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      09-15-2012, 01:25 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by txz4 View Post
Good advice on learning everything you can about the schools applied to, the interview will be a breeze for me. There are pluses to being a business school graduate and working in an executive position.
While you might have already accomplished a lot, don't go in to the interview being too puffed up about it. There are currently a lot of returning students applying to medical school, who have already had a lot of schooling (i.e., PhDs) and significant work/life experience (e.g., successful careers in other fields).
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      09-15-2012, 02:47 PM   #24
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Great stuff guys! exactly what i was looking for.

Im hugely interested in Medicine, i would have gone straight into pre med out of HS but i didnt have the drive, want, and most importantly discipline at the time. After graduating i realized that i needed to turn my interest in medicine into a career to better enjoy my life (in my free time i was coming up with medical device ideas etc.). After college i was being groomed to be the CEO of my family's business, i realized it wasn't something i wanted to do. Many situations played into my decision to go the medicine route culminating in (long story short) me helping a woman who was having a stroke while driving.

I still have two years, including this one, just in pre reqs so i still have time. I know i need to cultivate as much information as i can as early as i can to succeed in this highly competitive field. Thats what this thread is about.
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      09-15-2012, 10:57 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by dvpouldar26 View Post
I somewhat agree and disagree with shadowing getting boring very fast. It may, but be sure to choose a field that you'd really enjoy, or else the hours and hours in clinic, ER, or OR can get boring. Most of my shadowing (3.5 years +) was all done in Orthopedic surgery and I still enjoy it to this day.

As for working with med students and residents, I highly recommend it. They can give you recent insight that perhaps older physicians cannot provide. Also, they are making a lot of publications while in residency or med school, many of which are clinical studies. Most are always glad to have an undergrad help them out and I have found that to be one of the quickest, and easiest ways to get some research experience and get a publication under your name. As for the higher ranking academic institutions, publications certainly do help, and might even be necessary for admission. I also agree with sending out your AMCAS information early. Letter writers lag with writing letters of rec, transcripts take forever to send (send them out months in advance), and writing a good application take some time. I submitted a few days after the app opened and it worked greatly to my advantage in terms of getting secondarys.
Well, you have more patience than I did, to shadow someone for more than 3 years. I found shadowing, after the first few days, to be a total waste of time and just another useless hoop to jump through.

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      09-15-2012, 11:05 PM   #26
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I'd just like to add one thing:


TRY TO HAVE A LIFE. Go out on weekends and live it up. Embrace whatever hobbies that you have. Do not turn into one of the typically lifeless pre-med drones. Work hard/play hard.

Why do I say this?

Well - how many interviews did I have? 7-8. And at how many of them did I talk exclusively about medicine? 0. At one of my best interviews, I found out that my interviewer had a Mustang GT that he tracked frequently; I spent about 20 minutes talking to him about track prep, tracks we had both visited, and amateur karting that I had done in high school. A lot of these interviews are just about figuring out if you have "social skills" and can interact with others on multiple levels. It's going to be hard to nail these sorts of interviews if your head was stuck in a book for the past four years.

Also, medical school BLOWS, with regard to having a life. The first year is not so bad. The second year is significantly worse, especially as you approach Step 1. The third year is HELL. You are going to lose a big portion of the best days of your life sitting in classes and in hospitals. So take advantage of what time you have now, and create some memories and hobbies that you can look back fondly on and return to at some point in the future.
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      09-15-2012, 11:10 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by DevJ View Post
Hi,

I haven't been on the forum for several months just because I have been applying/shadowing/volunteering/etc...some solid advice in this thread. Many medical schools really emphasize your MCAT and GPA..so doing well on those is a good start. A competitive score right now would be at least a 31+. Many people are applying and the standards are going up.

Try and volunteer at a free clinic. This is probably one of the best experiences you can get. You really get to do something rather than follow a doctor around when shadowing. Also, admissions staff really loves this. (So I've heard..from my dad..)

I would also try to do as much community service as you can. The majority of medical schools want a doctor that will give back to society basically..

