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premed989 last won the day on September 3 2017

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  1. Also, thanks for all the comments and support. I hope you appreciate that it takes a lot of courage to write about this, to open up your personal life to the internet, with the expectation that you might possibly get attacked for it. I'm not afraid to speak my mind though, and this is how I honestly feel about this whole issue. So thanks for appreciating that.
  2. Oh man, I probably should have been better prepared for such a reaction to my rant. This wasn't meant to be a sob story about how hard my life was. I mean, I think, on the whole, I've had it pretty good. I just find it kind of obnoxious that people deny their privilege when it comes to these things. My rant was about how strongly I believe being in low socioeconomic circumstance makes it harder for you to get in. I mean, my family was above median. What about the bottom third of the ladder? Many of the students I went to high school with grew up in the ghettos. Like, the proper ghettos. Those community housing projects near Chinatown for example. A lot of them had doctor aspirations just like you or I, who will probably never make it. Most of the people who live in those ghettos are new Canadians who can't afford to live anywhere better. It's not because their parents are lazy, or are drug abusers, or whatever you may think about people living in ghettos - they have regular family values. AFAIK (and it is a pretty tight-knit neighbourhood) none or almost none of them were able to enter medical school, from my generation. Shouldn’t poor kids have a shot at becoming doctors too? And it can be pretty hard for students of low SES when they do get into medical school, because there’s a bit of an old boys club mentality once you’re in (old rich boy’s club). Like the indigenous student who talked about being bullied because she got in through facilitated admissions. The staff here at McMaster talked about how students actively made her feel like “she didn’t deserve to be in medical school”. That made me feel horrible, like most of my class. It also made me feel a bit angry, because I’ve read some of the threads here about facilitated admissions and sometimes it is not very nice. I mean all the experiences I have described about being in low socioeconomic circumstance is made infinitely worse when your part of a population which is also marginalized. It is not a surprise that many indigenous families have experienced pretty traumatic events in their lifetimes. Many of these families have histories of drug/alcohol abuse from all of this – not a great upbringing. And anyone who says stigma isn’t a real issue when it comes to making it harder for indigenous students to get into medical school is blatantly proven wrong by these particular students who bullied her after she got in. Even among med students there seems to be a belief that indigenous kids are less capable than regular kids. Getting into medical school is hard, and we all rightly should be proud of our accomplishments. There are a few students however, that walk around with the attitude that, because I got into medical school, I’m better than everyone else. Yeah, I’m not afraid to speak my mind. The belief that other people can’t get into medical school simply because they’re not as smart or capable as you is a toxic attitude to have. That said, most medical students are great, I really, really like my class. But, there’s always the couple of students who totally deny their privilege. They become defensive when you point out their privilege because they have to be better than their peers who didn’t get into medical school. These are the kinds of students that end up bullying that poor indigenous student, who would actively make her feel that she didn’t deserve to be here. I mean, I find it pretty obnoxious when people deny their privilege on this forum, but to do it to an indigenous kid, telling her essentially that you're better than her despite all the privilege you've had as compared to her growing up, is some next level thing.
  3. Man, I hate to revive an old forum post from 2016, but I just started medical school at McMaster this year, and I've definitely noticed this. I've noticed it so much that it really, really bugged me, I went and did some research on why the hell my class is like this, and found this thread. I come from a middle class family. Our income was slightly above the national median, but we actually have real trouble making ends meet. During the financial aid talk this week, the professor asked how many of us had NO DEBT going into medical school, and 3/4 of the class put up their hands. I went to school in downtown Toronto, and I'd say more than 1/2 of students from my high school had to borrow from OSAP to pay for their undergraduate degree. I personally have 12k in OSAP debt from undergrad. I talked about this to my group of friends back home (some of whom want to be doctors) and all of us had OSAP debt. I told them about how my class was made up of rich kids - imagine how discouraging that must have been for them. And then I got to know more of my class. Many of them had parents who were doctors, professors, etc. It was disproportionate, and they talk about it really casually, "my dad does family medicine at blah blah". I don't think I went to a shady high school or something, but aren't these sort of family backgrounds supposed to be somewhat rare? Among my entire circle of high school friends, not one of them came from such a good background as having a family doctor as a parent - NOT ONE. I've had no doctor mentors to take me through this process. I hate to feel this way, but I'm beginning to