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  1. 33 points
    Just got accepted to VFMP!!!!! I am in tears... I am in so much tears.... I just can't... I just can't even process this..... oh ... my.. god... I am still shocked this is unbelievable...
  2. 33 points
    Butterfly_

    Success Stories- Non Trad Style!

    This thread inspired me and gave me hope to pursue my medical school dream. Thank you to all that have posted on here before. You have all truly touched my heart. It is because of your stories, that today, I also have the pleasure of posting here and sharing my own journey. When I was younger and about to head to university, I had a tough time choosing between pursuing a business degree or a science degree. At that time, I knew my interests were in biology and psychology, but seeing my parents labouring hard on the farm, I felt pressured to help support the family and make money fast. So, I decided to pursue a finance degree, work in investment banking, and provide enough money to make my family comfortable, then pursue my interests afterward. It was a naïve and misguided plan. From the first moment in business school, I already felt like I didn’t fit in. This feeling got worse 4 years later when I began working in investment banking. The hours were grueling, and I was completely uninterested in what I was doing. I kept at it for 2.5 years because it helped me pay my debts, supported my family, and made my parents proud. But one day, I reached my breaking point. I was out of shape, burnt out, and depressed. I woke up dreading the new day to begin. So, I finally quit, at the shock of my parents. They didn’t understand why I would give up a lucrative and prestigious career. I didn’t know how to explain it to them either. So, I decided to travel. Backpacked by myself across Southeast Asia for 6 months. When I was in Cambodia wandering the night markets, I walked past a bookstand selling novels for $1 USD. Not sure if it was fate or intuition, but I chose to buy the book The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. It was a book that changed my life. It helped me rediscover my passion and interests in life. I started focusing on things that I loved to do. Travel. Eat. Exercise. Health. Science. Languages. During this process of self-discovery, I developed a strong interest in healthcare and medicine. However, I was still too afraid to pursue it. The time, the commitment, and the financial burden all seemed too daunting. I also convinced myself that I wasn’t good enough to be a doctor. That I wouldn’t be able to handle the responsibilities that came with life and death. So, I became a travel agent instead. I had a lot of fun, met many amazing people, and excelled at the role. I traveled to over 35 countries. Life was exciting, and I felt content. However, the idea of medicine never left my mind. It kept gnawing at me every day and I eventually began to feel too comfortable at my job. It was at this time I met my fiancée (on Tinder, lol.) He was in his 3rd year of pharmacy and applying to medicine at the same time. His mother was a nurse. His grandmother was a military doctor. I was suddenly immersed in a world of healthcare. Watching my fiancée work hard and challenge himself every day made something click in me. I started to think that I might still have a chance at medical school. Couple months later, I went on a Mediterranean cruise with my family. I was sitting in the hot tub and decided to strike up a conversation with the person next to me. We talked, and he asked me what I did. I'm not sure what came over me, but for the first time in my life, I told someone out loud, "I'm going to become a doctor." It was a liberating moment. Everything suddenly felt real and achievable. And fate would have it, the person whom I was talking was an army doctor who graduated from McGill Medical School. He was traveling with his wife in Europe before beginning his next station in the UK. He said, "Go for it!" And I did. I quit my job in December 2016 and began studying for the MCAT full time. I also enrolled in 2 semesters of English to obtain enough credits to meet the UBC admission requirements. After 5 years without reading a textbook, it was a brutal transition. And with zero science prerequisites under my belt, it was so much harder than I thought. Furthermore, some of my friends and family did not take me seriously and discouragingly told me not to "waste my time." It was a challenging few months. Many days, I felt overwhelmed. But, I survived due to a wonderful support network. I listened to those who believed in me and ignored the ones who were negative. I acknowledged my weaknesses and sought help and advice. I studied 8-10 hours a day, 6 days a week, for 7 months and self-taught myself the sciences. I took the exam in July 2017 and achieved a score of 508. It was below the average admission score, but good enough to give the application a try. I applied widely to as many schools as I could. 5 schools rejected me. 3 schools interviewed me. And a miracle happened. I got an acceptance. It was an unbelievable moment. I felt all the worry, pain, and doubt just wash away. All the time I spent, all the risks I took, all the sacrifices I made, paid off. Everything was worth it and I was the happiest girl in the world. Finally, at 27 years old, I will begin medical school in Fall of 2018. The moral of my story: Don’t ever let anyone tell you what you can or cannot achieve. Only you can decide that for yourself. Also, remember that: "We are, at any moment, capable of pursuing our dreams... And, when you want something, the whole universe conspires in helping you to achieve it." - The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho If medicine is your dream, don't give up. Never, ever give up.  I sincerely wish you the best of luck on your journey.
  3. 33 points
    SoraAde