So to sum up what many others have already said in this thread
1). Rock the MCAT and make sure your gpa is above 3.6
2). Volunteer at free clinics.
3). Community Service
4). GREAT letters of recommendation.
5). If you have a pre-med advisor at your college get into her good graces. Chances are she may be a uploading your letters and maybe even writing your letter of recommendation (committee interview, depending on your school)

Just saw you're from texas..try to do research at the medical school you want to go to. Having ties to the school will really go a long way!

For example, my friend had ~33 and a 3.95 gpa from Oklahoma, did research at UTSW and sure enough he got it. Their avg for out of state is usually a lot higher so it benefitted him greatly..

Good luck! It's a long process. I hope it will be worth it in the end
Interesting to see so many pre-meds and applicants on this board.

I hope you all know what you are getting yourselves into.
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      09-15-2012, 11:31 PM   #28
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re: trying to be MD. Advice?

"Do, or do not. There is no try."
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      09-16-2012, 08:06 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by Echo M3 View Post
Interesting to see so many pre-meds and applicants on this board.

I hope you all know what you are getting yourselves into.
Very true!! Thankfully my father and sister are both MDs! (Interventional Cardiologist and first yr fellow in oncology!)
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      09-16-2012, 08:28 AM   #30
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PS: SDN forums is full of gunners and all the crazies from med school... heavily biased forum.
QFT..I'm in pharmacy school and that website..full of the crazy.
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      09-16-2012, 02:57 PM   #31
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Here is some advice from someone who was part of the admissions committee not too long ago:

1) The MCAT is the biggest deciding factor when giving out interviews, and unfortunately, many schools have cutoffs. You want to rock this test, even if it means taking it multiple times. Looks into a review course, I personally liked the princeton review. Take many practice exams before the real deal. You can purchase them and the Princeton review comes with many many previous practice exams.

2) If you haven't taken Organic Chem, make sure you ace this course. It is the biggest predictor of how a medical student will succeed in medical school just because of the nature of material. If there is one course that is looked at in your transcripts, it is o.chem.

3) Prepare for your interviews. There is a book called "The Medical School Interview". Read it, learn it, know it. Know about the school you are interviewing at, and know future plans/advancements/changes in curriculum. Ask intelligent questions and look very interested. Treat every interview as if it is your only interview. And most importantly: be very friendly to everybody including other applicants and secretaries.

4) Every applicant is more than just their MCAT, you want to be the total package. Your Z score is who you are as a person. What kind of life experiences and hobbies you have. How will you contribute to the student body?

PM me with any other personal questions and let me know where you end up applying...
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      09-16-2012, 02:59 PM   #32
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...oh and one more thing: make sure you are doing medical school for all the right reasons.
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      09-16-2012, 11:49 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by egt135i View Post
Here is some advice from someone who was part of the admissions committee not too long ago:

1) The MCAT is the biggest deciding factor when giving out interviews, and unfortunately, many schools have cutoffs. You want to rock this test, even if it means taking it multiple times. Looks into a review course, I personally liked the princeton review. Take many practice exams before the real deal. You can purchase them and the Princeton review comes with many many previous practice exams.

2) If you haven't taken Organic Chem, make sure you ace this course. It is the biggest predictor of how a medical student will succeed in medical school just because of the nature of material. If there is one course that is looked at in your transcripts, it is o.chem.

3) Prepare for your interviews. There is a book called "The Medical School Interview". Read it, learn it, know it. Know about the school you are interviewing at, and know future plans/advancements/changes in curriculum. Ask intelligent questions and look very interested. Treat every interview as if it is your only interview. And most importantly: be very friendly to everybody including other applicants and secretaries.

4) Every applicant is more than just their MCAT, you want to be the total package. Your Z score is who you are as a person. What kind of life experiences and hobbies you have. How will you contribute to the student body?

PM me with any other personal questions and let me know where you end up applying...
I appreciate the info, ive heard O chem was the hardest class i will have to take so im dedicating a whole summer to nothing but that. At the end of this school year i intend to start my mcat prep, once i learn a little bit more of the information thats going to be on it i should have a better base to build on. I will take a look into purchasing that book, the interview is going to be very important and like anything else, preparedness plays a large part in the end result.

