Profiles of Some Successful Applicants

    Medical school applicants are often anxious to know what their chances of acceptance are. These vignettes are intended to help in this regard, and maybe even provide some encouragement.

    If you have been accepted to medical school, please e-mail me your particulars.

    • 1) I went to Columbia.
      2) When I applied, my undergraduate GPA was about 3.8.
      3) My MCATs were 12V, 14P, 14B, Q.
      4) I got into:Cornell, Columbia, NYU, Albert Einstein, Washington,and Mayo Med just to name a few. I also got into a bunchof DO colleges, but attend an MD school.
      5) Nothing too special about my transcript, but I did notice that research is key to getting into the best medical schools.

    • 1.) I attended Johns Hopkins and Majored in BiomedicalEngineering.
      2.) Overall GPA=3.4 (FreshmenGPA=3.8....Senior GPA=2.6)
      3.) MCAT 9V, 14P, 11B,S-Writing
      4.)Applied to 12 schools total.
      5.) Interviewed at11 of them (no interview at Univ. of Maryland)
      6.) Accepted at 4 schools: George Washington, SaintLouis, Albert Einstein, and Med. Coll. of Virginia.
      7.) Waitlisted at 5 schools: UVA, Bowman Gray, NewYork Med, Boston Univ. and NYU.
      8.) Rejected fromCornell and Mount Sinai (b/c of terrible interviews.. I wassick while I went on my New York interviews)
      9.) Problems with my application: My premed advisoralready told me that I would have problems with myapplication because of my sliding GPA. I started outFreshmen year with a 3.8 and fell to a 2.6 senior yearbecause of family problems.
      10.) Reasons for some of mysuccess: a.) Above Avg. MCAT b.) Publication as 1stauthor c.) Many supportive letters of recommendationd.) Well-written AMCAS essay and secondary essays.

      For all you premeds out there, be sure to write a strongAMCAS essay. Don't take it lightly. I know of too manystudents that relied solely on the name of their prestigousschool, GPA and MCAT scores but didn't take theAMCAS essay very seriously. Now, they're still reapplyingto medical school.... Good luck to y'all. I'm very happywith going to George Washington!!!

    • Undergraduate college: Harvard;
      GPA: 3.73 sci, 3.77 non-sci;
      MCAT 11V, 13P, 14B, O (ooops!).

      White female from NorthernCalifornia. Standard research and pretty goodextracurrics, no publications. Good but not stellarletters of rec. (didn't know many professors verywell).

      Interviewed at UCSD, UCLA, UCSF, Vanderbilt,Stanford, Penn, Yale, Harvard, Hopkins, Duke.Also invited to interview at Pritzker, Wash.U. andUSC, but I didn't go to these interviews because Ialready had a couple acceptances.

      Accepted by Vanderbilt, UCSD, UCLA, Duke,and Hopkins. Wait-listed at Stanford and Penn.

      It's kinda weird: I had secondaries and interviews atevery school I applied to except one: UC Irvine!I've heard that they actually have a top cut-off, ie, ifyou have ABOVE a certain GPA/MCAT theywon't even give you a secondary because they"know" you won't go there. Go figure!!!

    • I am white with 3.55 gpa/3.5 sci
      Small liberal arts college, not well known.
      MCAT 10v 9p 9b and was a biology major.

      I applied to 30 schools!! interviewd at 22. accepted to 12 of these!! Harvard, Columbia, John Hopkins, Cornell, were the top schools I was accepted to. Also, I am a CA resident but was only accepted to UCD and USC in CA. I was so shocked at my results that I have asked admissions committee why they accepted me. Their answer: I acted human and they could see I was genuine and I had faults and talents. They were also comfortable being around me, and thought I was a nice person. My advice: aim for interviews, then be yourself... If you are a truly nice and REAL person then you have a good chance to get in.... GOOD LUCK!

      p.s. I am going to Cornell

    • College: Penn
      Major: Computer science Minor: Fine Arts
      GPA/Sci: 3.7/3.8
      MCAT: 10/12/12
      Applied to Columbia, Yale,Penn, Vanderbilt, Cornell, Univ. TN, U.Mich. Interviewed at all.Withdrew from Cornell and U.Mich. Accepted to Columbia,Penn, Vanderbilt, U.T.

      Discovered an allele, co-authored one article Chairman of onejudicial committee, Board of Student health, Coordinator in AMSA, one year of volunteer work at Penn hospital, tutored for 3 yrs. Research asst one semester at Penn hospital, Researcher at Sloan-Kettering (for above accomplishments) Two other in-depth computer science/medial research projects

      Bad mistake: I sent in my apps in Sept! Bad! Due to this late submission, along with lost recs, I missed the deadline for Harvard. If you haven't applied by now, get to it!

