Should I Take Med School Prereqs Before Applying for an SMP?

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Session 93

Session 93

Our poster is a 29-year-old and has a cumulative 2.5 GPA and he is wondering what he can do to prepare for a successful application to medical school.

Also, check out our other podcasts on MedEd Media to help you on your premed and medical school journey.

[01:12] OldPreMeds Question of the Week:

“Short story: Community college for five years with a 2.4 cumulative GPA, 2.2 Science GPA. University for three years with a 2.8 cumulative GPA, 2.7 Science GPA. Overall – 2.5 GPA, 2.4 Science GPA.

Unfortunately, I did not do well in my lower division prereq classes as I got a C for all of the courses (and some D’s as well). All of these courses were taken at community college.

When I was at a university as a chemistry major, I did better with upper chemistry class as I got B’s and C’s for the courses which equate to 2.7 Science GPA. However, that is still very short of my expectations. I’m trying to get majority of A’s.

I’ve taken a break from school for about a year trying to get my act together. In the meantime, I work as an EMT currently. I would like to continue following my dreaming in becoming a physician. I feel a lot more refreshed and I’ve thought a lot about my past mistakes and learned how to overcome it.

So now I’m thinking about doing postbac. I’m planning to retake all of my prereqs courses at UCLA Extension for two years. And then apply for SMP in the following year. Do you think that would be the best idea to approach it? Or should I approach this differently?”

[02:50] Course Correction

There’s something in there that this student was not course-correcting. I have emphasized this several times during my previous podcasts. If something isn’t going right, you figure it out and course-correct.

This student spent three years in the university with 2.8 cumulative GPA and 2.7 GPA.

[03:45] Expectation of Majority of A’s

This is a wish but not a goal. They didn’t put any effort to getting the A’s. There was something there. There was never any course correction done. They probably didn’t think about what they could have done differently this time.

[04:06] The Biggest Question

It’s good that the poster is taking a break. But the question is what are you going to do differently next time?

If you don’t know the answer to this question then don’t even try. If you keep doing poorly, your chances are going to get worse and worse. You need to figure out what went wrong with those courses. You need to figure out why you’re motivated to be a physician. Use that motivation to drive you in your courses. Get A’s. You have to. From here on out, you need A’s.

[04:53] Taking Prereqs Courses

I would question doing prereqs at UCLA extension for two years and then applying for an SMP. Look at an SMP. Figure out what the minimums are and try to get into an SMP as fast as possible. You don’t need to retake all of your courses and then do the SMP. Reach out to SMP’s. Figure out what you need to do to be eligible to get into one. They have minimum requirements and you probably don’t meet them at this point. But you ‘ll never know. Talk to them. See what you need to do to get into the SMP. Don’t just blindly retake all of your prereqs and then go to the SMP.

[05:48] Final Thoughts

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