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Genetic Counseling Fall 2018 Applicants

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1 minute ago, trp111 said:

How is everyone deciding about where to apply? With the match system, I realize that while we do rank our programs, those programs that we rank really have to be ones that we could see ourselves going to. I think this is giving me a bit of anxiety since my home state only has a couple of programs and I haven't visited many other cities that have programs so I really don't know how I'd feel about living there. I'm also finding that a lot of the programs don't necessarily have a plethora of information about the program-more of just an overview. How are you guys reconciling this?  

My first criteria for choosing was location. I want to stay in my state, and if not, as close as possible. So that cuts programs down to the ones on the west coast/south west. After that it's cost, if I could afford it, and then if I'd even want to live there. As you can see from my signature, that's 8 schools. I applied to 8 last cycle, but only 5 of them are the same from last cycle, the other three are new schools that should be open by next cycle. I know it's not super helpful, but that's my criteria. My mentor once told me that "you can do  anything for two years," and I think that's true. Try not to stress too much, but I think interviews and being honest when you do rankings after interviews, you'll end up where you're supposed to be.

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16 hours ago, trp111 said:

How is everyone deciding about where to apply? With the match system, I realize that while we do rank our programs, those programs that we rank really have to be ones that we could see ourselves going to. I think this is giving me a bit of anxiety since my home state only has a couple of programs and I haven't visited many other cities that have programs so I really don't know how I'd feel about living there. I'm also finding that a lot of the programs don't necessarily have a plethora of information about the program-more of just an overview. How are you guys reconciling this?  

Location, when rotations start, and cost are my three main factors. If you want more information about a program you can always email the director or whatever contact info they list on their website. And as for not knowing what a city is like to live in, you can google cost of living/housing/etc, and if you think you could potentially see yourself living there then you can ask more about it at the interview if you receive one. You usually have time to speak with the current students and you can ask them all of that kind of information.

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17 hours ago, trp111 said:

How is everyone deciding about where to apply? With the match system, I realize that while we do rank our programs, those programs that we rank really have to be ones that we could see ourselves going to. I think this is giving me a bit of anxiety since my home state only has a couple of programs and I haven't visited many other cities that have programs so I really don't know how I'd feel about living there. I'm also finding that a lot of the programs don't necessarily have a plethora of information about the program-more of just an overview. How are you guys reconciling this?  

I was really unsure of it as well. I started by looking at location and where I had family or the areas I wanted to live it. After that I looked at cost and the rotation schedule (when they started and their locations). I also reached out to current students or alumni to get their perspective on the program and city. From there they just narrowed down themselves. I also asked how many schools and which ones the people I talked to applied to, one even gave me the name of a school they thought I should look into more. Definitely reach out to the faculty, alumni, or current students. 

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Hey everyone! Just thought I would mention that university of Phoenix offers a 5 week online genetics course for any of those who are needing that

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On 6/28/2017 at 0:45 PM, gc2017 said:

Hey everyone! Just thought I would mention that university of Phoenix offers a 5 week online genetics course for any of those who are needing that

@gc2017 Is it a grad level course or undergrad level?

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So I was browsing through the genetic counseling program websites to see if any schools have updated their deadlines for next cycle yet. I was surprised that North Carolina already has their applications available. It says their due Dec. 15th however I'm not sure if its because of the match system or if that's their typical due date. OSU said due to the match system this cycle their applications would be due at the end of December. The fact that their already available is scary/exciting. 

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16 hours ago, JN212 said:

So I was browsing through the genetic counseling program websites to see if any schools have updated their deadlines for next cycle yet. I was surprised that North Carolina already has their applications available. It says their due Dec. 15th however I'm not sure if its because of the match system or if that's their typical due date. OSU said due to the match system this cycle their applications would be due at the end of December. The fact that their already available is scary/exciting. 

@JN212 agreed! I've already started my NC app... I'm antsy :) I noticed a lot of programs are moving their deadlines up. Some of them haven't updated their websites yet but just from contacting the programs myself they told me they were going to have an earlier deadline this year. I wish more would open their applications earlier so I could spread out the costs of sending my transcripts/GRE's/app fees over more time instead of dropping it all basically at once. 

Edited by Nefelibata

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Update for all on a couple of the new programs... MGH Institute of Health Professions doesn't plan on accepting applications until next cycle (fall 2018) for admission Fall 2019. Baylor will be taking admissions this cycle and will be admitting 8 students. They are submitting their application for Recognized New Program status by the end of the month. 

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Hey guys,

First time applicant here! I'm happy to see a support group just for GC applications.

Self-Blurb: I am applying a little earlier than planned just because I want to see what happens. I have a BS in Psych, am currently working as a Data Aide in a cardiovascular medicine department of a hospital (aka I read doctor and GC notes).  I am beyond excited to see Baylor on the list of upcoming programs! Very interested in seeing how these five new programs play out. Fingers crossed they're all ready for our application round! 

 

I look forward to sharing my experience as well as learn from you all along the process!

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Two more program updates.. Arizona is on track to accept applicants this cycle for admission Fall 2018. They expect to have their website/application info up by the end of the summer. I forgot to mention in my comment above, but Baylor said they were hoping to have their website up by the end of this week. 