      P.S. Getting published means a BIG deal to medicalschools, particularly private ones. Pretty much all of myfriends who got into top medical schools had one or morepublications. Being deeply involved in research shows notonly that you have the intellectual capacity it takes to makeit through the academics of med school, but also that you possess intellectual curiousity, a quality necessary to excelin all aspects of medicine. Considering that there are tens of thousands of applicants, many with comparable numbers, publications are one of the major landmarks thatget people into top medical schools.

    • MCAT: V10/B13/P12
      GPA:3.5(3.5 sci.).


    • 38 yrs old
      3.4 gpa
      MCAT = 11/10/10
      Applied to 14 schools, interviewed at 4, waitlisted at 2, accepted at 1. (2nd round of applications.)

    • GPA 3.45, Sci 3.51
      UCLA, Bio Chem
      MCAT 33. V 10, P 11, BS 12. WS R.

      Two quarter research project on Brain wave mapping.

      Got in MCW, St.Louis and Finch.

    • UC Berkeley
      GPA 3.66 cumulative, 3.55 science
      31 on MCAT

      Acceptances New York Medical College, Medical College of Virginia, Dartmouth, Tufts, UC San Francisco.I decided to go to UCSF.

    • Fresno State University as an English major who graduated Magna Cum Laude in 1994. Since then, I completedall the pre-med pre-reqs. + genetics and cell biology.
      My scienceGPA was 3.68 and my overall GPA was 3.85 undergrad, 4.0post-bacc.
      MCATs: 9V, 10BS, 11PS, WS-R.

      Worked full-time while in school, did some research assisting for Dow chemical company. The past year I have taught high school physics and an astronomy course at Fresno State. Worked as avolunteer for St. Agnes Hospital, Central Valley Blood Center. Iapplied to 35 schools and was offered 8 interviews (went to 4 ofthem), and was accepted UC Irvine, Davis, San Francisco, andNew York Medical College. To be honest, with my numbers, Idon't know how on earth I pulled this thing off with SanFrancisco!

    • (1)undergrad.... UCLA, BioChem
      (2)GPA...Cum. 3.45, Sci 3.51
      (3)MCAT... 10 VR, 11 BS, 12 PS, WS S.
      (4)Einstein, St.L., Bowman Gray, all UCs,Georgetown, Med. Coll. of Wis., Finch, Temple, Loyola, U Penn, Tulane, Creighton, Univ. of Kans.
      (5)Accepted at St.L., Finch and Med. Coll. of Wisc. Decided to go to MCW.
      (6)Two quarter research, full time with Profs. Wrote and presented paper. Killer letters of rec. from Profs.
      (7)Table Tennis Champion of School. Great interviews at all accepted schools.

    • I have an honors B.Sc. and M.Sc. from McGill. So by the time I applied, I had almost 3 years research experience.

      I applied MD/PhD to most of my schools.
      Boston U - Accepted
      Dartmouth - Accepted
      Chicago Med - Accepted
      Pritzker U of Chicago - Accepted
      USC - Interviewed, waitlisted, and withdrew from waitlist
      Jefferson - Same as above
      Penn State - Same as above
      Univ of Maryland - Same as above
      Georgetown - Interviewed and rejected
      Other offers for interviews that I didn't go to (I was already accepted when these offers were made): U of Conneticut, Bowman Gray, and Case Western.

      Other schools I applied to but was rejected (they told me that they accept applications from Canadians):
      U of Vermont, Tufts, George Washington, U of Virginia, Northwestern, Mount Sinai, Cornell, NYU, U of Cinncinati, U of Penn, Einstein, St. Louis, Wash U, SUNY Brookyln, SUNY Stony Brook, SUNY Syracuse, U of North Carolina, Vanderbilt, Ohio State U.

      Schools I discovered that do not accept Canadians: all UC schools, U of Michigan, Allegheny, Temple, Loyola, Rush, U of Illinois, SUNY Buffalo, U of Alabama.

      I also applied to some Canadian schools:
      McGill - Accepted
      U of Toronto - Accepted
      U of Calgary - Offered an interview and withdrew

      I decided to join the MD/PhD program at the University of Toronto. There were a lot of personal and professional reasons for doing so, and it was a hard choice between Toronto (close to Montreal/amazing school and hospitals/superior research experience) and Pritzker(amazing school/environment/opportunities).

