Saturday, 15 October 2011

And so begins the most stressful six months of my life

Currently listening to: Corporal Clegg - Pink Floyd

During my time at QMUL, I had only one thought going through my mind whilst attempting to get to grips with my Biomedical Sciences degree: "it will all be worth it when I apply for medical school". Having wanted to study medicine since the age of about 9 or 10 (I wanted to be a forensic pathologist back then - I was an odd child), but not having had the grades to apply during school, my degree seemed like an opportunity to atone for my rubbish chemistry marks during sixth form. Happily, it paid off, I graduated in July and sent off my UCAS application for medical school two days ago. It feels like all those plans which I made back when I first started university are slowly being realised, which is a pretty good feeling indeed.

So...after all the indecision surrounding my final choice over the past few weeks (see earlier posts), where did I pick? The results are in, and the following choices made it onto the UCAS form:

Barts and The London A101 GEP
Warwick University A101 GEP
Barts and The London A100 5 yr degree


Southampton University A101 GEP

Surprising no? I seemed dead set against it didn't I? So what made me change my mind? Given that Newcastle's UKCAT cut off last year was 702.5, and this year it will almost certainly rise, I would have had a 100% chance of rejection had I applied there. I still have an overwhelming chance of rejection with Southampton, but it's less than 100%, at any rate. And without wanting to sound completely arrogant, by the time I finished writing my personal statement, I thought I'd actually made quite a good job of it. I'm not trying to say that I'll definitely meet Southampton's standards, but I do think I've given myself a decent shot so I don't feel totally hopeless for applying there.

So, what now? By the time my birthday rolls round (in March), I'll be one year older and also have a very good clue about what I'll be doing come September 2012. It's so strange to think that in just under six months everything will be way or another. At the end of the day, these past three years (and counting) have all been focused on one goal: getting into medical school. To that end, I really hope that my hard work during my degree, my UKCAT score and my personal statement will land me an interview or two, because words really cannot describe just how much I want to do medicine.

In the mean time, I know there will be a lot of nervous waiting, sleepless nights, and endless pessimism. So I'm glad that my masters degree will give me something else to think about during this time. Thanks to everyone who's commented these past few weeks, the advice has been much appreciated. Particular shout out to "A Fresher" for very succinctly summing up why Newcastle would have been a bad choice for me.


  1. Good choice. Everyone has an overwhelming chance of rejection for any GEP program, but someone has to get in to Southampton and it could be you. I'm sure you'll get at least 5 year Barts.

    Do Barts and Warwick GEPs still share their selection centre?

  2. Grumpy, how is wanting to be a doctor at 8 or 9 a little weird.. we've all played doctor as kids im sure!! =)

    Good luck grumpy!!

  3. I made EXACTLY those choices 2 years ago, scary! Good luck :)

  4. @tofu: Wanting to become a dr isn't weird...but already picking out your specialty (a pretty morbid one at that) WAS strange...especially considering one of my friends at primary school was firmly set on being a footballer...somehow wanting to kick a ball around and make lots of money seems more fitting for a nine year old than performing post-mortems!

    @Anonymous#1: Quite, I'd be ecstatic if BL 5 yr gave me an offer...I'm absolutely not going to be picky here...all I want to do is have a place to study next year. Yeah the selection centres are joint.

    @Dr Faye: Thank you :) so wait, which one are you at now?

    @areyousure?: Best of luck to you too...where did you go for in the end?

  5. Good luck Grumpy! I suspect that this time next year you may well be a Bart's medical student :)

  6. I'm at Barts in my 2nd year of the 4-year course :)

  7. After a lot of thinking I went for Southampton, UEA, Lancaster and Liverpool.

  8. Take Barts over Warwick. Warwick is fucking shit.

  9. @Dr Faye: Ahh, that's so cool...I'm so envious, I hope that's me someday :D

    @areyousure?: Good luck mate, I've visited Southampton, it's really nice.

    @Anonymous#2: Thank you so much, I really hope so :)

    @Anonymous#3: Well BL is my first choice, but believe me, if I had a Warwick offer I'd still be overjoyed!