    Female advice needed, thank you

    Find a place where you're not going to be interrupted by other people, then start small talk etc, show you're interested.. then when the silence hits, tell her you have a 4.0 GPA and 132 CARS. She'll ask you for your number
  4. 32 points
    So update for any interested parties. I matched to Family Medicine! Always liked living life on the edge, but I'll admit this was cutting it close. I can still accomplish my goals through this route, just have to take a different path than initially intended. Thanks for all of the advice.
  5. 31 points
    After 6 years of applying to UBC Medicine... going through all the possibilities (regrets before interview, to regrets after interview, to regrets after waitlist, to being ineligible for 2 whole years), I seriously cannot believe I'm writing this... It had always seemed like it's something too good to be true, yet here I am. There are many people I would like to thank (and letting them know will take a solid week) from the bottom of my heart for the support, encouragement, and love they have provided me within this long and incredible journey I have been through. I write this with shock, excitement, and full of heart. TIME STAMP: 11:56 AM PST (May 10, 2019) Result: ACCEPTED VFMP (1st choice) !! 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.): I had written this description already in a separate post I made, but will be copying it here as well: 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 which couldn't be included unfortunately, and a few are expected to come soon). Lots of awards (mainly from high school) and one high performance activity for winning multiple awards with St. John Ambulance. The intention of this post is to try and help people down the line, so that's why I'm including lots of details. Interview: I finished my interview initially feeling good about my answers. I had a terrific interview experience! I felt each interviewer was well engaged in my responses and discussions; they all smiled and nodded as I was answering questions and follow-ups. But then the 3-month period started and man oh man oh man was I second-guessing myself... I kept doubting my answers and my confidence started to drop a little bit each week that had passed. I knew at minimum I did 5/10 stations that I would categorize as "good" and at absolute most 8/10 stations. But overall, especially leading to D-Day, I was completely unsure how I did, but I don't know if I was being too self-critical or not. At the end of the day, I still overthought everything haha. Turned out to be okay I guess! I would like to sincerely congratulate everyone who received an offer this year and sincerely congratulate in advance those who will be receiving offers from the waitlist! It's an overwhelmingly amazing feeling that I get a chance to be in class with you folks – I cannot wait to meet each and every one of you as we finally set to make our dreams become a reality . For those who didn't receive the news they were hoping for, I can definitely understand how you feel, believe me... Disappointing news can be demoralizing, but let me tell you that you were selected to interview for a reason; you all have incredible potential so please keep your chin held up high and do not allow, even for a single moment, a decision to define who you are. As my case can further add to the supporting evidence, persistence is absolutely key.
  6. 29 points
    TIME STAMP: 9:00AM Result: Admitted with Condition (MDCM) cGPA: 3.80, pre-reqGPA: 3.4 MCAT: Not submitted ECs: Lots. Year: B.Sc. + B. Sc. + M. Sc. Interview preparation : Did 0 preparation. Not a single book. Nothing. Post-interview feeling right after : I had no regrets and I was proud. That was enough for me. Post-interview feeling weeks after : You start to question everything. That's normal. Let it go. Attempt : Fourth attempt IP/OOP/International: IP I never thought I would ever post on here. I was already enrolled for next semester to re-take my pre-requesites and I had paid the tuition for it. I had accepted that I would be refused. It is very hard to summarize a 10 years long journey in a few sentences. I could write a book about my journey, my feelings and my doubts. If I had to give advice to a future applicant, here is what I would say : Before getting accepted, try to accept the idea that it might never happen. Define yourself beyond your medical path. Don't do things because they would look good on a C.V. Live your life. Take every extra year as an opportunity to grow your life. Don't see it as an extra year of suffering and waiting. When you get accepted, everything makes sense. Every doubt you had suddenly turns into sparks of hope. It is very hard to describe. After you get accepted, life feels lighter but you realize that it's another journey that starts. I wish I could explain myself but I had the worst odds against me and I made it. Not because I am unique. Because I was lucky. I truly believe I am. Therefore, if it is your dream, follow your heart and never give up. Never give up. Never ever give up.
  7. 27 points
    Well... this story is five years in the making so bear with me for length... It is quite the novel!! I wrote in the forum 2 years ago with hopes of gaining acceptance to UBC... hoping to write in this thread. Turns out it wasn't going to be that year, but finally... FINALLY .... this year. This is the year I get the honour of writing my success story!! For anyone struggling right now, it took me FOUR years of applications to get an acceptance! If you are continually improving yourself and your application/interview skills/grades/etc. stay focused on your goal and hang in there! I am 33 this year and began this journey five years ago while deciding to change careers from environmental/animal biology towards medicine. My first step was to go back to school for some prereqs for UBC during the summer. I had asked for time off from work and was so lucky to receive it. I completed the courses with good grades and began studying for the old MCAT. Then I saw that the MCAT was changing and got crazy stressed out so I signed up for a Princeton Review course to learn what exactly was going to be tested on this new MCAT. I found it difficult to focus my attention 100% on the MCAT as I was concurrently working fulltime. A tragedy struck my family and I had to take a month off from studying, and shortly thereafter decided to quit my safe, full-time job to float by on a part-time job and savings while dedicating myself 100% to my goal and dream: getting a good score on the MCAT and getting into medschool. I pushed my test date ahead once or maybe twice, can't remember, and when finally the day came for my test I arrived sleep-deprived because my cat had been sick all night and it was so hot out that I couldn't sleep... No matter! I scored decently well regardless (511) and forged onward with my first ever set of medical school applications! I applied broadly and received pre-interview rejections from all schools. I hadn't expected much because I knew it takes an average of 3 applications in Canada to get in. That fall (2015) I had gone back to school to take medically-relevant courses as I had not really done so during undergrad (just had done typical bio degree courses) so I had a lot to focus on regardless. I finished those up with awesome grades in April 2016 and began the process of reapplying. I rewrote all of my descriptions for UBC and added new activities and grades. I took some first aid courses and started working as a medic on construction/oil/gas sites. During the 2016-17 cycle I received one interview: UBC. I prepared extensively with the interview groups, taking time from work to focus on preparing. Interview day came and went and I felt confident but not overly hopeful so as to spare myself in case of rejection. Mid-May rolled around and the offers, rejections, and waitlist emails came out and I was gutted to find I had been rejected... No matter! Forging onward. It has only been 2 applications so far anyways... After a brief pity session I regained my composure and determination and set myself up for taking even more university courses and enrolling myself in an additional course that would eventually grant me employment as a paramedic. I felt the fire of my passion fueling me onward: “I will get in” was the feeling. I went back to school again at more than one institution and did a heavy load, full-time and got A+ in most of my classes... “This will be my year”... I got another interview with UBC for Feb 2018. Second interview, third application; this has to be my year! Mid-May 2018: post-interview rejection. “Ok.. I can recover.. I guess. One more try... I have all those courses I did... does that open any doors for me?? Oh, Queen's! McMaster?? Do I take the MCAT again? Ok, let's do that – I really don't want to”... I was scared I would get a worse score somehow... And to have to redo that test and work and ... “Let's just try re-applying again this year without redoing the MCAT... one last shot with this score and then I will re-evaluate”. I begin crafting my OMSAS applications, and re-doing my UBC application. All is well I think. I will probably get my UBC interview at least! (fingers were crossed) and maybe I would score an Ontario interview... December 2018 UBC interview results day comes: PRE-INTERVIEW REJECTION... My TFR dropped over 10-15 points, just like my jaw... my NAQ dropped from mid 30's to in the low 20's... What??? I was shocked... How??? I had added hours, courses, activities, my wording was excellent, I had been receiving interviews for two years in a row????? HOW!!!??? If you look back through the UBC threads around that time you will see that I wasn't doing well with the news and I wasn't expecting much from Queen's either as I had never received an interview with them thus far (I applied during my first application round in 2015-16 also). After feeling low for a few weeks or so I began to slowly gather my broken dream and tried to see a way to improve, again. Fifth time will be the charm I guess, mostly ignoring that I still had apps out in Ontario... I go on vacation to the Caribbean and forget for a while that OMSAS will be releasing interview invites. I don't have much hope but I check my email the morning of the second day of my vacation there to see I had received an interview!!! I cry with happiness!! This cycle may yet provide positive news!! I finish my vacation and return home. I take a month off work and set to focusing on my interview. I watched Ted talks, read, practiced solo and otherwise relaxed. Planned my trip to Ontario and set off in March 2019... The interview felt amazing. I loved the school, the people, the curriculum design... The panel was awesome, and I felt so confident when I got back to my hotel room. I spent the rest of the night in a positive buzz and then came home reservedly hopeful... The wait between interviews and decision day was agonizing... I had started to think about my 'what-ifs' for the year... If I get in – do I buy/rent? Do I get a new car? What about this? What about that? If I don't get in... redo MCAT? Go up north for work? Move to Alberta? Move to Ontario? Start Australia applications? Go to the States? What about Ireland... and on and on and on... to the point where I had considered quitting this goal and beginning to brain-storm alternate careers... I reluctantly decided I would give it one last try before giving up if I didn't get in for this cycle. This process had taken so many years from me and I felt stuck in limbo and stagnant. Mid-May rolls around... Waitlisted... Ok I guess that's better than being outright rejected, but man... MORE WAITING!!! I commit to my daily activities to stay busy. I have some hope but I try not to let it get too high – the waitlist for Queen's notoriously moves a lot, according to historical trends (as noted in the Queen's threads)... Many on the Queen's forum think that the first wave of waitlist offers are coming out May 28, 2 weeks after initial offers... I check my email like a crazy person early in the morning on May 28... and also the forums to see if there was any news yet... I go to bed (in the morning cuz I am a night person) only to be woken an hour later by a gardener with power tools... Okay, well if I am going to be awake for a bit again may as well see how the forum is doing... The waitlist thread is hot... “oh.. jeez, it's happening... let's see – yep people are getting offers. Better rip off the bandaid and check my email...” Queen's School of Medicine----- Oh my god. I don't even have to open this email to know what it is... Dear Clever_Smart_Boy_Like_Me, On behalf of the Admissions Committee of Queen's School of Medicine, we are pleased to provide to you a conditional offer of acceptance... I didn't even read any further than this, I just started sobbing...loudly... with the windows open... someone probably thought something terrible had happened... I start running around in my house sobbing and shaking!! All the years of hard work and determination and sacrifice I had made. All the hours I had spent working at this... Everything I had done in the past five years finally FINALLY paid off... I GOT INTO MEDICAL SCHOOL!! I feel almost moved to tears just writing this sentence. I called my dad and I couldn't even speak, I was just sobbing hysterically into the phone... between sobs I said “I got in” and started losing it again... he came over to my house right away with flowers and a card. I ran around all day telling those important to me that I finally got in. My family and I went to dinner that night to celebrate and I am planning a party to celebrate as well.. Logistics of this process have set in and I am working on all the info I have to provide for the school and getting finances in order and looking for a place to live but... the magnitude of this washes over me randomly throughout the day and I feel so elated and proud and like crying again all over. I AM GOING TO BE A DOCTOR!! I am the first in my immediate family to attend university. And within my family there are not many doctors (though I have learned I have at least 2?). This was a huge goal for me. From its inception in 2014 to its realization in 2019 I have grown so much as a person and with every decision I made towards improving myself and my application I reaffirmed my passion for medicine. It took five years of hard, gruelling work and determination, sleepless nights working on projects and courses, sacrifice, and planning to get where I am. It took four years of applications to get an acceptance. And I am finally in. I am finally in. QMED2023 PS: for those of you who are struggling or otherwise needing guidance on your applications I am willing to provide insight and advice
  8. 27 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.
  9. 27 points
    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
  10. 26 points
    I CANT BREATHE. I CANT BREATHE. ACCEPTED. 5th time applying, 2nd time interviewing , IP Guys never fucking give up. I have two undergrads, I'm doing my masters, I redid 4 of my cegep classes (yes i was 25 and hustling it in cegep). 3,8 science GPA. IM OFF RUNNING SOMEWHERE SCREAMING THAT IM HAPPY. PM me for anything.
  11. 26 points
    Egg_McMuffin

    Success Stories- Non Trad Style!

