Stats above are altered for anonymity.
cGPA: 3.5-3.8 sGPA: 3.5-3.8 MCAT: 27-29
Strengths: - Above average stats (LECOM-B complimented me on my GPA!) - Volunteered (At some places I volunteered for 10 years. I guess that showed commitment.) - I took many upper division classes in human physiology while in school.
Weaknesses: - Have been out of school for a while (Reason for rejection at RVUCOM) - Took a while to send back secondaries (at some schools up to a month!) - Applied late.
Top choices: KCUMB and DMU
// Applications //
Application Cycle One: 2013
Undergraduate college: State school
Undergraduate Area of study: Biological/Life Sciences
Total MCAT SCORE: 505
MCAT Section Scores:
Overall GPA: 3.70
Science GPA: 3.50
Summary of Application Experience
Cost of Application:
$1,830 Kaplan Course $100 Examkrackers Materials $315 The Berkley Review $270 MCAT -$200 Sold study materials
$1,280 Primary AACOMAS Application (About 30 schools) ~$850+ Secondaries ~$90+ Interfolio Letter of Recommendation service $ Hotels/Car rental/Gas/Food etc. ------- Total: $5,000+* (I stopped caring after $5,000) Budget: $7,000
*This amount doesn't include other things like the suit, travel, and other accommodations.
I sent my primary to all the DO schools but only sent my secondary to about 50% of the schools. The following weren't in the drop down menu
Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine - Interview Invite - Withdrew
---- Summary of application cycle
One of my biggest regrets is not having applied earlier. I feel the outcomes of my interviews would have been more positive if I had applied 1-2 month(s) earlier when more seats were available. By the time I was interviewing in November a lot of SDN members had already decided where they wanted to go. You want to begin your application as soon as it opens up.
*If your MCAT score isn't ready to turn in when AACOMAS opens up you can always submit it to 1 school so it can be verified. When your MCAT scores are back your transcripts are already verified and ready to be turned in.*
I also took too long filling out the secondaries. A majority of my secondaries were turned in within the first 2 weeks but some were after a month. I really shot myself in the foot with that.
Make sure you have a proper list of schools that you would be interested in. By the time I was ready to submit it had already been ~2 weeks after getting my MCAT scores. Rather than narrow down a proper list I just sent my primary to all schools. I figured when the secondaries came along I would research the schools and respond accordingly. I only returned about 1/2 the secondaries I received. This ended up costing me a few hundred dollars extra but it bought me some time to do research on each school.
- 09/07/2013 - First secondary sent out (DMU) - 09/21/2013 - First interview invite (LECOM - Bradenton)
- 10/15/2013 - Second interview invite (ATSU-SOMA)
- Interviewed at ATSU-SOMA, Western University (Pomona), KCUMB, and LECOM-Bradenton.
- Rejected from ATSU-SOMA, Waitlisted at Western University (Pomona) and LECOM-Bradenton, Accepted at KCUMB.
- Interview and waitlist at DMU. - Application cycle is over. I've decided I won't be sending updates to the schools who waitlisted me. Going to enjoy my time off and matriculate at KCUMB in the fall!
- Interview Invite for AZCOM. I really didn't expect this but I'll play since it's IS.
- Interview scheduled at AZCOM
- Decided I will be matriculating at KCUMB.
Later in 2014:
- Got off WL for Western U (Pomona). Unfortunately I had already put down my deposit at KCUMB
The time flew by pretty quickly. For the most part I'm happy with having chosen KCU. Our class average COMLEX Level 1 score was a 551.92 (30 points above the national average) and 98.8% first-time pass rate.
Application Complete, Rejected
A.T. Still University - Kirksville
Combined PhD/MSTP: No
Secondary Completed: Yes
Interview Invite: No
Interview Attended: No
Summary of Experience:
"Thank you for submitting an application to A.T. Still University/Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine for the Summer 2014 class. At this time, we have finalized our enrollment and wish to inform you that your application is being closed."
Summary of Experience:
"Thank you for your application to the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine. Your application reflects many fine qualities and attributes and we commend you for your accomplishments to date. Unfortunately, it was another very competitive year for admissions to OU-HCOM. Applications were up 7.9% from last year and the pool provided us with the challenge of narrowing down a very competitive pool of applicants for our limited number of interviews.
Although you were not selected for an interview at OU-HCOM this year we certainly encourage you to reapply for admission should there be marked improvement or enhancements to your current application.
Thank you for your interest in the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine and we wish you every success in your future endeavors."
I really liked this school. Kind of bummed out that I didn't get to interview here.
Summary of Experience:
Submitted secondary around August-September.
Rejected through email first week of April.
The faculty and administration of the Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences and College of Osteopathic Medicine sincerely appreciates your interest in becoming a medical student within the entering class of 2014.
Each year, the competition is keen, and we regret more positions are not available to interested applicants. The Student Selection Committee has reviewed all applications submitted, and we must regrettably inform you we will not be able to offer you a position in the upcoming class.
Again, we appreciate your interest in the Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine. Should you have any questions or if we may be of assistance to you, please do not hesitate to contact the Office of Admissions at 918-561-8324.
