Becoming a Competitive Re-applicant
Being a successful re-applicant is possible, but it is certainly challenging. A re-applicant is not just competing against the rest of the applicants in the applicant pool but is also competing against his/her prior applications. It is incredibly important for re-applicants to show substantial improvement over prior applications. Some applicants who are wait listed in application cycle A and reapply for cycle B are not invited for an interview because very little, if anything, has improved on the new application. Many applicants need to wait a year before re-applying in order to establish enough evidence that they have improved in multiple areas of the application.
(This is why we encourage all applicants to apply when their application is as strong as possible. It rarely ends well for an applicant who applies “just to see what happens” before he/she is competitive.)
It’s not impossible! Nearly 12% of the entering class of 2013 was comprised of re-applicants.
Re-applicants should plan to improve in as many areas of the application as possible. Evaluate and identify your weakness. However, do not only focus on weak areas of your application – address all areas that can be improved.
This may mean:
- Re-taking the DAT even if you had a strong score, especially if you think you can improve
- Earning a two-year master’s degree (with a thesis) in a core science area
- More shadowing, more community service, and/or more research experience
- Obtaining new letters of evaluation
- Updating your personal statement
- All of the above