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    anonymouspanda reacted to Anaik in EC Character/Word Limit   
    500 characters
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    anonymouspanda reacted to stethoscope2019 in CASPer Guide 2019   
    Hi. I'm an incoming med student, who got into McMaster despite having a weak GPA (3.45). My MCAT/CARS was good (129 CARS). People keep asking me how I managed to get in. In fact, when I had told people that I was going to apply with my GPA they told me:
    I wouldn't get interviews I would need to do a fifth year of undergrad OR I would need to do a Master's and possibly a second undergrad. And to be honest, they were completely right. With my GPA and MCAT, I wasn't really a good candidate for anything. But, I placed all my hope on the wildcard that is the "CASPer" test. It's up to you whether or not you want to take it seriously, but I'll explain how to approach CASPer the best I can.
    The CASPer is a 90 minute test of your ability to answer ethical problems... and realistically to just type fast. They want to see you see both sides of every issue they give you and how you'll solve the ethical dilemma without breaking the rules
    So I spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to tackle the CASPer test. Here's what I did:
    It literally drives me nuts to hear people say "You can't practice/study, so I won't even try." For me, it was going to be as important as my GPA (which I poured my blood, sweat and tears into) and the CARS section of the MCAT (which also killed me inside as I studied). I practiced my ass off. For me, I used the CASPerfect tests. I paid for their evaluation, which gave me good advice and the tips I list below.
    Even if you don't go through with paid evaluation, consider buying unevaluated practice tests. Take the time to analyze your responses and figure out how you can get better at this. Once again, it is entirely up to you to pay for prep - but it worked for me. You decide if you want to pay for prep - there are free services, and free official practice materials from the CASPer test makers too.
    For me, practicing for CASPer meant:
    Prepared by reading up on medical ethics.
    This sounds silly, but I read [Doing Right](http://www.amazon.ca/Doing-Right-Practical-Trainees-Physicians/dp/0195428412) before even doing the test. It's a classic book for interview/MMI prep, so I figured I'd get a head start on it. By practicing for CASPer, you're really strengthening the skills that come in handy for the MMIs. For that reason, when you're done with your apps, working on CASPer is pretty much prepping early for interviews (which you can get! You've got this bro ) The UWashington Bioethics page is also great.
    I reviewed my ECs and application
    The CASPer has a personal statement every third question where you have to discuss yourself and your background. Here, they're looking for you to be thoughtful and self-reflective. Ultimately, I believe they want to see that you can take what you've learned from your experience and apply it to your future in medicine. For me, I ended my paragraphs with "I will take what I learned from this example into my future in medicine someday." or something like that.
    Have a game plan and strategy
    For me, I planned my responses like this:
        Discuss the issue from both sides (there are usually two parties involved).     Discuss the issue in the context of "society." (How would cheating on a test affect the student cheating, other students, and then all of the future employers/patients/etc that will rely on the cheating student someday?)     Answer with a decision that is ethical and doesn't break any rules.     (If possible) Come up with a creative solution that minimizes punishment/harm/damage to any of the other people involved. Improving my typing speed:
    While the CASPer markers say that the amount of text isn't important, logically if one has more ideas down they'll likely score better, right? That seemed to be pretty basic to me. I practiced typing with the practice tests I mentioned at TenFastFingers. Note that this typing practice isn't as good as real CASPer practice tests because the time it takes to think and type >>> the time to type these random paragraphs quickly.
    Getting better at thinking through the formula I devised quickly. This is where the practice tests were extremely useful for me. I recommend practice for this reason - you need to strengthen your ability to type fast and ethically.
    How the CASPer is scored
    Knowing how CASPer is scored is important as well. To begin with, CASPer markers mark a given question for a set of test-takers. For example, a marker may mark 1000 applicants answer to Question 1 and only that question. Why is this important? Because of two reasons:
    It means you can be repetitive with what you say, the style and phrasing of what you say And importantly, you need to stand out against other writers who are writing that same question. What this means is that showing that you think/reason more clearly, show more empathy, and/or come up with a creative solution will all push you higher up that bell curve. The CASPer is scored using z-scores (a type of statistical measurement that is similar to a bell curve). You can check out the official CASPer marking guide from the people who made the CASPer here. 