Summary of Experience:
1. Location - I have lived in AZ for the past decade but never visited Mesa before so I had no idea what to expect. The weather during my interview day was absolutely beautiful and it's a shame we spent it all inside. To the south you have a new town called Gilbert which is expanding quickly and seems to have large homes. To the west you have the city of Tempe which is older and has ASU.
The campus itself is pretty small and I'm guessing it has to do with the fact you only spend 1 year at the Mesa location. SOMA itself is only 1 building consisting of 3 floors. The library and lecture room are probably the smallest I've seen. The great thing about SOMA is it's pretty new (2007).
2. Academics - SOMA uses a 1+3 model curriculum when the first year is spent at the Mesa campus for around a year. Starting second year you move with about 9 other students to your selected community health center. Rotations don't start until 3rd year but being there during your 2nd year is supposed to help get early clinical experience. I think you get about 8 hours per week of clinical time during your 2nd year and all lectures are done online. The curriculum is a clinical presentation model of about 120 scenarios a patient can present to the physician.
The school recently turned one of the rooms into a virtual anatomy lab that has computer equipped with all sorts of cool dissection software.
3. Finances - Tuition is about $40,000 which is average for private schools these days.
4. Student Life - The students were quite friendly but seemed like they were ready to get out and head to their assigned CHC.
5. Personal - The night before the interview you get a chance to meet fellow applicants and talk to faculty. On interview day you meet in the main lobby and sign a form that says you won't share information about the interview day.
Overall I left the interview with mixed feelings. I really want to stay in AZ and the campus is located in a great area. I believe SOMA has the smallest class size out of all the places I interviewed which was really nice.
Unfortunately the idea of moving your 2nd year and doing most of your rotations at a CHC didn't appeal to me much. I personally don't think the clinical presentation model would have been the right way of learning for me. From the research I've done, SOMA tends to have lower board scores than all the other schools I interviewed at.
Result: Rejection. I guess they could tell I wasn't really into the school.
Summary of Experience:
Post-secondary hold a few weeks after submitting my secondary.
Interview invite approx. 8 months after being complete.
1. Location - AZCOM is located 1 hour northwest of ATSU-SOMA. I didn't get a chance to spend much time here but it seems the area around campus is geared towards students. There are plenty of places to eat and go grocery shopping. The apartment complexes look very nice and I personally wouldn't mind living there. The campus is big and continuously expanding.
2. Academics - AZCOM has a pretty traditional curriculum and they have usually been in the top 5 for DO board scores in the past few years. During the day the dean put emphasis on the fact they were going to review the performance of students and see how they could constantly improve education. From start to finish the faculty was was pretty transparent about costs and education. It seems a majority of the students get to stay in state and the OOS rotations were in respectable places. The student interviewer mentioned he scored more than 1 SD above the average on USMLE step 1 and there were a few in his class who had scored higher. The only negative I can see is the large class size of about 250 students. When you see the large lecture halls and multiple OMM/anatomy rooms you get the sense that you're just one of many students.
3. Finances - $55,000/ year. This is about $10,000/year more than other schools.
4. Student Life - The students felt they were happy with their education but wished they had gone to a cheaper school. While I was walking around on campus I noticed a few families sitting around on benches with their children. This place seems to be really friendly for non-trads.
5. Personal - AZCOM is a great school with competitive board scores and great facilities. I could see myself spending the next 2 years living here. Unfortunately the tuition is a hard pill to swallow. The interview didn't really cover much at all. There was no financial aid lecture and the tour was about 2-3 buildings. The website also has sparse information about the programs and campus. If you really want a sense of what MWU has to offer then it's probably best to visit the open house.
Summary of Experience:
Second interview of the cycle!
1. Location - After driving 6 hours from AZ to Pomona I finally understood why many applicants called it "the armpit of CA". The area surrounding the campus was a little dodgy and run down. Although the campus itself was massive, it felt a little dull and drab. A logo on one building was slightly coming off. I probably would not want to walk around the neighborhood at night.
Back in the 60's this area had been a strip mall. I believe a JCPenny was converted to the COMP campus and Western U has been buying up buildings in the area. They recently purchased a Chase bank and plan to use that as office space. The campus itself integrates seamlessly with the neighborhood and during the interview I could see people just walking through. During the tour one of the applicants jokingly asked if self defense classes were offered.
2. Academics - Western University has a great reputation and usually scores near the top for boards. They are really proud of the excellent clinical rotation sites. Unfortunately, because the campus is a bit old the OMM room and anatomy room seemed ominous. The study areas were dimly lit and I don't think I would want to study on campus. The students I met seemed to give off a much more competitive vibe than the ones at SOMA. The school placed a big focus on training healthcare professional that wanted to practice in a diverse community and stay in SoCal.
3. Finances - $50,000/year. I can see this being worth it if you really want to stay in CA.
4. Student Life - The students felt good about their education but mentioned most of them didn't live near campus. There was some construction starting up for new student apartments being built near the campus. I stayed in a hotel 15 miles from campus so I didn't really get a chance to see what Pomona has to offer.
5. Personal - Western U is a great school with a solid reputation and I honestly wouldn't mind attending. The only problems I had were with the location and how crowded it felt. I don't do well in big cities or traffic. During the interview I was asked if I would pick Western U after being accepted. I think the interviewer picked up on my slight hesitation.
Result: Alternate list :(
Accepted off waitlist. I had already made arrangements to attend KCUMB so I withdrew.