My degree is a BA in Medical Ethics.
I was a transfer student. I attended junior college for a year and then transferred to the UJ. I graduated from college in a total of 3 years. I had trouble in my first few science classes in JC, but got close to all A's after that (just one B in a one unit lab class). My GPA at the UJ was a 3.98.
Academic Awards: Dean's List (every semester for all three years) Parsons Research Fellow Graduated Summa Cum Laude UJ College of Arts and Sciences Award for Academic Excellence
Jobs: Professional Actress, Los Angeles, CA (1997-2000) Philmont Boy Scout Ranch, Cimarron, NM, Program Counselor (Summers 2002, 2003) Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, position: Research Intern (2002-2004) Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, position: Clinical bioethicist (2003-2004) University of California San Francisco, SF, CA, postion: IRB analyst (research ethics)(2004-present)
Memberships: UCSF Ethics Committee, member since July 2005 UCSF Academic Business Officer's Group (ABOG), since January 2005 UCSF Toastmaster's Club, member since October 2005
Hobbies: Music: Guitar, mandolin, singing Crafts: knitting, quilting, etc. Outdoors: Backpacking, hiking, biking Excercise: swimming, running, water polo Computers: web design
// Applications //
Application Cycle One: 2005
Undergraduate college: University of Judaism
Undergraduate Area of study:
Total MCAT SCORE: 509
MCAT Section Scores:
Overall GPA: 3.82
Science GPA: 3.78
Summary of Application Experience
The school listings are a hodgepodge mix of my three application cycles.
First application cycle: no interviews. Second cycle: Accepted at one school, but it wasn't a good fit. I was waitlisted at 3 other schools (2 of which were my top choice schools) last year for over 7 months. Grueling! Third cycle: I was just accepted at my two top choice schools!
Explanation: I think that I was not accepted on the first try because I was so young (20 years) and graduated from college in three years. I thought that this would be a plus, since I worked so hard. However, in the end, I think that there was a big concern that I was too immature. I also didn't know as much about the range of schools as before. I didn't know which schools would look upon my application more favorably. Plus, I have a degree in medical ethics which is really weird. I took very few classes above and beyond the basic requirements (my school didn't offer very much).
My second application I had a timing problem. I should have gotten my stuff together and submitted my application on June 1. However, I was still depressed over the first year rejections, and I procrastinated. Then I procrastinated with my secondaries. So by the time I interviewed in February and March, several schools had already filled their classes, so I interviewed for the waiting lists. Plus, I've heard (through various contacts) that I was ranked quite high on the waiting lists, but that they accepted very few people after May 15. I heard the GW actually over booked their class when too few accepted students matriculated. Then it was EVEN HARDER to get in off the list. Loyola used to (up until last year) fill the class by December. This year, they are saving at least 10 spots until after May 15. *I should mention that I was accepted at one school, but it was a bad experience and I knew that I wouldn't be happy there.*
In terms of how I improved my application, I had two amazing jobs in two very different hospitals. I was a clinical medical ethicist for a major Los Angeles hospital. I saw some of the most grueling cases and worked with a wide variety of health care workers, patients and families on decision making issues. I saw how wonderful and horrible it can be to be a doctor. I met people who would become an MD all over again, and those who wouldn't wish it on anyone. I saw so much that I never saw as a volunteer. My work at UCSF in the IRB has been equally educational (although not nearly as dramatic). I had done bench research in college and found it quite boring. I hadn't had an opportunity to do any clinical research. Now I get to read about hundreds of research projects and help determine whether or not they are ethical, legal, worth it, etc.
This year, after going through two cycles of rejection, I was able to say in my interviews that I am serious and stubborn. I want to be a doctor and have fought long and hard to become one. The time applying has helped me to clarify and strengthen my rationale for entering the profession. Also, through my work in ICU and wards (as an ethicist) and as an IRB analyst (overviewing hundreds of research proposals), I have seen what working in health care is really like. I don't think that you get that kind of education from reading books and volunteering (my volunteering didn't show me much at all about medicine).
It was horribly depressing both times I was rejected, but they turned out to be blessings in disguise. I would have missed out on so many amazing experiences that have shaped me into the person I am now if I had gone to school earlier.