Non-Trad, gpa from 12 years ago limiting options

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matthewnunez
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Dec 20, 2019 11:17 am

Non-Trad, gpa from 12 years ago limiting options

Post by matthewnunez » Fri Dec 20, 2019 11:42 am

Seeking advice (possibly reassurance?) regarding my options given a poor gpa from my first undergrad:

I understand that a lot more goes into ones application and selection than just gpa/mcat. However, I am interested in how one gets past the screening process in the first step of application.

situation:
-first bachelors from 2008 had a gpa of 2.39 (military school with a lot of credits geared toward leadership and military specific topics, 140 credit hours with 114 that transferred)
-second bachelors graduate 2020 with a gpa of 4.0 (almost exclusively science, 143 credit hours, state school)
-NextStep's gpa calculator gave me cumulative GPA of ~3.08 and science GPA of ~3.18 (including all classes from both bachelors degrees)

Questions (assume that my mcat score is high or at least competitive):
1. Does the initial screening process account for grades from more than ten years prior?
2. If they do account for all grades no matter the time constraint, will the gpa stats listed above (given a good mcat) get me through the first step in the screening process?
3. If yes to q2, will I be limited in the schools I apply to (for example, state school vs Harvard or Stanford)? If I am limited (can't get past Harvard-like filter with a 3.08) will a high MCAT (say, 520+) have a chance at getting me past the initial filter despite the low gpa?
4. I have two semesters left to also get a masters degree. Will waiting until that is complete affect how I get through the initial screening (keeping in mind that two more semesters will do little to raise cumulative gpa further but only give me an extra degree to throw on the pile)?

I appreciate any advice. Thank you!
NS_Tutor_Mathias
Posts: 616
Joined: Sat Mar 30, 2019 8:39 pm

Re: Non-Trad, gpa from 12 years ago limiting options

Post by NS_Tutor_Mathias » Sun Dec 22, 2019 7:06 pm

The usual caveat: My advice is non-professional and not given as an admissions adviser. We offer that service separately through our website.

1. Yes. Not all schools screen, but those that do tend to screen tend to do cumulative GPA and BCPM (science) screens at around 3.0/3.2 respectively.

2. You will pass most automatic screening measures, although your 3.18 may be borderline.

3. Top tier schools are highly selective for anyone, so there is virtually no guaranteed pathway into them. The combination of a strong, solid trajectory in your recent past and a strong MCAT would maximize your chances anywhere. My advice for reach schools is generally: As long as you're okay simply losing 150 dollars (primary + secondary) and a few hours writing essays, AND you actually have a strong argument to make for why you are a competitive student, go for it.

4. A completed masters may look better, particularly if it is more than an additional semester off. It would likely make your application stand out more after submitting a secondary, rather than helping you pass screening measures (which like I said, you should not have a problem with).
matthewnunez
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Dec 20, 2019 11:17 am

Re: Non-Trad, gpa from 12 years ago limiting options

Post by matthewnunez » Mon Dec 23, 2019 12:58 pm

Thanks for the response! I really appreciate the advice!
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