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  1. 2 points

    Very Low GPA

    You can do a second undergrad degree, say in Kin if this interests you. Work hard, excel, attain competitive grades and do volunteering, ECs. Then apply as a competitive candidate. It takes sweat, perseverance, money and time.
  2. 2 points

    Physician political orientation

    Who says anyone is doing what you think they're doing? You've setup multiple strawmen of what you think these people are doing, and knocked them down. You have no idea what any of the people you disagree with here are doing. You didn't even ask once. Whether you're early in training or early in life, this is not going to serve you well in medicine. You're going to have a hard time with a lot of patients if this is how you characterize people you disagree with. "I don't come from a very well-off background and I'm content with the salary I will be making, because it'll be much more than anything my parents ever made, pay cut or not, and I think that perspective is an important one to have." Neither do I come from a well-off background, nor do I suspect most the people that you disagree with here. I'm the son of minority immigrants who where persecuted and worked two jobs each just to make it in Canada. This shouldn't matter for this discussion, but not coming from a well-off background does not make your argument any stronger. My partner IS a refugee from a current war zone. The least effective way we can think of to effect change is voting for a provincial party. I can tell you that both of our families feel the same way. Where you direct your time and money has a much bigger impact then the 5 minutes it takes to tick off a box at the voting station. "I agree with you and there are indeed reasonable people on both sides. I respect people on both sides, but moral consistency is paramount." The fact that they disagree with you on the role of voting in effecting change on the priorities they have in life, does not make them morally inconsistent. You morally disagree with at least something on the left, and agree with at least one of the morals on the right. Yet it's not morally inconsistent of you to vote for the left. You've prioritized which of those morals you want to support through voting, and which you want to support through other means. That's a complex calculation for each individual to make, and is heavily influenced by their personal circumstances. And yet you've decided that you know whether your colleagues decisions are morally consistent, with absolutely no knowledge of the variables in their calculations. Like I said, regardless of where you are in training or in life, that approach is going to hurt you and your patients.
  3. 2 points
    I really think this argument is laughable. You can't go and volunteer at some refugee-oriented organization and vote for a party that wants them deported at the same time. You just can't. Early in my training, not as early in life... I obviously don't agree with everything the liberals and NDP propose. I vote based on impact on the most vulnerable. I don't come from a very well-off background and I'm content with the salary I will be making, because it'll be much more than anything my parents ever made, pay cut or not, and I think that perspective is an important one to have. I agree with you and there are indeed reasonable people on both sides. I respect people on both sides, but moral consistency is paramount.
  4. 2 points

    Physician political orientation

    You don't agree with EVERYTHING the liberals/NDP propose. I'm sure there's SOMETHING that the conservatives support that you agree with. And yet you vote with the left based on the issues you've prioritized (which I assume is social liberalism). Similarly, others may agree with some of the leftist platform, but still prioritize their families' well being over that platform...hence "socially liberal but fiscally conservative". The fact is that there's a lot of grey area, and many reasonable people who agree with you on social policy will vote conservative for other reasons, and chose to enact change for social issues in their own way (voting is HARDLY the most effective way to enact change). Politics, like life, is grey. If I remember your other posts correctly, your early in your training. Learning that there's grey and reasonable people on both sides will be an important skill to pick up during your training.
  5. 2 points

    EC for UWO?

    Shadowing would be key - not just for the application but also come interview time. I found that people in the year I applied had strong grades but did not get an interview because of their personal statement and extracurriculars. Research would be nice but overall if you could have entries for each aspect of the extracurricular section in the application, that would be ideal. Even work experience is important. Every little bit helps.
  6. 2 points
    true - we also wouldn't be able to do it without also opening it up as well to anyone else internationally trained to apply. and often these students are not rich - or rather their parents aren't. Not what most people think of as being rich at least - they are usually more well off professionals that are willing to dig deep to pay for their children's education. The funding is still a huge strain, and paying another roughly 500K for a 5 year residency (which is less than the sum of what the schools get and the salary for Saudi residents) is a huge financial cost.
  7. 2 points
    We wouldn't be able to give residency to Canadian citizens trained in the Caribbean without giving them the right to practice here. Regardless, this is not good practice.
  8. 1 point
    Aw thanks I feel better ranting about it XD And I got it solved but it was a hassle but worth it (made the difference between paying nothing vs. $60 for out of pocket)!
  9. 1 point

    Physician political orientation

    Whatever is left of the conservative party will get my vote. Voted liberal the last few elections, and constant let downs on failed social policies and back-peddling. May as well vote conservative to be a bit more physician friendly, and then use my own personal time and contributions to society to full-fill my left leaning ideologies.
  10. 1 point

    Chances of Interview at Western?