Columbia is "not certain" that they will have both state and board approval in time for admission for fall 2018. It sounded like they were hopeful and would really like to take admissions this year, but that all depends on how long it takes to get their approval. I'm kind of surprised they are not more confident they will open this next fall considering they were the first of the 5 schools to submit their letter of intent (back in January!), but then again I don't know anything about program certification...:) One of the programs did mention that it takes a minimum of 11 months to get certification. 

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I have received responses to my emails from five of the eight schools I applied to regarding feedback, received feedback from four of those, and am still waiting to hear back from three. 

So far the feedback is basically what I already assumed, but it was nice to hear areas that I did well/impressed them in. It makes me feel like I wasn't totally poor candidate. 

-----

In reference to what @Nefelibata said above, I can attest to the length of getting programs started. Arizona wanted to accept applicants LAST cycle, but due to university politics, didn't even get approval from the school until Spring. That's why they had to push back until 2018, but I am not worried now. The school is completely behind the program and ready to get it start ASAP.

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Hey everyone!  Hope you all are having a fantastic day!  Has anyone received feedback from Utah?

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1 hour ago, kds27 said:

Hey everyone!  Hope you all are having a fantastic day!  Has anyone received feedback from Utah?

I received an email with feedback from the director on the 11th. I sent my email on May 25th. Hope that helps!

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Hey everyone! I'm new here, and really excited to communicate with some other hopeful GC students! 

I just graduated from university with a degree in Educational Psychology (pre-counseling degree)- 3.8 GPA. I am taking a gap year and trying to decide what to do with it. I have the opportunity to work as a lab GCA, but not sure how I feel about it because I am really partial to clinical GC. My other option would be to take additional classes. Because my major was psych-based, I feel like I could use a boost in the sciences, but not sure which path would be more valuable. 

I have taken all of the primary prereqs (human genetics, stats, psych, biochem) but was thinking an A&P or medical terminology might be valuable? Additionally, I've taken health psych, psych of interpersonal relations, abnormal psych, individual differences and exceptional ability, human biology, and human growth and development. 

Beyond classwork, I participated in a lab that studies a rare genetic condition- even went to the international conference, and did presentations at research forums on campus. Also on campus I was a clinician at a clinic that provides academic services to children with developmental disabilities. I've logged 60 hours of shadowing (and counting). Have not yet taken the GRE but I am a strong test-taker, so not super worried about it. Did about 6 months worth of peer counseling at the crisis pregnancy center. 

Does anything here stick out as lacking? Also, if you have insight about taking classes vs. taking the lab GCA position, I would be most grateful! 

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15 hours ago, hopetobeGC said:

Hey everyone! I'm new here, and really excited to communicate with some other hopeful GC students! 

I just graduated from university with a degree in Educational Psychology (pre-counseling degree)- 3.8 GPA. I am taking a gap year and trying to decide what to do with it. I have the opportunity to work as a lab GCA, but not sure how I feel about it because I am really partial to clinical GC. My other option would be to take additional classes. Because my major was psych-based, I feel like I could use a boost in the sciences, but not sure which path would be more valuable. 

I have taken all of the primary prereqs (human genetics, stats, psych, biochem) but was thinking an A&P or medical terminology might be valuable? Additionally, I've taken health psych, psych of interpersonal relations, abnormal psych, individual differences and exceptional ability, human biology, and human growth and development. 

Beyond classwork, I participated in a lab that studies a rare genetic condition- even went to the international conference, and did presentations at research forums on campus. Also on campus I was a clinician at a clinic that provides academic services to children with developmental disabilities. I've logged 60 hours of shadowing (and counting). Have not yet taken the GRE but I am a strong test-taker, so not super worried about it. Did about 6 months worth of peer counseling at the crisis pregnancy center. 

Does anything here stick out as lacking? Also, if you have insight about taking classes vs. taking the lab GCA position, I would be most grateful! 

I'd say 100% go for the GCA position. Relevant work experience is regarded much more highly than classwork. Plus, even if you are more interested in clinical GC you will still learn skills that will give you a leg up and you will likely have lab rotations as part of your education anyway. You can also shadow clinicians on the side if you have time. 

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On 7/14/2017 at 7:54 PM, AspiringGC said:

I received an email with feedback from the director on the 11th. I sent my email on May 25th. Hope that helps!

I sent mine May 3rd. Never heard anything. They must have just liked you!:lol:

Edited by Blizzard

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On 7/13/2017 at 7:56 PM, AspiringGC said:

In reference to what @Nefelibata said above, I can attest to the length of getting programs started. Arizona wanted to accept applicants LAST cycle, but due to university politics, didn't even get approval from the school until Spring. That's why they had to push back until 2018, but I am not worried now. The school is completely behind the program and ready to get it start ASAP.

This gives me so much joy! I'm so happy to hear this!

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Hi guys!  I am finally ready to think about applying for the second year--I stayed off the forum for my own sanity for the last couple of months.  Last year, I applied to seven schools, and interviewed at OSU.  I did not get in, but interviewing was a really positive experience.