    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.
  12. 25 points
    sna

    I am so confused in becoming a pathologist

    Here's a visual of what @rmorelan said. Hopefully this helps you visualize your future path Hit us up if you have any more questions, we gotchu fam
  13. 24 points
    ADMISSION !!!!! J'en reviens pas!!! J'ai littéralement fixé mon écran pendant 5 minutes sans aucune réaction. Je comprenais pas!!! Après 2 ans de cégep de HESS, 2 ans d'uni, enfin j'ai atteint mon objectif ! - réponse : admission - contingent : universitaire régulier, en cours de bac - stats (cote, MEM, #LA) : cote 35.7, MEM 550. 1ère fois aux MEM Pour les autres refusés ou sur la LA, SVP n'abandonnez pas !! Vous êtes capable, je le pense vraiment.
  14. 24 points
    humhum

    Unfilled carms spots

    People obsess over what electives they took, and how many specialties they can apply to, with who they are doing research etc. and how it all gets interpreted by the selection committee. All of these factors are absolutely dwarfed by the monstrous magnitude of one singular factor: that is, someone on the selection committee really liking you. You could have done 20 weeks of psych, and 2 weeks of plastics, and if you have one guy on the plastics selection committee that will go on the bat for you, not only are you guaranteed an interview, but you have a higher chance of matching to plastic than someone who has done 10 publications in the field. I have seen this scenario over and over- if you don't believe me, ask the residents in each competitive specialty what they did in their third and fourth year. How do they get to like you, and be your champion? It helps if have someone on the inside who is a family member, or buddy of your mom or dad, or someone that lives in your own hood, or has early male pattern baldness like yourself, or finds you sexually attractive, or likes that you are ugly so you don't threaten their self-esteem, or maybe plays the trumpet like you, likes the sound of your voice, likes that you talk a lot, or likes that you don't, etc. etc. etc., and a million other unmodifiable factors that are pure luck and circumstance. I'm telling you this because I have personally been on both sides of this. A selection member of a surgical specialty asked me to apply and told me point blank I would rank me top 3, and I had done nothing but be a friend of a friend. For fuck's sake, my suturing skills were poorer than the psychiatry gunner on rotation with me. (I didn't want to do that specialty so I didn't apply). Another PD point blank told me she would not write me a letter of reference, after I was basically running half her clinic independently and demonstrated I could manage her patients at an R2 level. Why? She could not even remember my name when I asked for the letter. Another selection member wrote me a glowing letter that got me an interview at the country's most competitive program for that specialty, but I didn't even get an interview at my own home university. Why? Because on the first day we talked about our love of indie music, and didn't stop talking about it for next 4 weeks. On one of the interviews, the interviewers sounded shocked I had actually done an elective with them just three months prior. They had no recollection of me whatsoever. That program was my number 1 rank. I didn't match to it, but my classmate who had it as one of his bottom choices, matched to it. At the end I matched to my second choice program, but had not even done an elective there. And you can guess why I got in. This is why you have to hedge your bets, and pay attention to the stats. If you apply to FM, Internal, and Psych, across the country, you are guaranteed a match. Based on the stats, it is nearly impossible not to match - short of showing up naked at the interviews. But if you are applying to Derm/Plastics/Emerg, etc, you better do a very realistic appraisal of yourself: do you have someone to be your champion on the inside? No amount of studying, elective time, volunteer call hours, and publications will make up for this. If you bust your ass, maybe you can make it to the interview. But from those 30 they are interviewing for the 1 spot, they will pick the one they like in their gut over the forgettable contender, no matter if the latter can clinically perform at a level of an R2. Which brings me to my last point, if you are an MSI1/MSI2/MSI3 reading this, find a back-up and learn to LOVE it. Better yet, stop calling it back-up. It is your parallel plan. How on earth do people do 4 years of med-school, and decided at the end of it, they rather risk going unmatched than do something like FM or IM? It is all a matter of finding a charismatic mentor in any field to convince you that at the end, the work becomes the same crap - the impact and meaning is what you bring into it, not the speciality. It is idiotic for a urology gunner to think 10 years from now, doing their billionth DRE in a row of their 70th patient of the day is somehow more glamorous than consulting a mother who just got the news that they son has autism. It is all medicine.
  15. 24 points
    HalfBaked