    It'll come down to how you portray your ECs to be unique in your ABS and personal statement (ie. what makes you stand out above others?) and your DAT RC score. The better you do in each, the higher your chances. To be fair, my DAT scores were all below 20 and I was accepted this year, but my ECs were strong (pubs, healthcare employment, public speaking, etc.). Just make sure you hit the RC cut-off which is usually between 18-19 (varying each year), because that's the only part of the DAT looked at pre-interview. Best of luck!
  11. 1 point
    Ms. Chip Skylark

    cDAT Nov. VS Feb.

    This is from the DAT Bootcamp website: "The standard score is designed to make the tests fair for everyone. There are multiple versions of the DAT being administered simultaneously; the standard score enables admission committees to compare the DAT scores of students taking different versions of the test. This means that if you get an easier version of the DAT, missing more questions would hurt you more than if you took a difficult version of the DAT. In the end, you’ll score the same regardless of what version of the test you take. DAT Grading Scale A lot of students are floored once they realize how heavily scaled the DAT is across sections. For example, on the 2007 DAT exam, missing five questions in the organic chemistry section (out of 30 total questions) results in a standard score of 20. Missing five questions in the general chemistry section (out of 30 total questions) results in a standard score of 19. The DAT is not graded linearly. As you can see, there is very little room for error on the DAT. The difference between a 22 AA and a 26 AA is often just a few questions. Therefore, it’s important that you dedicate studying time to every section of the DAT. Continued practice is the best strategy to recognize your weaknesses and prepare you for test day." //// The way they mark a question is that you get compared to students who have previously written the test with that one specific question on it and how many students got that question right in the past and depending on if you got it right or not, you'll get a score based on that. So if it was an easy question (easy because most people in the past got it right when they took the test) and you got it wrong, you'll have a large drop in your mark and if you get it right you'll have a small increase. If the question is hard (because most people in the past got it wrong) and you get it wrong too, you'll have a small decrease in mark and if you get it right, you'll have a high increase. They do the same with every question. I don't think there is a specific Q-bank for November and February tests and instead, just one big one they pull from so the test questions will overlap from both months past tests and you'll be marked against students who have had the same question as you regardless of what month they've written. IMO the month you write doesn't matter, it all comes down to how much you studied for it
  12. 1 point

    Resident Interest Loan Relief program

    It just delays it. Fellowships don't count towards the total.
  13. 1 point

    ABS organization

    One. For year, you can write "undergrad year 1-3" for example
  14. 1 point
    You''ve got a point. The email was ambiguously worded so I'll consider clarifying over the phone. BTW, I think I've found you on SDN while browsing Canadians' profiles. If you are who I think you are - and I think this your username here sounds quite similar to the one over there - you're pretty darn impressive!
  15. 1 point
    I think you have to submit essays in the language of the stream you are in. Also you can listen to RECORDED lectures of any language. However, you cannot attend the lectures of the opposite stream (people were doing this and it was deemed a professionalism issue. Repeated professionalism issues get put on your record and can get you kicked out of med). keep in mind not all lectures are recorded and all of your practical and small group learning will be in French. Really only apply to French if you are for sure comfortable doing all of medicine in that language.
  16. 1 point
    Summary: Community practice shouldn't be affected. Dal and IWK are another story.
  17. 1 point
    Concisely, more important what you learned (in terms of CanMEDS competencies) and perhaps, your contribution.
  18. 1 point

