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  1. 25 points
    Dear all current applicants and prospective applicants to UBC Medicine, My name is Neurophiliac as I’m obsessed with brains (in a good way, trust me ). I wanted to take this time to explain my story especially for those who haven’t received good news from UBC this year. In doing so, I am hoping that my story can become your inspiration to hold your head high, your motivation to push through with 100% of your energy, and your encouragement to consider not giving up. I want to put an emphasis on the consider part. As I’ve mentioned before, I absolutely have no right to tell you “hey, don’t give up”. After all, everyone has their own challenges that are unique to them, in which no one can fully comprehend or empathize with. But, I wish to ask of you for one thing: to please try. Please try to consider not giving up. Even when life seems impossible, if there is a will, there is a way. Later, I will get into some details of how to improve your NAQ via better application planning and writing. I hope what I share also helps prospective applicants to UBC Medicine to some degree. Story time. This is going to be a SUPER LONG one, so find a nice and comfortable seat, relax and maybe grab a nice cup of tea if you're wanting to read it all . I am a long-term applicant to UBC Medicine. This application is my 6th try, and it all started back in 2013/2014. That year, I submitted my first application to UBC Medicine while I was finishing up my final year of undergrad. I had a bunch of volunteering experiences, but wasn’t having high hopes for my application being successful. Sure enough, I received regrets pre-interview. I was quite disappointed, but thought of the bright side: At least, this was a great experience to familiarize myself with the application. In 2014, I met a variety of health care professionals and was given opportunities to pursue research, awesome volunteering positions, and much more, all of which I am most grateful to this day. I started brainstorming how I can make a positive impact on my community. One thing led to another and with the help of a small group of friends, I founded my own non-profit organization dedicated to helping communities via coordinating annual fundraising musical concerts and donating 100% of the proceeds to great causes. For the first year, my team members and I dedicated our event to my local hospital’s ER, as I was familiar with the ER since I had been volunteering there since 2011. The 2014/2015 application cycle came along, and I was excited to see how this application would turn out. I spent a lot of time carefully writing my application, rewording each entry, making sure the description is concise yet filled with details. When the interview status D-Day arrived, I was in tears of joy when I realized I received my first invite for UBC. Simply put, I could NOT stop dancing, so you can easily imagine the scene . I spent the next 2 months practicing for my interview, attended the large practice sessions and so on and so forth. In May, I was way more nervous than I had been for my interview notification. I decided to shut off my phone from the night before, check on Premed101 in the morning to see when everyone had received their results, and then to turn on my phone again. I did, but realized it was a rejection. I was devastated. I had a flashback of everything I had been through, knowing that I would need to repeat it all again. A week or two passed, and my head was cleared. My optimism resurfaced, and I realized what an accomplishment I’ve made: My NAQ had increased by ~10 points, from 24 (previous year) to ~34 (that year). Giving up now? No way, Jose! During that year, I did a whole bunch of new things ultimately enjoying what I did (as I still do), and as a byproduct it also helped my application. So, for the 2015/2016 application cycle, I spent more than 1 month to complete my application. I planned how to write every new entry, reworded my previous entries, and looked at all the details involved; once my application was complete, I also remodified it several times. When the interview notifications were released, I was ecstatic to know that I received another interview! Very much prepared, I decided to host the MMI Facebook group as I learned a lot from the individual leading the previous Facebook group from the previous year. I was so happy to meet some new people and also some of those who were reapplicants, in the same shoes as I was. Amidst the joy, there was one thing that had always been bothering me: My MCAT score. My old score was a mere 30, very mediocre. I sought guidance from my parents and they convinced me to sign up for an MCAT prep course – this was primarily because the new MCAT was rolled out, and I realized perhaps taking a prep course will prepare me for the new, tougher, longer exam. It was a very strange feeling to prepare for the interview and study for the MCAT again… something I did way back when I was preparing myself to begin my first application. I decided to study for the MCAT and write it in case things go