Premed transfer college choice


I am a current junior at UC Berkeley and applied for transfer this semester after seeing how ridiculously low the premed stats were at Berkeley and how overall awful our prehealth advising was. I just want the best shot of going to medical school and was told (and shown) that Berkeley just isn’t the place for that.

So far I’m considering Baylor, Boston University, and American University. But I’m having difficulty picking.

In terms of Financial aid, American would be the cheapest, then Baylor (almost double American), and Boston at the most expensive with about a 24k difference from Baylor.

I am 100% certain I want to go to medical school and have done my research and worked a fair share of different roles in the healthcare field (as well as other fields).

My current GPA is 3.9 and I don’t want to destroy my GPA going forward. I like being involved in campus and also off-campus (working and such). I am also interested in research and obviously need time to study for the MCAT.

EDIT: I’m from California, I am neutral in terms of sports, neutral in terms of college size (if I had to pick I’d say I enjoy smaller schools and prefer to not live in the city but honestly it doesn’t matter). And at the end of the day, I am privileged to say finances are not that big of a deal to me (I am currently attending Berkeley on a full-ride so obviously not super keen on paying a lot).

I’m also still awaiting decisions from Northeastern, Vanderbilt, and Villanova.

Does anyone have any thoughts on where I should go or any advice? Thanks!

How many premed pre-requisites have you completed until now at UCB ? These includes courses in Biology, General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Physics, Math ( Calculus I & II), Biochemistry, Psychology and Sociology. If you have already done these, what is your major at UCB ? Can you maintain your 3.9 GPA in junior and senior years while taking your classes in your major ? Major doe not matter for medical schools.

Here is UCB medical school acceptance data from their website.
It seems nearly 50-60% students from the table below get in to a medical school without any gap year from UCB. Not that bad at all in IMO.

Highlights of Cal medical school applicants:

The majority of Cal applicants take at least 1 gap year before entering medical school. For most applicants, this timeline means applying after spring of their senior (or final) year at Cal.
Cal applicants have consistently higher acceptance rates than the national average.
Across all MCAT scores, Cal applicants with a cumulative GPA of 3.60 or higher are more likely than not to be accepted.
Cal applicants represent a variety of majors, within and outside of the biological sciences, and across all colleges, including Letters & Science, Engineering, Public Health, and Natural Resources.
UC Berkeley First-Time Applicants: Acceptance Rates by Class Year, 2015-2019
APPLICATION YEAR: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019

CLASS OF 2015:
Acceptance Rate
49.4% 38/77
62.5% 95/152
57.4% 81/141
38.2% 21/55
40.7% 11/27

CLASS OF 2016:
Acceptance Rate
62.7% 47/75
65.5% 97/148
58.1% 61/105
45.6% 26/57

CLASS OF 2017:
Acceptance Rate
53.0% 35/66
55.5% 91/164
67.1% 100/149
CLASS OF 2018:
Acceptance Rate
59.5% 22/37
65.0% 93/143
CLASS OF 2019:
Acceptance Rate
58.8% 30/51
Note: Data is for the ~85% of annual applicants to MD programs who, through AMCAS, give permission for their application information to be released to UC Berkeley. Class year includes December, May, and August graduates of each academic year.

I still have some premed pre-requisites to take. With the pre-requisites, I have let to take I’m not sure if I can ain’t the 3.9 considering all the grade deflation and competition. My major is MCB: Neurobiology.

@grtd2010 Thank you. I have also read these stats before. Compared to Berkeley 50-60%, Boston reports an 80% premed to medical school acceptance rate and Baylor reports 70%. This is partly why I was considering transfer.


Boston and Baylor both use health profession committee letter to control who is and is not allowed to apply to medical school. UCB does not–anyone wants to apply can. Boston and Baylor use the HC to pre-screen applicants and only grant letters to those who the committee feels has a strong chance for med school admission.

So those acceptance percentages are artificially inflated.

Also be aware that most colleges have requirements that you take a minimum number of credits/classes in order to be granted a degree from that university/college.
Typically, it requires about 2 years of attendance to reach that minimum. That’s something you should investigate before making any decision to transfer.

One thing that I have wondered about but really do not know the answer: I have heard that medical schools expect students to have completed their undergrad in four years. If you are currently a junior and if you transfer, you might delay your graduation due to issues with transferring credits or with schools requiring that you complete two full years there to graduate. I do not know what impact this will have with your chances of acceptance to medical schools. It is possible that this might not be a problem.

It seems to me that if you have managed to pull of a 3.9 in two years at Berkeley, you might want to just stick with it, and see if you can pull off another 3.9 for your last two years there.

A GPA of 3.9 at UC Berkeley is very good.

Used to be true, but no longer is.