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Seeking Advice on Pre Med Schools

futurestudent100futurestudent100 Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
Hey Guys,
I'm currently a junior in a competitive high school whose very interested in pursuing premed in my undergrad.
My ACT was a 33 but I plan on trying to get a 34 this June. (math and science are 34 and 35, but english and reading were 30 and 31).
I plan on taking the math 2 and physics subject tests. I also took bio but did poorly (740), so I may/may not use this score.
Unfortunately, since I attend a competitive high school, my grades are not as high as I want to be. Freshman year I got half A's and B's, but sophmore year I got straight B's. However, my juniour year I am beginning to get half A's and half B's again (but with a much harder course rigor than previous years - 4 AP's). Hoping to get straight A's 1st semester senior year.
My weighted GPA will be around 4.0, and my unweighted will be around 3.4-3.5. My course rigor is high (1 AP sophmore year, 5 AP's junior year, 4 AP's senior year).
For extracurriculars, I have been on my school's varsity swim team for 3 years, and varsity debate team for 2 years. I have volunteered in a hospital, and shadowed a neurologist in the past. This summer I will be doing a research internship for 6 weeks.
What are some good premed school to look for with my gpa range and these stats? I know ivies are out of the question, but any second tier schools?

Replies to: Seeking Advice on Pre Med Schools

  • merc81merc81 Registered User Posts: 7,324 Senior Member
    edited April 20
    For ideas you could consider some of these schools:

    http://www.****/lists/list/the-experts-choice-colleges-with-great-pre-med-programs/199/

    Based on your record, at least several would be open to you in terms of admission.
  • trackmbe3trackmbe3 Registered User Posts: 447 Member
    College Express list is a good start but by no means is it all inclusive. And not entirely accurate either. So many colleges with good premed programs are missing from the College Express list- I question that they are really "Experts" as their website puffs. Tulane, Pittsburgh, Florida, Sony Brook, Ohio State are five undergrad schools that come immediately to mind and which I am familiar with and should have been included on that list. Also, some schools that College Express lists as Honorable Mention (like Michigan, U Rochester, Case Westem) are significantly better than some of the schools it lists as Top Choices (Muhlenberg, for example, which should be recognized instead for its theatre program). I wonder if some of the schools pay College Express to be put on that list? IMO a better and more objective resource for students thinking of premed should be the following statistical information https://www.aamc.org/data/facts. Students can see medical school applicants and matriculation data, as well as a list of the undergraduate institutions that supply the most applicants (broken down by race and ethnicity). I think a student can learn more about which undergraduate schools are best for premed here. If an undergrad school does not have even have the minimum number of applicants (50 or 100 ) to be included in this Listing, then i think it says something about how premed oriented that school is.
  • CrewDadCrewDad Registered User Posts: 1,640 Senior Member
    @trackmbe3 No one gives any credibility to College Express.
  • Muad_dibMuad_dib Registered User Posts: 572 Member
    @futurestudent100 - There's no such thing as a "pre-med program". There are certain core classes that are required for med school (biology, chemistry, organic chemistry, math, physics) that are offered at any university or college. You can major in just about anything, but you must take the requisite science classes. I knew a pre-med student who was a history major. Now he's a podiatrist. You're better off finding a school where you'll get a ton of financial aid because med school is expensive.

    Good luck.
  • merc81merc81 Registered User Posts: 7,324 Senior Member
    edited April 20
    @trackmbe3 : I'd disagree with few of your points. I'd note, though, that that site's list originated with a book, so their methodology may be more serious than it initially appears. Its chief weakness seems to be, as you pointed out, that it leaves off many potentially excellent choices that would be equivalent to those it includes. However, as a source for ideas for named colleges that might meet the OP's specific and general criteria, it may serve a purpose. The OP, as of the first post, indicated a blank slate in terms of schools, and can't, in the end, attend an abstraction.
  • artloversplusartloversplus Registered User Posts: 7,944 Senior Member
    edited April 21
    Standard questions you have not answered: How much your parents can/will pay, geographic area and what is your state?

    Premed track UG school should be that your stats are above 25-30% of all admitted students, lowest net cost, has a variety of programs that are interest to you and a fit to your life style after visit.
  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Registered User Posts: 82,623 Senior Member
    <<< College Express list is a good start but by no means is it all inclusive. And not entirely accurate either. >>>>

    <<<@trackmbe3 No one gives any credibility to College Express.>>>


    Agreed. And I'm not convinced it's even a "good start". Virtually any good school deserves to be on that list.

