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Do I have a chance at getting into a PA program?


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About 2 months away from finishing my undergraduate degree last December, I kind of switched directions from thinking I wanted to do medical research, to now pursuing a career as a PA. Because of my late decision though, I'm a little behind on the prerequisites and I'm concerned about my chances of getting into a program. I double majored in Biology and Chemistry with an overall GPA of 3.61 and a science GPA of 3.51. During one of my summers off school I worked as a phlebotomist (about 500 hours), so I figured that I could just continue phlebotomy as my HCE and make sure I get at least 2000 hours before I apply..however as I'm researching a little more, I haven't found anyone who has said they've gotten into PA school with phlebotomy as their HCE.

I don't have a great GRE score: 149 verbal, 150 quant, and 4.0 writing. I also have not yet taken anatomy and physiology, but I would definitely make sure I have completed those before applying. I have 68 shadowing hours and have just started volunteering at my local hospital. I also have a total of 1 year experience in undergraduate medical research if that means anything. 

I know I don't have the greatest GRE or HCE, but I was hoping that the fact that I maintained a good GPA while obtaining a double major from a science and engineering school (SD School of Mines) and while competing in a Division II sport, it would set me apart and kind of make up for my other lacking areas. Do you think I still have a chance to get in? I'd be open to retaking the GRE, but it would be difficult for me to get a different form of HCE since just about everything requires certificate which can take quite a while to obtain. 

 

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A PA I shadowed worked as a phlebotomist before school, granted that was over 20 years ago but it counted for her. You should definitely check with schools you'd be applying to and get their thoughts on that but I believe it should count at most places. Your GRE is a little on the lower end but people do get into PA school with lower scores so I'd doubt it'd prevent you from an acceptance given your grades; it's a good rule of thumb to be at least above the 50th percentile for all three sections. It's pretty difficult to raise a GRE score if you retake it but mine improved pretty significantly the second time around so you just have to work hard for that if you decide to retake it. Sounds like you know what you need to do, finish checking requirements off the list and you've definitely got a chance!

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