Jump to content

Recommended Posts

@pany123 I really wouldn't stress too much about the f especially because you've retaken the course. Unfortunately CASPA doesn't replace the bad grades when you've retaken the course so thats out of your control. I don't think this one grade will impact your chances of getting an interview should all other factors one competitive. I hope this helps and best wishes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@gmarie thank you for your question! I think you're a competitive applicant for most, if not all programs. You have a strong GPA and a masters degree that shows your ability to succeed at the graduate level. I would encourage you to consider shadowing a PA if you can, but I think your experience is solid. All other factors look good, and 300 isn't a bad GRE score so don't beat yourself up too much. :)...I hope you're considering Methodist since youre in NC. Best wishes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you so much! That makes me feel a lot better! I had considered Methodist, as I am very familiar with Fayetteville. I live in Greenville now, but most of my family live much closer to Fayetteville than Greenville. Unfortunately, I have not taken Biochem, so I did not have all the prerequisites for the program. I am thinking about taking Biochem through UNE because ECU requires a number of classes I haven't taken (e.g. cell biology) as prerequisites to their Biochem class. Thank you again for the encouraging words and the time you take to answer all of our questions!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@gmarie you have until next August to complete coursework prerequisites deficiencies so you're still eligible to apply and be accepted as long as you have a plan to complete the Biochem. We have accepted UNE biochemistry in the past. Best wishes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As others have said, thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. It is much appreciated.

 

How do admitting officials take grade trends into account when evaluating a prospective student? I ask because I didn't do so hot for a few years following high school for a number of reasons (parent's divorce, lack of motivation, indecisiveness on a major), however, after joining the Navy as a Hospital Corpsman I have really found something I love to do and my grades have really turned around. While I have two years worth of good grades, I also have 5+ years of grades that are nowhere near how I can perform as a student. How do you expect this to affect my chances of gaining entrance into a program?

 

Joel

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@friction thank you for your questions. I do believe your motivation is different than several years ago so you'll need to show committees that with recent work and not just your undergrad work. I would make sure that your most recent 60+ hours are at least 3.5 or higher and that your GRE scores (if required) are at the recommended/required score or higher. By getting into the classroom now and take a quality course load to prove your ability now that should help your chances. I hope this helps and best wishes!

 

Jennifer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm 41 and finishing up prerequisites for PA school this year. As an undergrad 20 years ago my grades were mediocre at 2.7 but I've made A's in most of the pre-requisite courses. The overall GPA is at 2.97 right now, and rising slowly. I know that if I get an interview at a PA school, the admissions committee will be looking at my old grades and probably wanting an explanation. There are three reasons (all true) and I would like to know if I should mention them. First, I was young and immature and did not take school seriously. Secondly, I kept changing my major and had I really didn't know what to do with my life career-wise; I was direction-less. And third, I had sleep apnea which caused me to have very low energy and daytime sleepiness, making it harder to focus in class and study.

 

My concern is that the first two reasons make me look like a fool and the third reason makes me look like whiner or that I'm asking for special treatment because of a disability. I don't know if any of these reasons are appropriate or acceptable to an admissions committee. Any advice would be appreciated! Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@LemonBars thank you for your questions. We run into these type of situations quite often and I'm going to answer this from our program's perspective. I would say that our committee would probably ask you about your past performance, but if you've performed well in a significant amount of coursework lately then we would focus on what you've done to better prepare yourself for PA school. 20 years ago is a enough amount of time to show maturity, professional growth and a change in motivation. From our standpoint, that's what we want to see. Hope this helps and focus on what you've done to make yourself a more competitive applicant!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ive got a few questions about interviewing.

 

Im more of an outgoing and energetic introvert, than an extrovert. I feel very comfortable working in direct patient care (8+ years CNA exp) but I feel that Im bad at interviewing. I had one interview already and it felt like a disaster. Ive practiced a bunch at home and prepared, but I feel so nervous and I have the worst inner critic. Ive been told to just be myself, but it has been so difficult in this situation because my future is on the line.

 

Can admissions coordinators pick up on my personality type and see that I would be good with patients? Or do i have to really present myself as extroverted even though my application screams experience? I know a handshake and a smile are important.

Can I use my introspective side as a strenght? Should I tell them up front at the start of the interview that Ive got a lot of nervous energy, but that they need not worry and are encouraged to look past it?

When asking them questions, is it ok to ask them to compare their school to others Ive applied to?

 

All advice is much appreciated! Thank you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've just recently decided that I wanted to take the PA route. I've been a pre-health student, B.S. in Biological Sciences, so I am good on the prereqs.

Here's my situation, this is my junior year.

GPA: 4.0 both cumulative and science

 

I only have about 50 volunteer hours so far in a hospital, which I am still at.

