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  1. 8 points

    What kind of applicant DOESN'T match?

    I understand the point of view that you are trying to portray. However, there are several factors you have omitted in your assessment that, in my opinion, point to luck playing a larger role than you are inferring. When applying to an ultra competitive specialty (re Ophtho, Plastics, Derm), getting your desired elective at a specific site is challenging. Often times, people will be unable to secure electives at certain schools despite applying several times (sending in an application right as the portal opens for that select week for every 2 week elective slot they have). This is completely random and not in your control. Furthermore, schools will infer interest in the program based on your elective set (which you may have limited ability to decide). Now in ultracompetitive schools, they will only interview you if you have done an elective at the school. Now let’s talk about preceptors. You can be a super star medical student but if you don’t work with the right people, this won’t mean a thing. What do you do if during your elective the PD took a 2 week vacation? What if none of your preceptors are part of the ADCOM? These are all things that influence your ability to match that you have no control over. Now you have submitted your application. Maybe the person reviewing your application doesn’t value your hobbies, research etc. Maybe they are in a bad mood when they read your application...etc The system we currently have has no objective measurements to compare students. We rely on subjective measurements that are easily influenceable by luck. We create an artificial rat race to try and select the ideal candidate, however I would argue that the criteria we use, often time have little to do with your ability to perform your job.
  2. 6 points

    Advice regarding bipolar diagnosis

    Hey! Diagnosed bipolar type 2 prior to entering med. It's not all doom and gloom. I am currently managing very well and haven't needed any time off. I also have been able to not ask for accommodations. In all honesty, I'm fairly lucky and my hypomanic symptoms are mild/pleasant. I'm productive, fun, outgoing, I make a good impression, I have fantastic energy, I have plenty of time to do my work and I can generally curb in any impulses to overspend or do anything silly. Depressive symptoms can be...well, debilitating. I manage well now but it wasn't always like that. I assume given the recency of your diagnosis that some recent event you couldn't compensate for happened - that's how it was for me, anyway. Honestly I 100% am with you and your logic for FM makes sense. I share the same perspective: I specifically considered the lifestyle of specialties. Everyone else also does that, everyone else thinks about having a family life and work-life balance. There's nothing wrong with it. I know that long term, I'll be happier if I am able to get regular sleep/don't have to be permanently stressed and working night shifts long into the future. Stability, routine are things that I value and I notice that my mental health is better when I have those. I am able to participate in call (though I haven't had too much experience with it yet), I am able to do the brutal hours on rotations that need it - but I know that's temporary and I truly feel that having to do that long-term would be a huge toll on me. It already does to some extent. It's a toll on everyone of course but unlike the general population, I have to think about whether it might trigger me to relapse and how that would impact licensing and patient safety. It's not worth that risk for me. I anticipate that I will be pursuing family medicine and I think it's mature of you to think about that right now too. It's not "letting that diagnosis limit you". It's understanding what it means, it's understanding how I take care of myself best and it's understanding that I need to pour into myself before I can pour into others. I'm not leaving medicine. I'm every bit as ready and worthy of being here as my peers and if anything, I think sometimes my diagnosis gives me strength. I am better able to build rapport with some patients with mental illness. I'm actually much more mindful than your average person of my own mental health and know how/when to prophylactically take a step back and tend to my own feelings. I actually find a lot of other medical students have depression/anxiety symptoms and don't always know how to handle it. I've been there, done that, and I know by now what works for me and what I need. My psychiatrist has been nothing if not encouraging of me. If you're in preclerkship, you don't have to decide yet. In all honesty, I find it unlikely that tremor will be the biggest concern you will have to deal with. Ride it out, see how medications go. Be careful about UGME/not reporting: I didn't but I was also coping well by the time I arrived in medical school and didn't expect to need accommodations. I was open to the thought if things changed but so far, nothing. That said, it's always better to take a preventative measure, let the school know (especially if you're in the early point of diagnosis and you're realistically not sure how episodes/medication will play out). You really, really don't want to end up taking a hit on professionalism because of something related to mental health if it could have been avoided. DM me with questions if any!
  3. 2 points
    1000%, if you can get into Mac HealthSCi , go there. Don't even question that. Western Scholar Electives is just an overlay on MedSci. You get together a few times a year and do a bit of extra stuff. More networking with faculty so better chances at getting Research opportunities. It will not really do much on its own for Medical School admissions. Your goal in first semester is to adapt to undergrad quickly and ensure you can achieve +3.9GPA. It is as tough transition. Don't assume you can carry your high marks using the same study approach you are using now. Once you have the grades under control get involved in one or two quality EC's and use th rest of your time for life balance.
  4. 2 points
    Lols I post my bad stats shamelessly!!!!!! =P - G
  5. 2 points

    Pharma ou Med Dent?