feel like the whole medicine enterprise is about a bunch of rich people from really privileged backgrounds who make a ton of money taking care of the poor (it's hard to deny that medicine pays really well) - and it makes me feel really dirty. Dirty in the sense that medicine is supposed to be a public service, not a system to perpetuate privilege. Shouldn't poor kids have a better shot at moving up socioeconomically? More importantly, on the public service side, doesn't it benefit medicine to recruit students from middle class backgrounds - people who understand what it's like to work stressful factory jobs while taking care of 3 kids, people who are obese, smokers, diabetic, and have high blood pressure (all 4 of which, I'm pretty sure, are far more prevalent in people of lower SES). My family isn't that poor, but I have an understanding of what many of these things are like - my mom has three of the above conditions (obesity, diabetic, high BP), and I'm pretty certain if we had more money, she'd be in better health. I actually really understand this, because I can see the stress she's under. I have a first hand appreciation of the social determinants of health, and I think it's a bit of a shame that not many medical students do. I mean, they learn it in class an all, and they answer all the questions correctly at the interview, but every time you tell med students about the sorts of conditions the AVERAGE canadian family (like mine) live in, they're absolutely shocked and appalled, because they've lived in nothing other than a big fancy house, with 4 course nutritious meals at dinner, living at a boarding school. All of the things I've described above will affect the development of the kids in that family, believe it or not. The SES bias is NOT a product of tuition being too expensive - realistically i've never heard of anyone not being able to "afford" medical school in Canada, if they have an acceptance in hand - they'll manage. Yes, there's very little excuse for someone to say "I did poorly on that math test because I came from poor parents". But medical school is more than just a single math test. IT's a LOT of work to get into. To do so, you need to reach your full potential. You need not only to do very well in school, but you have to be highly accomplished. People can only do these things if their basic needs are well met. I've seen my mom cry about not being able to pay off the mortgage - imagine how that makes me feel? It makes me hurt inside every time I spend my parents' money to buy food for myself. It means I have to work every summer to be able to live away from home, because I don't want to ask my parents to pay my rent. How can I focus fully on ECs when all this is going on? I mean, I made it into medical school, but imagine how much further I could have gone if I didn't have to worry about these things. People can only reach their full potential when all their needs are met. I want to emphasize that my family income is slightly ABOVE median. The majority of Canadian students are in family backgrounds that prevent them from reaching their full potential. I remember sitting on a GO Bus listening to a student behind me talking to her friend about her med school ambitions, about all the shit that goes on at home, about her sister attempting suicide because of school-related stress - she's not that far from the average family. Imagine how hard it must be for her. I wouldn't have made it if that was my family. These sorts of problems are common in Canadian families, believe it or not, but REALLY rare in families with >100k income (do your parents make more than 100k?) - I hope none of you are surprised to hear that, because rich families have a lot more control over their lives. That sister of hers would have just moved on to business or something without a care in the world. Some of the posts in this thread made me a little upset. It's easy to deny that family income has ANYTHING to do with medical school admissions success when you've been in a privileged household your whole life. This is my experience, and it doesn't surprise me at all now how skewed med school classes are. It's not the tuition, anyone who can get into medical school can afford it - I've never heard of any Canadian medical student being unable to attend, or even hesitant to attend, just because the tuition is expensive (quite frankly, engineering programs can cost $16k a year, medicine is a bargain). The cost of writing the MCATs and submitted applications is a factor, but not the leading factor. I'm pretty sure it's just the fact that kids from privileged backgrounds are more likely to do better in school, not because they're smarter, but because their needs are well met, allowing them to truly reach their full potential. You need to have your needs met before you can get a 4.0, before you can spent hours working on your med school/nserc/scholarship applications, before you can work at an inner city HIV clinic, or whatever the hell else premeds do. Being smart may partly be a genetically inherited factor, but I'm certain it doesn't explain a substantial part of the bias - I know plenty of smart poor kids who are definitely smart enough to be in my class. Also, why is there only one (I think) black guy in my class? That's why I kind of like Mac. I'm not the dean or anything, but I think at least part of the reason they don't look at ECs is because ECs favors privileged kids (I hope Queens' dean sees this). I'd still say Mac has a way to go. By the way, how many of you come from households with income above $100k? If so, you need to realize that you're somewhat privileged. You may not notice because all the kids in your school are likewise rich, another aspect of your privilege. YOU need to see what school is like in downtown Toronto. My high school produces about one med student per year. I hear many of the suburbian high school product 10s of med students per year. Are downtown kids just dumb? I think this article is worth a read:http://www.universityaffairs.ca/features/feature-article/medical-school-admissions-process-skewed/
