will only care about the end point. Some will care how you got there.

**The bottom line seems to be that everyone’s experience is different–and the best answer is to consult with the schools you want to apply to, and get THEIR opinion on the matter…since they are the ones that count. That way, you can procede with confidence, knowing that you aren’t wasting your time doing something that may work against you.

Good luck with your plans, whatever they end up being!!!