    Au lieu de comparer les programmes, pourquoi ne pas te baser sur le métier que tu aimerais faire plus tard ? Tu te vois plus être pharmacien (conseiller les gens sur la prise de médicaments) ou dentiste (travailler dans la bouche des gens et soigner les dents).
  6. 2 points

    Specialty Choices

    The detrimental result would be going unmatched. I don't doubt that this was the best strategy for you, and that you had spent a lot of time thinking about your approach to matching and CaRMS. I also appreciate that even though you weren't selected for the specialty you were most competitive for, you were able to make a good enough impression on the others to be successful. I have seen your posts on this forum for years and the utmost respect for you. Unfortunately, for most people, CaRMS is still very much a numbers game, and while I understand that everyone has their own advice based on their experiences, applying to 3 competitive specialties in a geographically limited area can have the very very real consequence of you going unmatched. If you appreciate and accept that risk, then by all means apply with that strategy. I would not however, advocate for this strategy across the board because one applicant in the past was successful with this strategy.
  7. 2 points

    Advice regarding bipolar diagnosis

    I do not have bipolar disorder, but I am a new psychiatrist--I can comment superficially, at least, based on my experience as a trainee having worked with individuals with bipolar. I have noted that there are plenty of people in high demand careers, including medicine, with severe and persistent mental illness diagnoses. Also, a number of individuals with bipolar are high functioning, but maintaining that level of function closely correlates with close followup, strict medication adherence, family/social support, and maintaining excellent sleep hygiene. It is a tall order to fill, no doubt, without adding the stressors that come with medicine. First and foremost, you need to get on medications to stabilize your mood episodes and need to have open and frank conversations with your psychiatrist about your future, your hopes, your dreams. You will likely require accommodations even in medical school, best to get these discussions going ASAP. Don't throw the baby out with the bathwater yet regarding ophtho. Good luck and all the best to you. LL
  8. 2 points

    The process is taking it's toll...

    This is my 5th time applying...when I first applied for the first time I heard of stories of people who applied many times and I thought that would never be me because I couldn't imagine the stress/anguish those re-applicants would face. I would lie if I said that rejections year after year didn't affect my self-esteem. Know that you are not alone. What keeps me going is hearing stories of those who got in after many cycles. Just the other day I was talking to someone who got in after their 8th try, yes 8th try. For some of us, it takes more time, but in the end I feel being a many time re-applicant gives us many good qualities like perseverance and allowing us to appreciate our position in medical school compared to someone who gets in right away. I am also a very firm believer of the saying that if you want it bad enough [getting into a Canadian Medical School], you will get in. Some people give up in undergrad, some give up after a poor MCAT, some never apply, some give up after one rejection, some give up after two rejections, some give up after not being interviewed for three years, etc etc.. but eventually it will come if you are actively improving your application (GPA/MCAT/EC/interview/etc). I have also heard of an extreme case, maybe one in a hundred type case but still notable nonetheless, a lady who has interviewed 6 years and applied for TWELVE straight years acquiring an undergrad, two masters, a PhD, and a current Post doc. I know that is a very extreme case, but hey some people never quit.
  9. 1 point

    IP status

    Ohh ok! lol At least it's verified now!
  10. 1 point

    February: So close but yet, so far!

    How is everyone doing? Have you been able to keep your minds occupied with thoughts other than "I wonder if they have started reviewing my file" or "how many more weeks until February?" Hang in there! I was wondering if anyone has been through the MMI process at Calgary more than once. I would like to know how similar, or different, the two (or more) years were regarding questions and content. Not looking for specific questions, as that's not permitted. General comments appreciated. Thanks, and hope to see you in Feb/March!
  11. 1 point

    UBC dental school acceptance?