    2017 Backpack?

    I personally found it to be an interesting reminder. We can be proud and patriotic and still leave room to constructive autocriticism. Md Financial said the backpack was about the CMA's 150th anniversary, so I mean, in a way it is still linked to Canada's 150th celebrations. And CMA's history is also one of being involved with at-risk minorities. So I don't think it was that off subject, though I also understand why some might think it is. I'm actually more than surprised to see the reactions this has brought. No one is being told that because you want a red backpack and/or because you want to celebrate Canada's 150th anniversary that you are being intransigeant to indigenous communities. It's merely a reminder and a way to bring awareness. If that doesn't interest you, fine just dont reply and post a comment on a different facette of the subject. As for the restaurant analogy, well it is held in a private setting, whereas this forum is a public space where anyone can contribute in any way they see fit as long as they are being respectful. To be fair, there is no right place to talk about those kind of subjects. They will always make some people uncomfortable, or bore them, or annoy them, or kill their fun. As for being involved with indigenous communities. That is a great and commendable act. I find that amazing. But it would be equally amazing to not discourage someone who tried to open a discussion about the social injustices they're living. I'm pretty sure they would be thankful for that too. And yes, it's just a backpack. Like it was just a seat in a bus, or just an apple that fell from a tree. From trivial objects can emerge amazing discoveries and history-changing events. I'm not saying this backpack is gonna start a revolution, but hey, if it can start a conversation on one, if not the most marginalized community in our country: it is a good thing. Telling someone that it isn't pertinent, that SJWs are invading again, that it should be discussed elsewhere, that it isn't about race/gender, that they are overreacting; well, it just stops all forms of debates. It's like taping someone's mouth and writing SJW on that tape. Anyone can be easily discredited and shushed like that, and change doesn't emerge without communication. Just because you don't want to be part of a conversation, that doesn't mean you have to prevent that conversation from happening. And even if you think the conversation should happen but elsewhere, there are respectful ways to say it. "Hey, you should create a thread about indingenous communities in Canada so you can have a more appropriate environment for that debate" is better suited than "take your unnecessary comments elsewhere", don't you think?
  16. 22 points
    I typed this really long post but was almost going to delete it. I felt like it sounded so silly. But I will keep it in the hopes that some of you find it helpful/encouraging because I've always enjoyed and was motivated by reading this thread. I tried injecting some context into this, so hopefully it doesn't bore you guys too much with being somewhat long. I grew up in a relatively rough neighbourhood. I'll give you an example to highlight the point: in grade 7 while my friends and I were going trick or treating, we ran into three of my older brother's friends profusely bleeding from stab wounds. Turns out they had been ambushed by a group they had bad blood with. Anyway, one of them had a pretty bad gash in his neck, close to his jugular, but thankfully none of the major vessels were cut. My friends and I had to help them to a nearby clinic (which was thankfully open). Scary stuff, but it was the reality of the place. My parents worked really hard to provide for my siblings and I (I have two older brothers - let's call them Alpha and Bravo). They tried their absolute best to keep us shielded from the bad stuff, but there's always an inevitable influence by the environment. Being males in a rough neighbourhood meant keeping up a “macho” facade. You definitely didn't get overly sentimental, and so my brothers and I were walled off emotionally not only from friends, but each other as well. So what was the culmination of these early childhood experiences? The "climax" of it all came during my senior year of high school. Well, I should say my SECOND senior year. At this point in my life, I had never had the experiences to develop an appreciation for education and knowledge. I would skip classes to go play sports. There was a point in grade 12 where I had skipped more classes than I had actually attended. This meant that I was forced to do an extra year in high school to try and salvage my marks enough to try and apply to postsecondary. This extra year was tough. You question the decisions you’ve made so far, you watch all your friends move on to the next stage of their lives, and you're in classes with kids younger than you. Unfortunately, this wasn't even the tip of the iceberg. Within the span of 3-4 months, my life literally spiraled out of control. My high school sweetheart (who had started university at this point) had just broken up with me. I already mentioned how I came from a background where I was extremely insular about keeping my feelings to myself. My girlfriend was a sweetheart - I could open up emotionally to her and it was a welcome change. Losing her in an already difficult time was tough, and unfortunately things kept getting worse. Soon after the breakup, I injured myself playing sports, effectively ending my entire sports year and requiring surgery. Sports had always been that one pseudo-emotional outlet of mine, so removing it was definitely a huge emotional hurdle. I even started losing my hair from stress (this is a contentious topic haha, but I genuinely believe acute stressors can potentially act as a trigger). Unfortunately, I would soon realize that all of these challenges would pale in comparison to what was to follow. I will never ever forget this day. It still seems so vivid. I came home from school one day to see my brother, Bravo, in our driveway with this very confused/sad look on his face. He was very inebriated, but that confused/sad look still haunts me. He looked so vulnerable. He was being arrested for drug charges. It was heartbreaking. We would later find out that he had been battling severe mental health issues and masked them through substance abuse. Being arrested wreaked even more havoc on his mental health. We couldn't bail him out because my other brother (Alpha) had already tried. The first time he was bailed out, Bravo's mental health lead to him acting very erratically. He broke his bail conditions and disappeared. We were able to track him down after a friend of Bravo’s contacted the family. So I had to watch from afar, yet again, as my brother got arrested. My mom was with me this time. We later learned from the friend that Bravo had been really hungry, yet we saw him get arrested as he about to take the first bite of his food. My mom started getting very frequent panic attacks soon after this incident. I remember visiting him in jail on multiple occasions, only to be received by non-nonsensical and hysterical laughter. This was absolutely brutal for me. I grew up always being Bravo’s sidekick. I followed him everywhere he went, being that annoying little brother. He really was my role model. So to see him there, unrecognizable, was very gut wrenching. We were unable to convince the penal system of the clear mental issues he was exhibiting and he was retained in a normal jail. His condition worsened and he was eventually placed in solitary confinement due to bad behavior. He stayed there for 2-3 weeks. Being a witness to this and unable to help was absolutely excruciating. Like, the breakup, surgery, extra year of high school seem bad right? They genuinely felt like a walk in the park compared to this. It was during this ordeal that I had made up my mind to commit myself to working hard, getting into university, and getting into the field of psychology so that I might help others that had gone through similar situations as my brother. Thankfully, after a few months convincing, we were finally able to get through to the courts. We had been able to convince the judge to transfer Bravo to a mental treatment facility as opposed to a jail. I still remember the day we found out that they would transfer him: June 12th, 2009. It is probably on the top of the happiest days of my life. Getting into medicine definitely pales in comparison to that day. Anyway, he received a diagnosis and began treatment, which he has continued to this day. I started university soon after. Motivated with my desire to pursue psychology, I had a relatively strong start. However, I was faced with quite a few additional hurdles on the way that reflected in my GPA trends. Beyond the typical academic struggles (taking time to find field of interest) and personal struggles (breakups, dealing with limitations after surgery etc.), helping Bravo navigate his mental health condition and potential substance relapses was quite challenging. Additionally, my other brother (Alpha) also developed a very bad substance abuse problem due to the stress of the events surrounding Bravo. It's been an ongoing thing for a few years and still continues to this day. This caused my mom's panic attacks to become even worse/frequent. However, Alpha has significantly improved in recent months. But to tie in an earlier theme, I strongly believe that there is a component of emotional support to this. My siblings and I were raised to be very insular about our feelings, and substances may be seen as an easy “alternative” to having to deal with these emotions. That’s why I think it's so important to cultivate the ability to share your emotions with others, and make others feel comfortable in sharing their emotions with you. Especially so as a physician. So that's my journey to med in a nutshell. It took me 5 years to do a 4-year high school degree, 6 years total to do a 4-year BSc, three MCAT writes, and three additional years off. But I've always been one to challenge myself and improve after every failure. I've been fortunate enough to have amazing parents (though we might not agree on everything) and lucky enough to find amazing professors/mentors in my life. I owe literally all of my successes to these people. Although I continue to be faced with some of the same challenges that seemed completely insurmountable before, I really believe I am stronger than ever, not only individually, but also because of the social support network I’ve been able to establish. I understand the responsibilities I carry because of these events, but believe me, that doesn’t stop me from being the silliest and happiest person that I can possibly be. I hope to carry these experiences into the field, and hopefully make a positive impact. Here is a thread to some of my more CV-like details: http://forums.premed101.com/topic/69931-lost-with-updates/ if you’re curious about what type of stats, ECs etc. I was working with. Good luck everyone!
  17. 20 points
    sorry for the late post, been busy pinching myself and crying all day!! TIME STAMP: ~14h30 pm (heart attack since 9 am)  Result: Admitted with condition !!! pre-reqGPA: 4,00 (redid my 4 basic pre-reqs at Athabasca, Thomson Rivers), old pre-req GPA was 3,01 MCAT: Not submitted Feeling About MMI (please be mindful of NDA): This was my 4th time interviewing at McGill, so I felt confortable with the process (I could've basically rehearsed their ppt slide), so I was a lot more relaxed and went in there being 1000% authentic (cheesy I know but its true). Felt like I was great in 3 stations, 1 below average and the rest pretty average IP/OOP/International: IP Comment : I've been applying to med school for 7 years!!! This was my 4th interview at McGill, I was straight up refused all 3 cycles before being admitted this year with no WL. Anyone with refusals, I know it sucks, I know your hurt. You need to keep trying and you need to push through if this is what you want. If anyone wants to chat PM me!!!
  18. 20 points
    sna

    What is everybody using at med school?

