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Chances of admission with a low GPA


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Hi all!

I have been reading a lot of threads about the sub 3.0 GPA issue and I am worried about it, too. So here is a brief summary of my situation.

I am Emre from Turkey, a senior studying Chemistry and doing double major with Chemical and Biological at the highest ranked University in Turkey (according to the Times Higher Edu.). My undergraduate GPA is 2.81 with the grade average of the last two years being 3.04. The reason is that I got very low grades throughout the first two years of my study.

For grad school, I want to study either computational biology or biomaterials (drug delivery). I have worked at four different laboratories so far and two of them are directly related to my future goals. However, I don't have any publications yet. I also completed a summer internship at the Clinical Trials department of Novartis.

My GRE scores: 154 in verbal, 169 in Q and 4.0 in AW

TOEFL: 112 (got 30 from the listening and the writing parts)

I have two professors and an associate professor who agreed to write me recommendation letters. Two of them are my current or previous research supervisors and the third one is my academic advisor.

I am planning to apply to a lot of programs, here is the list:

I already applied to UDel PhD in Chem Eng.

Planning on applying to

University at Buffalo, PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences,

Stony Brook, PhD in material Sciences and Engineering 

Illinois Inst of Tech, PhD in chemical Engineering 

MSc in Chemical Engineering or Pharmaceutical Sciences at Waterloo (although it requires me to find a potential supervisor and that is very difficult to achieve as they either completely ignore my e-mails or they lack sufficient funds)

MSc in University of Alberta,  Western University, Calgary, Queen's 

Uppsala, Chalmers and Linkoping in Sweden (MSc)

Twente and Groningen in Netherlands.

Obviously I can't apply to all of them since it is extremely costly. So I would like to know if one or more of these options are far from realistic for my situation, so that I can avoid wasting money on them. Because of my GPA I am constantly being discouraged, telling myself "should I even apply at all?" 

I asked about the GPA policy to some of the universities above by e-mail but they simply responded by copy pasting what is already stated on their website.

Overall, I would really appreciate it if you could give me an idea about my chances and possible steps that I can take for the future.

Thanks in advance

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