What a great place! (Introduction)

Hey all, I’ve been lurking these forums for a few days before I decided to join.

My name is Adrian and I am a dual-enrolled Human Biology student between my local community college and University of Michigan’s Flint campus. I’m 25 (which isn’t really old) but at the rate I am going with full time work and chipping away at credits, I should be done with my B.A. in 2014-2015, putting me at the age of 29.

I originally started at Michigan Technological Univ as a mathematics major, and for multiple reasons (mostly dumb) I left about 1/3 way through without the best of grades. I decided that I wanted to follow my childhood dreams of firefighting and went to an academy near Detroit. During academy, it was very obvious if you even wanted to try and find a job as a firefighter, you HAD to go into EMS, so immediately after I enrolled in an EMT-Basic and Paramedic program. I loathed the idea of patient care; I just wanted to jump inside fires and save babies and cats

Well, needless to say, the paramedic program made me fall in love with medicine, and I decided that med school could be right for me, but I’m scared… My college-level academic history (before I started again) is terrible. I dropped classes left and right, withdrew, got crappy scores, etc. Even though I am currently carrying a 4.0 after about 20 credits, I am afraid my history will come back to haunt me.

I am trying to pad this with paramedic experience, free clinic volunteer time, and good grades from here on out, but that thought still lingers in the back of my head that all of this is useless because they will see my crap from 2004-2006 and say “screw this guy” and I will be stuck with a degree that isn’t very useful in the real world and sad

I have read some awesome success stories on here from back in history about people getting GED’s then getting into med schools, but has anyone had a bad college experience, took a break, and tried again? How did that work out? Were you as freaked as I am?

Sorry for the wall of text, but I hope this community will be very beneficial to me and vice versa!

Hi! And welcome!

And while I have not “made it,” just a fellow companion on the journey…I do know that A LOT of people (particularly on this forum) have had jobs, previous degrees, bad grades, etc before deciding to pursue medical school. Most everything can be overcome it will just take a bit of extra work!

The good thing if you are thinking DO is they do grade replacement, so any similar courses you did poorly in can really get a boost. MD will just average everything together. But schools do look at upward trends and a strong MCAT score can be helpful too. Just bear in mind, you’ll want to make sure to do REALLY well in your pre-reqs and whatever classes you take from now on. An upward trend is good; a roller-coaster of up and downs into your current degree would make it very tough.

If you look up AMCAS GPA calculator/spreadsheet, you can see what your cumulative and science GPAs would be and what you would want to aim for as you continue on.

Good luck!

Old pre meds = lots of people who have less than perfect histories.

You have the right goals in mind - show commitment to others through non-clinical volunteering, show understanding of what you’re getting into with clinical experiences and shadowing and show dedication to (and ability to survive the process of) medical school by excelling in your current academics.

Do NOT rush to get everything done right now, don’t overload yourself with too many classes.Don’t panic if you get a B. Spend lots of time with study groups and in professor’s office hours. Do take the time you need to get As.

And always pop in here and ask specific questions about anything that comes up, unless you’re too busy saving babies and adorable kittens.

Good luck!

You can’t change the past. Do the best you can from here on out and see where you land. Yes, your past history will be seen, but a strong performance now combined with a good MCAT and strong clinical/volunteering experience will help.

Don’t count yourself out. There are a number of us on here who got into medical school (and pretty good ones, at that) with sub-par undergrad GPAs. You have the added advantage of being a resident in a state with a high number of med school seats per population.

Welcome and good luck!

Welcome to OPM! You will find lots of stories here about people who have lousy, terribad GPAs, with several semesters of W’s on their transcripts; people who have started, stopped, started, stopped; had a career; thought about and started/stopped again; and are now in medical school.

I’m not saying you can get in. I’m not saying you will get in. When I was pointed to this site, I was told to follow some people and read their stories.

there are stories on here of premeds falling off the forum (some never came back to say they quit trying to take the courses), some left after saying they could not hack the courses and were leaving to pursue a different path; some found they really did not want to spend the time to get the medical degree and left; there are those that did not want to spend the time to pursue the medical education but have stayed here on this forum to help the rest of us chase this crazy dream; and some made it into medical school… only to be asked to leave.

Then there are those that have come here, with grade baggage, or life baggage, who are now MDs, DOs, or will be very, very soon.

It seems the training you’ve had has stoked your desire. If you can handle the pre-reqs and get good grades, get a good MCAT, why not go for it?

Best of luck!!

  • PixieSanders Said:

Do NOT rush to get everything done right now, don't overload yourself with too many classes.Don't panic if you get a B. Spend lots of time with study groups and in professor's office hours. Do take the time you need to get As.

Rule 1: Take a Breath!
  • Adoc2be Said:

I'm not saying you can get in. I'm not saying you will get in. When I was pointed to this site, I was told to follow some people and read their stories.

I want to take your entire post and make it the front page of OPM. So well written.
  • PixieSanders Said:
I want to take your entire post and make it the front page of OPM. So well written.


Each of those sentences had a person behind it. Krissis, B00bs (she was a lactation specialist), Terry, and one of our own board members-

who came here thinking med school was his passion and when he decided med school was not, stayed here anyway to help all of us; who continues to lead this forum so that oldfarts like me, can chase a dream; so that people wanting to fulfill their destiny are not chased off by other forums saying we're has-beens, or worse, too dumb to compete, or otherwise, unworthy of med school.

My writing was only a summation of their lives - far more worthy of accolades.

But thank you. I'm humbled.

Thanks so much for all of your repolies everyone! I appreciate the honesty, and I am definitely not going to go crazy deep in immediately.

Spring will be my first full time semester since 2005, with 13 credits, but I am not taking too difficult of classes, and (hopefully) my wife will find a nice job with her master’s in microbiology after she graduated in December and I can sink to maybe a couple days of work a week. If she doesn’t, her research stipend ends and we are back to 1 income, mine, so I will have to work full time, and probably cut it back to 2 classes

also, Khan academy is the best thing since sliced bread

  • actowery Said:
also, Khan academy is the best thing since sliced bread

100% True!