    Publications vs experience

    Depends what your goal is. If it's just to get research on your CV for med school, 3 is more than enough to.show breadth, but you'll want a decent publication or at least presentation to show depth. No one is going to Give you more points for research because you were in six legs instead of 3. But they will take you more seriously if your research is actually productive.
  19. 1 point
    Hi! I literally made an account just to respond to you question because I think these are very important questions and I thought I might be able to help answer them. I just finished my first year at MAM. So obviously I don't have ALL the answers but I'll try my best. First of all I want to say CONGRATULATIONS on your acceptance to U of T! At the end of the day you are a U of T student and you get all the perks that come along with it. You might hear whispers that MAM is lesser than the STG campus when it comes to matching/competing for specialties but you need to be confident in yourself and remember that whatever they have access to, you have access to it as well. As a MAM student I shadowed downtown a bunch, I also am working on a research project at a downtown hospital (not through CREMS) and there are many students in my year and above that are going for competitive specialties (Plastics, Emerg, Neuro etc). In a way you are at an advantage because during our core rotations it is well known that MAM clerks get to do a lot more. Because there are less learners in the room (ie resident and fellows) in Missisauga the doctors will look to us as clerks to do more. So that is very exciting. However, something I've been told is that since we're in Mississauga it is important to book electives DT if you are going for something competitive so that you can get face time with the doctors who will eventually make the decisions to let you into their program. Luckily as a UofT student you get first dibs on booking electives at UofT. So it's a balance I'm not saying it's perfectly equal (mam vs stg). Now this might be hard to believe but the commute is really not that bad. I live downtown and found the commute extremely manageable and I was doing it 2-5 times per week.You will likely find yourself going downtown more than you thought anyways for example: we had anatomy labs (at the start of the year), all of our anatomy bellringers and mandatory interprofessional events downtown (sorry if that sounds like a lot, it totals maybe 1 day of class downtown a month but it's more at the beginning). So I suggest you accept the idea of commuting (it can be 30 min if you leave a the right time, it's TOTALLY DOABLE). Plus some MAM people I know (that lived in Mississauga) would use their Wednesdays off to go dt and do research. So I wouldn't write it off that you cannot start a research project during the year. Besides any meaningful research contribution can't really be done just in the summer anyways and it's also nice to build a long term relationship with a doctor who might be a mentor to you down the road/in clerkship. As far as research goes, I wouldn't discount Mississauga, I'm sure there's lots of good and important research going on if you take the time to look for the right doctor. There are a lot of ways to network and find a doctor (no matter where they are located). For example, some people would shadow a doc and then during they would ask about their research. You can search online to find a doc with interesting research and then send and e-mail to see if you can get involved. You could wait around for CREMS (although I will say this year I didn't notice many projects in surgery or ER). Something else you'll notice is people will regularly post in the FB group when they need assistance with projects. So there are many ways you can network and find an interesting research project especially if you're really keen and want to start early. As for CREMS, I don't necessarily think CREMS is the best way to find a summer research project especially if you're targeting a specific field. But on the whole you do not need to be networking with doctor's beforehand in order to get a CREMS project. I think I'm going to end it now because I don't even know if I'm answering your questions anymore. Hopefully this has given you lots to think about and I hope you're excited to come to MAM! Let me know if you have any further questions.
  20. 1 point

    3.7 GPA

    Regarding your GPA I guess what you want to hear is this : yes, you could get in with 3.7. The GPA is only one of numerous factors that play a role. Therefore, it is very hard to compare 'your' 3.7 to 'another' 3.7. It is not exactly a strength, nor a weakness. Don't let it limit you. Regards extra-curricular : I did not do anything amazing. I just pursued my passions, mainly running and writing. In the process, I was lucky enough to get involved in unique experiences. I did not participate in them to get into medical school. I just did it because I was passionate about them. A lot of people kept telling me that I was wasting my time pursuing them. That I should be studying instead or focusing on research and clinical work. Volunteering in a hospital, being VP XYZ of a student association or having participated in a run for cancer. Don't get me wrong : they are all amazing and noble experiences. I did the 'usual' volunteering that we mostly all did. But did it make me stand out when compared to people with 4.0 GPA, 4.0 pre-reqs and 10 x more hours of volunteering? I doubt. Good luck !:)
  21. 1 point


