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cephalexin last won the day on June 25

cephalexin had the most liked content!

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  1. I agree with what atm said, and would only add that the MCAT subreddit and Student doctor network forums are better places to ask about mcat strategies. Most people here are grad school focused and not med school focused.
  2. Taking a glance at your profile, it seems like you have a strong profile, especially for programs where the GRE is not looked at. also, I’m not an expert in cancer bio programs, but your program list looks good. I would look at Wisconsin as I remember seeing cancer bio as an option when I applied for molecular bio.
  3. I agree with Baby. This is not something I have heard of. You could, and I don’t see an issue with it, but I’m unsure if they would even look at it.
  4. I’m going to echo what BabyScientist said above. I am PharmD to PhD, and I have never been happier than in my program. Best aspect: doing what you love all day. When I was in pharmacy school, I spent my free time in a research lab, but I always had to worry about exams, rotations, etc. worst aspect: money. See Baby’s post. Also not being eligible to apply for some grad student fellowships because of your degree. please let me know if you have any questions about the application process if you decide to apply or if you’d like any other advice, I’m happy to chat/help. With a professional degree, your application will be unique compared to other applicants. I found the whole application-interview process exciting and encouraging, and I am happy to talk about it.
  5. cephalexin

    No PI LOR

    The fact that you’re in a lab and you’ve only talked to the PI a couple of times is wild to me. Can you reach out and see if you can meet with him? Talk about your project, time in the lab, etc. Have there been other undergrads in this lab? What did they do? If you don’t know your grad students might. as for your other letters, you should be okay if you can get one from your current PI. Obviously check every programs requirements, but I only had one real undergrad PI. I had two other professors write my other two letters. Finally, depending on the rest of your application, you may want to pursue a masters first for A ) more research experience and B ) a strong letter.
  6. Okay so you have a lot going on here, but here are my thoughts/opinions as someone who applied to micro phD programs all across the US last year. A) Your GPA may be an issue, but you'll have to look at specific program minimums. Pitt's Program in Microbiology and Immunology has a minimum of 3.2 for example. For programs like this, I would call the admissions office and ask how strict this minimum is considering your more recent semester GPAs were clearly much higher and your biology GPA is likely higher as well. Other programs either do not have a minimum GPA requirement (such as Michigan's umbrella program Program in Biomedical Sciences ) or do not publish GPA minimums on their website. Your best bet is to discuss your growth and improvement in your statement of purpose. B ) Your experiences sound pretty good. A small undergraduate project shows you can develop your own project, and your work experience has granted you many lab skills important to a scientist. I wouldn't worry about "flashy" molecular or genetic experience. This is not the norm for applicants as far as what I saw on interviews. In terms of techniques, my undergrad project was mostly Western blot, with a little cell culture and some plaque assays sprinkled in. Nothing too "flashy" here. Your TA experiences in undergrad will also look good imo. C) If you score well on the GRE, this could offset your lower GPA. However, I would look at the programs you plan to apply to first. All but 2 of the programs I applied to either removed the GRE requirement or did not accept GRE scores at all. D) You talk briefly about loans/debt in your post. All of the phD programs I applied to are fully funded, so for a micro phD you shouldn't gain more debt. However, the stipends are roughly half of what you make currently (w/o bonus), and varying depending on the cost of living in the program area. E) All of the programs I applied to have lab rotations, and thus, I didn't email any potential labs in advanced. I only emailed if the PI I was interested in was not available during my interview weekend. I am genuinely not sure what the norm is here. F) As for a masters, I do not know your situations well enough to really give advice. However, I can give my general thoughts on the topic. I have been told that talked a masters is best for students who lack research experience or are not sure they want to pursue a phD. You seem to be neither of these, but that call is only one you can make. Let me know if you have any questions about my experiences applying to micro phD programs.
  7. Anytime! Let me know if you ever have any other questions. Happy to help!
