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Unique situation, need advice

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Hello everyone,

I have been playing professional baseball since 2014. Due to covid, there is a chance my career could be cut short due to contracts (long un-needed story). I was a student athlete in college until I was drafted after my junior year in 2014. There are definitely more difficult situations out there, but being a student athlete at my school meant I had 2-3 hours to study per day starting at 8-9pm and we lifted at 5am every day. Finishing my degree in minor league baseball was just as tough. 12 hour bus rides twice a week, hotels, 10 hour days at the field, and playing for 6 months with only 2 days off a month. Not trying to make excuses, it was just tough for me.

I still need to take organic chemistry, but my cGPA is 3.3 and my sGPA is 3.2. I have not taken the GRE and I have about 80 documented hours of shadowing, with over 300 undocumented hours.
 

Until it is certain my career has ended, what can I do to stay fresh on all my sciences? Have I missed anything to apply for PA school? Do I have a chance of getting in to school? A friend of mine is a physician and said medical/PA schools love unique stories and backgrounds. Even with my story, I want everything else to show I have a passion for medicine and I’m willing to bust my butt in school when I can strictly focus on school.

Thank y’all in advance for any honest feedback!

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You didn’t mention if you have any PCE hours. Most programs require these hours prior to applying, but there are some that don’t require any PCE. So you’ll want to make sure you apply to the programs you qualify for.

Do you have any volunteer hours? This is also a common attribute of applicants. Many people also have research hours too.

Your GPA is on the lower side for most school averages I would guess, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re not a good applicant. You can read several posts of people getting in with lower GPAs.

I think you do have a very unique story, which would make you stand out. You would want to have an exceptional personal statement and I would apply to a large handful of programs. 

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59 minutes ago, Janie55 said:

You didn’t mention if you have any PCE hours. Most programs require these hours prior to applying, but there are some that don’t require any PCE. So you’ll want to make sure you apply to the programs you qualify for.

Do you have any volunteer hours? This is also a common attribute of applicants. Many people also have research hours too.

Your GPA is on the lower side for most school averages I would guess, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re not a good applicant. You can read several posts of people getting in with lower GPAs.

I think you do have a very unique story, which would make you stand out. You would want to have an exceptional personal statement and I would apply to a large handful of programs. 

I have experience in my undergrad with obtaining vitals and patient histories, but nothing in a professional setting. I was never able to lock down an actual assistant job where I could obtain these hours. I usually have 4 months a year I can actually work before my training becomes too intense to work. Therefore not many facilities are willing to hire someone for that short of time (at least none I talked to). My time shadowing has allowed me to read charts and interpret EKGs for doctors in the ER, so I have experience there.
 

I do not have many volunteer hours within the medical field. No excuses, I just have never branched out to do it. I have a bunch of random volunteer hours though. 

On a side note, any advice on staying fresh with undergrad knowledge? I’ve been out long enough that the small details of my science classes aren’t in my memory. For instance, I don’t remember the Kreb cycle or specific mechanisms of action for hormones and drugs

 

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You will need to do a little research on PCE vs HCE vs shadowing and see where your experiences fall; I would guess maybe HCE and shadowing. PCE is when you are directly responsible for providing the care of a patient; usually trained/certified and paid work. There are programs that you could apply to that don’t require the PCE. 

Your volunteering can be with any organization, not only medical.

The only undergraduate class I would brush up on is anatomy and physiology. Watch videos, books, old class notes.

To get going I suggest you research what schools don’t require PCE hours, look through their application criteria, minimal standards, average class stats (these are often deflating so don’t get discouraged), and then decide what your next steps will be. 

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Thank you! I will definitely start researching and brushing up on A&P. I’ve looked at a couple of schools and the stats were pretty deflating. However, reading a couple of posts about getting in with a low GPA has brought my confidence back up. Thank you for that advice! 

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I wish there was but there isn’t. Fantastic nursing school but not PA. There are two branches of my university that have PA programs so I would like to try for those. The hospital I’ve spent so many hours shadowing at, is the teaching hospital for one of the programs. I’ve only shadowed physicians in the ER at the hospital, but those physicians are “teachers” for the medical and PA students. Hopefully recommendation letters from a few of those physicians would also increase my chances

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