    Finally, realize that saying the wrong thing can get you and your exam red-flagged. That likely means a score of 0, or potentially having your application removed entirely. It's not clear what that means, but you can read about it in the official marking guide above. If CASPer is holding you back, you may be getting red-flagged.
    Unfortunately, regardless of how you feel about the test, it matters. Here's how much it matters, in Canada (I'll add US values if people know them):

    Feel free to DM me with questions, or ask here. 
  3. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to centralperkmd in UBC OOP worth it?   
    Hey! I'm an OOP applicant from this cycle - I applied to UBC with a roughly ~89% GPA and a 507 MCAT and am currently on the waitlist. I would say submitting an application is definitely worth it if you're interested in UBC, as there have been people with similar stats on the forums that have been accepted as OOP. My EC's were definitely an asset for me personally, but they aren't anything too out of the ordinary - if you make sure to write your descriptions well and have good references I'd say go for it!! Good luck - if you have any questions feel free to PM
  4. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to RichardDegrasseSagan in Lost (With Updates and Acceptance)   
    Thank you everyone!!! You guys have been so supportive - it's a bit mind blowing. As for the big news: I was accepted!
    Although this is a really great success for me, I just want to emphasize that I didn't have an insane cathartic moment. Sure there will be transient happiness with good news, but your true source of happiness starts way before that. So for those of you who are in the same position I was in last year - please please please don't feel demoralized. You have the opportunity to do great things outside of medicine. Work hard for your career, but don't neglect your personal lives. This year was amazing for me, and I worked hard to be happy with my personal life. So this is just the cherry on top.
    I want to direct you guys to this thread, which I think does a good job of conveying this from current medical students:
    TL;DR I didn't have a magical cathartic moment by getting this acceptance. The acceptance isn't a magical gateway to happiness. So those of you who haven't gotten in yet, don't feel as if you can't be happy in the meanwhile and during your re-applications.
    Sorry if this sounded a bit convoluted, but I am just in a break during work and wanted to update all you awesome people!!
    Thanks again for all the love!!
  5. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to RichardDegrasseSagan in Lost (With Updates and Acceptance)   
    Post-application update:
    Guess I was wrong about Queen's! Got my first interview there! Woo hoo!    Thank you all for your support and kind words. I thought I'd missed my opportunity for medicine, but your reassurance and positivity made me stay the course. Even if this interview doesn't pan out, I am infinitely more confident now. Thanks to your guys' nudging, I pushed myself to get involved in a lot of clinical research, which I find I am enjoying so much, and learning so much from. I don't even feel as if I am stuck in limbo (while waiting for applications) because of it.
    I remember the song I was listening to when I first posted this thread - feeling super lost. Re-listening to it right now, and I can honestly say that the non-trad forums have been the most supportive collection of people ever. I love you all.
  6. Like
    anonymouspanda got a reaction from Fun_Mushroom1998 in GPA Calculation   
    I think it's for grad applicants in general however will you complete your degree by June 30, 2021? If you're starting this year, chances are you won't complete before the start of next year's class so you might not be eligible for admissions. I also think you have to have completed the degree for the gpa to be considered so that policy might only apply to those who have already graduated at the time of application because at the time of application, you won't have grades from your grad degree to report to contribute towards your pre-interview score..
    This is just my understanding/analysis of that policy and I might be wrong! 
  7. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to avocado_toast in Worth it to apply OOP?   
    I would say go for it!
    For OOP applicants, in past years, the interview offers are based on GPA, MCAT, and maritime connection essay. Your GPA and MCAT are competitive for OOP, you just need to write a strong maritime connection essay.
    The admissions committee will be looking at why you are interested in Dalhousie. I would recommend looking at their website and seeing what Dalhousie Medicine has to offer. They have a focus on exposing students to rural medicine, with lots of opportunities like a Family Medicine Trips (where you visit rural Nova Scotia and learn clinical skills early) and Rural Week (where you go out into rural Nova Scotia for a week to shadow a doctor at the end of 1st year). They also have early clinical exposure -- you shadow a doctor in clinic/hospital on the first day of medical school and have the opportunity to do clinical electives and deliver babies in your first year.  Dal also has a strong research component to their curriculum -- every student does a research project and will present/publish their results. If any of those things interest you, I would mention that. The maritimes are a great place to go to school -- Halifax is beautiful and affordable, and the people are really nice. If you have family connections or are interesting in saying in Halifax longer term, definitely mention that in your essay.
