Well, I am writing because, despite having been an excellent undergrad and grad student in applied sciences, my performance in pure sciences, which I never had to do for some reason, 13 years later has been so much worse. I am sitting on a 3.0 science GPA, down from a 3.8 GPA where I graduated in the top of my program with numerous awards.
I work my buns off, but I honestly think that much of it is the highly competitive nature of the program I am in. I can’t seem to get above the curve in my classes. On the one hand, I do find my classmates are the smartest young whippersnappers I have ever gone to school with - but I don’t think admissions committees really care about where you went to undergrad, do they? Is going to an Ivy League school a factor, since we are graded on curves against really high performing students? Prior to the program, everyone in my class once got As - now only a quarter of us do. While I love my classes, my grades are getting me down. I now have four classes left, and am trying to decide if I should switch schools and drop the committee letter in favor of better grades?
Worse still is that my grades in bio - a subject I have historically excelled in, are my worst - high Cs. It is by far my most challenging class. The material is great, and I am learning so much, but the professor writes notoriously fierce exams.
Any experience or thoughts here would be well appreciated. Targeted advice/recommended steps would be particularly welcome. I have two labs and two physics classes (by far my worst subject, I fear) left to take and a year to try to build volunteer/work experience into my resume, as well as a somewhat accomplished career in service to underserved populations.
Also, assume I do reasonably well on the MCAT, which I know is now absolutely essential, are there any schools that will take a 3.0 science GPA (osteopathic or allo)?
OK. First relax…
Are you still in a post bacc program or finishing your pre-req? DId you take the MCAT yet? When do you plan on applying?
All of this is important. What is your preference for where you want to go to school? There are many schools in the NYC area as well as 3 in NJ and then there is Philly. So more information about this is important.
Hi Gabelerman. Thanks for responding.
I am finishing my orgo and bio lectures this spring in the postbacc program, and still have orgo lab, biolab and two physics courses to take, which I plan to do over the next year.
So yes, I am still in the postbacc program, and plan to take the MCAT next June. My husband is technically willing to relocate (he’s awesome) but I would only want to do that if he could swing a good job opportunity - so I guess that means that in all likelihood I am confined to the NY metro area. Philly would be a stretch - we hate long commutes.
I am originally from Canada, where there are some med schools I would really like to apply to. Again, hubby’s career is important to me, so only if it would work.
As a Canadian who applied in Canada and the US, I thought I would just mention that as there are relatively fewer med schools in Canada but with a very high application rate, the competition up here is stiff. Add to that the fact that the schools are way more focused on numbers (if you don’t meet their cut offs they won’t look at the rest of your application - and some of their cutoffs are high eg. one ON med school required at least an R on the writing sample!! - another had a minimum 3.73 GPA cut off with 11’s on each section of the MCAT). On top of that most don’t accept international students and will only take a small percentage of Canadians from out of province.
I found that the US schools were more holistic in the application review process. I hate to say this but in the US, med schools are businesses and they really have great customer service. In Canada, they are primarily government funded and have not really heard of customer service.
Anyway, that sounds a tad bitter. Didn’t mean it to be, I just wanted to give you a heads up. I will be happily attending an osteopathic school in the US starting in August.
Thanks LJ, You don;t sound bitter. There is a bit of a double edged sword to the business side of school here (mainly cost!). And yes, I realize applying in Canada is a bit less predictable, but I have also heard that Canadian schools were a bit more holistic. Maybe it depends what province you are from. There are a number of reasons (residency, language) that make me feel optimistic that I can get in to one Canadian school.
However, like I said, I am expecting that getting in here in the US will be my only viable financial option.
I’m a little bit more interested in studying Osteopathic medicine myself, and would really like to know if a B to a B+ science GPA would realistically get me in somewhere in or around NYC. So, if anyone else has any advice re: my post above, and would recommend any schools specifically to focus on, I would gladly appreciate it!