    I've tried both and found that the iPad Pro has better hardware (Apple Pencil, longer battery, better display) and software (Notability, and although the surface has desktop Microsoft office with full features, I prefer the simpler mobile versions). With the iPad Pro, I was torn between using Notability vs OneNote. Notability has superior annotation, functional auto-sync to pdf, OneNote has better organization, infinite scroll in both x and y planes. So rather than choosing a compromise, I've ended up using both: Notability for in-class notes and OneNote for studying. Let me demonstrate what that looks like: Downloading the pdf/lecture file is easier on iPad (vs laptops) because you open it in the browser and tap "Open in Notability". This iniates multiple steps at once; it downloads the file, opens it in Notability, creates a pdf back-up in google drive that gets updated in real time as you take notes. All with one click. After class you get this: Then after class, you just tap the share button on the top left corner and with one tap save it in OneNote. Later when you're studying, you'll have room the ability to add additional subpages if necessary (Notability doesn't have this, see example below) and make additional comments/add resources on the side (see example below). You can also still annotate further: This system has worked beautifully for me so far. Let me know if you have any questions!
  19. 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.
  20. 19 points
    6th time applying, 3rd time interviewing, still in shock to be posting this... Time Stamp: 12:25 PST Accepted, VFMP (first choice) AGPA: 86.55% MCAT: 512 (balanced, 129 CARS) ECs: Student government, orientations leader, crisis line volunteer, volunteering with various charities, hospital, lab assistant at various research labs (paid), CIHR funding for a summer, working at a gas station, currently working as a policy analyst for government, and a few very random but unique hobbies (honestly could have either really helped or not counted for anything, they're pretty out there) Geography: IP Year: BSc completed 2013, Master's completed 2016, currently working full-time Interview: Honestly felt like the best interview I've ever had, and I've done 12 (!) of them in the past 5 years. I walked out of every station this year feeling pretty good, and knew I absolutely nailed at least two of them (the acting station went almost perfectly, and there was one where I really felt I connected with the interviewer). There were some that were probably average, but I didn't feel like I bombed any of them - which was a first. Usually I walk out of them unsure and crossing my fingers that things worked out (it never did), this time was completely different. Stats from last year: NAQ: 29.00 AQ: 25.58 TFR: 54.58 Interview: Below Average (below average the year before as well) I feel so blessed to have finally received an acceptance to a Canadian medical school. I've been applying for years now, and have been given so many opportunities - which I always ended up blowing. I've interviewed at UBC the past 3 years, but I've interviewed at Calgary, McMaster, Alberta, and Saskatchewan (I had a really high old MCAT score) over the years. May has consistently been the worst month of the year for me, and last year was especially awful because I spent a lot of time practicing - every week for a couple hours since the previous summer - and still received a rejection. That was a pretty low point in my life tbh. The practice did help, but I think the thing really holding me back was my lack of maturity. I had always been very academically focused, and to be honest hadn't really had a chance to live a life. I think doing that the past few years - falling in love, going to bars with friends, arguing about politics, moving to my own place and dealing with laundry and dinner - has really helped me grow as a person, and I think permanently changed who I am. I went into each of those stations as if I was talking to my girlfriend about an interesting topic over lunch. I had fully formed opinions and thoughts on subjects because I'd argued about these things over beer with friends (and on reddit). I'd had cool experiences to talk about not just from volunteer activities, but also from disagreements with a roommate or co-workers, or from moving across the country for a master's program. Anyway, wanted to get that off my chest. This year really did feel different, and I'm glad it ended up being different. I interviewed at Calgary as well this year but felt terrible after (question style is very different from UBC imo, which I focused my preparation for), and got a rejection. I also interviewed at a US school and received an acceptance, but the tuition kind of terrifies me so I was still really stressed out this week. To those who didn't get an offer this year, trust me when I say I know how it feels. I've had a lot of experience trying to improve my application over the years, so if anyone wants some advice, or even just to chat or rant, please reach out through PM. This process really involves a lot of luck, and there are so many amazing people who don't get accepted every year. If you really want this, it'll happen eventually.
  21. 19 points
    Ottawa gonna drop these emails January 32nd
  22. 18 points
    Felt I should add my stats in here because I’m super stoked and would want someone like me who was applying to see this... 2013 was my first application to medical schools in Canada, 2019 was my 1st interview at UBC. Accepted, VFMP (1st Choice) TIME STAMP: 11:56am PSTEarly or Regular Deadline: RegularAGPA (if applicable): ~83MCAT: 124 in CARS, 513 overall. Geography: IP Educational background: BSc and MSc (Thesis) in basic science , plus some Continuing Ed. ECs: Not an Olympian. Didn’t have any publications from my Master’s degree until after the June deadline, but some poster presentations. My weak GPA didn’t get me on the Dean’s Honours List. BUT I had years and years of service/volunteering/philanthropy, student governance and policy work during high school and university years, working in marginalised communities in BC and Quebec, experiences from my life that let me be in leadership roles outside of school, finding a true pride being a member of the LGBTQ2S+ community, and having made genuine connections with people that supported me over many, many years and were so thrilled to be verifiers (and making me cry seeing their genuine excitement when I told them I got in). Honestly, it took a village to raise me and they were all included in my application. Interview: I worked a full-time and part-time job while prepping for interviews, but all I can say is that I spent NUMEROUS hours working with friends, colleagues, anyone who I could find that wanted to spend the time to give me honest feedback to prepare. I wanted the input of non-applicants (I wasn’t here for the biased opinions and shadiness, and that’s the T), and I went in feeling great. I read articles for 5 hours a day to understand what was going on. I listened to podcasts while I worked. I watched the evening news before going to bed. Unfortunately, getting to the interview day and walking up to the first station, it was an out of body experience that I didn’t anticipate and my anxiety got the best of me. I know I had brought enough into the conversations, but it wasn’t at my best — however, I was happy to know that it was enough. Having low grades and a threshold CARS score was really pushing me to prove my worth in the interview and I did (and I’m so proud of that). The acceptance email comes and the grades no longer matter, the number of times I tried and wrote the MCAT no longer matter, the years of failed and rejected applications no longer matter. I’m looking forward. Forward to a new chapter and new beginning. Getting into medical school is easy for some with the grades and the privileges, however, without those, it’s full of hurdles. Jumping over enough of them will eventually get you to the finish line. One yes is all you need.
  23. 18 points
    My friend just sent me an email titled, "Acceptance to McMaster Medical School". Unfriended.
  24. 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
  25. 18 points
    Ok sorry for this long post but I had to share my thoughts to all current and future applicants that are facing disappointment. Everything written here is based on my humble opinion. If it can help one person, than I have achieved my goal. Introduction Since decision came out, a lot of amazing candidates learned that they were rejected. They may feel emptiness, doubts or sadness, thinking that their efforts were wasted. They may feel that even after re-doing basic sciences, reading books and working hard, it wasn't enough. I am just writing this post to let you know that we all go through that feeling. You are human and it is normal to feel that way. What I did in the process, is write letters to myself. I never wanted to forget how I felt because it would help me later on in life. I was questioning if writing a post about this was a good idea. I am no one. And I like motivation but would hate to sound like a cheap version of Anthony Robbins. About me I got in this year at my fourth trial. I was granted a single interview and rejected everywhere else. It was my first interview. I am not different form all of you and I got in. I am a normal student. I am not smart. I just try my best and try to forget about the rest. You're more than a medical school acceptance or rejection Challenges come along all the time, may they be medical or not. Resilience, persistence and dedication are traits that can be developed. In my case, I was trying to become a better person. I improved myself and that could have been useful in every circumstance. Had I decided to go into healthcare management, financial services, etc. Sure, rejections letter meant I wasn't fit for medical school. But no one could take away the skills I had developed and the experiences I gained. The best way to prevent regrets is to give your best today For me, there are 2 types of rejections : Rejected while knowing I did not do my best : leads to regrets Rejected while knowing that I did my best: no regrets at all This year, I was ready for the second type of rejection. So all I can tell you guys is : just do your best. If you truly give everything you have, then you can be proud and happy. Control what you can control. The increasing competition and the decreased amount of seats : you can't control at all. Your GPA, your MCAT score, your pre-req scores : all in your hands. You can still change your mind and that is not a failure I think that medicine is not for everyone. Some amazing potential doctors become public health researchers, lawyers, entrepreneurs, etc. And they leave a trace on our society that exceeds what most doctors did. Don't give up because they refused to give you a spot. BUT accept that there there are other ways to make an impact. If you decide to move on because you discover another passion : it is fine and you should be proud. It is not a failure. It is a decision. We can have more than one passion in life. It's not a one size fits all world. Just be sure you are making that decision because you want to : not because a letter forced you to. Everything you are feeling is normal and we all felt i So I said earlier that I used to write letters to myself when I was tired. It is very personal but here is one that I wrote about a month ago. I wrote it after the interviews when I was reading about the statistics. Let's just say the numbers are not very encouraging. Just to show you that you are not alone in this. I'm not even making that up. Just try to be the best version of yourself Remember that everyone that got in, every current resident and practicing physician, everyone encountered obstacles. That is also true for plumbers, janitors, lawyers, cashiers and engineers. It is part of life. Don't try to become a better doctor thinking it will make you a better person. Do your best, be the best version of yourself regardless of medical school. THAT will make you a better doctor. Good luck to all !
  26. 18 points
    Time Stamp: April 12, 2:00PM With tears in my eyes... ACCEPTED!!!!!!!! (OOP WL) GPA: 3.9 MCAT: 515 Essay: I tried my hardest on this section bc im not very confident in my essay writing but ended up having to rush it more than I thought I would have to due to work. Weakest section by far really recommend taking extra time on this!! ECs: Research for a couple of years in Biology and Humanities (no pubs but impact was significant curriculum changes to 2 large uni courses), curriculum design assistant (published 2 interactive books), digital media assistant (mostly videography), undergrad TA for 2 terms,1300+ hrs of paid mentorship and tutoring, Crohns/Colitis volunteer, some unique placement experiences, cofounder of a startup. Interview: First interview of my life so I had a lot of trouble sleeping the night before. I felt like most of the sections were okay, 2 stations I felt really good on, but there was a station I completely bombed because I didnt read the prompt correctly and there wasn't enough time to save it. My total score was 77.63 I am a non-trad applicant and ive worked through so many failures and uncertainties its hard to describe how amazing this feels. I was put on academic probation after first year because I couldn't handle this idea of trying to out-compete my peers, the anxiety was too much and I was too scared to reach out for help. It took a break from uni for 1.5 years for me to be able to face my fears and accept being vulnerable/reaching out for help. I told myself that if this didn't happen for me this year, I would have to start pursuing a realistic backup. At a time where my family has been struggling, being able to call my momma and update her with this is unbelievable. This process almost feels like its designed to test your constitution constantly, I can't tell you how many times I nearly gave up. Don't let the process make you forget your own intrinsic value in this world, we all mean so much more than an application!!!
  27. 18 points
    Hey guys. This is Ana Safavi, the resident referred to in the articles. I did used to post here under a different username, but right before I went public, I sort of panicked and asked to be perma-banned from the forums in order to delete my entire post history. I don't think you can un-perma-ban a user, so here I am under a new profile. Oh well. I debated whether or not to post in this thread. Initially I stayed off premed 101, because I didn't want people to feel inhibited from discussing my case freely amongst themselves, for fear of offending me or something like that. Please don't worry about hurting my feelings -- trust me, I have been called way worse in the comment sections of the Sudbury Star and National Post by now. I wouldn't have gone public if I didn't have a thick skin, and I want people to feel like they can criticize me in this thread if they want. The reason I am posting in this thread is because I want people to know that I am available to help anyone else going through something similar. Medical student or resident. Male or female. Harassed -- sexually or otherwise. Unfairly targeted, discredited, silenced, or maligned by your institution. Whether you want advice, referrals to (non-shitty) lawyers, or just want to vent to somebody who gets it, I'm here and happy to help in any way that I can. I have learned so much over the past two years about how to navigate the system and protect yourself as a learner trapped in a broken, corrupt system, and I feel obligated to pass on that knowledge to anyone else who can benefit from that hard-earned insight. And my schedule is wide open right now. If you are afraid to put your thoughts in writing, my cell phone number is 519-859-9334. Text me anytime. Or you can add me on whatsapp. Just please no unsolicited d*ck pics (unintentional side effect of going public, I have recently learned). Btw, feel free to ask me questions. Don't worry about prying -- if I can't answer something for legal reasons, I'll let you know. The articles are a bit confusing, and some of my actions may seem somewhat illogical as a result. I will do my best to clarify things (like why I haven't released the name of my sexual harasser). You can also ask me personal questions if you like (what it felt like being sexually harassed, how to cope with something like that, etc). I will let you know if I don't want to answer and I promise not to be offended that you asked. Finally, if people want to discuss what it's like from the accused person's perspective (issues of due process, etc) I have some insight to offer as well there. After all, I was unfairly accused and punished by NOSM for making so-called 'unfounded accusations' after a one-sided investigation done without my knowledge, so while I am a victim here, I do have sympathy for the other side of the issue as well. Due process is paramount, and should never be sacrificed out of expediency.
  28. 18 points
    RiderSx

