D1 and Premed

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September 21, 2012 1:31 PM

My son has received some interest from a mid major D1. Its a small but good school and known for a good premed program.

My question is, is playing D1 baseball, not IVY, and getting a good GPA for premed reasonable? or too much for most kids to take on?

My son is a good student but not exceptional.
 
 
 
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September 21, 2012 3:01 PM

I guess the real answer is, 'it depends.'

Doing pre-med anywhere, and getting a high enough GPA, is a challenge.

Call the pre-med advisor and ask them, I am sure they can give a candid view of how well the varsity athletes in general do.

I have had many doctors tell me this tip: students going pre med should try to do the 'gut' chem class over the summer, evne at a local community college of your home college permits it. For many students, it is grueling, and it can be a GPA killer.

Also, know that you don't have to be a bio or chem major to 'be pre med' so get good advice about a 'softer major' and still doing the pre med track.
 
 
 
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September 21, 2012 3:23 PM

quote:
Originally posted by BaseballmomandCEP:
I guess the real answer is, 'it depends.'

Doing pre-med anywhere, and getting a high enough GPA, is a challenge.

Call the pre-med advisor and ask them, I am sure they can give a candid view of how well the varsity athletes in general do.

I have had many doctors tell me this tip: students going pre med should try to do the 'gut' chem class over the summer, evne at a local community college of your home college permits it. For many students, it is grueling, and it can be a GPA killer.

Also, know that you don't have to be a bio or chem major to 'be pre med' so get good advice about a 'softer major' and still doing the pre med track.

Very good advice of course.

One way to analyze this is to consider how tough it is to get into medical school in the first place. I read an article a few years back and they analyzed the difference between getting into law school and getting into medical school here at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. They said the law school typically gets about 2,000 applicants annually for about 300 seats. The medical school on the other hand typically receives between 5,000 to 7,000 applications annually for 125 seats Eek I am assuming it is like that for every medical school in the country. They said the typical medical applicant accepted had perfect 4.0 records in college, scored very high on their medical exam (MCAT?), and typically had advanced degrees including many applicants with PHd's. My guess is it would be EXTREMELY difficult for even the brightest students to maintain a 4.0 average and participate in sports.

If he wants to be a doctor someday, my best advice would be to put his heart and soul into making that happen and forgo the baseball stuff. On the other hand, if he has a future in baseball, I would encourage that as well and perhaps focus on some other major that will not require such impeccable academic credentials.
 
 
 
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September 21, 2012 3:37 PM

quote:
Originally posted by BK35:
My son has received some interest from a mid major D1. Its a small but good school and known for a good premed program.

My question is, is playing D1 baseball, not IVY, and getting a good GPA for premed reasonable? or too much for most kids to take on?


My son is a good student but not exceptional.


It is too much for most kids, but there are of course exceptions like Ryan Tannehill, I think about a 3.5 in biology. Tannehill had said he wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon but I do not know if he ever took the MCAT.

Not sure if you son only wants the pre-med degree or if he wants to go to medical school. In most cases, need to be an exceptional student to go to medical school.
 
 
 
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September 21, 2012 3:40 PM

quote:
They said the typical medical applicant accepted had perfect 4.0 records in college


I believe the avg student that gets into med school has a 3.5 to 3.6 gpa and a 30 mcat. I am not saying that is easy but a 4 is not needed.
 
 
 
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September 21, 2012 4:42 PM

Like other posters have mentioned a lot depends on the program, however very very few D1 programs, other than Stanford and the Ivy’s give their players the leeway to miss practice because of labs and other demands that science and engineering students have. I went through this with my son, who is an engineering student. When we were getting down to the final choices I started asking the head coach directly, “so coach, what happens when you have a practice that starts at 2PM and my son has a lab from 2-4PM on Tuesday and Thursday of the week - what are you going to say to him, how do you handle it with other players, and how would this impact his playing time?” One coach started hymning and hawing about it and, and Coach Stotz at Stanford came straight out and said we have kids coming and going all of the time, it is part of how we run the program. So to find out for sure you need to look at the rosters and see what majors they have, very specifically ask the coach. This is the one area that I personally got involved in the recruiting process since it is difficult for kids to pin down a coach on difficult questions like these.
My personal opinion is that science, pre-med, engineering and other lab dependent majors are not compatible with playing D1 baseball unless it is part of the programs culture. This means the coach is openly supportive, you go watch some practices and see it for yourself, and you confirm it with others on the roster. In the end it WILL impact your sons playing time, even if the program is supportive IMO.
Because of all of this my son decided to play D3 ball. His program is one of the top D3 programs in the country, but the coach is openly supportive and has kids coming and going all of the time. Even with the coming and going however his coach expects him to get his work in on his time. This makes it very challenging and it takes a lot of discipline to get in academic and athletic work in.
I will also be careful about thinking you can take Chemistry at JC’s during the summer as many schools will not allow it. I know my son’s school will not accept Chemistry taken at a JC because it does not meet their academic requirements.
Best of luck to you and your son.
 
 
 
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September 21, 2012 5:29 PM

I recall Craig Krenzel (won a ring as a QB at Ohio St.) did very well in a pre-med curriculum. It was often spoken about on the air in his games.
 
 
 
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September 21, 2012 6:24 PM

quote:
BOF said...My personal opinion is that science, pre-med, engineering and other lab dependent majors are not compatible with playing D1 baseball unless it is part of the programs culture. This means the coach is openly supportive, you go watch some practices and see it for yourself, and you confirm it with others on the roster. In the end it WILL impact your sons playing time, even if the program is supportive IMO.


quote:
BaseballmonandCEP said...Call the pre-med advisor and ask them, I am sure they can give a candid view of how well the varsity athletes in general do.

