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About MCF10A

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    Espresso Shot

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  • Application Season
    2017 Fall

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  1. Your profile looks great. If you can get great LORs and write a solid SOP, you should be able to get interviews from a great number of programs. I'm an international applicants applied to/looked into many cancer-bio-focused programs on your list last cycle. Sadly, the admission for many cancer bio programs is very hard for intl applicants, because they rely on NIH training grants like T32. So you should look into more large biomedical science umbrella programs. From my experience, UCSF BMS and Stanford Cancer Bio rarely take intl applicants unless they can secure their own funding. Y
  2. I would recommend you to take a gap year or two to get more research experience. Your GPA is good enough even for the most competitive program, but your limited research experience would hold you back. Working as a full time RA after graduation will not only help you to get more solid research experience and better recommendation letters, but also give you an opportunity to access whether grad school & a career in research is what you want.
  3. One concern I have is the length of your research experience. Before you submit your application this December, you'll have one 3-month summer research, one ~6-month thesis research, and one 5-month iGEM project. None of these can be counted as "significant" in terms of length. Do you think you understand these projects very well, be able to write about them in depth in your SOP, and get great letters from your mentors? If so, you're probably good to go. The rest of your profile is solid. For your school selection, I would simply cross off UCSF Tetrad unless you can secure ur own funding
  4. To future international applicants: Many programs are not "international-friendly", especially some small programs that rely on NIH training grant. When selecting programs, do some homework on whether these programss have a proven track-record of taking intl students.
  5. https://gre.magoosh.com/flashcards/vocabulary/decks Magoosh GRE vocabulary flashcard is free, and it also has a mobile app which is really handy. About GRE subject test, I totally agree with @Kaede. Don't take it unless you've screwed up your upper level biology courses. I believe most of the programs don't care about subject test that much. I didn't take it, and most of my friends/interview buddies didn't take it either.
  6. I think you're in good shape. Your previous research experience looks solid. Just make sure to get great LORs from your current PI and the PI of your gap year lab. The LORs are probably the most important things in your whole package. Some comments on the GRE: it's very different from the MCAT. The verbal section of GRE is way easier than the verbal section of old MCAT which I took. For the GRE, the challenging part is the vocab, but the reading passages are very chill and the questions are straightforward. I got a shitty 52th percentile on MCAT verbal, but 93th percentile on GRE verbal
  7. I'm committed too! So see ya'll this fall
  8. Still 50:50 now. It's a tough one. Yeah I learned about HU housing options, but the $900/mo dorm room in Vandy is not as attractive as the $850/mo room in 2b apartment in Uppereast lol, and I want to live close to Longwood in G1. BTW good to see you here, I probably know who you are
  9. I'm facing a similar decision (Harvard BBS vs. GSK) so I can totally feel you. I pretty much agree with all of your pros and cons, and just want to add a few points: (1) GSK has many PIs doing comp bio/genomics work too. They recently added a new "computational and systems biology program", and recruited Dana Pe'er from Columbia to be the chair. Those PIs are doing amazing cancer related work (Berry Taylor, John Chodera, Christina Leslie, to name a few). (2) There are several faculty members in MIT Koch doing cancer immunology (their cancer immunology program has 10 faculty members accord
  10. Got accepted by UPenn CAMB Cancer Bio (tho I already emailed to withdraw my application)... I was told by the Adcom that there's a quota for international students, so I declined the offer immediately and hope some other intl student would get this slot soon. Good luck! Updates: just declined Weill Cornell PBSB and Duke Molecular Cancer Bio too. Hope will help folks on the wait list.
  11. Just got my schedule for a upcoming interview. So I'll be interviewing 6 (!!!!!) faculty members in one day. That's goona be a longggggggg day I bet...
  12. I'm a international applicant too. Grad school admission is indeed very hard for us because of funding issue. One thing I noticed is that research experience in the US+rec letter from PIs in the US can be the deal breaker for intl applicants, especially for the most competitive schools. Most of the intl students I met in my interviews have such experience (undergrad, summer research, exchange semester, thesis research, etc in the US). Good luck on your NYU Sackler and JHU and wish you can get into both!
  13. Based on my experience it shouldn't be a big deal. I thought I screwed up 2 interviews at 2 schools because I didn't answer the follow-up questions about my own research well. I felt really bad, but I ended up receiving very positive emails from those two interviewers and got into both schools. Thing are usually better than we thought, so don't worry too much!
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