    uOttawa Interview 2018 Discussion

    I feel like I’m on a never ending roller coaster today, I got all the kinds of butterflies
  29. 18 points
    Log

    2017 Backpack?

    LEGOLAS, WHAT DO YOUR CALGARIAN EYES SEE? Edit: okay wow I just now read the entire thread and realized how serious this got. Oops.
  30. 17 points
    Instagrammar

    GPA chance

    Honestly, when I found out my GPA was only 5.0 on a 4.0 scale, I almost just gave up. I realized my GPA would hold me back so I just grabbed the holy CanMed infinity stones - Cerulean Communicator, Carmine Collaborator, Lilac Leader, Salmon Scholar, Hazel Health Advocate, and a Purple Professional Stone. When I combined my CanMed infinity stones, I was able to overcome my GPA. I hope this helps!
  31. 17 points
    warthog

    May 14 Countdown

    The Cycle of Waiting 1. Hoping: “I have good stats, I think! I did okay in the interview...let me check the Accepted/Rejected/Waitlist thread again...” 2. Imagining: “If I get in, what will I do? Who do I tell first? What do I put on my Facebook? Omg I’d have to quit my job. Would I cry?.” 3. Someone asks you “What’s up?” or “How are you doing?” Or EVEN WORSE: “Any word yet?” This derails your confidence immediately. 4. Racing Heart: “crap crap crap what if I don’t get in? I’d have to tell everyone right? I’d have to start over...I’d have to retake the MCAT.” *lurks on PM101, r/MCAT and r/premed to torture self* 5. Wallowing: “I am not a competitive applicant. I shouldn’t have applied. I wonder what the career prospects are like for goat herding?” *aggressive googling* *cycles through memory of the interview for the trillionth time* *spends weirdly long time reading the medical school website when you’ve memorized it already* *a lot of sighing* 6. Try to Distract Yourself: Start reading books you’ve read already, start going on weird subreddit and YouTube spirals, start researching alpaca farming. “I wonder what Snooki is up to these days?” Wallow/Hoping cycle begins again. You wonder if you should’ve just gone into banking or teaching or public service like everyone else. More sighing. You go on YouTube again. 6. The cycle restarts.
  32. 16 points
    no-name

    Mon histoire

    Salut salut! Ça fait un moment maintenant que je pense à écrire ce message. J'espère que ça en incitera d'autres à partager leurs expériences et encourager ceux qui sont dans ce processus. Pour certaines personnes, rentrer en médecine a été un chemin linéaire, mais pour plusieurs d'entre nous, ce chemin a été toute une aventure parsemée de moments de découragement, de lâcher prise, de persévérance et de fierté aussi. Je me suis toujours dit qu'une fois accepté en médecine, j'allais partager mon histoire. Je ne vais pas être trop long, mais comme beaucoup d'entre vous, j'ai toujours voulu aller en médecine. D'abord, c'était un 'rêve', puis j'ai commencé à travail dans le domaine de la santé après un bac connexe et c'est devenu un vrai projet de vie, le seul qui me semblait 'fitter' avec moi. Quand j'étais plus jeune, j'ai vécu de l'intimidation et des problèmes d'intégration; mais je savais que j'avais de grandes compétences académiques. Sauf que le manque de confiance en soi, ça peut fuck up bien des choses, y compris les notes. J'ai été à la recherche de ma place jusqu'à temps que je rentre sur le marché du travail et que je réalise que depuis le début, ma petite voix avait raison et que la médecine était la bonne carrière à poursuivre. Je pense avoir gagné plus d'expériences que la plupart des personnes de mon âge qui m'ont fait devenir la personne que je suis aujourd'hui. Ma vocation ne m'a jamais quittée. Même quand j'ai fait une dépression à ma première session d'université. Cette session là, j'ai fini avec une GPA de 2.3. J'étais allé voir un conseiller à mon université et il m'avait dit qu'il fallait que j'oublie l'idée d'aller en médecine et que je n'y arriverais pas (c'est vraiment ce que le conseiller m'a dit...) Le premier jour, j'étais démoralisé, j'ai même pleuré. Puis, les journées ont passé et par la suite, j'ai décidé de tout faire pour combattre cette dépression et de faire de mon mieux, MAIS sans me stresser, à mon rythme (i.e. en n'écoutant pas ce que mon entourage me disait! spécialement les autres personnes qui voulaient rentrer en médecine et qui stressaient beaucoup trop haha) Je me suis fait des study buddies dans mon programme et je me suis impliqué dans mon asso. J'ai fini mes études en 2014 avec une GPA entre 3.6 et 3.7 (en étant parti à 2.3, c'était tout un marathon!) J'ai appliqué en médecine pour la première fois l'année passée, et j'ai été refusé post-entrevue. Mais ce n'était pas si grave car le fait d'avoir été accepté en entrevue me prouvait que j'étais capable d'y arriver. Il y avait quand même toujours la peur de ne jamais pouvoir compenser mes notes. La première entreuve j'avais tellement peur que je crois que ça m'a empêché de focus et de me concentrer sur la préparation. Un an plus tard, j'appliquais a nouveau et j'ai été accepté cette année!! Le but de mon message est : n'abandonne JAMAIS en toi même car tu es la personne déterminante pour ton admission. Prend soin de TOI, de ta santé mentale et physique #selflove. Et si tu en viens à la conclusion que c'est vraiment en médecine que tu vas t'épanouir, go for it. Personnellement, je pense avoir une belle longueur d'avance dans mon entrée dans le programme: être ultra motivé et savoir que c'est vraiment ma place. NON il ne faut pas être un premier de classe pour y arriver. Mais il faut être travaillant et persévérant.
  33. 16 points
    Poloma