south post-interview. Interview day came along, and I was ready. I did the best I could do and realized how different my interview experience was compared to the previous year; in other words, I felt a lot more confident. When offer notifications were about to be released in May, I was a mess – emotional rollercoaster since the second I woke up in the morning at 7 AM. I anxiously awaited my results. When the rejections wave passed and I got no notification, I suddenly felt an infinite spike of optimism and hope. But it was short-lived. At the time of the waitlist wave, I got a “ding!” on my phone and I knew what it was. I open my email and I see the subject line “UBC Undergrad Admissions: Application Status – Waitlist” and my heart sinks. Had I just survived that couple minutes of the wave, I would have been 180˚ different. Time passed and my head was cleared. I said, “Hey, this isn’t so bad! There is still hope, why am I so down?” I was grateful to have improved from last cycle at least. But the hope gradually dissipated when I wasn’t able to receive an offer from the waitlist. I improved from a Below Average to an Above Average, and my NAQ stayed at roughly ~34. Now, it was MCAT time. The next application cycle (2016/2017) for UBC, Admissions was allowing a final cycle where old MCAT exams were still being accepted. One of my very close friends who got accepted off the waitlist strongly advised me not to write the new MCAT, and just reapply and see what happens. God forbid, if I would get an ineligible score for UBC, none of my old MCAT exams would qualify as only the new attempt(s) count. But I was sure that my MCAT had to be the one thing holding me back. So, I registered for a late-June exam and started prepping my application for the early deadline. Late-June 2016 came and I was sitting at the exam centre at 7:30 AM, waiting to be registered. Wrote the exam, felt like crap, but somehow, I decided to score it – after all, I had put a lot of effort into it and spent a lot of money for my prep course, and I was sure that at least I got the minimums for UBC, so everything was going to be fine, right…? No…. Things didn’t turn out to be fine. My science sections were average but passing, just got the passing score on psych/soc with 124, but… but… but… I realized my CARS was 121 (the damn verbal reasoning, the bane of my existence, the archnemesis of my soul). It was freaking panic time now. I quickly registered for a late-August exam to at least get a passing score so that I am at least eligible. Late-August, 7:30 AM, same exam centre. The guy looks at me and says, “Oh hey, you were here before, right?” And I say with an uncomfortable laugh, “Oh yes, I’m trying to get a better score hopefully!” Wrote the exam, and felt actually a bit better about the CARS section. I still knew it was going to be horrible, but hopefully at least I get that 124. I go home and work on my application for the next week, finalize it and submit it for the early deadline. Late-September arrives. I am at my computer on the AAMC MCAT score release log-in screen. I enter my username, password, and click log in. I place a sheet of paper on my screen hiding all scores. The plan is to check chem/phys first, then bio, then psych/soc, and finally CARS. Chem/phys, bio, and psych/soc are all great actually – much better than before. I take the sheet of paper and unhide my CARS score. What…? Huh…? Surprise turns to disbelief, disbelief turns to anger, anger turns to panic and utter… utter fear. I see 119 besides CARS. How is this even possible…? You mean, I seriously got 1 point above the absolute minimum?? How… HOW… HOW?! Frustration, anger, panic. My head was exploding, blood pressure was low, and I was cold-sweating all over my body. The worse part was that many other bad things had happened to me that year, especially in the summer time. With this news added on, my world felt shattered… With the support of my friends and family, gradually optimism resurfaced again. With the volunteering connections I had built previously, one thing led to another and I transitioned into a full-time research position so smoothly, it felt like the sky opened and this job fell into my hands. In 2016, I started working at UBC Department of Psychiatry on a project focused on exploring the metabolic, genetic and immunological factors affecting those diagnosed with treatment-refractory schizophrenia, one of the most severe forms of mental illness. Also, in 2016, I reconnected with a dear, close friend via my cousin’s wedding who I had lost touch with since we were young. She became a very, very special person in my life. She lives in my previous home country (where I had immigrated from with my family as a child), so we had a long-distance relationship going. With the bad news of the MCAT and other things that were affecting me, suddenly 2016 didn’t seem so bad now. I worked for the whole year, did my volunteering, extracurricular activities and so forth, while restudying for my MCAT. Even though I was prepared, the last couple of exams took a huge toll on my confidence, and I was still very nervous