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The last time I wrote on here I was advised to do some GPA calculations. After doing those calculations I've determined the following:

The most realistic improvement on my gpa will be a 3.02cGPA and a 3.2 sGPA. The upward trend in my GPA for the last 60-70 credits will have to be around a 3.8-4.0. That is including the majority of prereqs that schools require although when I was an immature kid I failed a Biology and Anatomy & Physiology class (retook both one for an A the other for a B). By the time I can apply to PA school I will have been a Firefighter/Paramedic in a busy city with just about every medical call you can imagine for 7 years. I will also have been a Clinical and Lab Instructor for EMT and Paramedic school for about 3.5 years. 

Question 1: What else can I do to improve my application that would give me an edge due to my bad GPA

Question 2: Do you think I have a realistic chance at getting in? 

I understand it is going to be a very big time and financial investment just to get to that point. So I'm looking for honest advice as to if I should move forward. I really have a passion for medicine, unfortunately I did not find that out until I was out of my teenage years and competition for this career seems to be pretty fierce.

Again, thank you guys for your time.

 

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You definitely have a chance of getting in. You have a story that you can tell. You aren't the only applicant, however, that has had a bad running with undergraduate GPA.
I think you need to do your research on what schools are PCE heavy because you probably have a TON since you've been working for so many years.
Have you taken the GRE? I think you should study hard to do well on it to compensate for a lower GPA. However, a lot schools look more on GPA and PCE while the GRE serves only as a checkbox. That is, adcoms don't really care what you get as long as you score above the minimum.
Make your personal statement unique, obviously, receive stellar letters of recommendation, and really explain why you aren't just another person that "got tired of working as a technician and want to be in a more comfortable setting as a PA"

Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk

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I think you will have a good chance at getting in once you are at that point. Your HCE is fantastic, the history of education in EMS is also a great thing on your application. A couple of things to think about between now and when you apply to improve your chances.

1) Have glowing LOR's, talk to some of the EM docs or PAs that you encounter at you FF/Medic job. Make sure they really know you and can speak to your knowledge and patient care.

2)Study for and take the GRE, you should be looking for something over 300 (150V and 150Q) as a minimum. If you can get in the 305-310 range this will help offset the GPA.

3)Apply broadly when you do apply, we are talking 10-12 and a minimum. If it were me I would try to find 15-18 or so. Also tailor this list carefully, there are many schools that value quality HCE highly. University of Utah, MEDEX, Emory and UNE are a couple that spring to mind. Those are the schools you want to look at, a minimum of 1500-2000hrs is a good indicator of this. You can also look at the matriculated class stats to get an idea of the HCE experience in each class.

4)Personal Statement will be really important. Tell your story, what you have learned over your years in medicine etc. Don't restate you application statistics, this is a common theme from the PS's that I have reviewed and edited. I am happy to help edit yours if you want when the time comes.

Good luck, its a marathon not a sprint.

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Thank you all for your advice. I appreciate the honesty and encouragement! 

I have yet to take the GRE. But when I do I'll give myself enough time to study to get the score I need.

I made a list of schools that don't "require" a 3.0gpa for application. I figure that maybe I will have a better shot at applying to those schools when the time comes. However, I have noticed that these schools continue to increase the GPA requirement numbers from 3.0 to 3.2 or so. So hopefully it holds steady at 3.0 until I can apply. 

I have a good relationship with my Medical director at the Fire department. He is also the Medical director for the college I teach at so we work together on a regular basis. I'm sure I can get a good LOR from him. I'm not so sure about a LOR from a professor or anything like that. I take a lot of classes online, so I don't get to build a relationship with any Professors. 

Edited by johncfl
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22 hours ago, johncfl said:

Thank you all for your advice. I appreciate the honesty and encouragement! 

I have yet to take the GRE. But when I do I'll give myself enough time to study to get the score I need.

I made a list of schools that don't "require" a 3.0gpa for application. I figure that maybe I will have a better shot at applying to those schools when the time comes. However, I have noticed that these schools continue to increase the GPA requirement numbers from 3.0 to 3.2 or so. So hopefully it holds steady at 3.0 until I can apply. 

I have a good relationship with my Medical director at the Fire department. He is also the Medical director for the college I teach at so we work together on a regular basis. I'm sure I can get a good LOR from him. I'm not so sure about a LOR from a professor or anything like that. I take a lot of classes online, so I don't get to build a relationship with any Professors. 

I wouldn't say that an LOR from a professor is absolutely necessary, unless one of your schools specifically states that you must have one from a professor. I did not have one from a professor last year and the year before it was from my EMT faculty, not a science professor.

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On 5/5/2018 at 7:05 PM, johncfl said:

Thank you all for your advice. I appreciate the honesty and encouragement! 

I have yet to take the GRE. But when I do I'll give myself enough time to study to get the score I need.

I made a list of schools that don't "require" a 3.0gpa for application. I figure that maybe I will have a better shot at applying to those schools when the time comes. However, I have noticed that these schools continue to increase the GPA requirement numbers from 3.0 to 3.2 or so. So hopefully it holds steady at 3.0 until I can apply. 

I have a good relationship with my Medical director at the Fire department. He is also the Medical director for the college I teach at so we work together on a regular basis. I'm sure I can get a good LOR from him. I'm not so sure about a LOR from a professor or anything like that. I take a lot of classes online, so I don't get to build a relationship with any Professors. 

Would you mind sharing this list?

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