I have had many doctors tell me this tip: students going pre med should try to do the 'gut' chem class over the summer, evne at a local community college of your home college permits it. For many students, it is grueling, and it can be a GPA killer.



I couldn't have said it any better. The advice BOF and BaseballmomandCEP offer is extremely easy to verify and valuable. I would follow up on those ideas presented.

I think the other part of this puzzle is understanding your son, and his work ethic. If he is self-motivated, disciplined and a self-learner by nature this may be a good situation for him. He my hit his stride in college, who knows? But alot of this may be out of his hands if the program is not tolerant & supportive of students with difficult majors as BOF points out.

The other dynamic to this is his baseball position. If he is a pitcher there may be more tolerance than for a position player. I know in my son's case (engineering) that pitching vs position players is a huge difference with his D1 baseball program.
 
Last edited by fenwaysouth September 21, 2012 6:26 PM
 
 
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September 21, 2012 7:09 PM

My daughter played softball and majored in forensic science. Her classes with labs only available in the afternoon she had to take in the summer.
 
 
 
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September 22, 2012 11:56 AM

Fenway made a good point on position. Pitchers can get in their throwing and bullpens more on their time so it is a little easier than a position player.

RJM, at least at my son's school the labs are concurrent with the classes so you have to take them in the same semester to stay on track with the program.
 
 
 
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September 22, 2012 1:59 PM

quote:
Originally posted by BOF:
Fenway made a good point on position. Pitchers can get in their throwing and bullpens more on their time so it is a little easier than a position player.

RJM, at least at my son's school the labs are concurrent with the classes so you have to take them in the same semester to stay on track with the program.
She had to take the class and the lab in summer school.
 
 
 
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September 22, 2012 11:12 PM

quote:
Originally posted by BaseballmomandCEP:

I have had many doctors tell me this tip: students going pre med should try to do the 'gut' chem class over the summer, evne at a local community college of your home college permits it. For many students, it is grueling, and it can be a GPA killer.



Just make sure that the class is rigorous enough to sufficiently prepare you for organic chemistry, which is perhaps even MORE of a GPA killer.
 
 
 
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September 22, 2012 11:15 PM

Here is one local Tampa player who did what you ask:

Jonathon Kosco
 
 
 
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September 23, 2012 1:40 AM

quote:
Originally posted by Blue10:
Just make sure that the class is rigorous enough to sufficiently prepare you for organic chemistry, which is perhaps even MORE of a GPA killer.


Organic Chem not only is a GPA killer, it's a weeding tool. If you want to know if the preparatory class is good enough, ask the professor how what his/her OC final was.
 
 
 
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September 25, 2012 4:15 PM

It can be done, but you must research the school, talk with the dean of biology/science department, and make sure they are willing to make some exceptions for your son when he travels during the spring. Additionally the coach needs to be willing to allow a flexible schedule for some practices/workouts because of the extra demands of labs that cannot be missed.

My son is at a mid-D1 and is taking premed. He did well his freshman year, but we also did the aforementioned. Several labs he missed while on the road, the dean allowed him to make up in other classes labs when he returned. At least one missed test was proctored so he could take it upon his return. Also we helped him to choose class schedules which are more heavily weighted in the Fall knowing it will be more demanding in the Spring.

Some schools are very aware of which professors are friendly/understanding toward student athletes, and which ones are not. The coaching staff at USC for instance will review the class schedule, and say avoid that teacher, and take this other class instead. Those are the extra type of things he will be dealing with, so a lot of homework needs to go in to choose the right school for him to do both.

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September 25, 2012 5:19 PM

I think it really depends on the person. I personally would struggle with it because it takes a while to get stuff into my brain. I was a student athlete at Georgia Tech and majored in management rather than engineering for that reason. However, my son is just starting out as a freshman at a Top 20 D1 program studying engineering. Studying and time management comes much easier to him than it did to me. He obviously has a long way to go, but he is already taking labs and so far he seems to be doing quite well. There was a kid from the team who graduated last year in mechanical engineering with high honors, and there are 2 other upperclassmen that are majoring in engineering that are key starters.
 
 
 
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September 26, 2012 12:02 PM

BK35- you've gotten great advice here that should be helpful. I want to add 2 points:

Once students get to college and take some basic classes and pre-recs they often change their majors. So like they say here on the hsbbweb don't pick a college strictly for premed (or baseball).

I have worked many years with medical school students. They all had outstanding grades in college and great MCAT scores. Medical school is very selective and in my neck of the woods only the top students get into good med schools. One woman majored in a more difficult major than biology @ UC
Irvine. She had 2 B's mixed in with all her A's so not a 4.0 college GPA. She was not admitted to the UCI med school but strangely enough was accepted by Stanford and is doing great. If you don't go to a well respected med school it can be tough to get a good residency program.

But if your son is really motivated, gets to college and does do the premed route you may find his college grades may be better than high school due to maturity and focus. Good luck.
 
 
 
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September 26, 2012 5:25 PM

quote:
Originally posted by CaBB:
She was not admitted to the UCI med school but strangely enough was accepted by Stanford and is doing great.


Competition for UC medical schools is incredibly fierce, due to their "affordability".

UC Irvine 2nd yr med school costs: $63K
Stanford med school 2nd yr: $97K

Yikes!
 
 
 
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September 28, 2012 10:27 AM

Good read.. Great advise and thoughts. A new trend developing with the shortage of primary care physicians is the emphasis on more humanistic approach,volunteerism, research and generally a more well rounded and diverse applicant besides GPA, MCAT alone. I would say just playing baseball at any level given it be Division I,II, III for 4 years and managing your time is already a plus. In my dealings with medical residents, there are more applicants to med school who are not necessarily biology or science majors. One was even a Music major. The best MCAT scores recently reported were taken by English Majors!
 
 
 
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