    Interviews typically take place in late November, with notification of success in mid-March (or April if there's a global pandemic). 
    Best of luck.
  8. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to Aslidoctor in Frustrated with the admissions system   
    OP is catching a LOT of heat but some of what they are saying is valid imo
    For reference: Current third year resident, visible minority. Took me three application cycles to get into medical school. The most biased people I find (GENERALLY) are those who get into a Canadian school their first try. Superiority complex definitely exists. A large majority of my class looked down on IMGs and their peers who had gone abroad. Made me lose faith in the system. During CaRMS they would often say things like "that program is known to take IMG's". The bias sticks with them.
    The reality of the situation is that the whole system is broken and there is no easy fix. People lie on their applications and get extra non-academic points/fake reference letters. They are impossible to prove as fake. GPAs are highly inflated from smaller universities - I was one of them. My undergrad was relatively easy at a smaller institution (although so was Canadian medical school....60% pass. Maybe I'm just brighter than I realize and would have been OK at a bigger university - who knows). The interview selection and actual interview scoring is also a complete gongshow. I have been involved in pre-interview application review as well as MMI scoring at a major Canadian medical school. During our "teaching" for scoring of applicants there was no consistency whatsoever. Interviewer bias is very real.

    It is a broken system, without a doubt. Nepotism exists through residency, and jobs after. It really is just life. I am very thankful to have jumped through the hoops to get to where I am and I know that there are people that worked harder than me (and many others!) that never got through the boundaries. To the OP, if you are actually a frustrated applicant, try to persevere. Residency isn't easy and I think that if I hadn't struggled to get into medical school so hard I would not have been able to get through some of my training. I was extremely jaded during my third application cycle but it was necessary for my journey.

    Hope this post doesn't offend anyone - its a topic I have put a lot of thought into over the years. 
  9. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to Edict in Frustrated with the admissions system   
    Great point, this system is definitely not fair or equitable. I put the blame less on the medical schools themselves and more on the state of our education system in general. In high school, kids are oddly given an easy time, there is no standardized testing and your grades depend more on your individual teacher's biases than your learning as a student. Then in undergrad, the system is so laissez-faire that the smartest way to get into medical school is not to study what you are good at, but to choose the right program and the right courses to get yourself the highest GPA, interest in learning be damned. 
    Ultimately, this system screws over far too many people and people are left doing degree after degree, masters etc, all to be ultimately underemployed. Our system is failing to distribute talent well. In fact, I would argue for a limit on the number of students that should even be studying the life sciences. Its a joke that we make people spend 4 years chasing a med school dream only then to tell them that in order to get any job remotely related to their field, it'll be at least another 2 years of schooling. 
    My bias is that, the government for years has been chasing the "% of population university educated" stat as a measure of its success and while good intentioned is an incredibly flawed statistic. Just making people do 4 years of university while making the populace generally less bigoted and uninformed, also fails to address the appropriate distribution of human resources. We have way too many life science majors in Canada (The single largest group of undergrads at UofT study either Life sciences or Engineering/physical sciences), especially in Ontario and not enough jobs for them all. We have way too many university grads in general, with way too few good well paying jobs for them all. This ultimately results in the phenomenon of people with 4 yr bachelor degrees going to college for training that is practical. One could easily argue those people would have been better off financially if they had just gone straight into college instead. 
  10. Like
    anonymouspanda got a reaction from reddd in Advice/Tips for Premeds   
    Thanks for taking the time to give me meaningful advice on improving my chances for next cycle! Your advice for structuring interview answers was very helpful! 
  11. Thanks
    anonymouspanda reacted to reddd in Advice/Tips for Premeds   
    Hey everyone, I got accepted to Alberta and Queens Medical School this cycle and have some free time to answer some q's about apps, MCAT, CASPer, and interviews over voice/video chat. Feel free to send me a DM.
  12. Sad
    anonymouspanda reacted to Phil Jackson in Western Waitlist Party 2019-2020   
    It’s like you’re a 25 year old minor league third baseman still clinging on to your hopes of playing in the majors. You know your time is running out. Your youth and excitement for the game is ever slightly fading year over year as you struggle to improve your game. Some of your best friends and teammates from college are already starters contributing for playoff teams. Maybe this year you put together a string of great games. Maybe you get noticed by some scouts and are even called up for a couple workouts with the team. You know this is gonna be one of your last few chances. You do your best but there’s always some doubt AND you also know there’s plenty of younger and more talented players competing for that same spot. As you await for that official invite to participate in spring training you are contemplating whether you even want to spend another year grinding it out in AA ball. Maybe you should just take that offer to be an assistant coach at your alma mater and move on with your life. 