[i have plenty (at least 200 hrs) from volunteering in various places in high school, which really wasn't that long ago for me but I don't know if I can use this?]

 

I'm going to get CNA certified but the soonest would be by Feb., leaving me with only a couple months of experience (about 250 hrs). I'm planning on starting to volunteer at a local hospice, so by the time I apply in the summer I would have 400-500hrs of patient contact total.

My paid work experience:

Summer with Artworks program, public murals project.

Health Sciences program at the university (336 hrs), participant with stipend

Tutoring services through the university (continuing)

Lab Assistant for Chemistry dept. (continuing)

Supplemental instructor for health and nutrition course (future, next semester)

 

Extracurriculars:

Biology club (VP)

Premed society (club)

Christians on Campus

Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society

Multicultural Association of Premed Students (MAPS)

 

I would still have to prepare and take the GRE, too.

Schools I am interested in: Baylor, Kettering, Yale, Philadelphia, Alabama (birmingham), UMDMJ

 

..Now that I'm typing this out, my application looks a little weak. It seems like a lot of work to cram everything by June/July (all these HCE hours, GRE, applications, etc.)

Actually, I could technically graduate after fall semester next year, after applying. But I'm planning on studying art abroad in Italy spring semester while I'm still receiving financial aid, so I'm delaying graduation.

 

Should I wait another year to apply? I could get in more HCE, spread out my classes, study more for the GRE, be able to put my study abroad experience on my application...and spend that extra semester or two either working or going to a Bible training college I've been looking into.

 

I really don't know what to do. Are my schools too beyond my reach? I need schools that don't have a high requirement for HCE, will accept AP credit, and preferably don't require statistics or additional psych. courses. Should I wait another year to open up more PA program options? I would really appreciate any help! Thanks in advance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@mattfin3 thank you for your questions! First, don't feel like you're the only one who has a more quiet/shy personality. I honestly don't think committee members will discount you if you have that personality--not everyone is an extrovert! That being said, it is important that you're able to control your nerves during the interview process. I probably would not encourage you to tell committee members that you're nervous because more than likely all others interviewing that day are also a bundle of nerves. What stands out to at least our members are those who have a more quiet side being able to demonstrate their confidence in their abilities to be a good fit for their program, effectively communicate that you understand the role of a PA and to be a good provider. Sometimes applicants get so wrapped up in their nerves that they are not able to clearly communicate their thoughts and may be perceived differently than what you really are.

 

In addition to preparing at home, I would recommend preparing with a mock interview with a friend or coworker if you don't have access to some type of career services (or agency that may be similar). Now that you've had your first interview, reflect on the questions they asked you and use them to prepare for future interviews. Again, everyone is nervous, but the best advice I can give is to be confident in your abilities and potential as a PA. Hope this helps!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@jennifer4293 Thank you for your questions! You've got a great resume and leadership positions. My advice is to take a year off from applying rather than trying to cram in getting ready for PA school and studying abroad. I do think it would be beneficial for you to consider getting more quality HCE through a paid position or shadowing once you return from Italy. It's hard for me to say "yes, you're ready for PA school" without meeting you face to face, but you've got a lot great opportunities to explore prior to getting into PA school.

Remember, preparing for PA school is a marathon, not a sprint, so take time to enjoy the things you want to do (you don't have much of a life once in PA school ;)) and make sure this is the route you want to go. If you delay applying it will give you time to prepare for the GRE , arrange more HCE and allow you time to get your application materials ready. I hope this helps and have a great time in Italy!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Within the past year I have decided to change careers from equine medicine to human medicine. I graduated from undergrad studies in 2007 with a business administration/accounting degree. Following that I took partnership in an equine ambulatory practice and was an emergency technician there for years acquiring over 10,000 hours in field surgery, routine and preventative medicine, sports medicine, radiography and ultrasonography work, stem cell harvest, IRAP, etc. (on-call really added up!)

 

The past two years time constraints prevented me from being able to continue working in the field and managing the clinic simultaneously so I have been working exclusively as the practice manager and only per diem in field. This recent year I have committed to transition to human health care and acquired phlebotomy, EKG, and CNA certifications. Currently I am working as a CNA on the weekends and satisfying all my prerequisite sciences. My volunteer work includes an upcoming mission abroad in January, weekly pet therapy at two different hospitals, and working with a physical, speech, and occupational therapists in EAT.