for my exam. I registered for an early summer 2017 exam just in case I don’t make it. I write the exam, don’t know how to feel. My results come out, sciences have all improved even more, but my CARS… 122. Another big hit to my confidence. But hey, it’s okay because I have another opportunity to write an exam, right? I register for another in August 2017, and write the exam, feeling maybe I did it this time. Results come out. Sciences are spectacular, but CARS… 123… why is this happening…? Why is life s***ing on me like this…? You think previous times I had a major hit to my confidence? No way, Jose. This was the biggest hit to my confidence… A score of 123 is basically 1 or 2 correct answers from a 124. I was embarrassed. I felt so disappointed to let down my coworkers, close friends, and family who were all rooting for me. Another year of being ineligible… By the way, these 2 years of being ineligible, I was still applying to UBC because I didn’t want to break my consistency. I wanted UBC to see that I still care and I am still trying, even though they don’t do a file review when you’re ineligible. The fall of 2017 at least became one of the best times of my life. I took vacation from work and my family and I planned a trip to go visit my girlfriend and her family. While there, I proposed to her and I heard the sweetest “Yes” of my life. We had an engagement party and got legally married (on paper), since the two go together in my culture (and the wedding ceremony is usually within a year or two after). I then returned back to Canada soon after because I could only get a short vacation, and started working on her immigration application. I used the year to again work, actually working multiple jobs, doing a whole bunch of volunteering, doing way more than I have ever done to not have it appear that I’ve “plateaued”. Finally, 2018 comes and I start the whole routine of studying for the MCAT… all… over… again. At this point, I’m drenched in volunteering and work, while maintaining my MCAT studying schedule. Again, I register for an early summer exam just in case so that I have another opportunity late August. I write the exam, no idea how CARS went. I get my results back, and yet again… CARS is 123. At this point, my confidence has been kicked around, chipped, and 99% eaten away. But I put these thoughts away and force myself to think positively; after all, it’s only maximum 2 questions away to 124. I have one more chance for this next application cycle for August. Luckily, I’m able to register for another exam for August 25, 2018. Another 7:30 AM at the exam centre. I write it, and something inside ever so slightly tells me… maybe. As soon as the exam is over, I prepare myself to take a vacation to spend a month to visit my wife on the other side of the planet. I really enjoyed the trip; we spent quality time and made memories which will last forever. However, on the inside, mentally my mind is asking the “what if” regarding my CARS. This was my 6th attempt for the new MCAT exam… if this didn’t work, I had to think of something. Perhaps the Caribbean schools, or the European or Australian schools. But what would that mean for my wife? If she immigrated to Canada, where would she stay? Would she come with me? Would she stay in Canada and we have to live a few years of our lives apart other than the short visits? She wants to continue her education in Canada, so her studies matter a lot too. These lingering thoughts bothered me everywhere I went and I was neck-deep in internally-hidden anxiety. When I returned to Canada in late October after my vacation, my exam result had already been released in mid-September yet I hadn’t checked it (only released the scores to UBC). Even the thought of logging into AAMC makes my heart pump hard and sends my thoughts racing. But eventually, I control myself: “I can do it,” I say. I bring up the AAMC MCAT score release website screen, take 5 full, deep breaths before I log in even though I'm nauseous as hell. Again, I hide the scores on the screen with a piece of paper and check each with CARS last. My chem/phys is 130 (wonderful), bio is 130 (excellent), and psych/soc is 129 (wow, best I’ve had!). As I’m about to reveal CARS, internally and externally I start praying for just a 124 or more. I reveal… and… it’s a… 125. 125?! OMG!!! Surprise turns to disbelief, disbelief turns to joy, joy turns to tears and utter… utter happiness. I’ve made it… I’ve made it!!! I instantly feel so much weight, tons and tons of load get released off my shoulders. I can’t believe it finally happened. After 6 whole tries, I can finally be eligible again. And here I am. I have been through every part of the spectrum other than being accepted; rejected pre-interview, to rejected post-interview, to being waitlisted-rejected, to being ineligible. For me, it’s one of the best feelings in the world to be eligible to apply. And now with receiving an interview invitation… I do not even have the words to truly express how thankful and grateful I am. Through this whole process, I have learned one of the hardest ways to never take anything for