  13. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to LetsTryThisAgain19 in McMaster Waitlist Party 2020   
    I just thought that amongst all this sadness for people who didn't get a spot I'd just share my story as I'm sure some of you can relate and others can hopefully draw some inspiration. Also I just need to vent.
    This was my 4th cycle, I've gotten in at schools in the US and Europe but I just really wanted to stay in Canada because this is my home. 
    After not getting in post undergrad I did a master's program that has allowed me to obtain a role as a health care professional. I've got over two thousand hours of frontline healthcare experience. 
    All I've ever wanted was an interview to show these schools that I WILL be a great doctor. Just a chance to show them that stats aren't everything (I've got a great GPA, but 126 CARS). 
    Having worked in healthcare, knowing how to talk to patients and working with doctors, nurses and allied health on almost a daily basis, I knew I was ready to slay the interview (despite what Mac said about us thinking we would do better on the interview than we actually would). This year for the first time I got my wish, and got that opportunity..only to ultimately lose out on the chance to show what makes me unique and demonstrate my readiness to be a physician. TO A LOTTERY no less. It's been a really really tough pill to swallow but I'm not giving up just yet. 
    I know that I will be a great physician, it's not a matter of IF but WHEN. As hard as it is let's all keep our heads up. Congrats to everyone that's gotten in. All of this waiting is just going to make it that much sweeter when we are finally there. 
    Peace and love 
  14. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to Alegobeh2 in Physics -> Business -> Ontario Med School?   
    Fellow physics to med here. I have a B.Sc. in physics and will be starting at Ottawa this Fall.
    You definitely do not need any health-related EC's to be a successful applicant. The first thing you should do is take a look at how all the schools calculate your weighted GPA (e.g., UofT drops lowest marks based on full-time course loads, Ottawa weighs later years more heavily, McMaster just takes your raw cGPA, etc.). Once you take your MCAT, you'll have a better idea of where you stand. Focus on CARS so you raise your chances at Mac.
    The importance of ECs can get overblown for Ontario schools. I consider myself as someone with average ECs. I only had around 16 items on my ABS sketch for OMSAS and I managed to get 3 interviews in Ontario this cycle. Taken altogether for Ontario, GPA, MCAT and CASPer are each way more important than ECs. You definitely do not need any health-related ECs to be successful here.
    Lastly, don't underestimate the role that CASPer plays. some people say that "you can't prepare for CASPer" but that's untrue. I took the CASPer test over 3 times because of rejections in previous cycles. My first attempt at it was complete rubbish, and over the cycles I got way better. So the MCAT and CASPer are the things that give you the most bang for your buck (in terms of time spent on them vs. positive effect they have on your application) in Ontario and lots of other schools as an out-of-province applicant.
    So calculate your weighted GPA at each school to get a better idea of your chances. Do great on the MCAT (especially CARS) and CASPer, write awesome essays based on your unique experiences, and you'll have great odds.
  15. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to Lemming in 2020 waitlist support thread   
    Demographic: OOP
    UCAN GPA: 3.88
    MCAT CARS: 128
    Email rec'vd at 4:30 pm (adjusted to Calgary time)
  16. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to SquirtleMD in Accepted/Rejected/Waitlisted??? (for current applicants)   
    ACCEPTED!!! Holy crap I can't believe this, I'm completely numb right now. 
    Time stamp: 9:31am EST
    cGPA: 3.75, 2YR: 3.9
    MCAT: 131/127/130/125 (513)
    ECs: A lot of work (I graduated in 2018 from my Master's degree), been working in R&D since. Hospital volunteering, Research (senior thesis and 2 summers), lots of community volunteer work too. (No sports/athletics at all)
    Interview: Online. I thought the MMI was okay, most of the stations felt okay but it was awkward talking to a screen. Panel felt so strange as they stone faced me. 
    Year: BHSc, MSc, working for 2 years. 
