Is it hard to get accepted into medical school? You think getting into medical school is all about years of hard work, self restraint, self sacrifice, motivation and scholarly excellence? Think again. From Carpe Diem comes this aggregate data : 2008-2010 Medical School Acceptance Rates from the Association of American Medical Colleges. As you can see, getting accepted into medical school has less to do with working hard and more to do about being black or Hispanic. Don't get mad at Happy. I didn't make this data up. It's right here for you all to see. My analysis is accurate and truthful. The average GPA for students applying to medical school in 2010 was 3.53 and the average MCAT score for students applying to medical school in 2010 was 28.3. If you are black and have average MCAT scores and average GPA, your acceptance rate (84.8%) is almost three times higher than an Asian applicant (29.3%) with similar average objective data.
If you are black and you have the below average grades and below average MCAT scores, you are 5X (66.4%) more likely to get accepted to medical school than a white applicant (12.3%) with the same objective data and 8X more likely to get accepted than an Asian (7.9%) with the same objective data. In fact, if you are black and have a GPA and MCAT score below average, your medical school acceptance rate (66.4%) is about the same as the rate of acceptance for a white applicant with above average grade point average and above average MCAT score (74%).
As someone who has completed the medical school application process, twice, I can assure you that medical school acceptance committees don't care about your essay or your volunteer work. The only difference between my two applications were my MCAT scores, and that's exactly what they told me. They want a great GPA and a great MCAT score to tell the world their students are better than their peers. That's what they are compared against and that is what is reported for the world to see. It is all about objective data, including the color of your skin, no matter how repulsive that is.
What does that mean for you as a medical school applicant?
- If you are Asian or white, you have to have a better than average MCAT score and a better than average GPA to bring your acceptance rate to a 50:50 chance of getting in. Or, alternatively, you can mark black or Hispanic on your application and head down to your local makeup artist and have them help you present yourself to the accepting committee as either black or Hispanic.
- If you are black or Hispanic and you show up to the table with below average grades and MCAT scores, don't worry, your skin color gives you a better than 50:50 shot of getting in. You don't have to worry about taking the MCAT twice. Don't study too hard. It's not necessary. They'll take you because you have other qualities they want, like the color of your skin.
What does this mean if you're a patient?
If you believe that GPA and MCAT scores have any correlation with being a good doctor, as a whole, you should avoid black and Hispanic doctors, because their rate of acceptance into medical school with below average grades and below average MCAT scores is so high. You can worry less about the the grades and MCAT scores of your Asian and white doctors, because they are much less likely to get accepted into medical school with below average grades and MCATs. That's what the data is telling us. They just aren't accepted at the rate black applicants are. Don't get mad at me for speaking the truth. That's what the data is telling us. Hard, objective data.
If you think that GPA and MCAT scores don't have any correlation with who's taking care of you, than you should seek out only those doctors with the lowest GPA and MCAT. Why? Because you must conclude that since they got accepted with the worst grades and GPA instead of another candidate with above average MCATs and grades, they MUST have other subjective or objective qualities which make them better medical school candidates and ultimately a better doctor and as a patient searching for the best, you should seek them out.
If GPA and MCAT scores are poor markers of future success for good doctors, then we should immediately stop using both as admission criteria and instead just stick with skin color. Being black makes for better doctors. That's the conclusion I have to come to based on the rates of acceptance into medical schools in our country.