granted, and always appreciate the things you have in this moment. Even though life seemed impossible, I never stopped fighting for what I really care about; I never gave up. Even if I don’t become accepted this cycle, I will continue to battle the challenges of my life and will not stop pursuing my dream. If medicine is your dream too, don’t let it remain a dream. Continue to push through the dark times because there is always good around you. The experiences that you accumulate in life will eventually aid you to become stronger, more mature, more professional, well-rounded, and more, which primarily help you become successful in life in general, but also with pursuing medicine. Know that whatever you do, you’re not wasting your time. I define “wasting your time” as when you’re sitting on your butt and not doing anything for your future. Down the road, no one will ask when you completed your MD, no one cares that you’re an amazing, experienced physician when you’re 50 as compared to when you could have been 47, for example. Medicine is a life-long career. What really matters is that you enter medical school when you’re ready, because that’s when you can take the most out of your program and be the best future physician you can be. Like I mentioned earlier, anything you do now will ultimately help you in what comes after MD, such as in CaRMS, which is quite important. Lastly, I want to point out one important note. Medicine is very important when it’s your passion. But, there are always things that are way more important than it, such as love, family, and friends. It was through my failures that I met my wife. If I had a choice to reverse time and be accepted to medicine back in 2016/2017 by not re-writing my MCAT (lots of ifs), I would have not taken this offer. Because then I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to gain experience in my work field that I have now, I wouldn’t have met all the wonderful people through my jobs, and most importantly… maybe I wouldn’t have met my wife. This just comes to show that medicine, although a true passion, shouldn't be on a pedestal. As I go with the flow, it will happen when it happens, as long as I don’t give up. Long story short, I strongly encourage you guys to please, at the least, consider not giving up yet. I’m sure you all have your personal challenges, but let my story inspire you. Let your inner optimism resurface, too. Gain the support of your family, relatives, friends, coworkers, and seek their guidance. And please know that I am here – if you’d like to chat, I would love to listen. If I can help in any way, please PM me.
  2. 19 points
    If people are wanting to take legal action regarding a single medical school rejection, then I think admissions is doing their job correctly in keeping you out.
  3. 18 points
    My friend just sent me an email titled, "Acceptance to McMaster Medical School". Unfriended.
  4. 18 points
    We are getting close, but you forgot to factor in the lunar cycles 2014 (Jan 24) was the last quarter visible at 47% 2015 (Jan 21) was a new moon visible at 2% 2016 (Jan 13) was a waxing crescent visible at 18% 2017 (Jan 18) was the last quarter visible at 64% 2018 (Jan 10) was a new moon visible at 2% Hmm, I'm starting to see a correlation here It's going to be in the next waxing crescent moon, so the 10th or 11th lol
  5. 16 points
    While I acknowledge people's frustration over changing goalposts, I think Western's change this year is commendable. The reality is, high MCAT and GPA scores are not good predictors of who will become good physician. The aamc has been looking into how medical students and physicians perform based on their entrance scores, and there is no significant difference between someone with a 132 CARS and a 126, for example. Even more importantly, arbitrarily high cutoffs unnecessarily favour more privileged students (those who can afford tutors, expensive prep courses, not having to work for a summer while they study) and results in less class diversity. By lowering cutoffs in favour of an additional aABS, Western is taking steps to ensure that they've still selected students who are likely to succeed academically, but come from more diverse backgrounds and will better reflect the patient populations they'll be serving. As for the quality of someone's EC's, don't assume that just because you've done something unique or flashy, that it holds more value than someone else's accomplishments. Just because Candidate 1 could afford to take a summer off to travel and do charity work in another country, doesn't mean that experience holds any more value than the experiences of Candidate 2, who had to work full time in customer service to support their family. File reviewers are often trained to look for these issues, and would be asked to look through essays and evaluate personal character or what was learned from an experience, not what was actually done. TLDR; Thinking you have the best scores or flashiest ECs does not make you any more deserving than anyone else, and expressing sentiments of entitlement really make your privilege show.