    Not yet... I hope they will send out the emails soon
  12. 1 point
    Dear all, I am a current CSA at Griffith University in Gold Coast. I wanted to share with you my horrible experience and tell you I think you should not even apply to Griffith for medicine. Seriously, don’t do it. Do yourself a big favour, apply to UQ or U Syd instead. If you want to know more, feel free to PM me.
  13. 1 point
    ll PM ll

    Cours 'faciles' sigle BIO ou MCB ?

    Salut tsunade! Moi aussi je rentre en science bio cet hiver et je compte changer de programme pour l'automne 2020. Mon amie m'a dit que le prof de bio cellulaire (Anne Routier) est nouveau a l'enseignement et qu'elle est correcte. Pour génétique, Caroline Daigle est vraiment bonne (c'est facile aussi) d'apres ce que j'ai entendu. Pour physiologie, c'etait supposé etre Stephane Molotchnikov (qui etait vraiment bon d'apres mon amie encore), mais ils ont changer pour deux autres profs et ces deux la sont pas les meilleurs mais ehhh ca passe, d'apres ce que j'ai entendu. Genetique c'est vraiment un cours de "problem solving", tandis que bio cell et physiologie sont plus de type memorisation. C'est pas Eric Guadagno. C'est Anne Routier.
  14. 1 point
  15. 1 point

    MCAT Question

    What I have figured out by going through the interview invitees on this forum from last year is that, if they have section cutoffs in fact, their section cutoffs seem to be as follows: 125/ 126/ 126/ 127. And their accepted overall score has been as low as 509. So I think you do not need a rewrite at all. And we all know that they don't look at your scores past whatever cutoff they assign each year. Good luck.
  16. 1 point
    stupid long term memories ha It is kind of variable the impact - many places it counts against you - sometimes quite a bit. There a few places where showing persistency by reapplying may help (and I mean just a few - mostly in areas where a high failure rate in an attempt is expected).
  17. 1 point
    Don’t fool yourselves, both of these oft neglected specialties are not so “uncompetitive”anymore.
  18. 1 point

    Better to do research in different labs?

    I think there's pros and cons to both. I'll brainstorm with you. Staying in one lab: + Show commitment + Great reference letter and connection with a professor + Increased chance to publish (I bounced between 3 labs in my UG, never published) + No need to be retrained constantly (there's always a slight bounce backwards in experience when you move lab to lab, for various reasons) - Less experience on research techniques and different areas of research (that's mainly for your own personal growth, ex. clinical, animal, wet, dry...) - Limited network and only one reference (but, hey, maybe that's OK if you know you'll have a reference elsewhere) I would suggest maybe asking you professor if you can do an exchange in another lab for a summer. I did this and went to Germany. It's a great experience and you'll get another connection internationally and will expand your knowledge on different cultures (woo cultural sensitivity!). Even if you want to stay in the same country, it's still a reasonable way to leave your current lab and come back.
  19. 1 point
    Mike Oxlong

    UofT's new requirements

    You can always call and ask. I remember I asked if my physiology course counted and they just said "its for your own good". That to me sounds like its not super strict but you can always double check
  20. 1 point
    https://med-fom-ubcmj.sites.olt.ubc.ca/files/2019/03/Letter-3.pdf https://meds.queensu.ca/ugme-blog/archives/3568 https://healthydebate.ca/2018/03/topic/medical-students-carms
  21. 1 point
    I did email the admissions coordinator last night so I am just waiting on their email back!
  22. 1 point
    @drdaydream To get such an outpouring of support even now, I am honestly so lucky to be a part of this community. Thank you so much, you're amazing <3
  23. 1 point
    To me, 60/40 time split would actually imply the latter (physician scientist), if you're talking 3 clinical days and 2 research days (and extra off hours likely devoted to research as well). For many physicians in an academic centre, they essentially have a 100% clinical workload (which they need to work teaching into as well) and all the research is done on their own time, with maybe some academic days here and there (depends on the status of the particular department)...
  24. 1 point

    Application acknowledgement

    Oh I think the page name is actually McMaster MD Admissions Here's the link to the post I mentioned https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=2599327560183511&id=226453564137601
  25. 1 point
    You should also be getting a letter(s) of recommendation from your grad school supervisor/advisors, so they might comment on your performance.
  26. 1 point

    DMD, Pharma admission

    Sa cote R comptera quand même pour 10% après 2 années s'il a fait 45 crédits rendu à la session d'hiver, quoique si quelqu'un avait au moins la cote R nécessaire pour être admis en kin même un 3.9-4.0 suffirait avec au moins un casper décent
  27. 1 point

    Psychiatry Residency ranked?

