Firstly, I have found OldPreMeds to be the mos valuable resouce available for non tradional students. I abolutely love his web site so muh and have recieved lots of great information from reading the post and decided to finally join. A little about myself, I am a 27 year old single mother currentlsy pursuing a BSN degree at a small liberal arts college in Ohio. While I am a nursing student, I have always dreamed of one day becoming a physician and following in my father’s footsteps. I plan on attending a post-bacc program or even what you all call a DIY post-bacc program when I gradute in 2012 while workig part-time as a RN to support my kid and pay down some loans. I currently have a 3.8 gpa and clinical experience from being a STNA and from my nursing clinicals, I do need to do some shadowing and volunteer work. My conern is that despite all my efforts I am worried that I will not even stand a chance of getting into medical school b/c I attended a college right after highschool, 9 years ago, and failed out after a year and only earned 15 credits (read: I completely failed). At the time I was being treated for PTSD and depression and it took me six years and the birth of my daughter to finally find peace and turn my life around. Now I am very responsible and driven and it does reflect in my academics now, but I know the previous transcript will haunt me and bring my high gpa significanly down. Has anyone out there been in my positon? Do you know how adcoms look at candidate like me? Should I even mention the issues I had that caused for such a bad academic experience or will they see that as an excuse or another flaw? Has anyone gotten into medical school after being dismissed from an university for academic probation (bad grades conecutively, no cheating or anything)? I’d really appreiate any opinions, advice an help. Someties I think it’s such a long shot, that I should just give up.
Hello there and welcome to Old Pre Meds. You are among kindred spirits.
To answer your question, yes. One of our founders was asked to leave school because of his poor GPA. He is now a practicing physician.
Can it be done. Yes. Will it be easy, no way. Do you have a lot to prove. Yup. Has it been done, yup.
On this site there are many good examples of people who performed poorly earlier in undergrad and are now physicians. Many have paved the way and shared their journey with those of us who strive to be docs. Read some of the diaries up here. Good luck with your journey!
It’s possible! The road is long and expensive and tough (sometimes painful), but definitely possible. I was placed on academic probation my first semester of college, and I’ve just gotten into an MD program on my first application cycle… OK, yeah, it took me seven years since college to actually get to the point where I’d be a competitive applicant, but that’s the long-yet-ultimately-rewar ding road I’m talking about.
One thing that will work in your favor is that your current GPA is high and hopefully remains so; adcoms care about “overcoming adversity”, but not to the point that they’ll overlook continuously spotty or inconsistent grades. Osteopathic schools are actually much more forgiving about old grades, they will replace grades in their calculation if you retake the course (unlike AMCAS). Don’t be afraid to address your past weaknesses, but don’t make too many excuses - there are some good tips in old OPM posts on how to handle this common issue. Some admissions officers at DO schools are also willing to speak with potential applicants, so try calling the schools near you (I’ve found MD schools to be much frostier).
Also, be sure to make a convincing argument about why medicine is so important to you - as opposed to nursing, with which you can also have an excellent career - beyond the family legacy.
Thank you guys for the advice! I really needed some confirmation that it was still possible for me to achieve my dream of one day becoming a doctor. Thank you!