  6. 15 points
    Problem with your logic is that you think the system is goofed up or that the incoming class is somehow "screwed". They aren't. The wheels will keep turning and those that get in will continue along the process with zero functional difference. Just so happens John Doe took a seat instead of you. Got in on slightly different requirements/process but equally as qualified and capable of doing well in medicine. Dont get sucked into a false sense of superiority by having a marginally better GPA or MCAT score.
  7. 15 points
    I very much doubt 1 single individual read all 8 of your essays. It was likely divided among 8 people, with the average of your responses being taken as your final score. This is how it works in CASPer, for UoT, MMI, etc. The admissions office of every school has the right to change their admission criteria from one year to the next. Western is not unique in this circumstance. To be honest, I actually admire Western for changing their criteria to allow character elements to shine through compared to the archaic method of using only GPA and MCAT. As I mentioned to you before in a previous post, possessing a good MCAT or GPA, while important, are not the sole factors that determine whether or not someone is good enough for med school. IMO, focus on your other interviews at those Ivy schools. Perhaps take a little bit of time to reflect. Likening yourself to a 'Syrian refugee' screams to me that your line of thinking needs to come down a notch.
  8. 15 points
    ha, it has been 10 years on the forum - kind of scary. The journey is long but in the end worth it I think. Stay frosty and focused people
  9. 14 points
    Congratulations to all who got an interview! Try to start looking into the MMI process and preparing early, time really flies! There are plenty of resources lying around the forum, so take advantage of that. For those looking for more MMI questions to prepare with, try googling "korean premed mmi questions", you should find a pretty big list. Psychologically preparing yourself for emotionally/socially uncomfortable/awkward situations and remaining calm under all circumstances are really key, so try yourself at these sample scenarios and whatever else you can find until you feel like you're ready to take on whatever they might throw at you when the big day comes around. Also very happy to see some familiar usernames from last year I really really hope it works out for you guys this year. To the applicants who didn't get an invite this year and are really disappointed right now, I hope you'll feel better soon. It's an unreasonably competitive process, so while you should take a step back and re-evaluate, especially when the stats come out later in the cycle, you also really shouldn't let this result affect your sense of self-worth. Most importantly, don't let this hurdle put your life on pause; keep living life to the fullest outside of medicine, and the rest will fall in place.
  10. 14 points
    I AM SO EXCITED TO RECEIVE MY REJECTION
  11. 13 points
    Western's previous over-reliance on quantitative objectives has resulted in some barely-functioning manchildren being in my class since year 1, and judging from the replies in this thread (legal action l.o.l), the new system is keeping many such people out, so I'm all for it. Perhaps it's time for an attitude adjustment and self reflection if you think you're entitled to anything in this game.
  12. 13 points
    Result: Regrets Time Stamp: 9:00 am Interview Date: N/A wGPA: 3.97 (last two years of undergrad) Year: finishing masters at harvard MCAT: 509 (128/126/128/127) <- probably the issue ECs: executive on same clubs for 4 years, president of 2 clubs, founded not for profit, 1 first author publication and 1 co-authorship under journal review, work study research position in undergrad, various other miscellaneous activities in student society and clubs, I think I had strong referees? (had Rhodes interview based on them so don’t really think it could’ve been an issue with the letters...) Geography: Ontario Ive never posted on forums before because I really struggle with imposter syndrome and am super self conscious comparing myself against all the amazing candidates here. However, since Queens makes the application process extra difficult by not posting any statistics/criteria I thought I would contribute in case it could help someone. I also just wanted to say that I have a few friends that didn’t get any interviews for 2 years in a row and then managed to gain admission to multiple medical schools in their 3rd attempt. A lot of these admission processes can be quite flawed and may take students that may not make the best doctors while missing out on those that would. Even this year I know of someone who received an interview invite who not only failed a class due to a breach of academic integrity but also obtained a few publications in their name because their uncle was a surgeon. I’ve personally found it difficult to reconcile feeling like I’m not good enough in the face of knowing of cases like this. At the end of the day though what keeps me going is that (hopefully) hard work will pay off and things will work out for the best. I hope we can all take invites and rejections with a grain of salt, and continue to be kind to ourselves during this process. Wish you all the best :)
  13. 13 points
    ATG4B

    Interview Invites date?

