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RoamingRhino

Which Undergrad Program in Canada Should I Take For Medical School?

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I'm a grade 12 student that is graduating this year. I want to go to medical school, but I want to go to an undergrad that prepares me the most for it (GPA, MCAT) and other requirements. My options I'm thinking of right now are:
Waterloo Biomedical Science (no co-op)
Pros: Good structure and has many courses that are perquisites for med schools Cons: I heard it was hard (courses like embryology) which I won't be able to get a high GPA
Waterloo Honours Science (no co-op)
Pros: Lots of flexibility in terms of electives (so you can boost GPA)
Cons: Idk (no structure?)
 
Waterloo Life Science (co-op)
Pros: Idk
Cons: Idk
 
McMaster Life Science (co-op)
Pros: McMaster is known for their sciences
Cons: Enrollment says 1000 so large class sizes? Waterloo ranks higher than McMaster in terms of reputation (if that matters). Waterloo is known for co-op.
 
Guelph Biomedical Science (don't think so)
Pros: Idk
Cons: Haven't heard much about it (like it doesn't have a big reputation)
 
Would co-op matter? Like if I don't get into med school would it get me a higher chance to get jobs and would it be good for graduate school? Which school has the better co-op? In terms of GPA, which program is the best? In terms of preparing me for the MCAT, which program is the best? Which school is best in terms of marks, ECs, community? I'm thinking of McMaster Life Science because they have a medical school and I've heard McMaster is a good school for science (not sure tho).
 
In general, which program would give me the highest chance of getting into med school?
 
Can you provide me a more in-depth explanation of why this program is good (if you took it)?
Are there any other programs I should consider (other than McMaster Health Science and Western Medical Science which I did not get into)?
 
Correct me if I'm wrong with any of the programs (I really don't know much about them).

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On 6/1/2019 at 3:22 AM, YesIcan55 said:

Guelph and it's not even close

:lol: lmaoo. Thats the best answer that I could have given. @RoamingRhinoTo make this brief, do not get caught up with prestige when it comes to choosing a premed program. You want a program where it'll be possible for you to get a 3.9+ GPA after 4 years while still learning a fair bit about the basic sciences. It's unfortunate for me and a few others, but GPA still reigns king for the majority of the medical school admissions process. I always suggest York, Ryerson or Mac Health Sci. Mac Health Sci should be at the top of everyone's lists since most people are aware that students in that program tend to do very well... I've heard good things about Guelf as well. To contrast, out of my 5 friends that went to Waterloo with the intention of eventually getting into medical school, all 5 have since given up on becoming a doctor. 

Now I'm not saying that it is impossible to get into med school if you went to waterloo, but I would heavily discourage it due to my very limited sample size and having heard from other medical school students as well. (what I'm trying to say is please take this advice with a grain of salt)

You've got 4 things to do in the next 4 years. Get a 3.9+ GPA, Clear a 515 MCAT with a 129+ on CARS, volunteer as much as possible and improve yourself on a social level and then finally, get to be good friends with a few professors by working in their labs and just being a genuinely nice person. Most importantly though, always try your best to have fun and enjoy the process. :) 

The fact that you joined this forum right after high school tells me that you're already on a good track. Best of luck!

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Go to Guelph, so easy to get involved and have a good support system. Most of my friends are in medical school now from the program although because people can be gung-ho about veterinary medicine, a large portion of the class is future vets (for good reason). 

Research was a walk in the park to get involved with, extra-curriculars are overly abundant in the city and school. Good lifestyle. 

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Guelph grad here. Got multiple interviews and am going to MacMed next year having just finished 4th year. A lot of my friends that were premed got into schools across Ontario too (I would say 50% or greater). Had a great time during undergrad. Very, very little regrets. 

Also, in terms of premed education I actually think guelph is hands down BETTER than all the rest. All my friends did well on the MCAT especially the Bio/Biochem section (90+%ile). I myself scored in the top 0.01% overall on the MCAT and I credit a lot of that to my education at Guelph. 

In terms of finding top ECs, that's always gonna be easier in bigger cities but it's not like you can't do that in the summer. Regardless, you don't NEED to do those kind of ECs you just need to do something. And guelph gives you everything, there's just less research internships but there's also way less competition I'm guessing (I've only done research in Guelph).

Good luck! And like others said BUNN prestige lol, it will get you nowhere (at least at this stage of your career). 

 

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On 6/3/2019 at 2:43 PM, steelchopsticks said:

:lol: lmaoo. Thats the best answer that I could have given. @RoamingRhinoTo make this brief, do not get caught up with prestige when it comes to choosing a premed program. You want a program where it'll be possible for you to get a 3.9+ GPA after 4 years while still learning a fair bit about the basic sciences. It's unfortunate for me and a few others, but GPA still reigns king for the majority of the medical school admissions process. I always suggest York, Ryerson or Mac Health Sci. Mac Health Sci should be at the top of everyone's lists since most people are aware that students in that program tend to do very well... I've heard good things about Guelf as well. To contrast, out of my 5 friends that went to Waterloo with the intention of eventually getting into medical school, all 5 have since given up on becoming a doctor. 