    I did not interview there nor rotate through, but it is another strong program. Keep in mind that you’re in an English program in a bilingual province, so knowing French is a huge asset.
  28. 1 point
    Well GPA and CARS account for 30% of your post interview score, so applicants with higher stats would more likely score higher overall post interview.
  29. 1 point
    OP has an above average CARS and an average GPA when compared to the accepted applicants, not the interviewed applicants. They can be below average on CASPer and get an interview for sure as the interview pool will have lower average CARS and GPA scores
  30. 1 point
    The Ace of Spades

    Specialty Choices

    I realize Bambi may have gotten lucky or been a stellar candidate, but applying to "three unrelated highly competitive specialties" + "geographically bound to Toronto or Montreal" sounds like a recipe for disaster... Something's gotta give.
  31. 1 point

    MMI/Panel practice (mostly Skype)

    Current resident and tutor. PM if any questions!
  32. 1 point

    Pharma 2020 UdeM

    Non! Il n'y a pas encore de distinction "en cours de bac" vs "bac terminé" pour les 4 autres doctorats de la santé!
  33. 1 point
    Your marks and MCAT are stellar as you probably know. The thing is that the 3 schools you applied to are relatively EC heavy, and those are subjective. I think you still have a good shot but no guarantees technically. If for whatever reason things don't go your way this year (although hopefully you don't cross this bridge), I would definitely recommend applying to more schools if you have the means/are eligible. Especially schools that would weigh your high total MCAT and cars more (McMaster, schools in the prairies, western, etc) Good luck!
  34. 1 point

    MMI/Panel practice (mostly Skype)

    I'm interested!
  35. 1 point


    I am around 6 + Years of experience with Data Analytics Especially with Oracle ERP analytics (ETL & Reporting). I would like to peruse a master's course(Part time) in Data science , Can you please suggest an apt program with UoT. Request you to please kindly share some insights which would be an apt program for me. I am currently employed in Toronto.
  36. 1 point
    I think as long as you can get someone to verify your activity, it should be fine. Also make sure to write your description on the ABS strategically to maybe highlight the experience?
  37. 1 point

    Reference letters

    It’s a ‘service’ reference, which is not strictly from volunteering. They’re generally looking for someone who managed or supervised you who can comment on elements of your NAQ related to service to your community, e.g. altruism, service ethic, ability to work with others, relate to others, etc. It doesn’t have to be the classic unpaid pre-med volunteer role. It could be from a workplace or a community you’re very involved with (like a church), etc. A club could potentially work if it was very service oriented, but you may find it difficult to find a suitable referee if everyone else involved was just other students like yourself. If you use a workplace reference, you just have to be mindful that the same person cannot also give you a professional reference (which would need to focus on different qualities).
  38. 1 point
    Historically yes to 18-19 as an RC cutoff. My guess is scoring below 18 on any section puts you in hot water. Last year they changed their website to say they look at all sections instead of being more specific.
  39. 1 point
    Funny enough I know someone from Ontario who got into UBC and McGill first round but didn't even get an interview at Western and was waitlisted at UofT lol
  40. 1 point
  41. 1 point

    distracting yourself from december

    the whole point of "distracting" yourself from invites is to live your life and NOT think about med...watching videos of med students usually makes one more anxious, and if you don't get invited you will feel a lot worse after spending time watching/thinking about "what could have been"...take this advice from a fifth time applicant..
  42. 1 point
    Was a fifth time applicant, don’t worry I gotchu. There is another on here who was as well. You can do it :). Just know there are sacrifices that come with getting in.
  43. 1 point