      The MD/PhD route is many years. Don't just do it because you feel it is an easy way to get in - it's not. Applications are twice as long, and interviews tend to be 2 days long. Just like the MD route, your interviewers will see right through you if your reasons for going MD/PhD don't appear sincere and justified. But, if you want to do both research and medicine, by all means, apply MD/PhD.

      You have to understand that it is very expensive to apply and go to the states. Think good and hard about this before you apply. Realize that it is going to cost anywhere from 22-32 K tuition a year in US dollars. Add on the living costs and it is extremely expensive. There are no loans from US schools for Canadians, really, and bank loans from Canadian/US banks would be a scary thought!

      I stayed with students whenever possible during interviewing, and at U Chicago they have a sort of hostel that I stayed at. Always schedule your interviews on a Fri or Monday so you can stay over the Sat night to get a cheaper air fare. Chicago Med only interviewed on Thursdays and this cost me: flying out Wed to O'Hare and coming back the next day cost me about $1000.

    • BS in computer science, Rochester Institute of Tech; Masters inmeteorology.

      Undergrad (pre-premed): 3.2, science: 3.15.
      Postbac (premed): 3.92, science: 3.92.
      Overall undergrad: 3.35, science: 3.58.

      MCAT: 32

      I applied to SUNYs, UR, Cornell, Vermont, Columbia, MCO, Yale, Harvard.

      Accepted at SUNY Buf, Syracuse, Cornell, Columbia, Yale, Harvard. I chose Syracuse.

      Extracurriculars/research: Flight medic, mercy flight. Senior software engineer doing research in angiocardiography with U of W - left ventricular analysis and QCA.

    • I am currently a third year medical student at UOMHS in Des Moines, IOWA.

      I graduated from Oregon State University with a BS in biology (minor in chemistry).

      Science GPA 3.26; overall GPA 3.34

      MCAT: 9V 10B 8P R

      I applied to:
      OHSU - Got on the waiting list, rejected
      Loyola- Interviewed only for statistical reasons(that is what I was told after the interview was over. I was promised a place on the waiting list, however I was not told where I would be on the waiting list.) Rejected!
      UHS-COM - Interviewed and accepted
      UOMHS, CCOM - Interviewed and accepted.

      I decided to attend UOMHS as it had an excellent reputation for putting out clinically orientedand competent physicians.

      Extracurriculars/research, etc.:
      Emergency Room volunteer for two years in undergraduate.Two years of undergraduate research. I recommend only doing this if youare truly interested. I hated basic science research and although aftergraduating I worked as a clinical research assistant, I really only enjoyed the recruitment aspect, and not the day to day operations. So, the ruleis be true to who you are, only involve yourself in things that interestyou because it shows if you don't.I also was involved with a number of clubs on campus as Vice-Presidents,Secretaries, etc. Know your limitations. I was too interested in beingwell-rounded and in the end my grades suffered.

    • 1) Attended University of Toronto (Bachelor of Commerce degree)

      2) gpa/sci = 3.87/3.72

      3) MCAT 11V, 9P, S, 13B

      4) Applied to University of Toronto, McMaster, Univerisy of Western Ontario

      5) Accepted by all

      6) Extra currics: Worked part-time at Royal Trust (bank) - was on the soccer team for one year; research project on the culturing of T-cells;volunteered at a local hospital for a while; worked on the campus newletter (money section)

      7) Problem with application: Since I went for a B.Comm degree(Specialist Program in Commerce and Economics), I had little roomto take science courses *and* the interviewers queried me intensely about myreasons for entering medicine (they probably wondered why someone in business would want to enter med school)

      8) My successes with application: I had many extracurricularactivities; I was well rounded; superior GPA (in sci too); great essays (many English courses helped)

      ADVICE: Try to be well-rounded, and always have something to fall backon: don't major in bio or biochem for the sole purpose of medschool (you may pay for it if you don't get in).Frankly, I wouldn't have cared if I hadn't been accepted because with my B.Comm Royal Trust (a bank) wanted to hire me as a junior manager of accounts receivables (and I was only 22).

      Good luck, and remember it doesn't matter what you major in, just take the prereqs and do something that interests you. You will probably get higher marks that way.