    Geography: IP
    It took 3 applications, 3 cracks at the MCAT, 2 interviews over two years. If any future applicants read this I absolutely know your struggle and this feeling is so freaking worth it. I hope the best for everyone, I will be accepting this offer
  17. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to initrams in Advice on writing you app!!! TIPS   
    I am also probably gonna make a video or something about this so if you don't wanna read it all maybe ill post it on youtube and you can just watch instead. 
    So, last year I applied in the 2018/2019 cycle and received an overall TFR of 35 (so low!). This year I was granted an interview and an acceptance! What did I change between these two applications? Aside from adding one new work experience (that I had only been working in for a month) I but completely revised how I wrote my application. I think that there is so much power in how you present yourself and your activities through your wording, writing etc. To be fair, the application process is subjective to the reader as well. 
    UBC was the first application I wrote last year and so this advice pertains to UBC format, I used it for all my applications. I will provide examples from both years of my application throughout. 
    My stats are decent as far as GPA and MCAT, but did not change between the two cycles, demonstrating how important it was to rewrite my application for going from a TFR of 35 to an interview and subsequent acceptance. So, advice as follows: 
    1. Map Out Your Application First off, I recommend opening a word document and calling it ‘application draft 1’ or something along those lines. Put the headings of each category for entries such as Academic entries: Capacity to Work with Others, Service Ethic, Leadership etc. and then work experience as well. This allows you to see and understand the different categories and how you must organize your life activities. I then highlighted each of these entry types ex: Leadership in different colors.
    I then went into my CV and resume (I suggest having some sort of master inventory for all events/activities/volunteering endeavors you have participated in) and put them all on this same word document. Here you can do then pick the best/most fitting ones for each category. You may have some that you think would fit into two categories, but by seeing everything at once and seeing what categories you have many things in and categories you are lacking in, you can decide where to put events. 
    So, for example, I had an event about volunteering to coach sports- this could have went under Service Ethic, Leadership, or Capacity to Work with Others but because I had a lot of others for Service Ethic and Capacity to Work with Others, I decided to put this activity as a Leadership activity. 
    2. Write your application in simple terms- then add and revise  Now that you have an idea of what your application will look like as far as what will go where, it is time to get writing. 
    At this stage, I find it beneficial to write sentences or bullet points about each activity. These can be very simple sentences as you will make them more interesting to read at a later stage. So, for example here I would write:
    Volunteer Coach
    - instructed classes
    - built lesson plans
    - maintain interest of children
    -work with children 
    -adhere to safety regulations
    -get training 
    These are all ideas of things I did in this activity and therefore things I can write about. 
    3. Write the Activities Pertaining to the Type of Activity This is a very important step. Here is your chance to start writing your actual description of the event based on the bullet points on sentences you made about it above.  You have sorted your activities into what category you would like them to be in and now you must highlight WHY you put them into that category. So, for example, as I mentioned above, I could have used “Sports Coach” in any of the categories but ultimately decided to use it as a Leadership activity. Because I chose to do this, I will write about how I demonstrated leadership in this activity more than anything!!! I could write about many other things about this position but my job here is to focus on leadership, whilst describing my duties. 
    Example: one of my activities under leadership was Fundraising Coordinator. To drive home the leadership aspects of this I wrote things like: Coordinate and facilitate weekly meetings among board members to establish our annual fundraising event. Consult various causes to advocate for with our annual event and establish this cause alongside other members. 
    Although I could have written many things about this position, I chose to highlight ones that pertained to leadership given that this was the category which I put this activity in. 
    4. Emphasize HOW you did an activity.
    The Help Guide reads that they would like you to talk about your duties and what you did in the description section of your activities as opposed to writing about ‘how this activity made you feel’, ‘what you learned from it’, etc. I think though, that while writing about your duties, it is important to emphasize HOW you did these duties, meaning did you do them diligently, enthusiastically, etc.
    Here is an example from both of my applications to show you the difference of emphasizing how. 
    2018/2019 application:
    "I was a server at a restaurant where I greeted customers and I took orders" 
    2019/2020 application:
    "Enthusiastically acted as a first method of contact for customers, and effectively and precisely rang in orders ensuring optimal service." 
    I changed the writing completely but you can see that the words, enthusiastically, effectively, and precisely all described me doing an activity in a certain way and painted a favourable picture of me completing these activities. 
    5. Use strong descriptive words and action words for your tasks. 
    I literally googled 'strong action words' etc. when writing my entries. Where I had simple adjectives, I replaced them with these stronger ones. An example of a weak adjective would be dirty and a strong one would be filthy. It seems simple but it changes how your application reads. 