Quote:
Originally Posted by egt135i View Post
...oh and one more thing: make sure you are doing medical school for all the right reasons.
I have to ask, just due to the semi cryptic nature, what ARE the right reasons? My Grandfather was a very successful doctor when he was practicing and he often speaks to me of the people he knew who got into the field for the wrong reasons and weren't happy or particularly good for it.

Im not getting into the field for money, im walking away from becoming the CEO of a company for this. Im not looking to save everyone's life like some delusional view of being a doctor is. I am however looking to use my talents and skills to do good in life while also doing something personally fulfilling. I feel that this field will do just that in one degree or another. Of course thats my candid opinion on the subject.
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      09-17-2012, 12:07 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by txz4 View Post
Im not getting into the field for money, im walking away from becoming the CEO of a company for this.
It's the family business though, right? That's a lot different from clawing your way up from the mailroom.

Quote:
Originally Posted by txz4 View Post
I am however looking to use my talents and skills to do good in life while also doing something personally fulfilling. I feel that this field will do just that in one degree or another. Of course thats my candid opinion on the subject.
That's a really vague answer. You'll need something a lot better come interview time.
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      09-17-2012, 12:39 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txz4 View Post
I have to ask, just due to the semi cryptic nature, what ARE the right reasons? My Grandfather was a very successful doctor when he was practicing and he often speaks to me of the people he knew who got into the field for the wrong reasons and weren't happy or particularly good for it.

Im not getting into the field for money, im walking away from becoming the CEO of a company for this. Im not looking to save everyone's life like some delusional view of being a doctor is. I am however looking to use my talents and skills to do good in life while also doing something personally fulfilling. I feel that this field will do just that in one degree or another. Of course thats my candid opinion on the subject.
I guess it's hard to determine what the right reasons are, just make sure it's not the wrong reasons. For ex:
1) Money
2) Prestige/Ego (some people just want that DR.)
3) Family pressures (heavy in various cultures)
4) Being in a science program and having no sense of direction (obviously not your case)


The whole saving people's lives things makes me laugh always. I know each interviewer see's things differently, but if somebody was trying to explain to me that they want to get into ped's/FM to save lives I'm not sure how I'd respond. I might ask them why they didn't become a firefighter or work with an emergency response team. I feel like "SAVING LIVES" is a bit egotistical and I'd never use that quote.

Much of what you said is very similar to how I felt before starting medical school so that's good to hear!
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      09-17-2012, 12:42 AM   #36
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Something to consider that's often overlooked:

Don't get caught up in trying to explain why you want to be a doctor the whole time. Remember you are not applying to become a doctor, you are applying to ATTEND MEDICAL SCHOOL. Having interest and passion for the field of medicine itself is something so many students forget to discuss.

Sure it's great that you want to become a doctor, but you are applying to sit in a class and attend medical school not to sit in a clinic. You want to show them that you damn right want to be sitting in that classroom and you WANT to be learning what is being taught not just because you want to become a doctor, but because you are genuinely interested in the field of medicine.
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      09-17-2012, 01:25 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. G View Post
Something to consider that's often overlooked:

Don't get caught up in trying to explain why you want to be a doctor the whole time. Remember you are not applying to become a doctor, you are applying to ATTEND MEDICAL SCHOOL. Having interest and passion for the field of medicine itself is something so many students forget to discuss.

Sure it's great that you want to become a doctor, but you are applying to sit in a class and attend medical school not to sit in a clinic. You want to show them that you damn right want to be sitting in that classroom and you WANT to be learning what is being taught not just because you want to become a doctor, but because you are genuinely interested in the field of medicine.
I agree. I have come to realize that part of the reason to attend medical school (and various parts of the application process touch on this) is to see if you are academically curious. It isn't only about becoming a doctor and helping others, but is also about how interested you really are in the field science, what you plan to contribute to the field of science and medicine, and your passion to not only continue your learning in med school, but continue after when you're a physician. I can't even count how many applications touched base on this "path of lifelong learning", and how you as an applicant have this "appetite" to learn about the field. They want to see if you are genuinely interested in the field not only to do your best in medical school, but as a physician who will continuously be learning throughout his/her career and educate themselves on the latest findings and technologies.