    Federal Election 2019

    What you're essentially saying is you're ok with making the lives of minorities a living hell as long as you get your tax cuts. That doesn't make you any better in my eyes.
  44. 1 point
    Salut, pour ma part j'ai fais la mineure en arts et sciences, et c'est la meilleure décision que j'ai prise de toute ma vie! Je t'explique pourquoi!! Et mon background pour bien comprendre. En sortant du cégep, j'avais 32,7 de cote r. Je voulais aller être admise soit au bac en physio ou au doctorat en optométrie. Impossible avec cette cote. J'ai été voir une orienteure qui m'a ensuite dit, choisit toi un bon plan B, genre un bac en biomédical ou en biologie comme ça si tu n'es pas prise les années suivantes, tu termineras tout de même avec un diplome entre les mains qui te servira a qqch! C'est vrai, mais ce qu'il faut savoir c qu'il faut vraiment avoir des notes de FEU tout au long de ton bac si on veut espérer être prit dans un de ses programme (opto ou physio, surtout opto). Donc, si malgré tous mes efforts je ne réussi pas à me démarquer suffisamment de la moyenne dans ses bac, c'est un échec assuré pour rentrer dans mon programme de rêve. (Pour te donner une idée, j'ai une amie qui a fait un bac complet en sciences biomédical, elle a terminé avec 4/4,3 et elle a réussit à rentrer en opto, mais c'était la dernière à rentrer dans le programme cette année là!! Imagine 4/4,3 en biomed et il faut que tu pries les 4 dieux pour rentrer... pourtant c'est excellent comme note!! ) Personnellement je sais que je suis le genre de personne à devoir étudier bcp pour réussir, alors ce genre de bac m'assurait pratiquement une défaite avec tous les labos à rédiger et la difficulté assez élevée des cours. L'orienteure m'a donc proposé une autre alternative! Elle m'a dit, «Ok, si tu penses ne pas réussir dans un de ses bac à te démarquer, il y a aussi l'option de la mineure en arts et sciences. Par contre ce que tu dois savoir avant tout c'est que chaque université évalue différemment les dossiers qu'ils reçoivent. Donc, quand tu décides de prendre le programme Mineure arts et sciences dans le but d'augmenter tes notes, il faut que tu le fasse en te disant que ton dossier scolaire sera bien vu aux yeux de l'université de montréal, mais pas aux yeux de l'université de Laval par exemple. Pourquoi? Pcq l'udem accorde moins d'importance à l'indice de force de ton programme que les autres universités et plus d'importance à ton écart entre toi et la moyenne de ton programme. (ce n'est pas le cas de ulaval pour qui le programme mineure arts et sciences est TRÈS mal côté).» Donc si tu penses ne pas appliquer ailleurs qu'à l'udem la mineure en arts et sciences peut être géniale pour augmenter tes notes, à la condition que tu aies des SUPERBES bonnes notes (genre A+, A c'est le minimum metton). Mais ce qui est intéressant dans la mineure c'est que tu peux choisir des cours ULTRA ULTRA faciles! Donc oui tu dois avoir du A+ pour compenser l'indice de force plus faible que les autres programme (qui je le rappel, est moins prit en compte à l'udem qu'aux autres uni) mais dans des cours que TU auras choisis selon TES forces, donc bcp bcp plus facile de torcher!!! Pour te donner une idée, j'ai fais 9 cours durant cette année de mineure en arts et sciences (et chaque cours valait 3 crédits). J'ai eu A+ à chacun de mes cours sans trop de difficulté (j'ai étudié beaucoup oui, mais honnêtement comme c'était des cours de par coeur, tu apprends les diapos et A+ assuré!!) J'ai trouvé cette année de mineure arts et sciences bcp plus facile que mon sciences de la nature au cégep et j'ai eu que des A+. D'ailleurs un autre avantage de la mineure c'est que comme tu peux choisir ton horaire et tes cours, rien ne t'empêche d'aller regarder sur Rate my Teacher voir tes profs ont l'air de quoi! Je choisissais quasiment mes cours en fonction de si le prof semblait correct ou hyper sévère!! Mais si tu choisi ce programme, ne tombe pas dans le piège de choisir des cours de bio ou de chimie en te disant qu'ils pourraient peut-être t'être crédités dans ton futur programme, pcq même si c'est des cours intéressants, c'est des cours bcp plus durs!! Aussi, un autre truc c'est d'assister à plus de cours que ceux auxquels tu es inscrits à la première semaine, comme ca si tu réalises dans le premier cours que le genre d'enseignement que le prof donne ne te conviens pas ou que les travaux à faire semblent trop lourds ou que c'est simplement pas un cours qui t'intéresse du tout et bien tu peux te désinscrire à ce cours et en choisir un autre ensuite qui te conviens plus et dans lequel tu te sens confiant d'avoir 90% et +. Personnellement, j'avais choisi des cours de psychologie, de criminologie, de victimologie et psychoéducation... tu vois le genre de cours... Par coeur à fond, mais si tu étudies, BONJOUR LES A+++. Bref, avec seulement 5 cours de la mineure en arts et sciences considérés dans ma prochaine admission (car seulement la