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Not getting in PA school first cycle


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Hey you guys, I was hoping you all could give me advice or some encouragement to try to move on after having been rejected from multiple schools. I was actually rejected from a school today that I just interviewed at yesterday. I truly thought it went well and really liked the program more than I thought I would going in, but I guess I was not what they were looking for. To add to that, I got rejected from another program I applied to not 5 minutes later. I applied to 8 programs this cycle, received an interview for 2 of those programs, and have been rejected from 6/8. I am still waiting to hear from 2 programs but I assume those rejections are coming since its December. Should I apply to some of the programs I previously applied to next cycle? Also, how common is it to not get in your first cycle? I am not sure what these programs are looking for but I thought I was somewhat competitive which is why applied to 8 programs thinking I would surely get accepted into one program.

My stats:

3.66 cum gpa, 3.63 sci gpa, 1150 hours as an ER scribe, 200 hours as a cell saver technician in the OR (just started this job)

GRE: 157-V, 145-Q, 3.5-AW (Low I know)

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I applied last cycle and received 0 interviews from the 4 schools I applied to. I continued working full time as a patient care technician and shadowed a PA for 100 hours. This year I applied to 16 schools, received 10 interviews, and been accepted to 2 so far! (shouldn't have applied to so many, but I was determined to get in this cycle). Improve your application and get some interview prep books and do some mock interviews for next cycle!

If you want to go to those programs, I would definitely reapply! It shows you are dedicated and very interested in them. It is very common to not get in the first time. 

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Stats are about average for applicants. Clinical experience is on the weaker side, so that may have held you back a bit this cycle. I think you’ve certainly got a good chance next cycle when you’re applying with more hours. 

Overall I would recommend applying a bit more broadly next year, at least 10 - 12 schools. Definitely rework your personal statement and make sure it’s stellar. Retake the GRE. I know you’re > 300 but it’s unbalanced and the 20th percentile in quant could definitely be holding you back. Continue accruing PCE.

Edited by hmtpnw
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Sorry about the rejections, it really sucks. But pick yourself back up and keep moving forward if PA school is your goal. Lots of people I met on the interview trail applied more than once. Since your PCE, GRE scores, and GPA all look good, I would focus on your interview skills. Did you do any mock interviews with friends, colleagues, etc? Maybe you can contact the school for improvements. You can definitely reapply to the programs that you liked and can even apply to a few more schools if financially able. 

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I would consider retaking the GRE. Idk if most of the schools you applied to required it, but try to aim at least 150 in the verbal and quantitive sections and at least a 4.0 in writing. Along with your new gig and the hours you already have and your GPAs, I think you'd make a really competitive applicant next year 🙂 Get some really good letter of recs too! Best of luck! 

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As has been said before, if you got interviews but no invitations, there is nothing wrong with beefing up your background but there is a big flashing warning light as far as your interview performance. You looked good enough on paper to invite but didn’t seal the deal in person. Finding out why is a good start.


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