Anyone know if being part of a minority makes any difference?
I am 30y/o and recently (2005) moved to the US from South America. I have been attending classes at my CC and my GPA is 3.9 and planning on transfering in Jan to Pre-Med in a 4 year college. The thing that freaks me out, is that you can have a 4.0 GPA and >30 in the MCAT and still there is no garantee that you will be accepted into medical shcool. I would like to have any advantage I can think of.
This is a somewhat thorny subject (Affirmative Action, Employment Equity (Canadian version), etc) that most people are not really comfortable discussing.
As a graduate of the the University of Michigan, our school was embroiled in 2 such legal battles that went straight to the Supreme Court regarding AA. In one case, the court ruled that taking race into account for admissions was acceptable. In the second case, it was ruled that the University’s practice of awarding additional “points” for being of a particular ethnicity was actually unconstitutional.
and search for Grutter v. Bollinger and Gratz v. Bollinger.
As a sidenote, it’s interesting to point out that Affirmative Action in the US only benefits Hispanics and African Americans. For some really hilarious and ethnocentric reasons our really intelligent lawmakers have put Asians and whites in the same category… lol, go figure.
So I believe that some schools can take your ethnicity into account as a factor for admissions, although they can’t add points or anything to your admissions scorecard for for being of a particular cultural group. So since all race considerations are qualitative as opposed to quantitative, how big of a factor does it play? It depends on who is evaluating your application I guess.
But short answer to your question - it might help, but don’t count on it, do well in classes and your MCAT and use your personal statement perhaps to describe your unique journey to this country and why it makes you a unique candidate.
Thank You so much
This is all personal perspective - and that of an overrepresented minority, to boot - so please take it all with a grain of salt. That said…
It seems that many med schools are making a concentrated effort to recruit qualified students who are underprivileged or from groups underrepresented in medicine. Some of them are probably making a declaration out of some type of obligation (legal or whatnot) and may not really mean it. I suspect that many are sincere, though, and really do want to increase the pool of URM physicians.
Pretty much every school has a statement of at least nondiscrimination; off the top of my head, it seemed that most had the stronger statement of “hey, we really want more URMs!” Looking at matriculant stats for a lot of those schools didn’t show as much diversity as one might hope for (especially among Hispanics, African Americans, and Native Americans). Does this mean that they’re going to be even more motivated, or that they’re just paying lip service? I don’t know, but I do lean on the side of believing in their sincerity.
So that was all a long winded way of saying… it’s probably a good thing, and it sure can’t hurt. I think you’ve got the right approach to it, though - kick ass in your studies, really set your mind to it, and you’ll put yourself in an excellent position regardless.
It will help IF you are competitive, meaning medical schools are ALWAYS trying to recruit diverse classes and hence this may help you.
Interesting… but SO typical
Steriotyping to prevent steriotyping, after all,
“everyone knows all asians are good in math and are exceptional students right?” how silly!
- junhita Said:
I can guarantee that someone who had a 4.0GPA & >30MCAT either has a lousy personality, did not apply to enough schools, or both. Now it could be they just bombed the interview but how do you bomb only 15-20 interviews? I know of a 4.0/45 who was not accepted anywhere but his state school. He was interviewed at 12 schools. Don't be that guy.
Hey I had a 4.0 and a 35 on MCAT and I find my own personality to be quite fetching-- not “lousy” in the least. I had six interviews in 2006 and none of them paid off with admissions. So she’s right– there’s no guarantee of success.
THAT, however, is the nature of ambition. Any ambition. You risk failure by striving, but nothing ventured… (You know the rest!)
Mais uma coisa, Junhita. Something concrete-- my institution has a postbacc tailored to getting minority students ready to apply to med school. Contact the Associated Medical Schools of New York (should be avail. through Google) and ask about minority transitional year at University at Buffalo Sch. of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.
Ohio State also has a minority program similar to what Matt described. There is more info here.