    En tout cas, examsoft a l'air de dire que windows et surface pro sont tout à fait supportés... https://www.examsoft.com/dotnet/documents/sitehelp/sysreqs.aspx J'espère que cette info est connue des gens qui répondent au sondage!
  22. 1 point
    Vanity Smurf

    classement prog medecine Usherb

    I think you may have slightly misunderstood what I was trying to say. J'ai aucun problème avec des examens en français en tant que tels. Le problème est qu'on apprend nos termes en anglais, mais à l'examen il va falloir les écrire en français. Je veux pas faire mes retours en anglais, je veux apprendre la médicine en français, mdr. Puis, quand je fais mes notes, je suis obligé de les traduire et ça prend du temps... et il faut inclure ça dans les calculs lorsque la faculté prépare nos lectures. I may not be the authority on Sherbrooke's evolution as a teaching institution, but... If it has been like this since forever then why is everyone so giddy about the program that I'm in right now, which is supposedly all new? I love it when people use blanket statements without backing them up... I also like how you diverted the argument from Sherbrooke's version of PBL to PBL in general. I really don't know how to respond to your argument because it doesn't really address any of the things that I wrote in my post. So, POTATO! You don't need to talk down to me. I know that medical textbooks are dry. In fact, most textbooks are dry; it's just that some are better written than others, that's all. I've read my share of dry literature, so I dare-say I know what I'm talking about. I'm not complaining about medical textbooks per se, just the ones that were chosen for us. I have not studied medicine before, but I do know that every school has options when choosing its mandatory texts, and I feel like my school has not exercised that option wisely, given the structure of its program. You can certainly continue to hammer away at the idea that I and some of my classmates are just a bunch of crybabies who are using the new curriculum as a scapegoat. The fact of the matter is that you are not in my year and have not tried to study according to the new curriculum, so your opinions are of little value on that basis. Please feel free to defend the new program to the hilt, even though your understanding of it is through things like "J'ai checker leur horaire et appris que..."
  23. 1 point
    I was debating for a long time now regarding whether or not to post here...sadly my dream of becoming a physician has not, and will not ever be realized. However I would still like to share my story, which I will reluctantly call a success story (though really, only time will tell). It's going to be long (as an after note: It took me about 2.5 hours to type), and I apologize in advance. I don't mean to be presumptuous here and assume that anyone really cares about my story, but I am thinking of writing an autobiography as it would likely be fairly entertaining. ------------------------ Early life, leading to why I want(ed) to be a physician I was born to a poor family - we're talking the kind you'd see on TV shows poking fun at poor families. The kind with kids that would wear dirty clothes with those little animated stink lines coming off of them (indeed, clothes were a luxury). My parents tried their best... my mother was incapable of working, and my father worked those insecure, dangerous jobs to support us, though those never seemed to last. He'd try to balance his time between shift-work and helping to enrich the lives of his kids, particularly academically. See he didn't have the opportunities I've had - he started a university degree but was unable to complete it as he couldn't pay his tuition. Despite this, he was brilliant and resourceful, he read many books that he'd pick up for free here and there (math, science and history books mostly) and would pass his knowledge on. I had a knack for it - I learned mathematics very quickly and early (it would be no exaggeration to say I was doing calculus, and understanding it, in grade 3) thanks to his guidance and it ultimately shaped the rest of my life, as well as my academic interests. I was a straight A student who had the talent, and the brains to know that I needed to work hard. I had many things in childhood that I would say make me quite privileged, a father who gave me the time of day, and a traditional family that treasured the concept of a tight-knit family. "We don't need money to be happy" my mother would always say. As some of you may attest to, able-bodied people never really notice say, handicap parking spaces, or ramps/elevators until you either have a disabled friend/family member, or break your leg and have to use an assistive device. That being said, life is immensely difficult for the unwealthy, and you could never really understand the stigma unless you've been forced to live it. Statistically speaking, someone in my family should be an alcoholic (just based on numerical data) and granted, if we had the money to spend on it, at least one of us probably would have been. True or not, I was certainly treated as a drug abuser/alcoholic/future criminal by many I interacted with, other students, even many of my elementary school teachers (one of whom likely made the observation, and then gossiped to the rest). A turning point came in grade 6, I took it very personally when I wasn't selected for an academic award in math. I don't think I