  8. Thank you for providing your insights and your story, and I think this is a good discussion (both for OP and in general), so I have a few comments to keep it going. 1)While you're right that you often can't have continuous full time research during school, I think your comparison to a PI restarting his/her career doesn't really work. Skills translate from project to project, and so even if someone is in a different lab or different environment, he/she won't be starting from zero each time. Additionally, between grad school and post doc, institutions, topics, and entire systems often change, and that benefits the researcher, and does not harm him/her. 2) I don't have much to say here. You clearly have experience in looking for post clinical fellowships, and I only know what I've been told, so I'll defer to you on this. 4) I was focusing on academia when I made this comment. You are right about industry, if that is what OP wants.
  9. pharmCAS provides information about some (but not all) graduate programs in pharmaceutical science (including med chem and pharmacology), including recommended GRE scores. That might be a good place to start. However, not all programs use pharmCAS, and so you may also want to look at American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy's website.
  10. Your research experience will look great to the programs you've listed. I applied to Immunology and Microbiology programs, so not exactly the same niche, but your list looks fairly similar to mine. I applied to Princeton (accepted), Pitt (accepted), UNC (declined interview because I had already received interviews for my top choices), Michigan (rejected), Johns Hopkins (my accepted, my ultimate choice), UW-Madison (accepted), UCSF (rejected), Emory (rejected), Washington University in St. Louis (rejected). They were all great programs in molecular biology, microbiology, and/or immunology, and I would assume their biomedical sciences programs are great too. I also love UPenn, and would have applied there; however, they do not fund phD students with professional degrees, and I have a pharmD. I also know many faculty at Pitt's school of medicine, and they are great. I probably would have gone there if I wasn't interested in moving to a new city. My question to you as someone who went clinical -> phD is how important do you value patient care/interaction? I ask that because if that is important to you/you have interest being a physician, it might be worth another shot at the MCAT to try for a better score. A physician can move his/her practice towards research through fellowships etc, but a researcher can't (easily) become a physician. If you have any questions about specifics about any of the programs I applied to, let me know.
  11. This is a great start. Congrats!
  12. You could probably get into a good grad school with your research experience and overall profile. However, my advice would be to stick it out, and I’ll tell you why. First for background, I went pharmacy school -> grad school, and so a few years ago, I found myself in a very similar position to you. I found research enthralling, and I enjoyed the clinical aspects much less so. But then I talked to phD faculty at my the school, and I decided to stick it out. Here’s why and why I’d suggest the same to you (list is in no particular order). 1) you can do research during med school. My brother is in med school and he’s doing research between MS1 and MS2. Additionally, most schools have research programs between Ms2 and ms3 as well as a “research” elective clerkship/rotation. Reach out to faculty at your school that do research that interests you and see if they’ll take you. You can start during the semester and learn the basics between/after classes to start. 2) you can do research after med school. You can choose to enter a phd program after med school (you’d be a shoe in to top programs then. They love clinician scientists). If you don’t want to do a phd after, you don’t have to. Post residency, you can do a research fellowship. I know of plenty of fantastic scientists that are MDs. 3) you put so much work into getting into med school, and 3 more years to get that MD is not that long in the grand scheme of your life. Med school is hard. It’s not supposed to be fun. Some people may be enjoying it more than you but that doesn’t mean you need to abandon ship. Find a research lab, and use it as an escape from the stress of med school. That’s how I got through pharmacy school. 4) job prospects. I’m not sure where you’d like to end up, but academia is extremely competitive as I’m sure you’ve heard. Having a clinical degree gives you a huge leg up in terms of academia jobs. Med schools love having physician scientist faculty. Additionally, you will always have that clinical degree to fall back on, should a scientist job that interests you not be immediately available.
  13. Your best bet right now is probably being direct. Ask if she will write you a positive letter, and make sure you specific “positive.”
  14. I am no longer in Pittsburgh, but I lived there for 6 years. If anyone has any questions about living in the city, I'd be happy to answer what I can.
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