 

My undergrad GPA is deplorable at a 2.96 (which will be about 8 years prior at the time of my first application cycle) but all of my recent work and my science GPA is a 4.0 (my cGPA is now over 3.0). At the completion of my prerequisites I should have a cGPA of around a 3.2 or 3.3. I had considered heading into a surgical tech program and continuing undergrad upper level sciences to raise my cGPA (while completing that and gaining more HCE). Do you think that would be the advisable route or do you feel I would have a shot with a cGPA at 3.3 and a post bacc/science GPA at 4.0 with over 500 hours human paid HCE, >10000 hrs veterinary technician, >250 hours in community service and health care related volunteer work, a stellar GRE (I hope), and significant shadowing hours?

 

Furthermore, how do most schools feel towards vet tech hours? I have only found two that have specified them in their discussion regarding HCE, one accepted them and the other indicated the would be disregarded.

 

I appreciate your insight!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@JC525 Thank you for your questions! I'm going to answer your questions from our program's standpoint. I would say that you've taken strides to improve your application and if your post-bach GPA is high and based on a quality number of hours (i.e. at least 25-35 semester hours) I would encourage you apply. You've taken time to get into a field where you have patient interaction and have exposed yourself to PAs and physicians. When it comes to vet. tech hours our program would not count those hours, but I would check with the programs that interest you to see if they would count them. I'm not really sure if most programs would allow that to meet their HCE requirement. I hope this helps and best wishes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have few questions about the admissions process:

 

1.) I withdrew all my classes for three consecutive terms, meaning it wasn't so much about getting W's from each classes, I just simply withdrew for the entire term, which amounts to a whole year because I was really afraid of ruining my GPA. While I was able to preserve my 3.2 overall gpa, I was wondering if this would raise a redflag for the admissions committee? Overtime, I eventually took pre-req courses and was able to maintain a 3.7 gpa, so I was wondering if the upwards trend alleviates the issues that I had in the past?

 

2.) I finished my last year as an undergrad going to school for part time only instead of completing it as a full time student. is this something the admissions committee would be concerned about?

 

3.) Does a student who majored in English Literature have a disadvantage of being admitted compared to a hard science major?

 

4.) Does the admissions committee focus more on Pre-Req GPA over the Science GPA or are they both taken into consideration equally?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@optimus Thank you for your questions! See my answers in red:

 

1.) I withdrew all my classes for three consecutive terms, meaning it wasn't so much about getting W's from each classes, I just simply withdrew for the entire term, which amounts to a whole year because I was really afraid of ruining my GPA. While I was able to preserve my 3.2 overall gpa, I was wondering if this would raise a redflag for the admissions committee? Overtime, I eventually took pre-req courses and was able to maintain a 3.7 gpa, so I was wondering if the upwards trend alleviates the issues that I had in the past? I don't think your upward trend will alleviate the issues you had in the past, but it will definitely help prove to the committee that you've overcome that time in your college career. I would make sure you make reference to why you withdrew for 3 terms in your personal statement. As I always say, don't make your whole personal statement about why you withdrew, but without meeting you, I would imagine the committee members would have that as a top question. Answer it for them before you're even offered an interview. If you are offered an interview I would make sure you prepare for that question as it will probably be asked. You've done well to maintain a overall and have a solid science GPA so keep up the work, if you have any left to do, and keep your focus.

 

2.) I finished my last year as an undergrad going to school for part time only instead of completing it as a full time student. is this something the admissions committee would be concerned about? From our standpoint, it's not something that would really hurt your application. Of course programs do want to see that you prepare yourself as much as you possibly can for the rigorous curriculum, but I know our committee members recognize each applicant's situation is different from the next. Working and going to school, while maintaining high marks, show strong time management skills and determination.

 

3.) Does a student who majored in English Literature have a disadvantage of being admitted compared to a hard science major? Our program, and I would believe most programs, do not have a specific major required. So from our standpoint, no I don't think it hurts your application as long as you've taken the prerequisites. Consider going above and beyond requirements if you have the time.

 

4.) Does the admissions committee focus more on Pre-Req GPA over the Science GPA or are they both taken into consideration equally This question is more program specific. We focus a lot on the prerequisite or medical core GPA so it's important to contact the programs that interest you to see what weighs more.

 

I hope this helps and best wishes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest DLuong

I have been out of college for a while (~7 years) and have no contact with previous professors that can write me a letter of rec. Can I substitute a clinic coordinator as a LOR?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Dluong Thank you for your question. If you were applying to our program I would tell you to get a letter from your clinic coordinator as they are the one who will be most familiar with your abilities now. If you have to go back and take any courses and you're able to get to know your professor, you can use him/her as a reference. However, if the most recent professor is not someone you get to know I would rather see a supervisor give a reference simply because they obviously have known you longer and have had more time to judge your potential. Hope this helps!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a psychology undergraduate and will be applying for Fall 2014. I have a specific question concerning transcripts. When I first began college I attended a community college and went to college at the request of my parents (and to stay on health insurance). Consequently, my first 2.5/3 years (5 or 6 semesters [Fall/Spring]) of college were all W's/F's (The F's are from not properly withdrawing). Since then I have earned approximately 3.85 GPA with nothing but A's or A-'s in science classes (at the same community college and/or at PSU). Do you think the rough start will be held against me?