can accurately portray why this bothered me so much (perhaps it's even one of those irrational "kid things") despite having aced the EQAO (literally, my principal called my parents in to congratulate me) and placing 1st in the province in a UWaterloo math contest for grade 9s. To this day I don't know what basis I wasn't selected on, but the thing that immediately sprung to mind back then, and I have yet to shake from my mind, was prejudice. I felt discriminated against despite all of my hard work, and the only reason I could think of for being discriminated against, was being poor. So naturally, I "rebelled" against the school, and my parents who were upset with me for not being picked (and had somehow assumed I was being lazy, and took the teachers' side...man, don't you wish parents still had teachers' backs? Haha), naturally my marks dropped like a rock. If I'm not going to be appreciated/acknowledged for my effort, why put the effort in? If I wouldn't be able to afford going to university and getting a good job anyway, why should I bother? From Grade 6-10 my marks went from high 90s to low 70s and even 60s...kind of wish I could go back and time and slap myself, but don't we all. In grade 11, the kindness and support from one teacher helped me turn things around - I was in desperate need of corrective lenses (for probably about 10 years by that point) and simply couldn't afford it...so my teacher advocated to the school admin, who wrote me a cheque and told me to go get an eye exam done and buy some glasses. I was moved by this gesture, here was someone who not only didn't see me as "that smelly kid who's going to end up a criminal" and instead felt compassion. As you'd expect, I began to try once more and my marks immediately jumped back up into the 90s. In grade 12 I had that game-changer moment - I realized I could go to university, a thought which had never occurred to me. To get into the program I wanted, it required I do a "victory lap" year (as I hadn't taken enough science up to that point) to fill in the last science. ------------------------ The real game-changer - why medicine? About a month before beginning my victory lap year of high school, my dad woke me up one morning at about 6am saying his chest hurt and that he wanted to sleep on my bed as it was more comfortable. I went and slept on the couch without giving it another thought, he was perfectly fine after all. A few hours later when I woke up again he was insisting he needed to go to the hospital. My mom didn't take him seriously and kind of rolled her eyes at him, and so she sent me with him to the ER. We had to take the bus as we had no vehicle. Upon arriving at the ER, we found out my father's health card was expired by about 5 months or so, and were given a sheet outlining the various medical costs we'd incur. Naturally being unable to afford any of it, we immediately went downtown to get his card renewed. We had just done so and were on our way out of the building when he collapsed from a heart attack on the elevator down. The paramedics arrived after what felt like an eternity (it always does, doesn't it?) and pronounced him dead on arrival. I was dumbfounded, he had no family history, no prior episodes, and seemed perfectly fine even the day before. He was also in his 40s...his only real risk factor that I'm aware of was, you guessed it, being poor. This instilled in me a burning hatrid/fear of both, elevators, and the current medical system. I had vowed to do everything I can to become a doctor so I could do my part in preventing tragedies like this. As if coping with the loss wasn't bad enough, there went our family's sole financial provider (my mother is disabled). Despite this I finished up my final year of high school while battling what I can only assume was undiagnosed depression, using studying as a coping mechanism. I memorized my biology textbook front to back (even the obscure vitamins/minerals in table form) as I'd read it for about 7 hours a day while remaining focused on that goal. Thankfully I applied to university and was accepted to every program I'd applied to, and some even had a fairly respectable entrance scholarship. I chose a Kinesiology program that was local as I wanted to cut down on costs. ------------------------ The Ordeal Things did not look up for long however and eventually the OSAP/scholarship funds dwindled. By December of my first year, we were unable to pay rent and by February, we were evicted, with nowhere to stay and little money to feed ourselves with. We were homeless. Being the eldest male I took it upon myself to try and find work, so I wound up finding a job at a steel refinery, drilling holes into locomotive parts. Unfortunately I could not keep up and had to make a difficult choice - should I give up university to go work full time in the steel mill to feed my family? I decided not to, after consulting my family...they didn't want me to drop out like my father did, and instead I looked to tutoring. I applied for, and was offered a TA job and also began tutoring local students in first year calculus. However I was so desperate that I did not charge a competitive rate - I sat in the math building of my alma mater with a sign that read "Need help, will tutor (math course codes) for food :(" hoping for passers by to take me up on my offer...and they did. I thought it was smart to sit beside the cafe/deli so people could just buy a sandwich and