Applied to 6 Universities for PhD in Pharmacy and Haven't Got Even One Admit

Raghuram Sukumar Study in USA 33 Comments

> Following post was shared by Ajay who applied for PhD in Pharmacy in USA to 6 Universities.

I applied for fall 2012 to following universities in USA

  • Virginia commonwealth university
  • Northeastern university
  • university of Pittsburgh
  • suny buffalo
  • university of Mississippi
  • university of Missouri Kansas city.

My profile

  • GRE 285 first attempt, 290 second.
  • TOEFL 84.
  • B.pharm 70% m.pharm gpa 6.37/10 percentage 73%.
  • one research article and one review article publications.

I emailed to all of my professors on which two professors gave me a good reply and two others denied.

I was given admit for masters in Pittsburgh though but denied for PhD. I don’t have work experience, its been just two months for me in work right now. Broken down as hell, i am planning to apply again for this spring, please advice on my profile friends.

I cant afford the tuition fee for MS. That is why i did my masters degree.

PhD in Pharmacy in USA

I suggest you read the following articles about PhD Admission

I think your  GRE score is low for applying for PhD.

I would apply for MS, come to USA then convert to PhD. But, you already have MS, so I would suggest improving your profile (GRE and Research experience).


  1. Hello HSB!!! You have always helped me in many ways and i am very thankful for that.
    This time i need a solid solution for a huge problem. Well, here it goes…

    A friend of mine, who wants to pursue his master’s in USA, has a big mark in his profile. He has nearly 35 backlogs with 60% in his engineering. It doesn’t mean that he is poor in studies, due to some problems he couldn’t. But in his last year of engineering he dint fail in a single exam, although his previous backlogs were active . Many times he dint attempt the exam. Now all his subjects are cleared.

    His GRE and TOEFL score are 1250 and 100. These are score are pretty good, i think.
    The question is will he get any admits if he apply to universities????
    if at all he gets one, is there any chance of getting visa???

    Is there any possibility that supports his profile in any way??
    Any courses, any other exams to be written, anything?
    Or its better, if he gets job experience for a year and then apply for MS???

    Please suggest something.
    If any of your friends, relatives had same problem, please feel free to tell how they dealt!!
    Any suggestions from your experience is most welcomed.
    Thank you in advance:):)
    Have a good day!!

    1. IF he has shown progress, then he can get admission and visa. But he has to make an convincing argument in his SOP and during visa interview.

      1. Please can you post it??
        i would like to know others experience and suggestions, its very important..

    2. Hey sneha again, untill you throw the dice you cant expect six and interesting you are apprehensive about the last step that is visa. Visa rejection has boatland of causes. So I suugest apply since I know many my friends who has no. of backlogs but they have got visa.

  2. And a query about my GRE score card!!
    I gave my exam on 6th june 2012, i dint receive my score card yet. I am worried a bit as its been nearly a month…
    Whom to consult about this problem??

    Thanks in advance:):)

    1. Hey Sneha, This is very common, even I didnt get and to be frank it has no need, just carry print out from your ETS account in future for visa interview. One more thing, you can call to ETS in New jersey / e-mail them for your satisfaction.

  3. to be frank ur GRE, and toefl is less.
    Make more publications

    my frnd hv 11 research paper
    10 international confer
    7 semnars
    B.Pharm: 70
    1 yr teaching exp
    GRE 1290, toefl 96

    He got only 1 admit from MS
    so make more links with the professors and do research in a particular area only
    atlest publish some review articles
    also go for Canada, Germany, Australia, Singapore this time.
    first contact to the professor then apply to the univ.
    hope this will help
    good luck

    1. Hey Ajay, I think you have to do one thing only just write GRE again, try to get minimum 10, you have research publications that is very good, there are many people who dont have single publications are in IVY league university. So just write it again and try to apply atleast 10 university. Other things are fine…

  4. I am a n Egyptian pharmacist and i shocked by this article….Aproimatily, I have the same situation. the plan for you and also me :
    1- work on the quantitative resoning of the GRE …it easy to get a score near 170.
    2- work on toefl….it is easy.
    3- try the admission for biochemistry and analytical chemistry and bioanalytical chemistry phd programs in chemistry departments. these phds are very close to the pharmaceutical work.

    what do you think HSB?

    1. you are brilliant … nice options .. even someone is pharmaceutics can opt for chemical engineering and biomedical enginneering if s/he wan to do research in drug delivery.

  5. hey ajay
    sorry to hear this and also tensed as i too finished my and planning for phd for next spring. my track is also similar,

    TOEFL-91, GRE yet to give,
    B.Pharmacy-74% and 78% and 1 research paper publication and 1yr teaching experience and 1 yr clinical research experience

    so wat do u think of my profile HSB? would i get admission for phd???

  6. ajay,

    now-a-days phd adds no value. even doctorate from stanford drives a taxi.

    read more about the phd crisis in usa ( more phds, less jobs ) here.

    there are only a few handful us states which have minimum wage law for phds / pdfs. my friend did his phd in cse from lsu ( tier one public ) and now earns only 18000 usd pa. even a plumber earns much more than him and he is now trying to return to india where a phd gets 10 – 15 lac pa.

    hence, savings in usa for phd: 18 – 10 = 8 k usd / 4 lac pa
    and, savings in india for phd : 10 – 1 lac = 9 lac pa

    1. Couple of articles don’t show the PhD degree useless. How about Millions of PhD hoders who are working in USA and thousands of professors who are in universities. If there were driving taxi’s as you said form some article, who will be teaching Masters and other students.

      Why is that your comments always (almost) have negative outlook?

