So much for plan B

My undergrad grades were pretty crappy (BA 1992) so I was thinking about doing Georgetown’s special master’s in physiology, which is basically the half of your first year of medical school. My roommate did it. I was planning on applying to medical schools, too but that seemed like a good fall back plan.
This afternoon I went and talked to the woman who runs it. She asked about what I have done since college (it has been 10 years after all) and what my post bacc grades have been like (pretty good) and based on that thought I wouldn’t need them. She said if I do well on the MCAT (and her words on the MCAT were that it is ‘rigged,’ isn’t about intellect but strategy and you have to take a class) “you won’t need us” but also that people who do well in that program go on to medical school or ‘you could do poorly and ruin your life.’ Ruin my life? Yikes. I don’t want to do that. In any case. This whole conversation set me into a panic becase pretty much everything this week sends me into a panic. Maybe it’s the moon. Maybe it’s the meeting I had with the financial aid office yesterday afternoon.
Part of me thinks I should feel somewhat comforted by her telling me that I won’t need them but she hasn’t seen my undergrad transcripts and I worry that no matter how well I do now it won’t make up for that.
Thanks for listening.
On a good note, I am going to start shadowing a new doctor next week and that should be fun. That always lifts my spirits.

hmmm, if you think she is a reliable source of info, it sounds like you won't need that extra program. If you've already proven you can handle the sci prereq's, you should be in good shape. Spend your time and effort (and $) on the MCAT instead.
Good luck!

The SMP is like $20K or more, right? I would say that if you’re advised that it’s unnecessary, take that advice and run with it.
As for the “ruining your life” comment - well, that’s just silly. No one action or inaction ruins your life. The WORST that could happen is you do crappy on the MCAT and have to take it again. It would suck, and you’d FEEL like your life was ruined for some period of time, but it wouldn’t actually ruin your life fercryinoutloud. (just call me the ray of sunshine!)

Hey Alyson,
She was right, you don’t need them. You don’t need to pay Georgetown $20K for one year. Even if you take the priciest MCAT prep course, it wouldn’t cost $20K. If the MCAT were rigged, I would be the last person to benefit by it so she’s full of crap there.
Stop overthinking and start working on your “sales pitch” for your interviews. You are going to get into medical school and you don’t need Georgetown’s very expensive “fifth year of pre-med”.

Nat cool.gif

Ditto what everyone else said. If I were you, I would go ahead and study hard for the MCAT and apply to medical school. Worse case scenario: If you don’t get in this cycle, apply for the master’s program and get the master’s degree, which you can list on AMCAS next year and that will help your application stand out more. Although with your good grades in prereqs and ECs, I think you’ll get in this cycle. I think the adcoms will pay more attention to your current GPA than your undergrad GPA.
In my case, I’m suffering from the opposite: I had a respectable undergrad GPA (3.2) and am severely worried about the science prereqs…I haven’t really taken any yet so it’s too soon to tell how I will do! I’m very, very afraid of organic chemistry and physics…Plus, everyone on OPM and SDN is so successful, I’m starting to develop a little bit of a complex. sad.gif
P.S. Are you going to be at softball this week? I played last week and it was fun. I’ll be there again this week. We lost–but not by much. I think it was 11-9 or something like that.

I applyed last year to GTU's program and didn't get in, course I didn't in to med school either. Decided that the student loans weren't worth it and moved back to S. Va to take some more science classes. Had a year's worth of Biomed curriculum and am now reapplying. I know 2 people from GTU's SMP who got in to GTU Med post SMP, but it all depends on what you want to do with your money and time. I had been out of school for 5 years and definitely needed to go back and learn how to actually study in college (I had a 2.9 GPA when I graduated). I finished this year with a 3.82 GPA (brought my total up over 3.0, I was thrilled!!) Now, I'm working in a lab at school and thinking about a MD/PhD program.
Good luck! You'll make the right decision for you. If it's not GTU, think about taking science classes at another university.

Hey Alyson,
That “ruin your life” stuff is just crap. I’d try to forget that part of what she said. It sounds like you don’t really need that masters program–just keep doing well in your postbacc classes and when the MCAT comes around, do your best on that. As far as her not having seen your college transcripts–well, you could always bring them in and show her, and see what she says then. Or could you get an appointment with an advisor at a medical school, and ask for their advice? A 20K masters program seems like it might be overkill, and it doesn’t sound like it would necessarily help you above and beyond all the things you are already doing as a postbacc.
When are you planning to apply to med school, by the way?

If the woman you spoke to is who I think it is, I know her pretty well ( personal and professional). She’s a “straight and to the point kind of person(little tact)”, and REALLY hurt my premed feelings the first time we met( I’m in a similar situation as you). I think what she meant in her “ruining your life” comment is that if you do a program like SMP and don’t do well even with an outstanding MCAT score, your chances of getting in would be greatly diminished. I’ve heard this many times before, so I imagine there must be some truth to it. A weak undergraduate record is one thing but to combine that with a weak showing in a program with medical school courses seems almost insurmountable.
I also want to say that in my struggles as a premed, I’ve come across more than of few people like the woman at G-town. As I’ve aged, I’ve learned to take negativity with a grain of salt and keep in steppin’! biggrin.gif