give it to me in exchange for an hour of calculus help. Unfortunately, some people are inhumane and would call security on me, so I had to convince my university that I had extreme financial need. They offered me a bursary, allowed me to continue tutoring but asked me not to hold up the sign as that "detracted from the university environment" whatever that meant. So we compromised, I sat near a blackboard with "Calculus Help! Will take a sandwich :)" written on it. The university accepted this, as it made it appear more like a school function, and didn't look "quite so homeless." I would now find that a bit insulting, but I was thankful for anything I could get. It was at this point that I abandoned my hopes of becoming a physician. My colleagues were all gearing up to take the MCAT that summer with their fancy prep courses and books, and here I was struggling to feed myself and clean my clothes. I was crushed, but kept telling myself "People like me don't become doctors." It helped a bit... That continued for about a month... and thankfully I saved up enough to pay off the landlord and move into a new place. But it didn't last... I'll never forget that sinking feeling, that defeated feeling in my heart when I realized it was almost exam time. You might think I was worried about my own exams, given I had very little time or motivation to study, but that had nothing to do with it. That meant the semester would break for the summer which meant two things - First, my TA work would be over, and secondly, the demand for tutoring would drop...both of which supported us for the time being. I was utterly heartbroken, and terrified. But a miracle happened - my mom came into some money from the government which provided enough to pay rent and utilities. We were set, and I had a place to live...the ordeal was over! I finished my first year with a 3.0 GPA...a proverbial premed hole that, to this day, I've been unable to climb out of. ------------------------- The rest of my B.Sc. - an important switch Years 2-4 were relatively uneventful with only mild crises occurring. Unfortunately in nearly every one of those years, I had to drop a course due to some pressing financial need (ie. in second year I dropped a course because my mom needed some medication, and I got about a $400 refund on the course). I had a strong upward trend, 3.7 in both my 2nd and 3rd years. At this point I decided that I had virtually no chance at getting into medical school (rightfully so from the looks of it), so I began looking for other options. I had met my better half during those years as well, whose moral support has almost certainly kept me from suicide. She was a math major and one year my senior (due to that victory lap year)... despite having had a real knack for math, I hadn't taken any of it at university besides elementary calculus. I got numerous course waivers to take some upper year math courses with her and developed my love affair with math even further - it didn't matter that I'd skipped about six courses, when I took that advanced course in topology I killed it and loved it...so I switched to math in my final year, overloaded with 12 3rd and 4th year math courses (to meet the minimum number of credits needed to graduate) and nailed it, with a 3.9 that year. Unfortunately even that is kind of "meh" by premed standards. ------------------------- What comes next? More education of course Those particular courses, so-called "Pure" math (or "theoretical math" to the layman) take a special kind of person to take. That paired with the fact that I was attending a university with a fairly small math program, implied that my upper level courses rarely had more then about 5 people in them. I was the star of those courses once again, just like in elementary school, and so I stood out amongst my peers, and was coerced into applying for a masters degree in the field. "People like me can get masters degrees?" Keep in mind, no one in my family has ever completed university before...and now I was considering doing a Masters? Was I crazy? Could I even manage it? What followed were easily the best two years of my life. I received some funding which helped immensely and I had a brilliant supervisor who taught me so much about life, reality and how to live. I specialized in a niche-field of mathematics known as knot theory (quite literally - using complicated math ideas to explain/differentiate between different knots). I began reading all about DNA and how the "Unknotting number (a mumbo-jumbo math idea)" is a quantity that was preserved via gel electrophoresis, and that charge/mass/other obvious things didn't explain it as well as this crazy math idea. I began writing a book on the subject as part of my dissertation, stumbled upon a cool new field that just came into existence ("Virtual" knot theory) and began corresponding with professors in Japan, where the field was in its infancy. Imagine having to look up articles in your field, then using google translate on them because the only ones in existence were Japanese! I taught my supervisor about it, and the field has since grown in the western world, and I played a part in it which I'm rather proud of. I wrote the first english textbook on the subject, and in the process, proved a really cool theorem that I accidentally stumbled upon...this constituted my research thesis. Unfortunately I had a falling out with one professor in my department who, sadly, was