A little about me: I have a BS is psychology, and I've been involved in a bit of psychology research.  My school actually requires upper level psych students to break into small groups and run their own experiments.  I also interned for a summer with a psychiatrist who was involved in a major clinical trial.  Unfortunately, my undergraduate GPA is looowwww (2.87) due to some health problems my last two years.  I took a few years off to regroup, and then discovered genetic counseling.  Since then, I've taken another 5 classes (plus labs!) to cover my pre-reqs and managed to average a 3.76 in those classes.  My GRE scores were fantastic in verbal section, and good enough in the quantitative and writing sections.  Unfortunately, it has now been 5 years, so my scores have expired.  I'm currently studying to retake it (sigh).  I've also been on an advocate on a local sexual assault crisis hotline for the past 2 years.  I've spoken to a few GCs, but I have not gotten a chance to shadow.  I'm hoping to change that soon, though.  I recently found out that a lab with six gc's is literally right down the street (I just moved to another state), and I've just reached out to a gc who started referring to my mom (a therapist) a few months ago.  Up until recently, I was working for a group of registered dietitians, and often did the initial intake and scheduling.  

Over the next few months, I'll be retaking the GRE, and I've enrolled in a Human Anatomy class.  It's recommended, not required by a few schools.  I figured it also couldn't hurt to continue to show that I'm continuing to do well academically.  Also, I'm staying on the crisis hotline from my old town...they route directly to your cell phone, so it doesn't really matter that I've moved.  And because of the move, I'm back on the job market.  I've been specifically seeking behavioral interventionist jobs implementing in-home services for children with autism and developmental delays.  I had an interview last week, and I think it went well!

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On 7/12/2017 at 7:29 PM, Nefelibata said:

Two more program updates.. Arizona is on track to accept applicants this cycle for admission Fall 2018. They expect to have their website/application info up by the end of the summer. I forgot to mention in my comment above, but Baylor said they were hoping to have their website up by the end of this week. 

Columbia is "not certain" that they will have both state and board approval in time for admission for fall 2018. It sounded like they were hopeful and would really like to take admissions this year, but that all depends on how long it takes to get their approval. I'm kind of surprised they are not more confident they will open this next fall considering they were the first of the 5 schools to submit their letter of intent (back in January!), but then again I don't know anything about program certification...:) One of the programs did mention that it takes a minimum of 11 months to get certification. 

Thank you for all of these program updates!  They are super helpful!

 

On 6/26/2017 at 9:54 AM, KCGC said:

I was really unsure of it as well. I started by looking at location and where I had family or the areas I wanted to live it. After that I looked at cost and the rotation schedule (when they started and their locations). I also reached out to current students or alumni to get their perspective on the program and city. From there they just narrowed down themselves. I also asked how many schools and which ones the people I talked to applied to, one even gave me the name of a school they thought I should look into more. Definitely reach out to the faculty, alumni, or current students. 

I also want to point out that some locations might be easier to fly home from than others.  I mean, I can fly home from UTHouston for a weekend for like $150 the last time I looked.  Flying into a major airline hub might be easier/more cost effective than driving across a few states...

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7 hours ago, Billowack said:

I'd say 100% go for the GCA position. Relevant work experience is regarded much more highly than classwork. Plus, even if you are more interested in clinical GC you will still learn skills that will give you a leg up and you will likely have lab rotations as part of your education anyway. You can also shadow clinicians on the side if you have time. 

Thanks so much for the feedback! You're right about all of that. 

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52 minutes ago, hopetobeGC said:

So I know all of the programs have different reputations... which ones have you heard are good for prenatal GC? Peds? Cancer? 

I'm not well versed as to which schools are the best for each specialty, it just depends on the curriculum. For the schools that I decided to apply to I searched their program websites and analyzed their rotation sites and looked at the hospital locations mentioned as well as the percentage of each specialty analyzed at each site. From there its really easy to figure out which programs tend to be more focused in one specialty or if they're more diverse. For example Cincinnati is based at Cincinnati's Children's Hospital so they're more pediatric based with some adult genetics. From what I have noticed from shadowing and interning there are a lot more prenatal and pediatric genetic counselors so more programs are going to be guided in that direction followed by cancer and adult genetics. However it's very subjective and depends on the program and their diversity based on the availability of hospitals. 

Edited by JN212

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4 hours ago, Blizzard said:

I sent mine May 3rd. Never heard anything. They must have just liked you!:lol:

Oh nah, I bet your email might have just been lost in the thick of things. I'd just send them a follow up :)

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14 hours ago, hopetobeGC said:

So I know all of the programs have different reputations... which ones have you heard are good for prenatal GC? Peds? Cancer? 

Technically, all the programs have to be "good" for prenatal, pediatric, and cancer because those are the three areas students have to be trained in per the ASGC/certifying board. But like @JN212 said, depending on what hospital(s) they run out of or do a lot of their rotations in, that can effect where they tend to concentrate more of their focus/where you will get more experience.

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In case anyone is interested, USF just sent an email announcing their GC program open house. It'll be on Monday October 2nd at 6:15. I am attaching the announcement they sent. 

2017 Open House.jpg

Edited by Billowack

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