  4. For what it's worth, I've been watching the stats closely. Take this with a grain of salt, as I don't want to spread false hope, but this is my analysis. The waitlist movement for medical schools is actually pretty predictable from year to year. While it is true that previous year movements cannot predict future waitlist movement, and medical schools don't want to tell candidates about their position for that reason, admissions also knows movements tend to be consistent. You can see this by looking at the AFMC 2017 document, not just for Mac over the last two years, but for all med schools in Canada (there's probably some underlying reason in the admissions environment that we premeds don't yet understand). They're always surprisingly consistent to like 5 or 10 percent. At mac, the decline rate is 120 probably +/-15. That's a very narrow variance. Admissions is sure enough about this consistency to "over accept", a risky thing to do. It also means Mac is able to keep their waitlist small, because they're reasonably certain they won't overrun the waitlist. This means good odds for you. From analyzing previous year stats, about 70% of waitlisters get offers, that's dangerously high unless your waitlist movement is predictable. I don't think we're there yet (I don't feel like we've reached 50%), I have an idea of how many people are following this thread and how many have gotten offers. It's not over until it's over, and it's definitely not over. There's a second wave coming. Lastly, if you don't get off the waitlist, then based on the above you must have ranked very slightly below the cutoff, by probably not more than 30 spots, out of 5500. It is my belief that if you were this close you were simply unlucky rather than inadequate. I was lucky enough to rank highly on the waitlist and get an offer, but I don't believe that the ranking difference for waitlisters is significant. It takes a bit of luck to get into med school and I was lucky, not that I did significantly better. If you don't make it, there's every reason to be disappointed, but no reason to be too hard on yourself, nor to be discouraged. ​Hope to see you guys at Mac.
  5. Well, realistically, OP has only so much time to study. Schools are quite literal when they tell you what their MCAT requirements are, so no I don't think there's anything that will screw you. While interviewing at Mac, one of the students told me she went "Mac or bust" (she was a non-trad) and literally skipped every MCAT section except CARS while writing the test. She's now in med school. ​My advice to all MCAT takers is: do the MCAT practice test (the official AAMC one) BEFORE you study, and look at your score. Then compare to where you want to be (look at the requirements posted by all med schools which you may be interested in). Then figure out what you have to study for. You'll probably find out that your ability in many sections may be much better than you think - in which case definitely don't study for those.
  6. I'm around Paris for another 4 weeks. Enjoy your trip dude!
  7. Yo Donald Trout, what a coincidence I was also chilling in Paris (was around the Latin Quarter refreshing my emails LOL). I've headed back to Palaiseau though, to my hotel. I'm supposed to be working around Palaiseau, but today is a French holiday. What a small world eh? ​Man nothing ruins a vacation more than med school waitlists.
  8. Don't fret yet greensurR. Based on what's been posted here so far, the waitlist offers are not even close to halfway done (I think we're at 7 of the typical 21 or thereabouts). And (in my neuroticism), I know there are enough waitlisters who are monitoring this thread, so it's not that people aren't posting. Keep on waiting and hoping for the best! Most of the waitlist offers have yet to come!
  9. Holy! Shit! I got off the waitlist to Hamilton campus! Today, 2:51 pm (literally moments ago). ​I don't think I've ever felt such a feeling of relief. I had to endure 2 weeks of waitlist and it was horrible. I really hope the waitlist is swift for all of you, and will be praying for you guys until the class is full. ​I've updated my post in Accepted/Waitlisted/Rejected, if you want my stats: http://forums.premed101.com/index.php?/topic/610-acceptedrejectedwaitlisted-for-current-applicants/?p=1047262
  10. Inb4 massive wave of offers today and everyone gets in. But in all seriousness let's hope for offers today or tomorrow. The wait is killing me.
  11. Is it just me, or does it feel like McMaster is behind on their waitlist offers.
  12. Fingers are crossed, but I'm not holding out that much hope haha. I'd really like to be your classmate though, you guys seem super cool!
  13. I guess the duck is saying that the bins are narrower than us premeds previously anticipated. Oh boy.
  14. Unfortunately, everything I know I researched from premed101. There aren't that many CNFS applicants, so there's very little information to be skimmed from these forums. Also, since the number of CNFS applicants are few, what happens with this list is probably very unpredictable. Sorry I'm not of more help. Maybe someone else knows more than I do. I think I speak for everyone in saying that the uncertainty of being on the waitlist is pretty torturous, especially since Ottawa dropped the good/bad waitlist system. We're all in this together until the class is filled. Hang in there everyone!
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