The chances are good that at some point you may be a “re-applicant,” having not succeeded in gaining admission the first time. First, recognize that you are NOT alone in this situation! Because there are so few seats for so very many applicants, many will not gain admission. At that point, you may consider re-applying.
What can you do?
- Talk with a member of the Medical Careers Advisory Committee, who can advise you on your next steps.
- Talk with a med school admissions rep. Many admissions counselors are willing to talk to a candidate who does not gain admission, discussing the strengths and weaknesses of their application
- Consider the various ways in which you can strengthen your application. Can you improve your GPA? Re-take the MCAT? Put in some additional shadowing or volunteer hours? Re-write your personal statement? For students who have graduated, this may involve a post-baccalaureate program.
- You can re-consider the medical schools to which you are applying, and adjust accordingly.
- You might consider working in the healthcare field for a year or two, and then applying again with a bit more experience and maturity on your side.
- If you have continued to shadow or volunteer in different situations, you can ask your mentor or supervisor for a letter of recommendation.
- It may be that you might need to re-examine your career goals, and see if there is another avenue to achieve your personal goals that does not involve medical school.
If you are a re-applicant, you can still work with the MCAC. Let us know your intentions. We will still need new or updated materials from you:
- A list of the schools you intend to apply to as a re-applicant
- A copy of your most recent unofficial transcript. If you applied as a junior, will we now need your final transcript from TCNJ
- A copy of a more recent MCAT test score report, if you took the test again
- A copy of the new, completed med school application
- Perhaps new letters of recommendation. We will still have the letters of recommendation used previously. Some of them may need to be updated by the evaluator, to add additional information about you or to adjust the letter to a new career direction. In many cases, a re-applicant should consider supplying one or two new letters of recommendation, from new mentors in new experiences or new classes. In such a case, we will need to know the name(s) of those new letter writers.
- We will also need an update from you as to your current situation and status, especially if you’ve been away from campus for a while. What are you doing to prepare for this career? We will want to include that in your committee letter of recommendation.
Very often, students are more successful as re-applicants. They have been through the process and know what to do and to expect. If they first applied as Juniors, they will have one more year of grades – and knowledge! – under their belt and reflected in their GPA. They’ve collected and reported the bulk of the information needed in the application. They’ve perhaps seen different med schools, and experienced a variety of interviews. In many ways, they are more READY to apply than they were the first time – ready to be successful!