 

Oh and I take approximately 18 credits a semester including at least 2 lab sciences and work part-time. (I only mention this because you've indicated in some posts that ADCOMs view work ethic/time management highly).

 

By the time of my application I will have approximately 500-750 hours of work with individuals with developmental disabilities, approximately 500-750 hours as an EMT-B, and 50 hours volunteering at a local psychiatric hospital.

 

I have not yet taken the GRE's, shadowed a PA, or begun collecting LOR's.

 

Would my application fare well at your program?

 

PAs practice medicine and so I don't understand why taking the MCAT is considered a test reserved for physicians. How do you view applicants who take the MCAT?

Edited by bjl12

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dear PA admissions,

 

I am really interested in beocming a surgical PA but I can't really find much info about this online. How do I go about becoming a surgical PA? Is there a special program I have to attend after completing normal PA school or what? I realize this question isn't really about admissions, but I thought you might be able to help me. Thanks a lot!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I probably shouldn't be asking you this, but I'm not sure where else to ask. Would you count recreational therapy classes towards science gpa? I am minoring in RT and am hoping for the classes to boost my science gpa. They are in the college of science and health. Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a question about health care experience. I'm currently a junior in undergrad and I work as an EMT-B for my university. It is a paid position. Does working as an EMT for one's school count as HCE for PA schools, or does it only count as "related medical experience"?

 

Some details about the job: It is paid, and our service provides emergency medical coverage for school events (commencement, homecoming) and for all of our school's athletic facilities. We also provide coverage for a large arena on campus (holds 7000 people) that often hosts special events that are open to the public, such as concerts, hockey games, and basketball games. We mostly treat sprained ankles, lacerations, and other fairly minor injuries. Sometimes we will treat more life-threatening injuries or see patients with more severe conditions that require us to call for BLS or ALS transport/backup.

 

I am definitely planning on working as an EMT for a private ambulance company upon graduating to get more hours, but I was wondering if this would be a good way to gain HCE during undergrad? Thanks so much for your time!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

PA Admissions Director,

 

I know many have thanked you for this thread, but I would just like to add my appreciation for your service. Two years ago I received 5 interviews. I was rejected outright at two and waitlisted at 3. I have had one interview this year and was rejected once again. I just received an invitation and now after six rejections I would like to seal the deal you might say. It seems I am good enough on paper to receive an interview, yet, in person I am not what the programs have been looking for. I am a confident person but would not say I come across as conceded. I have been hired for every job I have ever applied for and feel like I am a good interviewer. I have read much of the advice on interviews here on the forum, but I do not see where I am falling short. This might be a tough one to answer with little background information, but what advice would you offer to someone who is getting interviews but failing once they get there?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What do you think my chances are of getting in? I have applied to PACE, SBU, Touro Bayshore, Touro Manhattan, UMDNJ, Salus, PCOM, Drexel, and Phila U. My CASPA was mailed at the end of August. I have a 3.9 GPA cumulative and science, and will graduate in May with a BS in Biology from Touro College. I am 20 years old. I have worked for a bankruptcy law firm for 1000 hours (summers and beginning of college) and I currently work as an MA (120 hours were completed at the time of CASPA. I volunteered for 50 hours in Pediatrics, and 115 hours in Cardiology. I have shadowed PAs in Orthopedic surgery, Cardiac surgery, and Cardiology for 100 hours. I have 500 hours of Healthcare related experience (mentoring children with Autism). I also have 300 hours of community service. I have all the regular prerequesites completed except for Microbiology and Organic Chemistry, which I am currently completing (for Drexel and SBU I need genetics which I noted on CASPA that I would take in the Spring). LOR from my Chemistry professor, a PA, and the mother of the children with Autism that I mentor. Also, I could "PM" you my personal statement if you want. Any advice? Thank you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@zerog Thank you for your question and please don't feel that any question isn't worth asking. It's better to get clarification. It depends on what is required of the programs you're applying to to determine if any of the RT courses will count for requirements. As far as if they count for science courses, CASPA's science GPA is calculated through the following coursework: Biology/Zoology, Inorganic Chemistries, Biochemistry, Organics, Physics. I'm not too familiar with RT courses so if they don't fit into one of these categories they will obviously be calculated into non-science and overall GPAs. I hope this helps and best wishes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Welcome to the Physician Assistant Forum! This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn More