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Waitlisted: Advice on Re-applying


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So, I've been waitlisted aka placed on the alternate list. I only applied to two schools (first time applicant). I received an interview at one and then placed on the waitlist. In theory, I could still be excepted this year however, I know my chances of that are something similar to winning the lottery. So, looking to next year what should I focus on?

Quick glance at my stats:

Cum GPA: 3.46

Science GPA: 3.48

HCE: 5,295 hours currently and an extra 2,720 hours I received academic credit for but still HCE

Volunteer: 951 hours

Shadowing: 43 hours: 1 ortho clinic, 1 primary care, and one MD primary care

I didn't have awesome GRE scores so I only applied to schools that didn't require it. I have worked as a volunteer CNA, ED medical scribe, Physical Therapy Tech, and currently work as an athletic trainer. 

I know everyone says to apply to at least 8 schools but for me that seems like a waste of time and money. I've looked into taking a few more classes to help raise my GPA. I've also considered taking an EMT course however, I make more money now in my position as an AT and I have a family to support so it doesn't seem plausible as a career change for me right now. What are your thoughts?

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Looking at it from different perspective.

What is more of a waste of time and money, applying to two schools multiple times over multiple cycles and having to take more classes or applying to 8 schools that you qualify for one time and increasing the chances of getting accepted?

Honestly most will say to apply broadly here. You have great HCE hours and volunteer hours. Your GPA is decent. I don't know if you have any PCE, paid patient care hours or not. That may be the limiting factor. And finally, if you had an interview then working on your interview skills will benefit you greatly. 

I would personally apply to more schools and work on my interview skills and make sure my application for next cycle shows growth. You have to right idea, take relevant classes to increase GPA. I might try looking for CNA jobs, you said you worked as volunteer CNA, I'm not sure if that means you are a licensed CNA or not. This will take care of the PCE hours. 

 

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I would not worry about the HCE side of things. You have plenty and your current job as an AT is good quality experience. You should however look at changing your personal statement. It looks lazy if you turn in the same application. The LOR’s from last should be fine still. If you can knock out a class or two or already have that is ideal as you GPA will change slightly.

Your attitude on applying to more than two schools being a waste of time is a little odd though. Even if you apply to five schools that really interest you this will increase your chances of acceptance. As others have said spending the money on one cycle vs. multiple cycles with your two schools. If you are applying to only two schools because you can’t move elsewhere then that is totally fine, but if you are ok moving you should seriously consider more school.

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40 minutes ago, PACrankset said:

Your attitude on applying to more than two schools being a waste of time is a little odd though. Even if you apply to five schools that really interest you this will increase your chances of acceptance. As others have said spending the money on one cycle vs. multiple cycles with your two schools. If you are applying to only two schools because you can’t move elsewhere then that is totally fine, but if you are ok moving you should seriously consider more school.

Sorry, my comment did sound snarky. It is more because moving would be difficult for us. I have a one year old and we have a lot of family all over the state that would be able to help watch her while I am in school. Also, for clinical rotations I have family, like I said all over the state so odds of me being able to room with someone vs. having to rent a place for 4 weeks is highly likely. 

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39 minutes ago, AT2PhysicianAssistant said:

Sorry, my comment did sound snarky. It is more because moving would be difficult for us. I have a one year old and we have a lot of family all over the state that would be able to help watch her while I am in school. Also, for clinical rotations I have family, like I said all over the state so odds of me being able to room with someone vs. having to rent a place for 4 weeks is highly likely. 

In this case, you need to gear your application to fit perfectly with these two schools. If you can get a feedback from your interview get it. Ask how to improve on your interview. For next cycle, when you go to interviews, make sure you are able to convey that you are the perfect fit for their school. This means lots and lots of research and practice. Look at their mission statement, their vision, and what they value in a student/person and then highlight the things you have done that fits what the school is all about. 

Hopefully this helps. And Hopefully you get off the waitlist. Good luck.

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I'll add, too, that if you got an interview, your app was good enough to get in the door.  Work on interview skills.  

A good general rule is to check the matriculating applicant stats.  Do the schools have average GPAs of 3.8?  If yes, then you need to up your GPA.  Do they have an avg of 10,000 PCE hours?  Then work on your hours.  Your app is what I would consider 'on the bubble'.  No one spot needs specific attention but it's also not a shoe-in; it will really come down to who you are up against that cycle.

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