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Exra-curricular stuff

Guest UBC student

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Guest UBC student

Hi, Im just wondering what kind of extra-curricular stuff people in med did before getting in.


Im just worried because I find it hard to balance the time I spend studying vs. doing what I really want to do in my past time. Although Im still involved in student government stuff and a few other things that I've been doing since highschool, Im afraid to try out new things in fear of my GPA going south.


Although my desire to get involved is not solely for the purpose of getting into med, I also know they are required. so please people~ How should I balance my priorities? how much is enough?

(is it worth the possibility of your GPA going down a lil?)


Any advice is appreciated.

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Guest macdaddyeh

Hey BCstudent:


I'm currently in the dilemma of what to do about getting involved further and not letting my GPA slip. In my case however, I NEVER take more than 4 full courses a year, but I have very heavy responsibilites that would preclude me from ever doing 5 courses.


Nonetheless, what's most important here is you, not your admission to med school (although it almost always is glossed over in the opposite fashion). Take time for yourself and do what you enjoy, and someting that is stress relieving not stress inducing--not what might look good to the admissions committee, because rest assured that you will be grilled on why you chose that extracurric, what you learned from it, did you enjoy it etc...


My advice, from a strict number perspective, is NEVER to have more than three non-academic things happening at once and that includes family/home responsibilites AND remunerated work; so if you're married or have to take care of grandma or little sis or have a part time job, there goes one of the three.


Furthermore, my other philosophy is that one of your extra-currics should NOT be medically related. Why? Because it will be draining and too concentrated and may even be looked on suspiciously by adcoms b/c you failed to show that you are the ideal "well rounded" candidate.


If you are swamped now, why not wait until summer or even consider doing an international experience?


The bottomline is not to get burned out and doing something is better than doing nothing.


The following is my case and will likely not reflect your reality or that of other posters:


In year one I:


1) volunteered at Doc's office

2) church-related stuff

3) voleyball

4) part time job (involved heavily with work extra-currics)


In year II:


1) wife and kid

2) church

3) part time job


In year III:


lived and worked in South America through U of T


In year IV:


1) volunteer with refugees

2) on program advisory committee at U of T

3) wife and kid

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Know what's wild? In my first year of university I cut back on my extra-curriculars. I did horrible, academically.


In my third year of university I took on a couple volunteer positions of considerable responsibility. It was my best GPA year ever.


You gotta do what inspires you, not because you think it'll look good on a CV.

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Guest kellyl20

UBC student:

look at the UBC med admission stats and you can see what GPAs are required there; so do what you enjoy most and just safely keep the GPA to about 80%.:)

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