Pre-Med colleges for a struggling sophomore?

Hello all! I am currently just about to end my sophomore year and I’m looking to see if anybody has any advice on what colleges I should look at. This year, online learning has hit me pretty hard, which has drastically lowered my GPA. Here are my statistics:

Desired Major: Biomedical Engineering, Biochemistry, or Chemistry (Pre-Med)
Current GPA: 3.66 unweighted, 3.85 weighted
I have calculated my maximum GPA for junior year to be 3.76 (unweighted).

Freshman Year Transcript
AP Human Geography: A-
English 9: B
Honors English 10: A+
Algebra 1: A
Geometry: A
Algebra 2: A-
Chemistry: A-
Biology: A
Health & PE 1: A+
German 1: A
German 2: B+
German 3: B
Principals of Biomedical Science: A

Sophomore Year Transcript
AP Biology: A-
AP Chemistry: B-
AP Chemistry Lab: B-
Anatomy & Physiology: A-
AP English Language & Composition: A
Journalism: A
World History II: A
Trigonometry: B

Classes that I am taking next year:
AP Physics
AP English Literature
AP U.S. History
Human Body Systems
Law and Debate
Introduction to Engineering
Health & PE 2


Current (Grades 9-10):

  • Technology Student Association (Co-Founder & Vice President)
  • Model United Nations

Looking into for next year:

  • Mock Trial
  • National Honors Society
  • National Science Honors Society
  • Future Health Professionals (I would be founding the chapter)

Looking at the following volunteering/internships for this summer and next year:

  • Medical internship for a non-profit in Ghana.
  • Volunteering for a local politician’s campaign.
  • Student Advisory Committee for my local school board.
  • Volunteering at local hospitals.

Thanks for helping me out!

Forgot to note: I live in Virginia, but I do not mind out-of-state universities.

I think it’s hard to say which schools you might like without more context

You can major in anything and go to med school. You have to cover the prereq’s either during your time at college or through a post-bacc program (you can google some).

Many schools do not have a premed program at all. Are you sure you want to enroll in premed as a major? That may be limiting.


In Virginia, you have fantastic in-state options! UVA and William and Mary would be reaches, but JMU, GMU, and Virginia Tech are all great larger options. CNU is smaller and might be a great environment for you to stand out. I recommend these in-state schools because you don’t have a lot of criteria, and if you’re thinking about med school, it’s good to go somewhere cheaper for undergrad.

1 Like

Focus on your junior year. Prep for ACT or SAT. Get yourself in a good spot. Worry about colleges next year.

Med schools don’t care where you went for undergrad. Good luck

1 Like

Med schools will care about your GPA in college…not high school. So…you need to do well in college. If you are concerned you don’t have a good foundation for any of your courses, look at Kahn Academy.

I do not have suggestions on specific colleges for your list; however, I notice the B- in the AP chemistry courses in your sophomore year, which might indicate a lack of mastery of the material. Since college chemistry courses required for medical school applications are the graveyards where countless pre-med dreams are buried, I strongly suggest that you re-learn the material thoroughly before you start college. Perhaps look into the chemistry courses for high school students that are offered by enrichment programs (Hopkins’ CTY, for example). I am not sure on the following; be mindful that courses taken at community colleges (as a registered student, even in high school) might have to be included in one’s medical school applications, so check out the rules on these first, if this route interests you.


All college courses, including those taken while in high school, must be included in medical school applications, to be included in GPA recalculations.

Note also that a college course or AP credit that is repeated by taking a college course on similar material must have the second instance marked as a “repeat” on the medical school application.


If you’re ending your sophomore year, you still have a bit of time before having to select colleges. I’d put that time into finding online sources (not college credits) to beef up your knowledge of the sciences (Chem/Bio/Physics, etc), and Calc to be sure you have a great foundation. Doing so will also start training your brain for the study dedication you’ll need in college and med school. Prep for the ACT and SAT too while you’re at it. The thinking patterns you’ll get from that will help considerably too. It’s not like prepping for “a” test where you know which chapters you’re focusing on. It’s testing your complete knowledge and the ability to quickly reason the correct answer. Those skills are needed quite a bit in med school, because many patients are essentially a test - can you figure out the puzzle?

When Covid lifts, visit some colleges near you to get an idea what type you like. Big/small? City/Suburban/Rural? LAC/Research U? There are no wrong answers to this. You’re seeing what appeals to you because you’re likely to do best where you enjoy being. One warning, you don’t necessarily want too much “fun” stuff that might tempt you to stop studying without an EC cause (eg parties). In college you want to pack in the necessary studying, ECs med schools expect, and fun, “I have a life too” things, but the fun things look a lot better when they are club or intermural related than when they are parties. My guy had juggling, dance, ASL, and a Christian club for his stress relief/fun.

Then, when you have your first half junior grades in assuring that you can get straight As or close to it, coupled with the good foundation you’ve built, take your GPA and SAT/ACT scores to find schools where you will be in the Top 25% of students and matching your fit. There will likely be quite a few. Look at the finances of those so you don’t get into high debt or spend away a lot of money that could have gone toward med school.

Start a thread then and you’ll probably receive even more options than you located on your own.

1 Like

How did you end up completing three years of German in one year?
Did you attempt to take AP chem without a previous chem course and if so is that common at your school (it’s normally seen as one of of hardest science APs, taken senior senior).
A good college for “notstraight A” student who want to go to med school is Juniata college.

1 Like