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Overcoming a low GPA


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I understand these types of questions are generally frowned upon, so I want to start off by apologizing asking such a question as my first post. That being said, I am very grateful for any input you might have about my application to doctorate programs.

I graduated from a top liberal arts school (think Swarthmore, Williams, etc.) with a degree in neuroscience. Before my junior year my GPA was around a 3.3-3.5, however, during my small semester my mother passed away and it was a very sudden loss and my grades slipped pretty bad for the next 4 semesters, making my overall GPA a little over a 2.9. I did well on the GRE, 90+ percentile, and was accepted into a top 10 masters program in neurobiology. I graduated from the MS program #1 in my class, GPA being 3.94. During that time I worked both on my masters thesis and as a research associate (paid position) in another lab. I also worked as a medical device consultant for a start up and tutored first year medical students in clinical neuroscience and physiology. This September I will be joined the faculty at Harvard Medical School as an instructor in histology and will be looking to pursue additional research avenues while there.

My question to you all is do you think I have done enough to overcome my poor undergraduate performance to matriculate into a top neuroscience/biomedical science PhD? I know it is a difficult question to answer, but I really value alternate perspectives on my application.

Thanks so much everyone!

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