    6. Descriptive Pieces
    It is very important to provide your reader with descriptive pieces of information about an activity. Examples of this can be a name of a place you volunteered, a quantitative fact such as “working with over 20 kids” etc. 
    Example: Coaching Sports 
    Coming into a new gymnastics club I was asked to lead classes alone and thus had to become a leader in the gym. I had to ensure safety measures were constantly being taken whilst coaching children of a variety of ages and athletic abilities and ensure that everyone's needs were met to the best of my abilities. 
    Built on 5 years of experience, I instructed 3 classes per week to children between the ages of 5-17. I offered myself as a role model to classes of roughly 10 children and… 
    I think that using quantitative measures as above allows the reader to grasp more of what I am saying. 
    7. Highlight What a Medical School is Looking For- Don’t Undermine Your Activities. 
    For everything you do, you can find some value in this experience, and likely some value that will make you a better physician. Do not leave this up to the reader to decide what that is or if it is present at all, you must explicitly tell them. In my first application, I failed to see the value in things like my work experience as a server and therefore wrote about them in a way which was lackluster. However, I changed this to find the value in each activity I did, whether it is similar to being a physician or not. 
     In my position, I acted as a first method of contact for clientele and aided in product education. I diligently memorized menu entrees and daily specials to provide guidance to customers. I accurately recorded orders and worked as part of a team alongside kitchen staff to serve drinks and food which exceeded expectation. 
    This highlights things such as: communication skills, team work, knowledge of the business. All things which are imperative to any profession including medicine. 
    8. But... Also, do not stretch your task too far or exaggerate it beyond what makes sense. 
    Going back to the last point, we do not want to stretch the value of something too far. Do not make stuff up and do not stretch it too far, because those reading applications are trained to look for this. 
    Do not input skills that you didn’t learn into a position, instead just highlight those which are true to the experience. 
    9. Make Use of Titles
    Did you guys ever hear the rumours about application reviewers reading the title of an activity, essay etc. and then not reading said activity/essay because it seemed boring? I had heard this and have heard this more recently from someone who had reviewed applications. I am unsure whether it is true but I decided to make my titles all that they could be! A title is also a great space for you to elaborate on an activity more with such limited word count available. 
    2018/2019 Title vs. 2019/2020 Title
    Learning German vs. Learning German to Further Communication Abilities 
    Research vs. Neuroscience Research and Surgical Assists 
    Travelling vs. Gaining Cultural Competencies Via Travel 
    Varsity Athlete vs. Representing my University as a Varsity Athlete
    Anyways!!!! I am sorry this post was so long but I hope that it is helpful for at least one person! If you have any further questions, please feel free to ask! 
  18. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to GreenSnakeMedic in McMaster Global health MSc 2020   
    Hey, I am not sure when you will be notified, but the last day to accept/reject offers for me was the 19th of May. I would assume you will hear back shortly after that, depending on those who rejected their offers. Hope that helps!
  19. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to navymd in The process is taking it's toll...   
    Hi! I’ve gone through the self doubt of whether I’d be able to be admitted into Canadian medical school. I’m starting this year and my high school class is already in residency or finishing. Try your best not to compare to others and instead comparing you to who you were yesterday. If you’re improving while staying compassionate and disciplined then you should be proud of yourself. 
    I was accepted to a few allied health programs and ended up completing one before being admitted. I’m the first in the family to attend post secondary education and my parents immigrated here as blue collar workers. I started working to support my family at 14. By no means am I bragging about the barriers I had to overcome but I think there needs to be mentorship and leadership to show that it is possible with the right support. I’m actually deployed with the military right now but I’ll be posting some of my story to hopefully motivate and cheer you on.
    I wrote the mcat 4 times. You won’t need a fourth. If you work hard and stay disciplined, you will get a great score. I believe in you!
  20. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to daphodile98 in McMaster Global health MSc 2020   
    please keep updating this page if you get off the waitlist!!
  21. Like
    anonymouspanda got a reaction from Scrubadubdub in Western Waitlist Party 2019-2020   
    I can't help but wish that I had an in-person interview rather than a virtual one. No way of knowing whether that might have changed the result for me but I wish there was some transparency with the stats comparing # of applicants accepted from in-person vs. virtual interviews to put my mind at ease.
