As is the story of many of us non-traditionals, I was a dingus for several years when I first started my undergraduate career. I would say that I chalk it up to being undecided, however, I was completely sold on medicine from the get-go. My reason for performing so poorly is more embarrassing than being lost. I was working as a scribe about midway through my junior year at university and became so enthralled by the environment and “playing doctor” since I got to wear scrubs, stay up late, interact with nurses, and see patients, that I neglected my studies and practically lived in the ER. I eventually left my university to reevaluate myself and provide financially for my wife who was going through nursing school.
Now as I come to the end of my degree (3 credit hours left to graduate) I look back on my academic record and want to vomit. I have a sGPA of 2.53 and a cGPA of 2.49 with a total of 165 credit hours. My MCAT score was a 504 (125/128/126/125). After my break, I returned to school and achieved my first ever 4.0 semester with higher-level science courses and overall achieved a sGPA of 3.2 and a cGPA of 3.3.
I’ve scribed for a combined 8 years and have over 6,000 hours of clinical experience from working both part and full-time scribing in the ER and in a surgical office. I have also been conducting clinical research with a trauma surgeon for over a year.
With the background out of the way, what are my options as a subpar candidate? Although I feel my experience lends to me being a strong candidate in that I’m very familiar with the idea of medicine and am somewhat educated regarding the lifestyle and responsibilities, I am not insensitive to my horrendous grades and barely average MCAT score. I am applying to mostly DO schools as I appreciate the philosophy (truly, though I’m also not insensitive to the lower matriculant metrics) and my one state school (MD program). Will an SMP or postbacc really help that much given that my undergraduate career is so dense in poorly-performed credit hours? Should I contact schools even though I’ve already applied and ask them for advice? What advice would anyone be willing to share that may help advance my application forward?
I’ve already received several rejections, and though I am not surprised, I am somewhat dejected still. They’ll have to kill me to stop me from applying, and I really am willing to do anything possible to get into a program. This is the only thing I can do with my life. Truly.
Thanks for taking the time to read this. Any help is genuinely appreciated.