@offmychestplease Hi there, you echoed all of my concerns in your post... We have very similar backgrounds and I am also worried about being completely different from my peers, but this thread right now is very reassuring! I think I am also slowly learning that we need to start valuing ourselves: We are not less worthy because we come from a more underprivileged background. If anything it will help us understand and connect with patients from various demographics as a doctor.
From what I have seen, med students as a whole seem to be very nice and approachable! Go in being yourself and I'm sure you will make tons of friends
I calmed down a bit before making this post but I got the email from Chantal at 2:06 as well!! Was not expecting this!!! See everyone online in the fall and best of luck to anyone still on the waiting list! If anyone has any questions feel free PM me
Four cycles and I finally got in, unreal guys lol. Do not lose hope!
Result: Accepted (VFMP) off the Wait-list 6/8/2020
Early or Regular Deadline: Regular Timestamp: 3:45 PM PST aGPA: 85.1% ~22.5 AQ MCAT (CPBS / CARS / BBFL / PSBB): 513 (128/126/129/130) Current Degree (UG/Bachelors/Masters/PhD): SFU Molecular Biology and Biochemistry 2015
ECs: ~34 NAQ last year. Various things: Volunteered at shelters, Big Brother, some clinical volunteering, NSERC (no pubs), helped the elderly, charities etc etc etc. My application included a lot of my hobbies as I tried to paint a picture of who I really am: I like wrenching on cars so I restored an old Japanese car. I really enjoy photography, and drawing. I also repaired computers and phones on the side. I provided evidence for all my hobbies with links (an album for example). I've had quite a few jobs as well from selling cars to manual labor. For example when the town of Fort Mcmurray burned down I lived in a camp near there for 2 months to help with the clean up.
Interview: 7 stations went okay, bombed 2 stations (I might as well have gone in there and screeched for 7 minutes). My essay wasn't great.
I can't believe I am posting this. After 4 applications of straight rejections and 4 MCATs, I finally got wait listed and accepted in the 5th application and 3rd interview. This has been...quite a long and difficult journey. You can look back on my 8 year old account and see all the times when I lost hope completely or when I was researching schools in Poland/Australia/D.O. Schools. No way in hell I expected this. I had completely given up. Last year I quit my job and practiced 250-400 hours for the interview and got below average and rejected. I had practiced with residents, med students, other applicants, professors, teachers, my parents, friends, I gave it my everything so to be rejected like that was a clear message that I am not cut out to be a doctor. I moved on completely. I decided to do a second degree in Computer Science, nothing even health care related. The past 10 years of my life were considered forfeit. I talked to an advisor at SFU about CS requirements and he told me I have everything I need for Jan 2020 intake. Two weeks later as I am applying, they changed their requirements to needing more math courses, I was no longer qualified and UBC's BCS (CS) program wasn't until next September. I was in complete despair at this point. I felt like anything I tried to do with my life, there was a massive obstacle. Like there was some divine force preventing me from progressing while everyone else moved on. It was really hard to not have these negative thoughts. It was the uncertainty around getting into CS for January at SFU that led me to decide to apply to UBC Med one more time, I wasn't planning on it. After UBC MD application was sent in, the CS department decided to ignore their own requirements and admitted me. Finally, I could move on. December comes around and I was surprised to get the interview and grateful, but really did not have the energy or time during my studies to practice like that again. I practiced 2 weeks before the interview and went in. Bombed two stations utterly and completely, and the rest were okay. Nothing as good as my last year's interview. I walked out out LSC thinking to myself this is the last time i'll walk here. A chapter in my life had ended. I just wanted to go home, I had midterms. I didn't even eat the pizza. I didn't think about medical school or the interview again and focused on my studies. In May I get an email that I got waitlisted. I was really surprised but not that excited, given results of the last 4 years, I probably wasn't very high on the list anyways. I was too jaded to be excited. Yesterday was like something out of a dream. I was writing out a strongly worded email to UPS for damaging my car's coilovers when my gmail widget popped up "UBC Undergrad Admis..". I thought it's probably a COVID 19 message or they started rejecting people earlier because the waitlist isn't moving. I opened the email and it said "Congratulations". I stared blankly at the email for 20-30 seconds. I won't go into detail what happened afterwards, you can just imagine what happened. As I trembled for the next hour, I thought to myself...they made a mistake. There's no way. How? The interview was awful. How did this happen. There's got to be a mistake. It honestly still hasn't sunk in yet.
I am not going to write that perseverance pays off. This could've easily gone the other way and I know many for whom it did not pay off. Despite all the years of applying and taking rejection after rejection and seriously starting to think there's something wrong with me, I still think I got very lucky. There are risks to pursuing this path. I always thought not having backup would make me more motivated for volunteering and doing well in school and that might have been true, but I think the only thing that changed this year was my attitude towards the whole thing ( I didn't do anything new compared to the previous year's application, just a few more hours in what I already had). I didn't have desperation in my eyes anymore, the interview was taking up my time that could've been used for my midterms. The prospects and promises of the CS degree seemed a lot more realistic vs going up against a hyper competitive application pool. I had other plans, I was pursuing something else at the same time. Something else I enjoyed, but it wasn't necessarily my dream. The outcome of this interview was no longer a zero sum game. It wasn't really as important as last year when there was so much to lose. It had become something I had to do. And perhaps that attitude is something they like. Perhaps it comes off as being more confident.
If future applicants have questions about my ECs feel free to PM me!
I look forward to meeting my classmates soon! (well with covid...maybe soon?)
I think that a lot of the advice in here is great, but also keep in mind that I suspect most med schools are looking for people that are real people, with real experiences and real interests. Why do you want to be a doctor? What else in your life are you passionate about? What will happen when you face burnout in your career, especially if you have poured all of your energy into it? How will you be able to recharge in a profession that is rife with burnout? How will you relate to others?
While I think it is important to practice interviewing skills, keep in mind that is just one skill. You still need to go out and do the things that make you you. On the marathon analogy, I think it's important to actually train and get in good shape. It's not enough to practice putting on your shoes and walk to the pace line. You need strength in your heart and in your feet to keep you going.
For those of us who didn't receive the news we wanted yesterday-- I'm sorry. I know its crushing and it's probably a big hit to your confidence (I feel that too), but if you got an interview you're a stellar person. The feeling is going to suck for a while and is probably confusing, with many questions unanswered like "did I do something wrong during the interview?" or "what if it's my grades/MCAT?". Self-reflection is important and can help with future applications (if you choose to reapply, if not, that's okay too), but there is also inherent randomness and luck in the process as well. Keep doing what you're doing, stay passionate about those things; that is what got you an interview. As they say at the interview, sometimes the rejection is not a "no", but rather "not right now". Be proud that you made it so far.
This cycle has been a wild ride. There's a lot going on in the world, not even accounting for med school applications. We happen to be in a situation now where we are more isolated, maybe with less support than usual and higher stress/uncertainty.
If anyone would like additional support or someone to vent with who gets it, feel free to send me a message. This too will pass.