So, I got a few questions from a couple of readers after the introduction of Mary-Beth about the Texas Fresh Start Program. First off no Mary-Beth did not use this program but as some have showed some interest in it I decided to look into it and explain it a bit.
It is a unique program for Texas residents that allows all courses that were taken over 10 years ago to be for all intents and purposes ERASED.
If you are a non-traditional that had a bad undergrad this sounds like an amazing option to essentially get a second chance and not have to get a full semester of A’s only to have your GPA rise by a measly .02 points. 😦
What’s the catch?
- It is ALL or NOTHING if you do this you don’t get to choose what classes to keep and which to restart. ALL GRADES from 10+ years will be erased and they won’t count towards prerequisites nor your GPA.
- Only will help if your using the TMDSAS (unfortunately AMCAS will still want all your coursework and they will calculate it into your GPA)
- Must be a Texas Resident
While the benefits of this program are obvious there are some things that must be considered.
- The amount of financial aid you qualify for is still determined by ALL credits taken even those that were “erased”
- So please make sure that you qualify for enough financial aid or can pay for the total amount of time required for your degree
- Other Graduate programs have different policies of how the Academic Fresh Start coursework will be counted
- It’s a safe bet that if it is a PUBLIC Texas School then it will apply as this is a Texas Law
This is a great option if you plan on applying to only Texas schools, are financially able to support the 3+ years required, and all your bad courses are 10+ years or older.
With that said in my own opinion if you already have a Bachelors degree you may be better off just getting into a Masters program which will only take you 1 or 2 years to complete and your more recent grades will obviously have more weight than 10+ years ago. Although you must do exceptionally well in your Masters to make the argument of how you have changed from your frivolous early college years.
There are a few universities in other states that offer similar fresh start programs but I don’t see how it would help you in getting into medical school unless AMCAS adopts new policies and if TMDSAS recognizes fresh start programs from other states.