    • Male. University of Pennsylvania BS Biological Sciences
      Georgetown University MS Biological Sciences
      MCAT: BS 11, PS 8, VR 10
      Overall GPA: 3.37
      Science GPA: 3.20
      Applied only to combined PhD/MD

      Rejected from: Wake Forest University, Wayne State University, Albert Einstein of Yeshiva University, Florida State University, Boston University, Drexel University, Rosalind Franklin University, George Washington University, Georgetown University, Jefferson Medical College, New York Medical College, Saint Louis University, Tulane University, University of Miami, Virginia Commonwealth University, Nova Southeastern University

      Waitlisted then rejected: Philadelphia College - Philadelphia

      Waitlisted then accepted: University of Florida, Albany Medical College, University of South Florida.

    • Male. UNC BS Biological Sciences
      MCAT: BS 10, PS 5, VR 13, R
      Overall GPA: 3.02
      Science GPA: 2.97
      Brief Profile: Divison I athlete, full scholarship. NCAA All American Honors (3 of 4 years). Published movie critic in metro newspaper. Volunteering in local clinics. Soup kitchen fundraiser co-coordinator.

      Rejected: Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland Clinic Medical School, Drexel University, East Carolina University, Harvard University, Jefferson Medical College, Pennsylvania State University, Temple University, University of Cincinnati, University of Michigan, Wake Forest University, Florida State University, Duke University, Johns Hopkins University, University of Pittsburgh.

      Waitlisted: Creighton University, Georgetown University, University of Pennsylvania.

      Accepted off Waitlist: University of Virginia, Eastern Virginia Medical School.

      Accepted: George Washington University.

      This really is an unpredictable application process. Never thought I'd do so well with a 5 on Physics MCAT!!

    • Caucasian female from Virginia
      University of Virginia BS Physical Sciences
      Georgetown University MS in Biological Sciences
      MCAT: BS 11, PS 11, VR 10, R
      Overall GPA: 3.00
      Science GPA: 2.76
      masters gpa is 3.82
      3 weeks of shadowing doctors, tons of tutoring, medical assistant/secretary position, volunteering at hospitals

      Rejected: University of Miami, University of California, Los Angeles , Charles Drew University/UCLA,

      Applied, Withdrew: University of Illinois - "did not know of additional requirements", Brown University - "didn't know of the stat requirement"

      Rejected: University of Virginia, University of Vermont, University of Rochester, University of Maryland, University of Colorado, Tulane University, Tufts University, Temple University, Saint Louis University, New York Medical College, Loyola University Chicago, Jefferson Medical College, Boston University, Albert Einstein of Yeshiva University, Albany Medical College, Howard University, Georgetown University, George Washington University, Virginia Commonwealth University, Drexel University

      Attended Interview, Waitlisted, Withdrew: Meharry Medical College

      Accepted: Eastern Virginia Medical School 6/16 off the WAITLIST!! Miracle of Miracles... THANK YOU TO THE POWERS THAT BE!

    • Caucasian female from Virginia
      Georgetown BS Biological Sciences
      Georgetown MS Biological Sciences
      MCAT: BS 11, PS 12, VR 9, O
      Overall GPA: 3.40
      Science GPA: 3.40
      Research experience for 4 years. EMT certification. Publication in journal.

      Rejected: Dartmouth College, Boston University, Vanderbilt University

      Withdrew: Jefferson Medical College, Rosalind Franklin University, Emory University, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Tufts University, University of Pennsylvania, Wake Forest University, Albany Medical College, Virginia Commonwealth University, University of Virginia - "Withdrew after Georgetown Acceptance"

      Attended Interview, Waitlisted, Withdrew: George Washington University, Albert Einstein of Yeshiva University

      Accepted: Eastern Virginia Medical School - "Loved this school, would love to go there but I need to stay in DC", Georgetown University - "This is where I will be!"

    • Caucasian female from Virginia
      Undergrad: College of William and Mary History/Humanities
      MCAT: BS 11, PS 10, VR 12, R
      Overall GPA: 3.30
      Science GPA: 3.30
      Government Major. No research experience. Minimal clinical experience. Didn't decide to go pre-med until junior year. Strong non-health EC's. Strong recs. August MCAT. Submitted apps extraordinarily late. (Secondaries in around Thanksgiving)

      Rejected: University of South Carolina, Wake Forest University, Medical University of South Carolina, Virginia Commonwealth University - submitted too late,

      Withdrew: Tulane University - "Decided I wasn't interested in going far from home", University of Oklahoma - "Decided not interested in going that far away", Georgetown University - "Essay question 'Why do you want to go here?' -- I didn't.",

      Attended Interview, Rejected: Medical College of Georgia

      Attended Interview, Waitlisted, Rejected: University of Virginia

      Accepted off Waitlist: Eastern Virginia Medical School - "Accepted off top 1/3 on 5/12"

      Summary of Application Experience: I loved EVMS during my interview and I'm so excited about going. However, if I could change one thing about this whole process, I would have had my secondaries done way earlier. Waiting is not fun.

