I used to think that I was one of the smartest students, only to be rivaled by my fellow high school peers Fred and Heather. Freshman year of high school, there were only 4 freshmen taking AP calculus; Brittney, Fred, and Heather. As far as I knew, freshmen in calculus were completely unprecedented.
For me, I sat comfortably at third for smartest student while Fred and Heather had a long winded rivalry. (As one of Heather’s best friends, I knew she considered it the fight of her life, but I have no idea if Fred even noticed.)
I had no doubt that I would get into UW, even though I held doubt in conversation (oh fake modest me). I had done everything right. Stellar grades, an Associate’s degree by the time I graduated high school, volunteering, and a kick-ass personal statement.
Then, I went to UW. There I encountered Organic Chemistry, the UW grading scale (should be considered inhumane), classes of 600 people, and the need for some classes to curve the grades so that a certain number DO fail. Every sixth person I meet wants to be a doctor, and now I do not have the confidence of admittance that I once had.
A lot of premed students will have episodes of self consuming doubt. I’ve had them, and I’ve talked others down from their own. You’re probably familiar if you’re reading this right now.
Those depressive moments that can last hours to days, where you know you’re going to fail that class, that you don’t have enough shadowing hours, that you don’t have research experience, that you don’t have enough experience in anything and you have no idea how to study for the MCAT.
All of this can hit at once and culminate into you laying in bed with a bowl of popcorn on the right, blanket over your head to block out the world, and your laptop open to the requirements into a teaching degree.
If you find yourself hurtling down that hole of 2% acceptance rates, you have come to the right place, because I’m about to share with you how I get myself out of these episodes, and what is still driving my hope today.
This link is the AAMC report of the applicants and matriculants to every medical school in the country. It’s nerve racking to see the number of applicants in the 10,000’s when the number they are accepting is only 100.
However, this does not take into account multiple applicants! In the number of applicants for each school, there are people who have applied, prefer, and may be accepted to another school. The average number of applications per applicant was 16 for 2018-2019.
So while this report will reveal that there was 849,678 total applications in the country, there was only 52,777 applicants. In total for 2018-2019, there were spots for 21,622 matriculants in the country.
Consequently, there is a 40.97% chance that I get accepted SOMEWHERE in the U.S.! (21,622 matriculants/ 52,777 applicants X 100). If that doesn’t give you hope, I don’t know what will.