  22. Like
    anonymouspanda got a reaction from theevilsloth in Western Waitlist Party 2019-2020   
    I can't help but wish that I had an in-person interview rather than a virtual one. No way of knowing whether that might have changed the result for me but I wish there was some transparency with the stats comparing # of applicants accepted from in-person vs. virtual interviews to put my mind at ease.
  23. Like
    anonymouspanda reacted to dontRme in McMaster Accepted/Waitlisted/Rejected 2019-2020   
    Hey guys!
    I know there's a lot of hate going around lately with McMaster's decision to go with a lottery system, and I just wanted to share my perspective on it, since I know a lot of people are worried that the class of '23 will be stigmatized because of this or see it as unfair. As a disclaimer, this is just my point of view on it, and I recognize that being accepted may make it seem as though I'm just trying to justify it because I got in - and I'm sure to some extent that's true. But for what it's worth, I started to change my perspective around Sunday evening, during the time with (thanks to the buttongate lmao) I was convinced I was getting rejected.
    When the announcement first came out, my emotions went from confused, to baffled, to really effing angry in the span of a couple hours. I couldn't believe that everything was coming down to luck after everything. I was thinking that even though through interviews people typically have a 30-70% (ish) chance of getting in, of course I convinced myself that my chances would be better since I was prepared(TM). But after the emotions cleared and I really started to think about it, I realized that every other of the 540 incredibly qualified interviewees would be thinking the exact same thing. We often hear about how so much of the application process boils down to luck, but I think that the label of 'lottery' was so infuriating because it took away the illusion that we had more control over the process than we really do. Obviously, this system isn't perfect either; the top 100 pre-interview scored applicants obviously wouldn't have been guaranteed admission, but definitely had a higher chance than the rest of the lot based on historical trends reflecting their scores.
    For those arguing that McMaster should have gone with virtual interviews, I understand the logic - I shared the same thinking too. However, I think not having virtual interviews was actually more fair than having them would have been... hear me out. While of course the assessors would have tried to remain as objective as possible, there are some things that of course would affect how they perceive you. Total technical failure aside, imagine this: two people performed very similarly on the interview, but one had connection issues that caused their video/audio to cut in and out or be very choppy. Of course it would be harder to understand them, and naturally frustration that stems from that could easily impact the interviewer's mindset, and by extension, their perception of the interview. Not only this, but while I myself am very fortunate to be able to say that I could have gone ahead with a virtual interview no problem, there are many more who are much more severely impacted by COVID - people close to them sick/dying, mental health concerns given the abruptly changing world, etc. Is it fair to say that they should have to suck it up and try to give their peak performance when they're dealing with so much?
    Finally, one thing that really helped me handle the panic was the guaranteed interview next year. I recognize that this will cause somewhat of a disruption to the application process next year, but chances are, many of those who got an interview this year are already likely to get another one next year regardless, given that they were already in the top tier this year. If anything, while I'm thrilled that they are, I think that McMaster could have justifiably gotten away without doing so. While not perfect, in the end we as interviewees really did have about the same chance now as we would have otherwise, and guaranteeing an interview next year, if anything, actually makes those chances better for those of us that sadly didn't make it this year. The same number of people would have gotten rejected/waitlisted even with interviews, but had the circumstances not changed, there's no guarantee that these all would have gotten an interview again next year. 
    Again, I realize that this is just my perspective on it, and I had to really spend a lot of time thinking it over to realize that it wasn't actually that far off from how the selection process would have been. And for anyone worried that the class will be stigmatized, keep in mind: every single one of the applicants that made it to interviews is incredibly qualified and deserves to get in. Unfortunately, there will always be more of us than the classes can accommodate, and until the medical school admissions process (for every school) finds a better solution to this, it will always be, to some extent, a lottery.
    I hope this helps. Keep working hard, friends - in the end, a year is nothing when you're looking at a 40+ year dream career!
  24. Like
    anonymouspanda got a reaction from sam97 in McMaster Global health MSc 2020   
    Thanks a lot for posting that update, I was considering emailing them myself. Hopefully, they don't take weeks to process everything!
  25. Like
    anonymouspanda got a reaction from sr9 in McMaster Global health MSc 2020   
    Thanks a lot for posting that update, I was considering emailing them myself. Hopefully, they don't take weeks to process everything!
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