    • East Asian male from California Johns Hopkins University BS Biological Sciences
      UC Berkeley MPH
      Georgetown MS Biological Sciences
      MCAT: BS 13, PS 12, VR 10, P
      Overall GPA: 3.10
      Science GPA: 3.01

      What I did wrong: Screwed up first two years, academic probation, almost kicked out. 2.3 GPA starting junior year (I just went home and looked at my freshman year grades. I had a 0.99 my first semester! That makes my stomach curdle). I had very serious personal problems starting college. I'm not sure I ever attended class my first two years outside of exams, and I missed some of those too.

      What I did right: Finished the last two years at Hopkins on the Dean's List - My transcript GPA is actually a 3.3 but AMCAS averages retakes. Did a Post-Bacc IRTA at the NIH for a year Did a year research at Johns Hopkins - Wilmer eye institute Did a MPH at UC Berkeley - 3.7+ Did a MS at Georgetown (SMP) - 3.9 Turned my apps in super early, got great recs. The rest is below. Good luck!

      Rejected University of California, San Diego Indiana University - "First rejection! It hurt" University of California, San Francisco - "Rejected pre-secondary.. they must be really numbers driven.. duh." University of California, Los Angeles - "Rejected." Wayne State University - "Why did I even apply here?"

      Withdrew: University of Virginia University of Minnesota, Twin Cities University of Miami Howard University Creighton University Wright State University Georgetown University - "in SMP, did not submit secondary. Not the school for me."

      Rejected: University of Pittsburgh, University of Maryland, University of California, Davis, University of California, Irvine, University of Michigan, SUNY Downstate, New York University, Northwestern University, Boston University, University of Southern California, University of Chicago, Albert Einstein of Yeshiva University, Virginia Commonwealth University, University of Rochester, University of Cincinnati, UMDNJ, Tufts University, Temple University, Pennsylvania State University, Jefferson Medical College, Loyola University Chicago, Loma Linda University

      Attended Interview, Withdrew: University of Illinois, New York Medical College, University of Kansas, Drexel University, University of Vermont - "Declined interview after OSU acceptance", Rosalind Franklin University - "Declined interview after OSU acceptance", Uniformed Services University, Albany Medical College, Saint Louis University

      Attended Interview, Waitlisted, Rejected: Mount Sinai School of Medicine

      Attended Interview, Waitlisted, Withdrew: George Washington University, Tulane University, Wake Forest University

      Accepted: Ohio State University - "1st acceptance. 10/15", Charles Drew University/UCLA - "Accepted 2/25 - withdrew 4/11", University of Toledo - "Despite the antagonistic interview, I'm in.. toledo isn't exactly a bustling metropolis," Eastern Virginia Medical School - "I'm in! Standardized patient program very interesting. withdrew", Case Western Reserve University - "Looks like I'm headed here!", Michigan State University - "Will decline. Too $$. Students are friendly and happy. Would go if i were a resident."

      Quick Facts:
      Pre-secondary Rejections: 5
      Secondaries: 41
      Interviews: 19
      Declined: 9
      Waitlist: 4
      Accepted: 6

      Applying early has allowed me to filter out my interviews. I can only imagine the costs associated with going to 7 additional interviews. I imagine I would have spent another 2-3K. This underscores again how the one thing TOTALLY WITHIN YOUR CONTROL is to TURN IN EVERYTHING EARLY. And of course luck helps too as it has in my app cycle.

      Six months ago I didn't think I had a shot at an allopathic medical school. It took a lot of courage and support to even attempt to apply. I've spent the last five/six years slaving away to make up for the youthful indiscretions of my first two years of college. Follow your dreams, I am. I really hope that my application gives encouragement to people that have struggled along their way to applying to medical school. I know I could've used some during my journey. Ignore the negativity and nay-sayers, achieve what you know you are capable of. For those of you that are waking up academically later in college, I suggest that you plan out your next few years carefully so as to create an application that obviates your previous struggles.

      I cannot stress this enough. APPLY EARLY. I submitted AMCAS mid June, processed before the July active date, turned around secondaries ASAP, sometimes same day, basically done applying in mid/late August. Applicants like me need every advantage we can get. Again, if you're wondering if you should've done this or that already, the answer is YES, you should've done it a week ago! I know my app might pique some curiousity, so you can email me at if you have questions (or advice)!

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