    For everyone who is not getting the news they wanted today ... I want to tell you a little bit more about me in the hopes that it will bolster your spirit to keep pushing forward. I was all set to apply in 2006, but a family member became very ill and I had to put my dreams on hold. I tried several times over the coming years to go back to school, but I couldn’t manage to juggle full time work and full time school. It wasn’t until I turned 30 that I decided to sell pretty much everything I had in order to head back to school. It has been far from an easy road, but I wouldn’t change it for anything! I’m definitely not the same person I was in 2006 and I appreciate every opportunity for the blessing that it is. I don’t know what this year has in store for me, but I do know that I’m a hell of a lot stronger than I thought I was. You will find that out about yourself too if you keep pushing ahead. Be kind to yourself right now and know that one (or even many) regret email, doesn’t define you in any way! Hugs to you all.
  14. 12 points
    yake

    Interview Invites date?

    Last year the rejections went around around 5. I remember being in your shoes during finals last December trying to keep my heart from exploding, now I'm sullenly studying away for UBC med finals. My heart is with y'all, whatever news you may or may not hear today doesn't define you and shouldn't negatively impact your dream of becoming a physician
  15. 12 points
    Just wanted to point out that in order to "choose money over medicine", one would have to be accepted into medical school first. You can't truly choose between two options if you are only offered one option.
  16. 12 points
    Thank you for sharing your story. It must have taken a lot of courage to post it and I am listening. You’ve been through so much and I can’t imagine how difficult it must be for you right now, but I truly commend your resilience. The fact that you are here today and able to post your story, shows what a strong and amazing person you are. In undergrad, we meet many intelligent, seemingly perfect people; however, in reality, no one is truly perfect. Everyone has their own anxieties and flaws that they deal with. We think others are perfect because we can’t read what they’re really thinking in their minds. My best advice for you is to stop worrying about what others are doing. I know it’s hard, but please try. Statistically, medical schools do tend to favor applicants with higher GPAs; however, that’s only one aspect of the application. I know many students who were able to gain entrance with low GPAs by excelling in other parts of their application. Things like the MCAT, extracurriculars, jobs, Casper, volunteer activities, sports , letters of recommendation, and etc., can all make an impact on your application. Medical schools are looking for people who can become good doctors and not people who can just score well on exams. I am a medical student and I didn’t have a 90% average in undergrad. I am definitely not perfect and I have made many mistakes throughout my life. I have anxieties about school and I worry a lot. However, after talking with many of my classmates, most medical students (and students in general) in fact feel the same way. And that’s okay. I also got into medical school quite late —at the age of 28. So don’t worry about having to get to medical school within a certain standardized time frame or age. I understand being delayed one year in grade 10 may seem like a setback, but the path to medicine is different for everyone. Do what is best for you. If medicine is truly your dream, definitely do not give up. Focus on your strengths and improve your weaknesses. Do things that have meaning for you and things that make you happy. Spend time with the ones you love and take care of your health. Lastly, please remember to Give yourself more love. Give yourself more kindess. Give yourself more forgiveness. I wish you all the best and please take care. Feel free to pm if you need to talk.
  17. 11 points
    caspase-3

    Interview Invites date?

    I called UBC MD Admissions about 30 minutes ago and was told that we will be getting an update email this week, but invitations will not come out this week. They are still figuring out when to release them. I hope this helps everyone with the wait! I know how stressful it can be.
  18. 11 points
    Hi briannaxox, as you mentioned we are all allowed our opinions. However, attacking other people (even indirectly) who are clearly struggling, suffering, and asking for help by calling them "weak-minded" is, in my opinion, unhelpful. It also reinforces this individual's belief that other undergrads chasing entry to medicine are mean. Again, if I could add my opinion, there is no place for mean and unempathetic people in medicine, either. I will remind everyone that this forum is not as anonymous as you think. Regarding the original poster, Recusitatorwannabe, I will echo others' suggestions to not lose hope and to please take care of yourself. When you are struggling as much as you sound like you currently are, it will be harder to focus, study, retain things you learn and hence be unable to demonstrate your abilities on assignments and exams. Maybe you need a tutor, maybe you need psychological or medical supports, maybe you need to change programs/schools if you don't like what you're studying, or maybe you need to take a break from school to get things under control and to build your confidence and self-efficacy. Should you eventually end up in medicine, times like this will come again and it will be important to know how to navigate hard times. You have already demonstrated significant tenacity several times in your life--you can navigate and survive this too.
