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With the whole COVID-19 situation going on, a lot of my extracurricular activities (summer research, volunteering) have been put on hold. As a second year UG I was planning on applying for this year's cycle (MED 2025), but I'm slowly deciding against it as I've basically got little to none volunteering experience (I was hoping to have at least 100 hours by the end of June, but will probably have way way less than that by the cutoff date). Will I be hugely disadvantaged? Apart from volunteering, I have extensive employment experience in research during my undergrad (have authored two articles), along with ~4 years of employment since high-school, a few life experiences (coming from a low SES family and having to work, being involved the care of a family member suffering from disability and being exposed to medicine from a very young age due to my family member's condition) and on-campus involvement. I feel that I do have a half-decent mix of extracurricular activities, but I'm scared that I've not been involved long enough for some of my volunteer activities and that the adcoms will simply see me as a resume padder focused on quantity over quality. 

I have a GPA of ~90-91. Realistically, do you guys think I can expect an interview this December? I know it's a pretty common question asked on this forum but it'd be great if someone has some insight. 

 

Also, do you guys think that the adcoms will give some leeway to applicants this year due to this whole situation?

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9 hours ago, theUBCmedhopeful said:

With the whole COVID-19 situation going on, a lot of my extracurricular activities (summer research, volunteering) have been put on hold. As a third year UG I was planning on applying for this year's cycle (MED 2025), but I'm slowly deciding against it as I've basically got little to none volunteering experience (I was hoping to have at least 100 hours by the end of June, but will probably have way way less than that by the cutoff date). Will I be hugely disadvantaged? Apart from volunteering, I have extensive employment experience in research during my undergrad (have authored two articles), along with ~4 years of employment since high-school, a few life experiences (coming from a low SES family and having to work, being involved the care of a family member suffering from disability and being exposed to medicine from a very young age due to my family member's condition) and on-campus involvement. I feel that I do have a half-decent mix of extracurricular activities, but I'm scared that I've not been involved long enough for some of my volunteer activities and that the adcoms will simply see me as a resume padder focused on quantity over quality. 

I have a GPA of ~90-91. Realistically, do you guys think I can expect an interview this December? I know it's a pretty common question asked on this forum but it'd be great if someone has some insight. 

 

Also, do you guys think that the adcoms will give some leeway to applicants this year due to this whole situation?


For the volunteering part, there are associations (in quebec but probably everywhere in canada) that need people to contribute in advice phone lines (about covid) or just to talk with people that call and are stressed due to the pandemic. Some volunteering work can include being paired with an elderly person from a group home and call them 4 times a week for about 20 min to cheer them up as they have no visitors. 
 

For the research part, you can try and find someone who needs a student to do meta-analyses or gather data, informations (things you could do at home). Some student associations need people to translate research papers about covid from all over the world and vulgarise it to the general public.  
 

make the best of it and show them that in a time where you had everything planned, a pandemic happened and forced you to change your approach. Try to build from here and show them your resilience against obstacles. 

whatever you decide to do, try to stay safe, admission understands this is a stressfull year and hopefully will be more understanding of people’s situation

 

best of luck :) 

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On 4/4/2020 at 8:24 PM, pyridoxal-phosphate said:

Even under typical circumstances it's super hard for people to advise others on what to expect in December.  The current situation complicates things further. Not sure how helpful any of us can be. 

I wouldn't let your lack of volunteering  alone hold you back in applying if you have the finances and time. Your employment, research, and diversity of experience etc all count too. However, do you have an MCAT score? I wonder if test centres are still running, just something to think about if UBC still requires the MCAT. 

Your grades are good, especially if you are in province (although you probably already knew this so not sure how helpful I am here).

I'm sure admissions understand if people aren't doing stuff during these months given the whole situation. I can't see why they would see you as a resume padder if your volunteer activities were postponed/cut short (you also have a lot of work experience and family commitments). After all UBC postponed a bunch of medical school exams so I'm sure they understand. In terms of leeway specifically, again this is such an unexpected situation I don't think anyone knows how they will evaluate things. However, I'm pretty sure there other applicants who are impacted by this and this might be reflected in the applicant pool. 

Applications are stressful as is, my heart goes out to those who are applying during the COVID situation. Best of luck 

 

 

Thank you so much for your reply! I know, it's hard to tell how things will proceed really. I just really wish UBC was transparent with how they evaluate files because they tend to be very secretive...

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2 hours ago, theUBCmedhopeful said:

Thank you so much for your reply! I know, it's hard to tell how things will proceed really. I just really wish UBC was transparent with how they evaluate files because they tend to be very secretive...

I don't know if anyone's said this yet but if you're looking for EC's right now, Canadian Blood Services would be a good place to go to. They won't shut down regardless of how bad this gets as the blood supply is a core element of the healthcare system. I know that many of the volunteers I work with at my CBS branch have quit their positions until the quarantine is lifted, so I'm sure the branch near you will be looking for additional help!

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On 4/4/2020 at 8:24 PM, pyridoxal-phosphate said:

Even under typical circumstances it's super hard for people to advise others on what to expect in December.  The current situation complicates things further. Not sure how helpful any of us can be. 

I wouldn't let your lack of volunteering  alone hold you back in applying if you have the finances and time. Your employment, research, and diversity of experience etc all count too. However, do you have an MCAT score? I wonder if test centres are still running, just something to think about if UBC still requires the MCAT. 

Your grades are good, especially if you are in province (although you probably already knew this so not sure how helpful I am here).

I'm sure admissions understand if people aren't doing stuff during these months given the whole situation. I can't see why they would see you as a resume padder if your volunteer activities were postponed/cut short (you also have a lot of work experience and family commitments). After all UBC postponed a bunch of medical school exams so I'm sure they understand. In terms of leeway specifically, again this is such an unexpected situation I don't think anyone knows how they will evaluate things. However, I'm pretty sure there other applicants who are impacted by this and this might be reflected in the applicant pool. 

Applications are stressful as is, my heart goes out to those who are applying during the COVID situation. Best of luck 

 

 

Given alternate grading schemes and/or open book exams, do you think the applicant pool will have a higher average compared to last year? Or do you think it will be around the same?

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