an expert in a related field whose support I really needed to pursue doctoral studies. I did not feel like fighting it and got depressed once again, feeling as though my life was a big joke. "People like me don't become doctors" I was still telling myself, only this time I meant it as a "PhD" kind of doctor. Searching for a new path was when I re-realized my dream to be a physician. Unfortunately, I was as non-traditional as they came - no pre-requisites, no MCAT, no hospital involvement, and no "premed-y" stuff at all. I used some of my grant money to write the MCAT for the first time, but unfortunately I scored rather mediocrely so I chose, like a broken record, not to pursue medicine. "People like me don't become doctors." Instead I applied to teacher's college and was accepted. Teacher's Ed was fairly uneventful for me, but sadly the Ontario Government imposed new regulations on hiring practices for teachers...as I was finishing up teachers college. It now takes on average 6 years for a teacher (once they become a supply teacher) to become a full time teacher. Naturally, despite having done everything right IMHO, I just couldn't land that coveted supply teacher job...for 3 years (and counting) so I can't even start the counter on those 6 years, and they only open the supply list once per year (it's a lot like med apps, haha). If it's going to take me at least 6 years to become a teacher, why wouldn't I pursue med school? I'd have to be an idiot not to try, right? So there I was - three degrees, a lot of education-related debt, and not really employable...so I went full force into two things - tutoring math and science (which I had done all along, and now command a rather respectable hourly rate with all of my credentials), and obsessing over this idea of becoming a physician. ------------------------- Fixing myself for the adcoms I applied for the first cycle after finishing my B.Ed. (2013-2014) to the only schools I satisfied the requirements for (I still don't have those pesky orgo pre-reqs) - Queens, Mac and UofT. I told myself "If I can land that interview, I know I can nail it...I have so much I can talk about! But I don't look very good on paper, I realize that, so I may never get the chance. If I get an interview, I will reapply, if not, I won't." Queens and Mac rejected me early in the process, but UofT held onto me until the last interview spots were filled. It was utter agony to be kept waiting that long! But it gave me renewed confidence - UofT was interested, maybe with a different applicant pool, or slightly improved stats, I could get an interview spot! It was around this time that I joined PM101. So I had a renewed passion, I was surrounded by colleagues in similar, or even worse situations, who were all supporting each other and pulling toward that same goal. In no small way, has this forum and its kind people impacted my journey and for that I'm thankful. I began to study incredibly hard for an MCAT re-write, saved up money and got some help from my mother in law to pay for books and AAMC Practice Tests, and OMSAS fees, so I was off to the races. By the end, my score was in the high 30s! I was pumped, wrote the test...and scored significantly lower on test day, but still had a respectable 12/10/11. I began volunteering like crazy too, at a hospital notably (as I had no prior clinical experience) and with the elderly, particularly with dementia patients and those with special needs/mental disabilities. A truly humbling experience, but it wasn't always rewarding as it can be extremely difficult. Regardless I did what any premed would do - I manned up and did it, and I tried my best. Over the past few years (beginning before teachers college) I also helped pilot a youth centre for underprivileged kids where I taught them math and breakdancing and tied them together. It was tremendously successful, and I began managing the finances over this past year. Unfortunately, it's a non-profit so this didn't provide me with any income! Unfortunately because of all of this investing of time and money into med apps, my very carefully budgeted/balanced finances for myself and my family didn't really hold up. My family began to have problems paying their bills as I couldn't siphon money their way, and there have been several close calls that could have resulted in a similar ordeal to that dark time during my undergrad. I felt (and still feel) horribly selfish for pursuing my dreams against all odds this past while. ------------------------- Another Dark Period In January of this year, I received a rejection from Mac and Queens. Queens disappointed me tremendously and infuriated me. I was finally over their cutoffs, it was supposed to come down to extracurriculars, and wow what a story I've got! This was my year... but sadly, it wasn't so. I harboured an incredible amount of resentment - why have I been wasting my time and energy? Why has my hard work never been beneficial? Why does everything I touch seem to turn to crap? I've wasted the past x years of my life....etc. It was so difficult to keep the feelings inside, to feel like all I've done in my life is give to others and try my best, only to have life and the people in it give nothing in return. It felt so right, that I'd make a career out of helping others because it was what came so naturally to me... I was furious and not myself for several days, to the point where some of my loved ones were