  19. 10 points
    stats arent everything man. Maybe he came off as arrogant and entitled in his ABS.
  20. 10 points
    TIME STAMP: 11:06 AM PST Interview Invite or Regrets: Interview Invite Early or Regular Deadline: Regular Deadline GPA or AGPA (if applicable): ~84% MCAT (CPBS / CARS / BBFL / PSBB): 514 – (130 / 125 / 130 / 129) Current Degree (UG/Bachelors/Masters/PhD): BSc in 2014 Geography (IP/OOP): IP Extracurricular Activities (awards, achievements, volunteering, employment, research, etc.): Founded and lead a non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds for variety of causes via annual musical concerts, with the last 2 events focused on contributing to schizophrenia (5 years and counting); founded and led another charity aiding developing nations via Save the Children fund (6 years); extensive leadership and volunteering with UBC Department of Physics and Astronomy (8.5 years and counting); long-term ER volunteer and volunteer trainer and program coordinator (8.5 years and counting); long-term St. John Ambulance volunteer and Divisional Administration Officer (2000+ hours over 5 years, and counting); independently provide guidance and support to immigrants and families as they adjust to life in Vancouver/Canada (9+ years and counting); lots and lots of capacity to work with others including skin cancer research/holding workshops for high school students across Metro Vancouver, volunteering with med students and residents via UBC Department of Emergency Medicine, working closely with refugees and youth with physical and/or intellectual disabilities, and more (combined 3300+ hours); and lots and lots of diversity including clinical research as a volunteer, shadowing pediatric surgeons, toxicology research as a volunteer, epigenomics research at Michael Smith Labs, loads of piano and competitions, oil painting, and more. I also work 3 jobs right now, 1 full-time and 2 part-time jobs; full-time is being a research assistant at UBCH working on a project focused on treatment-refractory schizophrenia (over 2 years); part-time jobs include tutoring students in grade 4-12 in math and academic reading with a company, and also tutoring for the MCAT with a company. 1 Publication (1st author) on the application (had a poster publication/presentation on June 7th haha, and a few are expected to come during this summer). Lots of awards (mainly from high school) and one high performance activity for winning multiple awards with St. John Ambulance. As you guys can tell, I put a lot of details above, primarily to help current applicants who unfortunately didn’t hear good news and also prospective applicants. I will be writing a huge post to share my own personal story and to give a few tips on how to improve NAQ on the application, all intended to encourage those who have not received an invitation. You are all qualified, brilliant, hardworking, and dedicated individuals. Some of you I know very well, and others I do follow. You all have unique characteristics that are deeply appreciated and sincerely needed in medicine. It’s heartbreaking when some people dwell on thoughts of giving up on medicine when it’s been a dream for so long... I want you to know that I do empathize with you all, but just in a different context as I’ve had my own personal challenges. I have no right to tell you “don’t be sad” or “just pick yourself up and try again” because it’s unbelievable how much more difficult it is to do it than to say it; believe me, I know this. But, all I do ask is to please try. I’m hoping my story can be your motivation, your inspiration, your encouragement to try just once more. If anyone has any questions at all and would like to chat more privately, don’t hesitate to PM me. I’m always here to listen. To those who have received invites, never take it for granted and always be grateful for what you have; lessons I’ve learned one of the hardest ways possible. Of course, huge congratulations to all of you lovely folks – I cannot wait to meet each and every one of you
  21. 9 points
    I don’t usually post, but seeing what you’ve said thus far, I think you need a reality check. You’ve vented about how unfair the system is, how you’re tired of applying for 3 cycles. Yet you’ve applied with your 125 CARS for multiple cycles now, obviously banking solely on your SWOMEN status and being admitted into western. This year you didn’t get an interview (which I know, is a horrible feeling and I’m sorry for that), yet I find it somewhat ironic that you’re complaining about the unfair Canadian med system with your 125 CARS, while the non-SWOMEN cutoff is a 128. You’ve also said that you don’t know how to improve your app. I think the answer is pretty clear here - rewrite your MCAT. You said it yourself, your score precludes you from queens and Mac. I know it sucks right now, but seriously, stop feeling sorry for yourself and grind harder if this is truly what you want.