    UBC Post Interview Impressions.

    I called admissions - they said right now they plan for May 10 but they’ll update us with an email around May 1
  34. 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.
  35. 16 points
  36. 16 points
    IMislove

    Queens Waitlist 2018

    ACCEPTED OFF THE Wait LIST OMFG FRIGGGG YESSSSS IVE WAITED 5 long OMSAS cycles for this shit yeaaaaaaasss. Thank you everyone for the support and memes. Will edit later.
  37. 16 points
    Result: Accepted Geography: OOP GPA: 3.96 MCAT: 508 (129 CARS) <--Yes, you can get in with a low MCAT as an OOP! Degree: Bachelors of Commerce (2012) (No science prereqs) E.C: Non-trad applicant. Years of work experience in Investment Banking, Travel Agency. My volunteering activities are mainly cultural or entrepreneurship related. Won some top-level business awards. Black belt in Taekwondo. Grew up working on a farm. Traveled to over 35 countries. Fitness Mentor/Advocate. (No research at all) Interview: Felt most prepared for the U of A interview as it was my last of 3. The questions were more straightforward than UBC or McMaster. I really, really enjoyed the panel. I felt like I finally had a chance to talk about myself and show my personality. The panel interviewers were very nice and conversational as well. I felt iffy on the MMI. On 2-3 stations I did blah and the rest of I did okay. I think my ECs and Panel Interview really pulled through for me. I'm just so grateful right now to have received this opportunity. As I am writing this, I still can't believe it. After 6 years of contemplation, denial, and self-doubt, I finally now get the chance to become a doctor. When I found out that the results were released on this forum, I was at my desk at work. I literally just got up and ran out the door. I nervously tried to login to my account and ended up keying my password wrong 3 times. To avoid getting locked out, I had to call my fiancee to check my result on my home laptop where the password was already saved. When he read the admission decision to me over the phone, I crumbled to my knees and started crying. It was an unbelievable moment. I felt all the worry, pain, and doubt just wash away. I'm sure everyone that walked past me thought I was crazy. But I didn't care. This was the best day of my life. We are, at any moment, capable of pursuing our dreams. - The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho If medicine is your dream, don't give up. Never, ever give up.
  38. 16 points
  39. 16 points
    robclem21

    Lowest Point In My Life

    There is a lot of misconstruing going on this thread and words being taken out of context on both sides. However, I agree with a lot of points made by everyone. 1) Yes. It is not ideal to work at a fast food chain following 4 years of undergrad, and obviously nobody enters their degree with that goal in mind. Does that make the OP successful, no, but does it make them a failure? Also no. Everyone has their own path and although they were not successful this time, it seems unfair to call someone a failure while in the middle of their journey. Furthermore, nobody has the right to look down at anyone else for the job they do. You can't go through life categorizing and judging people based on the job they do and using that as a rationale for how you look at or treat people. I am not saying anyone here would do that, but the idea that certain jobs are "pathetic" is not far removed from that path and certainly conducive to being a compassionate person and physician. 2) There are a lot of people in my program and who apply (based on applications I read this year) that have a lot of growing up to do. There is nothing wrong with having to take a path you weren't expecting into medicine. Maybe some people have shit experience working in retail or fast food, but whether you realize or not, there were things you learned from it (maybe not hard skills, but maybe you have a new appreciation for how you should treat people who work those jobs). That in itself is something valuable. More "premeds" need to adopt an understanding view of how the world actually works, because things don't always go your way and the blinders of undergrad will eventually come off to a world where you don't always succeed and get what you want. 3) Lastly, I also don't think it is wrong that people choose to pursue medicine for prestige and salary. Some people grow up with nothing and would love nothing more than the opportunity to provide for their family and give their parents, spouse, children a good life. That is respectable in my opinion. Should it be the ONLY reason....probably not because there are certainly easier ways to make money, but I don't think that prevents someone from being a good doctor. Anyway, my two cents.. take it for what its worth.
  40. 15 points
    warthog

    May 14 Countdown

    It kind of feels weird knowing that in less than 24 hours, the trajectory of my life could be drastically different. On the other hand, I sincerely wish you all the best of luck!!! Regardless of the result, you took on this process. You committed to every step, and you made it this far — there are many that didn’t!
  41. 15 points
    I don't usually post my stats anymore since they've basically remained the same from my posts 2 years ago. I'll make an exception in this time just because of how -relatively- little data usually gets contributed here. TIME STAMP: Feb 21 2019, 11:17 EST Interview Date: March 30 Result: Interview (MD) cGPA: 3.96 (by rounding) MCAT: Passed cutoffs ECs: Filled up all 32 items this year, but I've had an interview back when I had 21/48 items. Diverse and met each of UofT's clusters quite well. Essays: Spent at least 1.5 months on them, at least 400 hours. Was it overkill? To be honest, probably. I'm not a bad writer by any means, but when it comes to pieces with word limits, I believe in the importance of articulating each idea as succulently and artistically as possible. My grades did suffer but I wanted to write essays that could stand strong among a diverse audience of readers (which is to be reasonably expected of) and leave myself without regret. All of the topics strongly resonated with my experiences and I had a lot to share. If anything, future readers should find this observation helpful: having exchanged essay reviewing with some of my friends, I've come to realize that there isn't a single, uniform writing style that really makes the magic happen. Some of my friends briefly addressed the question within a single few sentences, then built their entire essays on how their experiences met the four clusters. Personally, I dedicated almost half my word count towards giving a thorough answer/solution before briefly sharing some personal experiences. We all got an interview. Year: Graduated UG Geography: OOP Two years ago, I did horribly on my interview. I knew my application wasn't strong: I had a weak reference, few extracurriculars and ultimately, couldn't hold up to applicants with an amazing wealth of experience behind them. I was invited during the final week and suspected that I had only marginally scraped into getting an interview. I convinced myself that the odds weren't in my favour and let myself fall. Last year I didn't take my essays as seriously enough and got rejected March 16th. Firstly, the topics just didn't click with my experiences. Secondly, seeing that I already had been previously been invited, I grew extremely over-confident and complacent in my writing. I got no interviews from any school during this year. Each interview is a privilege. Each year, med schools get more and more amazing applications, either from those who have come back strong after a previous rejection, or new talented applicants. Perhaps I'm just on this site too often, but getting accepted 4th year doesn't seem as common as it once was. In any case, I'm extremely grateful to have another chance of making things right.
  42. 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.
  43. 15 points
    I won't be so flippant as to say just try it out, but I would ask you to try to take a step back and look at your situation objectively. At the end of the day, the only thing that matters is your happiness, and I do think there are many paths withing medicine that can be fulfilling for a wide variety of people; I also think it's incredibly easy to make numerous small sacrifices for dubious goals that accumulate to an overall frustrating life. I've absolutely experienced that miserable feeling you're describing, few people get to experience being berated by someone at 4am because you're still on the low end of the totem pole in your mid twenties. And there are a ton of people in my med school class who pushed themselves to do research in med school on top of that, put time in to networking, over-studied for every test, only to continue the cycle for another 6 years of residency. You don't have to do that if that's not your picture of happiness though. I was initially pushing for a difficult specialty and I would feel anxious every second I wasn't working on my research project, I was attending rounds for that specialty and doing additional clinic on top of normal school duties, and I honestly felt terrible. Then I realized that this doesn't have to be my life, my peers from high school who I was jealous of treated their jobs like a job and there was no reason I had to let it consume my life. I studied to around the median, I played sports and video games instead of researching, and I got in to a fantastic community family medicine program. And now my average days are 9-4 with some charting on either end and the occasional home call. And while I found a niche I'm really excited to pursue full time, I know someone who recently graduated and makes 80k a year off one hard day of work per week - something you won't find in any other field and allows him to pursue his true passions. So that's where I'd ask you to be objective. Whatever career you're comparing medical school to, don't compare it to the jaded or overworked staff you never hope to be. Compare it to what you, with your values, would do with that degree. I can't guarantee it's for everyone, but if you've come this far there's a very strong chance you find something that works for you better on many levels than most alternatives.
  44. 15 points
    lmck