    That list just gives false hope to the naive. Potential premeds and their parents often grasp at any straw that they perceive will give their child an edge. Picking a school from that list, simply because it's on that list, is just crazy.


    <<<
    Premed track UG school should be that your stats are above 25-30% of all admitted students, lowest net cost, has a variety of programs that are interest to you and a fit to your life style after visit.
    >>>

    Agreed! And if it's a tippy top UG, then being within the top 10% is probably a safer bet.


  • futurestudent100futurestudent100 Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    My parent's price range is anything upto 35k, with 40k being a little stretch but still ok. I also know not to accumalate to much student loans in premed, as I will be getting a lot of it during med school. I live in Northern Virginia, and am primarily looking along the east coast for college, however colleges in the Midwest like Purdue, UIUC, and others are still definetely in my target list.
  • rvalover7rvalover7 Registered User Posts: 362 Member
    @futurestudent100 Which East Coast Schools are you looking at? I'm from VA, and we have a lot of great state schools. Don't neglect to apply to those such as UVA, VT, JMU, etc. Also look at some private LAC where you are in a target for financial/merit aid. I'm pre-med now, and there is no pre-med major like others have said. The school name does not matter as much as how you perform does. Organic Chemistry from a state school will do you just fine as it would from Vanderbilt. If you attend state schools or schools that give you generous aid, you'll minimize the price for undergraduate, which will you save you money for medical school. Here are some things I would consider when researching colleges:

    1. Research - Most accepted medical students do research. How are the opportunities here? Is it easy to get involved?
    2. Faculty Reputation/Class Size - Are students happy with instruction? How are the class sizes?
    3. Student Life - Would you be happy here? How are the student organizations? Do you see yourself being an active member of the campus community?
    4. Pre-Health Advising - Does your school have an excellent advising program? Tour and ask professors and students these questions. Do they offer MCAT prep classes? How is the average medical school acceptance rate? How often do they meet with pre-med students?
    5. Off-Campus Surroundings - You want to be somewhere that has opportunities to shadow doctors (aka have a hospital nearby) and volunteer organizations you can work with such as hospital volunteer programs, medical assistant programs, etc.

    These are just a few of the things I thought about when looking for where I wanted to go to school. In the end, I chose a LAC, but my brother and sister-in-law chose the big state school and they both are in residency now. Just some things to ponder. I go to the University of Richmond if you have questions about that or any other VA schools. I'll be happy to answer questions based on some experiences I've had at various schools. Good luck!
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Registered User Posts: 24,946 Senior Member
    Among the top considerations, to me: a collaborative versus competitive/weeder program. That can be a little harder to figure out. But % of kids getting an admit to one of their top 3 med school choices is misleading, is after all those freshmen with med school dreams have been aggressively weeded out.

  • mikemacmikemac Registered User Posts: 9,580 Senior Member
    How is the average medical school acceptance rate?
    the med school admission rate tells almost nothing about how good a job the college does in preparing its students to apply to med school. Some schools boast incredible rates, but it boils down to one of two things. Either they start with great students (think Stanford, Dartmouth, etc) or the school weeds out students.

    Weeding out can be done with introductory math/science courses with a tough curve, ensuring only the best students still think of themselves in the running after a few semesters. But the biggest way to weed out is the "committee letter". Let me write the committee letter and I can get any college in the country an outstanding rate.

    The real question to address at this point is not what college, but why an M.D? Have you looked into the medical field and considered the alternatives? From the day you start college it will be 11-15 years before you are a practicing doctor. Its almost a reflex action among HS kids, they think of a career in medicine and its "I'm pre-med!" Doctors are far from the only ones in the health field that help people. Physical therapists, radiology techs, nurses, speech pathologists, physician assistants, to name but just a few. Spend a few hours browsing on http://explorehealthcareers.org Unless you've considered the alternatives and have spent time actually working in a health care setting (which is an unofficial requirement to get into med school, BTW) its better to think of yourself as interested in exploring a career as a doctor rather than someone who has already made the decision.
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Registered User Posts: 24,946 Senior Member
    Excellent, @mikemac. Should go out to many "pre-meds."
    The hosp volunteering should expose a kid to the many aspects of the healthcare world, the many roles. The many ways a person can help others, not just doctor as savior. Doesn't always.

    And OP, not just the vol work, not shadowing, not just the research, but how your record shows compassion in action, local, with the needy. Show, not just tell.
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