  22. 9 points
    No one can deny you the right to feel angry about the decision, however, I can assure you taking a legal route is not going to end positively. The policies are not meant to be transparent. Given that you also applied to American schools, you should know that there is a lot of ambiguity in the process, even more so there. Ontario is known to have some of the highest competition to enter medicine. While ~45-50% of people who apply to American medical schools will succeed in being granted admission (as per AAMC statistics), Ontario schools admit less than 10% of the applicant pool. When you apply, you are mixed with thousands of applicants of whom many will also possess amazing credentials. How do you sort out those thousands of applicants? Subjectivity. We all know by now that GPA and MCAT alone are not the sole indicators of how one will perform as a doctor, which is why all the medical schools have transitioned away from using those as the sole criteria (and in this year's instance, UWO was the last of the Ontario schools to reform their admissions criteria). Something about the aABS of the applicants they chose to interview resonated with the assessors. This ambiguity in the process carries forward even at the interview stage. You are correct, there are a lot of 'deserving students'. All premeds sacrifice a tremendous amount of their lives to apply to medical school. The unfortunate reality is that there are not enough positions for everyone.
  23. 9 points
    Good luck all, you can do this!
  24. 9 points
    Now, after that LOOOONG story, let’s see how we can hopefully improve NAQ scores! Below is a list of points to very carefully consider when filling your application. Hopefully, these will help potentially increase the NAQ score. I posted this exact same thing a few years ago (2015/2016 cycle). Important disclaimer: These are my personal speculations. These methods are NOT guaranteed to work, but will hopefully improve your perspectives and future application-filling skills. (1) Time: If you are spending less than a month on your application, you are doing it wrong. You should at least spend 1 month on your application, working hard on it almost every day of the week. (2) Plan Carefully: Before you fill-out your non-academic activities, take the time to list out EVERY possible thing you have done and are doing. Initially, they don't need to be in any order. Later when you are done, roughly categorize your activitie. For example, if you have traveled to many parts of the world with your family, you would never put this under Leadership. Always have the application Help Guide in handy -- check if some activity falls under Leadership or not, etc. (3) Spread the Goods: This is the stage when you make a finalized list of which activity should go where. "Spreading the Goods" means equally distributing your major activities across all categories of non-academic activities. As best as you can, avoid putting major activities together. By major activities, I am referring to your roles/responsibilities in your activity, your total hours, and time range of activity. (4) Write Your Description: As UBC Admissions Team emphasize year after year, write EXACTLY what you did in your activities. Skip the "I improved on my skills blah," or "I learned how to communicate blah." Just stick to what you did, and explain what you actually did in the best way possible. You have only 350 characters, so make it count. Yes, spelling matters, and yes, proper grammar is appreciated by the admissions committee. In this little description, your job is to paint a clear picture for the person who will evaluate you. Always ask yourself: Is this a clear picture of my roles and responsibilities? (5) Repeat: After writing your description, let a day pass, and then have a look at it again with fresh eyes. Ask yourself again: Is this a clear picture? Then, try to make your description even better. Do this as much as you can for every activity. Here is what I did to give you an idea: I literally spent 1 hour (sometimes 2) checking and improving a single entry's description -- that means I sometimes spent up to 2 hours writing 3-4 short sentences. So that is it, 5 things to remember. Again, to re-iterate, if any of you need help or would just like to chat, please do not hesitate to PM me. I would love to listen to your stories, too.
  25. 9 points
    Butterfly_

    Dropping out of Dental School

    If you want a lucrative lifestyle and prestige, perhaps you should consider careers outside of healthcare.
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