    Countdown to decisions [doomsday]

    I am in the MDCM/PhD pool, but I got my acceptance today! Good luck to all!
  45. 15 points
    Hello everyone, As an old reader of the site, I wanted to return to share a short documentary on the match process I recently created. It features my fellow uOttawa MD 2017 classmates. Enjoy and feel free to spread and share! https://vimeo.com/222682284
  46. 15 points
    elr

    My Experiences Being Unmatched

    I am not one to frequently post in the forums (I am more of a lurker), but this conversation is one that I feel pretty passionate about. This thread seems to have started as a supportive thread for students who have gone unmatched, whether it was through one or both iterations. I think that it is very important to have such to show support to our colleagues and friends. That being said, the way that this conversation has derailed is upsetting to see. It is easy to talk about matching and CaRMS academically and comfortably from the position of one who matched. I think that this has lead to some in the forum forgetting that we are talking to our colleagues who, very understandably, may be more emotionally invested in the topic. The reality is that when ~3000 CMGs apply through CaRMS and ~150 don't match in first iteration (https://www.carms.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Table_1_Summary_of_Match_Results_English.pdf), the problem is obviously going to be multifactorial. Sure, some individuals won't match because they had a bad reference or poor interviews, but some non-negligible percentage of unmatched applicants had excellent references, a fair number of decent interviews, and fair prospects. Yet, these outlier candidates are branded as 'not good enough' or 'flawed' in what amounts to an information vacuum. That's a ridiculous assault on logic and you should consider rethinking your position on this subject. We shouldn't make unmatched applicants in a heartbreaking situation feel worse because we think we understand an incredibly complex process better than they do. Hamham, you attribute your matching to your first choice to luck? But someone stating that, for a lot of unmatched applicants, it comes down to luck is deluding themselves? I am having trouble with your logic here. You seem to think that you are somehow helping by pointing out to amichel that they are unmatched for a reason. But I fail to see how you talking to one student about their experience going unmatched and implying that they are an unlikeable person is helpful. I agree with amichel that the anonymity of the forums can lead to hurtfulness. You state that you sympathize with people who have gone unmatched, yet you go on to try to enlighten them that other people are "better" than they are. This attitude contributes to the idea out there that doctors have a 'god complex.' I am sure you worked hard to get to where you are, but the fact that things worked out for you and you were fortunate enough to match to your first choice in no way makes you better than those who did not match. You mention that your posts here are in an attempt to help future applicants - with that in mind, you may want to consider a more appropriate context for your help. I don't follow your logic in posting in a thread in which many already unmatched applicants are discussing their experiences to pretend that that helps future applicants. If you think for a minute that unmatched individuals don't do some serious self-scrutinization, you are deluded. Knowing unmatched applicants personally, I can assure you that the first question they ask is "what is wrong with me?." This is a system that stigmatizes and penalizes people for going unmatched and then goes on to refuse to provide feedback as to the reasons why, and I have a fairly obvious problem with that. If you would seriously like to 'help' people not go unmatched, I think a more realistic approach is to have an open and honest dialogue about the issues that occur in the system, rather than placing all of the blame on people who are going through one of the worst experiences of their professional life. CaRMS is a flawed process, and most people I have spoken to about it seem to feel that way. It is the process that we currently have and must work with, but it is certainly flawed and there is a large component of luck to it, which you seem to acknowledge in part in your posts. Knowing the people in my class who did not match, I can honestly say that it could have been anyone going unmatched this year. While there will always be some students with 'red flags' who go unmatched and you may be able to attribute reasons to it, that was not the norm at my school this year by any means. I count myself very lucky to have matched to one of my top choices, and I feel that I could certainly have been in a different position had it not been for luck and subjective variables. The CaRMS process is incredibly subjective and I think that dismissing luck in it is absurd. Saskgrad001 - really? Trolling through someones post history and posting it as if their concerned posts MID INVITES somehow means that they got what they deserved when they went unmatched? You somehow convinced yourself that behaviour bolstered the idea that you have any sympathy for those who didn't match? I have so much more I would love to say on the topic, but I am at a bit of a loss in articulating how disturbing I find it that a thread that was intended to support those going through an awful process has been turned into a personal inquisition into one individual who had the BAD LUCK of being in that position.
  47. 15 points
    GH0ST

    GPA no longer considered (!!!!)

    @YesIcan55 I'm sorry but it's disgusting how insulting you've been our high GPA and/or young classmates. These "19 to 20 year olds" were among some of the best students in our class personally.....I speak for those in my class at least when I say that they are some of the most diligent and well rounded individuals, who are qualified to interact with patients. Not to mention.... there's like < or = to 5 in a class of ~162..... like come on ... Or the fact that the 4.0 students "spent days in their room"..... does that explain how despite the average hovering between 3.90 and 3.96 across the country that a majority of those students just study??? are you for real? I didn't have a high GPA going into medical school but never thought those that had a higher GPA were less social than I was... if anything, having a low GPA was my fault and I should have done better. If you want to make jabs at people at least have some actual sources/evidence before you make a claim like above. You have done this repeatedly in your posts.... whether it's looking down on typical science grads, or think med students feel "high and mighty" just because we got into a school in Canada, and now trying to put down people with a high GPA and marginalizing their hard work while trying to justify your cognitive dissonance with your warped perception ... We get you're upset with not getting into medical school and that sucks given the work you put into it, ... but seriously stop trying insulting those that have. - G
  48. 15 points
  49. 15 points
    sna

    Pre-meds Sabotaging other pre-meds

    The most "premed" thing I've ever done was in second year: I used to have a crush on this girl but she already had a bf so I convinced myself that he prob has a shit GPA to feel better about myself. I've grown a lot since then pls don't judge me haha
  50. 15 points
    IMislove

    2017 Queen's Waitlist Poll

    I know I am not on the wait list or anything, but I just wanted to say, I am proud of all of you. If this year wasn't your time, then maybe next year, or the next year. Myself, it took me awhile to overcome the negative feelings associated with this rejection I got after landing my first and only interview, after doing these applications for 4 years, and working so many months at interview practice. I've been here before and know how some of you may feel, witnessing friends and fellow forum pre-meds getting in while being left behind, and I get it. But know this, you are all intelligent, wonderful people. You got an interview, Queen's believes in you too. We will work together next year to get those interviews, and finally, land a spot in a coveted acceptance. Cheers to the 2021's, and here is to the future 2022's, '23's, etc :).
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