Thinking about this aspect of medicine when I was doing my own research really helped me as a pre-med and during the application process so far. I highly suggest to other pre-meds to start thinking about how this "appetite and interest in learning" applies to you.
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      09-17-2012, 08:41 AM   #38
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Good Luck OP, I sent in my AMCAS app over a month ago and am waiting to hear how things go. My GPA and MCAT is just average, and now I'm trying to find research work for the gap year. If I don't hear from any schools then I think I need to retake the MCAT, I can study for longer and be more prepared than I was, and I know I'll do much better on it.
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      09-17-2012, 04:26 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foodle View Post
It's the family business though, right? That's a lot different from clawing your way up from the mailroom.



That's a really vague answer. You'll need something a lot better come interview time.
I started with doing the daily deposits and worked my way up from the age of 15, im now 23. No other sibling was considered to work for the company in the capacity i do.

I appreciate the thought, though in fairness, this wasnt an interview. Just being honest and candid.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. G View Post
I guess it's hard to determine what the right reasons are, just make sure it's not the wrong reasons. For ex:
1) Money
2) Prestige/Ego (some people just want that DR.)
3) Family pressures (heavy in various cultures)
4) Being in a science program and having no sense of direction (obviously not your case)


The whole saving people's lives things makes me laugh always. I know each interviewer see's things differently, but if somebody was trying to explain to me that they want to get into ped's/FM to save lives I'm not sure how I'd respond. I might ask them why they didn't become a firefighter or work with an emergency response team. I feel like "SAVING LIVES" is a bit egotistical and I'd never use that quote.

Much of what you said is very similar to how I felt before starting medical school so that's good to hear!
Yeah i have to admit, the Save lives comment always make me laugh as well,something you could expect to hear from education majors with "shaping minds...etc"

My grandfather was a very successful Dr. and he was trying to convince me to become a PA. So i will say its partly pride, partly level of interest that persuaded me to pursue MD.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. G View Post
Something to consider that's often overlooked:

Don't get caught up in trying to explain why you want to be a doctor the whole time. Remember you are not applying to become a doctor, you are applying to ATTEND MEDICAL SCHOOL. Having interest and passion for the field of medicine itself is something so many students forget to discuss.

Sure it's great that you want to become a doctor, but you are applying to sit in a class and attend medical school not to sit in a clinic. You want to show them that you damn right want to be sitting in that classroom and you WANT to be learning what is being taught not just because you want to become a doctor, but because you are genuinely interested in the field of medicine.
Good stuff, ill keep that in mind. Ill mention hobbies such as microscopy, medicine technology, philosophy etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dvpouldar26 View Post
I agree. I have come to realize that part of the reason to attend medical school (and various parts of the application process touch on this) is to see if you are academically curious. It isn't only about becoming a doctor and helping others, but is also about how interested you really are in the field science, what you plan to contribute to the field of science and medicine, and your passion to not only continue your learning in med school, but continue after when you're a physician. I can't even count how many applications touched base on this "path of lifelong learning", and how you as an applicant have this "appetite" to learn about the field. They want to see if you are genuinely interested in the field not only to do your best in medical school, but as a physician who will continuously be learning throughout his/her career and educate themselves on the latest findings and technologies.

Thinking about this aspect of medicine when I was doing my own research really helped me as a pre-med and during the application process so far. I highly suggest to other pre-meds to start thinking about how this "appetite and interest in learning" applies to you.
Similar to what was said above. Talk about driving the point home!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blindside_137 View Post
Good Luck OP, I sent in my AMCAS app over a month ago and am waiting to hear how things go. My GPA and MCAT is just average, and now I'm trying to find research work for the gap year. If I don't hear from any schools then I think I need to retake the MCAT, I can study for longer and be more prepared than I was, and I know I'll do much better on it.
I have a friend in the same situation, he is about average on MCAT and GPA, he has many background things that will help with his application and much research under his belt. Alas, the MCAT i feel will be the biggest hurdle for most. He seems to have interest from schools though.
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