crying, intervention-style, telling me they didn't want me to become some broken person...and I finally had access to something I hadn't had previously, which concerned them: alcohol. Before things got too dire I snapped out of it, thanks to my better half. If I didn't have enough moral support, I may have ended my life right then and there. All I could see were rejection letters, financial difficulties, and biological clocks spinning out of control...I needed my way out. ------------------------- My Success? It's all in how you look at it I began to look into alternatives at this point, including other programs, or jobs I could do with my current education level. I stumbled upon a few that clicked with me, ranging from chiropractic to mathematical finance, to computer science, to a doctorate in theoretical physics of all things. I applied, and naturally, got into all of them (except for some I'm still waiting on). I realized at this point that even though I'm not meant to be a doctor, I've still overcome tremendous odds and will continue to overcome these odds. I'm still a pretty darn smart guy, and I've done really well for myself. I had an interview for a particularly competitive program (but one more up my alley in terms of being math-y), where the interviewer wound up boasting about why I was great, instead of the other way around. It was ridiculous, all these things that adcoms didn't think were enough impressed nearly everyone else in every other walk of life. I was accepted, nearly instantly, to a highly competitive professional masters program (they only accept 6 students, 1 guaranteed from Canada, 5 more international, and it's the only such program in Canada) which promises a really good salary at the end of the day. Best of all, it's employable - it takes very specialized math skills so they can't train very many people at a time. Apparently, I have a skill set which clearly the med adcoms do not value, but which made me a perfect match for this career. So I had to make the judgement call - turn down my offers and try for medicine again (and risk having my family become homeless again during the next year or two), or accept...I'd be foolish not to. Sure it's boring and not my passion, but I will gladly take this offer. The program is expensive so I'm currently in the process of procuring a loan with some difficulty due to my "shady financial history" (ie. I was born into the wrong family). With this, I slowly but surely, gave up the fantasy of becoming a physician. "People like me don't become doctors" is something I'll be telling myself for a long time now...but with each passing day, I can finally feel that resentment slipping away. If adcoms don't want me, then it's their loss...not mine. It's time to build my new life and say good bye to my old one. And right on schedule, a few days ago, UofT sent me my final rejection. Ironically, despite devoting all that time and energy to bettering myself, I did worse this year. I was not interview wait-listed, which means I have no idea how far into the process I got. ------------------------- The conclusion - my new dream, the moral of the story, and farewell "People like me don't become doctors....they become good people and good parents." My new dream is not to be a doctor, but instead to provide my family and children with the ability to follow their dreams unhindered...and I will do this even if it means sacrificing my own personal desire to be a physician. This is a dream that I can finally see come to pass. Don't be fooled, not even for a second - if you're here reading this, you are destined for greatness. You're the cream of the crop, even if medicine doesn't work out... even if life hasn't been kind to you... I promise you. Things will improve.
  24. 1 point
    I'm calling you a liar, because you are a liar. Most years there are ZERO or maybe ONE person that scores a 45 in all of north America in a given year. Only 75 people score a 42 or higher in all of north America in any given year (or maybe 7 or so in Canada). That 75 is virtually all clustered at the 42/43range. That you, of all people, know that one person with a 45 is a flat out lie. Let me state this right now. You are a racist troll and unfit for the career of medicine where helping people is important. About your claims about Asians being smarter and having an obviously higher IQ - how does that explain virtual dominance by non Asians in virtually all arenas of science for 600+ years (if not longer). Even today, of the top 100 universities in the world, virtually ALL are in the western world with primarily white teachers. Almost all of them. Despite the fact that Asians grossly outnumber whites. China alone has more people than the whole western world combined! Yet that country has had so few novel scientific developments, little Finland with only 4.5 million people would outclass them. If you believe so much in genetics and outcome, you would then concede that whites surpass Asians. I would say that cultural shifts explain much of the difference. What is your explanation for such poor intellectual output from China for 500 + years?
  25. 1 point

    Success Stories- Non Trad Style!

    Hi all, after 5 applications to UBC, countless rejections across the ocean, states and canada, and three interveiws at UBC I am in!!!! 42 years old, 21 yrs as paramedic. Still in disbelief, have printed off acceptance letter so it is in black and white......Rachel