    2. my bro in law has completed phd in pharmacy in usa and got a package of 1,00,000 dollars per annum . and this is normal. 🙂

      1. Dear dr OM,
        what is exactly the decipline of pharmcy phd, is it pharmaceutical chemistry , pharmceutics or pharmcy administration and do you have a liscence to work as pharmacist
        1.00.000 dollars package waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaw!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. is not me, but my bro in law who has completed phd in pharmcology. he got a job in CRO in north east. he did not have pharmcist license. he is just phd, which i think is better than being a pharmacist in USA. the reason, if look at the averrage salary of phd in lifescience people and pharmacist than, one with phd earns more than pharmacist. also, there are lots of pharmacsit in usa now as government has granted number of college to start pharmd course. its short of saturation in there. however, at the same time i would say that, rajashree’s comments is an eye opener. look a the second link, who is talking there. its coming form nature, amongst the most trust-able source. so there is a truth there. however, for us, Indians, the situation is different. i think for us, phd is best way to go der and do research and get a good paying job in the end. but if someone is already in usa than for then phd is not that great option considering current scenario. i think a person in usa wud prefer mba over phd. i am in india now and i like research so i am considering phd.

      1. very good conclusion.. it is typical with my expectations. yes, phd in any pharmaceutical discipline is better than pharmd specially for non americans like indians and egyptians and all HSB followers.
        also their is great opportunities in middle east, all my friendswho get phd from usa have strong positions now, here, in middle east.

    2. hey a
      would like to know if u r pharmacist and if u know anything about ph d in usa for pharmacists

      1. Dear sir,
        i am a pharmacist in Egypt and prepare for admission for spring 2013. my information about pharmacy school in usa that it is very very competitive and it is more easy to get admission at chemistry departments of science schools than pharmacy schools. for example: most analytical chemistry, biochemistry professors in pharmacy schools in egypt got their phds from non pharmacy schools. also in industry i have a friend who got his phd in bioanalytical chemistry from Washington state univ… then he got nice positions in SaudiArabia and Egypt.
        in MIDDLE EAST we say any degree from USA has the periority.

        1. hey a

          i did my masters in pharmacy practice dept and now trying for phd wats ur dept??

          and also i searched a lot for universities that have intake for spring for phd programme and if u know any can u tell me the univ that accept applications for spring 2013

          thanks in advance

  7. Hi Ajay,

    This fall session even i applied for Phd though not in pharmacy but for Bioinformatics and was rejected by all, but one suggestion do try again and if possible go for masters prog .As in US they have a high expectation for PhD ,i mean with regard to publications and research experience. so if u do ur masters from here and then apply for PhD admission is easy.

    Wish you luck for future.

    1. That’s good strategy. If profile is below PHD standard then try for MS.

  8. Hi friends, thanks to all who replied to me. I am sorry I was busy with my work that’s why not able to look at this. I can’t afford for Masters degree, i am from a normal middle class family only. That’s why i did my Masters here. I am applying for PhD because I wasn’t satisfied with my research project and right now I am working in Pharmaceutical Industry in R&D department. When I applied i wasn’t having any experience.

    I sacrificed an MNC job, a job in UK all for this. Had a way lot of stress for more than a year. I went for the job only after my application process to the universities was completed. Being sacrificed so much for it, I don’t want to give up. I can get back the money i used, but certainly not the time and the jobs. I don’t believe in luck, i believe “Luck is for Losers”.
    And what was that, a friend above replied that a PhD graduate going for job as a Taxi driver? That’s is something will never happen, then why on earth there is demand for PhD.

    Is my GRE enough?

  9. hey hie, My GRE score is 307, have 1 research paper and 7 yrs research experience.Can you advise me on where to apply for pHd in Biosciences.Thanks S.M

  10. hi, I wish to apply to PhD in Cancer Biology in USA for fall 2013. I have a GRE score of 1330 .I am yet to give TOEFL. I have 2 research papers but they are not published and one of the research is related to cancer. I am applying to –
    Roswell Park Institute of Cancer, SUNY Buffalo
    University of Pittsburgh
    South Florida University
    West Virginia University
    University of Texas, San Antonio
    University of Massachusetts, Worchester
    University of Tennessee
    Which out of these universities do I stand a chance to get an admit from?

  11. hi sir .i did Pharm.D in india..i have interest in phd in pharmacy usa..tell procedure..and merits and demerits in usa?

  12. I am studying Bachelor in microbiology at Mumbai university. My undergraduate GPA is- 1st semester- 6/7
    2nd semester- 6.7/7
    3rd semester- 6.33/7
    4th semester- 7/7
    5th semester- 7/7
    6th semester- 7/7
    Percentages- 73% (Distinction)

    Along with this, i have done extra curricular activities, have participated in inter & intra collegiate competitions, have done 2 research project in under graduate level.
    I want to pursue PhD in Pharmacology. I haven’t given GRE & TOEFL. But I will definitely try to get good marks in GRE & TOEFL.
    I want to ask you-
    Is my GPA good for getting admission in top PhD program ?
    If they are less, can my master’s GPA compensate them ?
    Plz reply… 🙂

  13. Hai friends this is swathi, completed M.Pharm in Sri Padmavathi Mahila University, Tirupati with 81% and B.Pharm with 80.33%, 2 research papers and 1 review paper publishes, presented papers in 2 international and 7 national conferences, i am plainnning to do ph.d in pharmaceutics in US, can any one plz suggest me process for getting admission in universities, whether i should apply for universities before attempting GRE and TOEFL or after attempting GRE…

    1. Well ideally you should be taking these tests first. Simultaneously narrow down on the research areas you would like to work in. Check for as many programs and Universities as possible. Once you have scores in hand, start communicating with the concerned faculty members so that they can consider to supervise you for your thesis. Based on your exposure, your admission chances should be good. Start doing extensive research on the appropriate Universities. For further insights from our end, post your queries in the forums section under appropriate thread!

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