session d'automne est considéré pour l'admission à l'année suivante), mon dossier est monté de 32,7 à minimum 34,4 , car j'ai été accepté au bac en physio à l'udem l'automne suivant sans même avoir été sur la liste d'attente (et la dernière personne acceptée dans mon année avait 34,4) j'ai donc peut-être facilement 34,7 et +. *Il faut considéré aussi dans cette cote le boni de 0,5 que j'avais étant donné que j'avais fais 15 crédits à l'udem, mais si vous faites comme moi vous l'aurez aussi!! C'est donc une tres grosse augmentation de cote!! (Mais comme je l'expliquais plus tôt, votre dossier sera mal vu aux yeux des autres universités, pcq cette meme année j'avais fais une demande en physio à ulaval, et malgré mes A+ j'étais 5e sur la liste d'attente [et savez vous quoi, la dernière personne admise en physio l'année d'avant à ulaval était de 30,4, donc mes A+ en mineure arts et sciences avait diminués de bcp la valeur de mon dossier à ulaval, il est passé de 32,7 à peut-être 30,6 environ, de la l'importance de ne pas choisir mineure arts et sciences si vous voulez appliquer dans d'autres universités, car l'indice de force de ce programme est dans les pires pour les autres universités]. Ensuite, du a un choix personnel, j'ai décidé que le programme de physiothérapie n'était pas fait pour moi donc 2 semaines apres le début du programme, j'ai abandonné! Je voulais me réessayer pour le doctorat en optométrie pour l'automne 2019. Donc dans ma demande pour l'automne 2019, mon dossier universitaire comptait maintenant 9 cours de mineure (3 crédits chacun) + la balance de ma cote du cégep de 32,7 + 0,5 (boni de l'udem). Et savez-vous quoi, j'ai été admiseeee!! Encore une fois sans être sur la liste d'attente! Prenez en compte que pour rentrer en opto il faut avoir encore un meilleur dossier que en physio, car il y a également le CASper à passer, donc avec un CASper dans la moyenne, il faut avoir minimum pt 35-35,5 de cote! Alors en résumé, en un an de mineure arts et sciences (9 cours à A+) , j'ai augmenté d'environ 2,8 de cote (35,5-32,7 = 2,8). et j'ai pu rentrer dans mon programme de rêve. Si vous comparez ca à mon amie qui a fait un bac complet en sciences biomédicale (donc ultra difficile) avec 4/4,3 (A) comme moyenne cumulative finale et qui est rentrer en opto en étant la dernière admise, je crois que la mineure en arts et sciences est plus qu'une bonne option à considérer!! Voilà, je voulais partagez mon parcours sur ce forum, parce que je sais que c'est tellement difficile d'être admis dans des programmes contingentés que si un parcours peut permettre plus facilement d'y arriver, je crois qu'il vaut la peine d'être partagé!! Je vous souhaite à tous d'accéder à vos rêves! Bonne chance à tous!
  45. 1 point
  46. 1 point
    It’s going to be a long one. I wrote all of this before I got in, because there is something wonderfully raw and vulnerable about documenting my reflections while I’m still on the outside looking in. I knew that if I was unsuccessful this cycle, I would still read it to remind myself of how far I’ve come. -- My non-trad path is nothing unusual- I suppose I am just a late bloomer who paid her dues after the fact. The biggest challenge for me, throughout this whole journey, was lacking the protective factors to cushion the falls. I have been financially independent, which means choices were often made to have a financial safety net rather than for improving my med school applications. I had no one within my social network to guide me; my family has not been supportive of my decisions, so I felt like I could never turn to them (as of now they still don’t know that I interviewed and got accepted). This forum taught me everything I needed to know about getting into medical school, and that being a physician is still a possibility for someone like me. I began university when I was 18, completely lacking in self-awareness and nowhere near ready to make any sort of decisions about my future. I went to UofT for life sciences. There’s that joke: “How many UofT students does it take to change a light bulb? Four; one to change it and three to crack under the pressure”. Well, I was one of the three. My time at UofT was the closest I’d come to being depressed. My marks were atrocious; I felt worthless and incompetent all the time. My family didn’t understand- and didn’t know how to- help me; no one told me “you should stop and figure your shit out before completely ruining your transcript”. I tried going to counselling but felt like I was not being listened to, so I never went back. Something was very wrong, I didn’t know what or how to fix it. Things at home were bad. In my final year, I cut all financial ties with my parents, and moved out- I needed to become my own person. The independence was exhilarating. The financial stress was real, but my mental health also improved 100%, and I gained the energy and mental clarity to finally start thinking about what I wanted in life. Unfortunately, at