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Pre-PA concerns/advice?


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#1 pabca94

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Posted 16 March 2017 - 05:00 AM

Hi there.
I'm currently a senior human biology major looking to apply in spring of 2018. I'm posting because I have some concerns about my grades and GPA, and wanted to know if anyone was in a similar spot or how they overcame the same issues. I have a little over a 3.6 GPA, and my grades for pre-refs are as follows
Gen Chem 1: B
Bio 1, 2, and Lab: A, A, A
Molecular Bio: A-
Anatomy: A
Physiology: B+
Stats: A+
Psych and Soc: A, A
Microbio and Lab: A, A
Genetics: A
Medical terminology: A
Currently taking Biochem, will most likely receive a B
I am mostly concerned with my Organic Chemistry grades. I received a C- in Orgo 1 lecture (retook to get a B+, and a C+ in lab. My mom passed away the summer before taking orgo and I was pretty severely because for about a year after, explaining these inconsistencies. I am wondering if I should retake lab as well, or just explain my circumstances and bolster my application is other ways. I'm getting my EMT certification and taking a year off before applying to get direct patient care, and I have adequate volunteering and extracurriculars.

Do you think these two low grades in prerequisites will be an automatic rejection? I was worried about one, let alone two, and am afraid I am now wasting my time. Should I get in touch with admissions directors to talk about my chances, or is that not a possibility? Any suggestions would be very helpful.

#2 corpsman89

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Posted 16 March 2017 - 05:36 AM

You should be proud of your grades, especially since your unfavorable circumstances would have epically crushed most people. You will have no problem getting into PA school, and I would honestly recommend med school if your age and lifestyle permits.

 

If you do pursue PA school, just make sure you get solid HCE, and you'll be a shoe in.

 

Good luck.


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Duke University PA-S, Class 2019

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#3 doubledose

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Posted 16 March 2017 - 06:00 AM

I pretty much have similar stats but I got a C in chem 1, B in chem 2 and B in organic. I was really worried about my stats as well, but got interviews and was accepted to a program. 

 

In my opinion they know everyone has at least one or two problems and none of the interviews I have been to asked questions about my grades. However, in my opinion they are way more concerned with your interviews and your maturity level.


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#4 pabca94

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Posted 16 March 2017 - 07:39 PM

You should be proud of your grades, especially since your unfavorable circumstances would have epically crushed most people. You will have no problem getting into PA school, and I would honestly recommend med school if your age and lifestyle permits.
 
If you do pursue PA school, just make sure you get solid HCE, and you'll be a shoe in.
 
Good luck.


That's so relieving to hear. I know I could have excelled in orgo I just wanted in a healthy mental state and it definitely took a toll. Just not sure how to explain that to admissions committee without making it an excuse or sound like I'm pitying myself. Also, really? I thought about med school I would just need to take physics. I'm so scared that without a 3.8 or 3.9 that I wouldn't have a solid chance because that's where most of my friends that are applying are at. Do you mind me asking what your gpa/experience was? I see that you're at Duke which is really impressive so I was just curious.

#5 corpsman89

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 02:47 PM

The fact that you're already concerned you may sound like you're giving an excuse is good. It tells me that you will say the right things when the time comes (if it does, which it probably wont) to explain the O chemo grade. But c'mon, your GPA is already pretty solid. I really can't stress it enough. If there is any question on your application, it will be about your health care experience. This is the area to be concerned.

As for me, I had a 3.7 GPA. But where I really stood out was the fact that I was a Corpsman who was augmented with a Marine Corps unit for the majority of my 5 year enlistment. I deployed to Afghanistan and was able to partake in quite a bit of experiences. After my enlistment I became a medical technologist (laboratory) which also helps me understand much of the lab values that we will need to interpret and order as providers. Ultimately , this amounted to >13000 hours of HCE, by far my strong point.

That's so relieving to hear. I know I could have excelled in orgo I just wanted in a healthy mental state and it definitely took a toll. Just not sure how to explain that to admissions committee without making it an excuse or sound like I'm pitying myself. Also, really? I thought about med school I would just need to take physics. I'm so scared that without a 3.8 or 3.9 that I wouldn't have a solid chance because that's where most of my friends that are applying are at. Do you mind me asking what your gpa/experience was? I see that you're at Duke which is really impressive so I was just curious.


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#6 MT2PA

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 09:54 PM

Your biggest problem will be programs that have minimum grade requirements for pre-reqs - where a C- might not be enough.  For THAT reason you may want to consider retaking it.  Or you could do your research and see if the programs you want to apply to even have minimum requirements for that course.  If not, nbd.

 

Most programs require a C or better in pre-reqs, some even as high as a B- or better.  Do your research and see if you need to boost that C- grade.






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