Now I'm not saying that it is impossible to get into med school if you went to waterloo, but I would heavily discourage it due to my very limited sample size and having heard from other medical school students as well. (what I'm trying to say is please take this advice with a grain of salt)

You've got 4 things to do in the next 4 years. Get a 3.9+ GPA, Clear a 515 MCAT with a 129+ on CARS, volunteer as much as possible and improve yourself on a social level and then finally, get to be good friends with a few professors by working in their labs and just being a genuinely nice person. Most importantly though, always try your best to have fun and enjoy the process. :) 

The fact that you joined this forum right after high school tells me that you're already on a good track. Best of luck!

But Waterloo is good for tech so if your friends gave up med for tech, they made a smarter choice. 

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Yo I went to Waterloo and I got in. It really doesn't matter where you go to school as long as you do well. For Waterloo, I would recommend Honours Sciences because it's very flexible and allows you to load up on on what ever field of science you're interested in without putting constraints on you. It's a superior program compared to biomedical science for medical admissions, but then again I did biomedical science and I got in, just things would have definitely been easier in Health sciences. 

 

I would go to the school that's closest to your home so you can avoid paying rent and save money that way. 

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4 hours ago, ysera said:

I would go to the school that's closest to your home so you can avoid paying rent and save money that way. 

4 hours ago, Hellothere77 said:

I would go to the school that's furthest from your parents so you can avoid not becoming an adult before med school that way.

Honestly unbelievable how many medical students are awful at functioning as adults. I know some who are still living at home for medical school, and are hoping to match to their home institution for residency so that they can continue living at home. At a certain point, I think you just need to bite the bullet and move out. Yes, it means spending money on rent, but it also makes you so much more independent. You can't live with your parents forever, and they also won't be able to do your laundry, cleaning and cooking forever. At some point, you just need to grow up.

Rant over, thanks for listening.

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1 hour ago, xiphoid said:

Honestly unbelievable how many medical students are awful at functioning as adults. I know some who are still living at home for medical school, and are hoping to match to their home institution for residency so that they can continue living at home. At a certain point, I think you just need to bite the bullet and move out. Yes, it means spending money on rent, but it also makes you so much more independent. You can't live with your parents forever, and they also won't be able to do your laundry, cleaning and cooking forever. At some point, you just need to grow up.

Rant over, thanks for listening.

Well I don't think being a functioning adult and living home during undergrad to save rent are mutually exclusive. I would still recommend the average person stay close to home unless they're hyper-dependent on their parents.

Also our perspectives on this might differ because of cultural differences, which is all good. 

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1 hour ago, ysera said:

Well I don't think being a functioning adult and living home during undergrad to save rent are mutually exclusive. I would still recommend the average person stay close to home unless they're hyper-dependent on their parents.

Also our perspectives on this might differ because of cultural differences, which is all good. 

if you re-read his post you'll see that he was talking about people choosing to stay and live at home for undergrad + any post-grad/masters + medical school + even residency...it does not matter what culture you are from there comes a point when enough is enough and you need to be independent and try and be an adult. And this is coming from someone from one of the most family orientated cultures in the world. 

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14 hours ago, ysera said:

Well I don't think being a functioning adult and living home during undergrad to save rent are mutually exclusive. I would still recommend the average person stay close to home unless they're hyper-dependent on their parents.

Also our perspectives on this might differ because of cultural differences, which is all good. 

I'm from a culture where it's pretty normal for three generations of a family to all live under the same roof.

Sure, there are those who live at home and are still able to develop the skills they need to be independent when they move out, but it becomes much harder to do so. First year or two of undergrad, there's no shame in asking friends and those you live with how to do laundry, how to operate a dishwasher/clean dishes, sweep, mop and vacuum because most people are going through the same learning curve. It becomes a lot harder to ask these questions when you're already finished undergrad and are in grad/professional school where the expectation is that you know how to function as an adult on your own. For many, if the opportunity presents itself, they will choose to keep living at home because that is what is most comfortable. The ability to take the step and move out becomes a lot harder if you don't move out for undergrad when most of your peers are making the transition. The result ends up being some medical students/graduates living at home well into their late 20s and early 30s.

Living close to home also does not necessarily mean at home. Someone who is from Toronto going to school in Waterloo for example, likely isn't going to commute to school daily (although I'm sure there are some students who think about it or have done it), but would be living away from their parents and still close enough that they can come home for the weekend if they feel homesick. I think it is extremely important to move out for undergrad, unless the cost of rent is absolutely prohibitive. This isn't coming from someone who had parents fund their education and didn't have to think about the costs of living - I worked at least 3 jobs at any given point throughout my undergrad to be able to afford to live away from home, and I am so thankful I did now that I am in medical school and realizing that some of my peers have no clue how to survive on the day-to-day without their parents.

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Whichever program you are most interested in. The trend in medical school admissions processes is that they want actual people. Being involved, not necessarily in medical volunteering, and doing well in a program you enjoy will make you a happier person and will reflect in your interview. 

 

I did chemistry and laughed through it and hated it. You want an example? Look up ViolinMD. Music major who got into medicine. You do not need a science degree and other than a few mandatory courses that also help with MCAT studying, just do what you like and excel at it.

If you insist on doing pre-med program, go where the grades are inflated. Mac if you have the choice or guelph.

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On 6/22/2019 at 4:48 PM, Edict said:

But Waterloo is good for tech so if your friends gave up med for tech, they made a smarter choice. 

Very true, but sadly this was not the case. You are totally right though, medicine is not for everyone, just wanted to share some personal anecdotes. :)

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