this point my marks (cGPA of 3.1, no year above 3.5) were useless for any post-grad program. I applied to Michener’s medical radiation program, a second-entry bachelor program, to become an X-ray tech. I got accepted, but opted to not attend-- for the first time, I thought about what I wanted in my career, and decided it was not for me. I decided to take a year off and consider other second degree options. I started to look into becoming a dietitian (other RDs on this forum, like Real Beef, were very helpful). This would be a competitive process with a lot more uncertainty than going to Michener. I had a lot to prove and nothing to show for it. I used the year to work several minimum wage jobs in healthcare to save up money for a year of unpaid dietetic internship that would follow my second undergrad, while getting volunteer experience in nutrition to start building my resume for dietetic internship applications. I started my second degree in nutrition with a lot of self-doubt. After UofT, I was uncertain that I could even pull off low 80s. I was sure that everyone was smarter than me, and that I was the loser who flunked a whole degree but still couldn’t keep up. But I also had a level of mental clarity and focus that I’d never felt before. And low and behold, I ended up finishing my first year with the highest average in my program. A 3.94. It was then that I realized I was onto something-for the first time, it seemed like medicine could be a possibility. I decided to extend my second degree into 3 years, to be eligible for Ottawa (ironically, I never interviewed at Ottawa), while building my application for dietetic internships. This led me to different opportunities in leadership, teaching, and working with low SES populations. After 2 years into my second degree, I wrote the MCAT while working full-time and self-teaching myself the material despite taking (and flunking) my pre-reqs 4-5 years before that. I was pleasantly surprised with a balanced 514 (however, with a CARS of 128, it was never good enough for Western). The year after, I graduated from my second degree with the highest cumulative average in my program. It took me 3 cycles to get my first and only interview at Queen’s. During my second cycle, I was completing my dietetic internship, which provided many opportunities to gain clinical and counselling skills, work with marginalized populations, lead QI projects, and work within interdisciplinary teams- I learned more about my interest and suitability for medicine in this 1 year than I had in my whole life prior to this. Internship was hard work, but also gave me small boosts of confidence and signs I am not a complete dumbass (e.g. a nephrologist who had no idea that I was applying to med, after listening to my renal case presentation, told me how impressed he was that I’ve shown level of knowledge that he’d only expect from a senior medical resident; 2 of my preceptors said that in their 10-20 years teaching, they’ve never seen a student work so hard to improve herself and be so dedicated to her patients; rotation after rotation I was praised for my critical thinking skills and natural ease in developing rapport with patients). This wasn’t just about ticking off boxes to get into med, but about developing my passion for hands-on learning and learning about my strengths and weaknesses as a professional. For the first time in my life, I thought “maybe I am good enough to become a doctor.” When I submitted my application for the third cycle, I had just graduated from internship and started working in public health in Northern Ontario. I moved here because I wanted to continue to step outside of my comfort zone. I wanted to do more advocacy and upstream work, and this was the place to do it. At around the time of decision day, I had applied to RD jobs in Alberta to gain IP status for U of C. So here’s what I’ve learned in the last five years: · Know yourself. Know your identity outside of being a premed. Figure out what your values are, what kind of a person you want to be, what drives you to take action, what triggers your mind to go down dark rabbit holes. This takes time and effort, and self-reflection from life experiences, but it helps to build resilience against the hurdles along the application process, medical training, and set-backs life in general. Knowing who you are and what you have to offer the world protects you against having your self-esteem and identity shattered when things don’t go as you had hoped; it gives you the courage to say “let’s try again.” when the world seems to tells you “you are not good enough.” Similarly, I hear too often that when people have spent their whole life dedicated to getting into med school, that when they finally get in, they feel a bit lost- “now what?”