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Will my two semester withdrawal's affect my chances?

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Just to give a little bit of background, I am currently a senior finishing up my undergrad degree in Biology. My sophomore year I fell really sick and was forced to medically withdraw from fall semester, which shows up as a MW's on my transcripts. My time in school after that has been awesome, I have been on the pre-PA track and have been doing everything in my power to excel once I apply to PA school as far as grades, PCE, volunteering, shadowing, etc. However, last semester, one of my close family members passed away unexpectedly in a car accident and I again, chose to withdraw from my classes for the semester just about the 4th week into classes. I now have two semesters that are completely W's for my undergrad and I was wondering if anyone had an opinion or know if this is going to be looked down upon or affect my chances negatively for when I apply to PA school?


Thank you in advance!



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You described the most recent episode of Ws was due to a death that was unexpected.  This is where I have mixed feelings.  On one hand sorrow impacts us differently.  On the other hand, one needs to be able to cope with loss and deal with struggle and not let it impact you.  With respect to the line of work you want to go into...Immediately I thought what happens when you are in school and something happens, take off school?  Or what happens when a patient dies later on in your career, take off work for a long time?  One need to be able to cope with loss in addition to other stressors.  I understand the sorrow though.  I had a cousin who recently died in his garage after falling and hitting his head.  I did not let it bog me down though, I had stuff to do, I was in school and was working full time, I had to eat and I have to pay for things.  Not sure if it would impact you or not, I am really just throwing out an opinion that others may have when you share this.  I don't know, this is a tough one and feels like I am treading on a thin sheet of ice here.  

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I’m in a somewhat similar situation but mine differs in that my Ws are spread apart from the time when I was 16 until today (almost 30). I had different reasons for dropping the classes with the most recent being out of necessity to be able to complete all prerequisites in time to actually apply this cycle.

Anyways... I think your situation is difficult but better than mine. You have two “bad” semesters which you can try to explain and if your application is strong enough and they like your grades and HCE and etc., you should be ok. My case is more difficult when they are spread about because it shows I quit things from time to time and “give up.” 

Dont drop anything else regardless if it’s a science course or a general course. 

But most importantly: What’s your GPA - overall and science? How many hours of experience do you have and what type? Volunteering? Shadowing? LORs? 

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