. I suppose that happens when you see getting in as a final destination rather than one of the stops along a never-ending journey of building yourself up. People around me couldn’t fathom where I got the persistence to keep at it despite facing setbacks and watching the years go by. It’s because I knew there is nothing valuable that a rejection can take away from me. I have been building myself up as a person. I am still going to be me, no matter what happens inside that interview room, and what May 8th brings. I still possess all the traits that I worked hard to develop and love about myself- my grit, self-awareness, intellectual curiosity, empathy, open-mindedness- and these are all going to carry me far in life, medicine or not. No rejection letter can take that away from me. · Figure out what you want to accomplish in medicine, outside of medicine. I always ask myself: what's appealing about a career as a physician, and how can I try to achieve it through another route? What skills do I want to use on a day to day basis in my career? What core values and beliefs will motivate me to do what I do in my career? I think reflecting on this helps to flesh out your motivations for pursuing medicine, helps to identify alternative career paths, and should you pursue an alternative path while you reapply, helps you to gain insights and skills that will be useful for medicine. Hopefully the adcoms will recognize this. If not, well, at least your satisfaction with your alternative path will still be pretty high. · Be kind to yourself. The playing field is not even, and you don’t need to add an additional layer of self-inflicted cruelty to the mix. It’s ok to not feel 100% determined all the time. When the self-doubt starts to creep in, sit on it, talk to someone (in my opinion, everyone should have a therapist). Use the insights from the above 2 points to ground yourself and as motivation to keep going. · Develop yourself in areas outside of academics. What saved me was working minimum wage jobs since I was 16 (I actually started out cleaning bathrooms, after I was fired from scooping ice cream for being too socially inept. True story.). 75% of my activities on my ABS were employment. I had to work, because I did not come from a background as privileged as that of many premeds. If the circumstances were different, perhaps I would’ve gotten in earlier. But the real world was the best teacher I’ve ever had- it helped me develop financial independence and literacy, character, resilience, and interpersonal skills that helped me along every step of this journey. It helped to shape my convictions of the kind of physician, what kind of person, I want to be. Ease yourself into uncomfortable situations today to build resilience against shit-hitting-the-fan moments later in life. --- I also want to say that sometimes on these forums, we read non-trad stories and it seems like people were 100% determined from the get-go while they stayed on this one path for 4-10 years. I know I wasn’t…and that’s ok. As a non-trad, you have more life decisions to make along your journey, some big, some small. I know that I had to make many decisions over the years to favour either my nutrition career, chances for med school, or my personal life- many times, these three conflicted. There’s no right way to go about it- it depends on your risk tolerance, other responsibilities in life, and priorities. Know yourself…this is so, so important. I feel so privileged that everything in my life lined up so perfectly to allow me to pursue this path long enough to eventually get accepted. I’m always happy to chat about second degrees, being an RD, or anything related. Stay positive and kind to yourself, PM101.
  47. 1 point
    I got mixed responses when I asked if I should do this but I did it anyways. I ended up sounding like fucking shrek so I do not advise doing this. Hopefully the interviewers thought I had a speech impediment or something
  48. 1 point
    medium fundamental

    3.7 GPA

    I was refused pre-inteview and recently got my rankings…but I was really surprised by this: my cGPA is 3.68, but my academic ranking was 270ish/817! (my CASPer really killed me) Keep in mind: I probably got a decent amount of points for the Overall Context part of the academic ranking (10% of the 70%): (a) the progression of difficulty of coursework: I didn’t think I was getting points for this as it wasn't obvious, but I guess they must have considered this (b) post-bachelor's academics: I have a completed MSc with 4.0 gpa, ongoing PhD (c) the recognition of professional degree programs: mine was not a professional degree, so no points for that Also, my cGPA had an upward trend (1st semester terrible but huge increase in 2nd, and also increased every semester afterwards) but there’s no points for that *officially* as far as I know… So some additional hope for sub-3.7 gpas!
  49. 1 point

    Médecine 2016

    De plus, les gens convoqués n'ont pas accès à leur rang!
  50. 0 points

    Advice regarding bipolar diagnosis

    i would probably leave medicine tbh...
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