CLS career path dead-end?

Comments (8)

sigh in Glendale, California

26 months ago

Hello Folks!

I'm a little worried about my prospects of being accepted into a CLS program in California.

Today, I have a BS in bio/microbio and all my CLS prerequisites have been completed.

I've already applied to UCI, UCD, and CSULA.

I was initially granted an interview with UCD last year for the 2013 spring cycle, but it was later rescinded because one of my prerequisites was not completed yet (biochemistry).

As of today, I have been rejected from all three programs (no interviews). Not too worried about CSULA as they are not even accredited by the NAACLS yet (maybe it will happen soon, who knows).

I'm planning on applying to LLU before the June 2nd deadline as I have no other alternatives at the moment.

My cumulative GPA is around 2.9 (horrible), my science GPA is around 3.1 (less horrible), and my last 2 years of schooling I had a 3.89 GPA (I started off slow and became a much better student towards the end of my studies).

My prerequisites are going to start expiring one-by-one, year-after-year starting in 2014. It really seems as though I'm wasting my time with CLS. I want it really bad, but I have to be realistic about my chances, you know?

I suppose I could re-enroll in all those courses again, namely analytical chemistry, but it's still no guarantee for me in the end. Not to mention how much time and money would I lose in the process.

Should I keep trudging along? Should I just call it a day and find another career path? With all the strong competition and bottle-necking going on, it all seems quite dismal to me.

The advice here is always appreciated. Thank you, everyone.

oiboyz in Los Angeles, California

26 months ago

I sympathize! But I don't think pre-reqs expire that fast, do they? I thought it was just a few specific pre-reqs that expire, and after seven years, not three, according to the rules laid down by the state of California. I could be wrong...

Since you really want to be a CLS, I think LLU is likely your fastest and definitely your most certain route. When I talked to LLU's director two years ago, she said it wasn't hard to get in. But of course it takes two years and costs about $60,000. There's also Cal State Dominguez Hills. I believe that both of those programs lead pretty certainly to a license, as long as you're capable of the work (which I'm sure you are, with such a good GPA your last two years.) You could talk to the program directors about your specific situation.

To keep trying for the one-year internships instead, one plan would be to try your best to get a job that will give you practical lab experience (if you don't have one already). That would make your application stronger, would let you make sure you like lab work, and would give you a career so you can be moving forward and making money. Then just apply to all the programs, every year. It's not much work to re-apply once you've applied the first time.

But if it seems like you're not likely to get a spot no matter how many years you give it, then LLU or Cal State Dominguez Hills would make a lot of sense. Only you know if it's worth it or what alternative careers might be more attractive for you. Maybe ask yourself what you'll wish you had done, five years from now. I hope everything works out well for you!

CLS potential in San Diego, California

26 months ago

I believe when you do the one year training at CSULA and pass the ASCP, you're certified and can work at the same jobs as others who do get trained at UCD and UCI. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.

Other options to do with your bio degree is actually work at a biotech company because many departments will hire graduates with your degree. QC, R&D, product development, manufacturing, clinical etc.. I know it can seem like a dead end, but if you stay active at work and learn about other departments, I've seen many who actually go from working in the lab to desk jobs at the company such as project management, marketing, sales, tech support, etc..

Don't give up hope and good luck!

CLS48 in California

26 months ago

I think you'd have a shot at Loma Linda. Great school. I graduated from there some years ago, paid off my loans with a per diem job, and now I'm a department supervisor. Talk to Kathy from there. She's one of the advisors. If you're nice to her, you'll get in with those statistics.

whisper in California

26 months ago

If you are willing to relocate to the Bay Area for one year of training, you may have a better chance with SFSU and SJSU. I don't know about SFSU, but I trained at one of the hospitals affiliated with SJSU, and if you are invited for an interview, your chances of being accepted are 1:2. From what I have heard, it looks like many of the programs in Southern California interview 4-6 candidates for each available spot in the program.

SJSU got 144 applications this past cycle, but your GPA from the last 60 units is definitely impressive. Based on CLS48's comments, I think your best bets would be Loma Linda, or maybe one of the Bay Area programs.

Other things to keep in mind for SJSU and SFSU:
- They accept 2 classes every year (March and September)
- SJSU now really seems to want either lab experience or pre-reqs with lab components (especially for hematology and medical micro)
- if you are applying to the June 2nd Loma Linda deadline, you could also apply to SJSU and SFSU at the same time. They have deadlines in the summer for classes that will start the following spring.

Good luck!

Maya in San Francisco, California

25 months ago

Hey Folks,
I just got Trainee Licence CGMBS and I also have vailed General Trainee licence (CLS)from LFS. Do anyone knows how to apply Quest and Company? Please let me if you can help me to find some internship my email is Thanks

ally in Lomita, California

16 months ago

Hi there,

I just recently graduated from UCR with a Bio degree and I'm really concerned and worried about my GPA not being good enough for the CLS program. I still have to complete the remaining prereqs. for CLS (hematology, med microbioloby, etc) for the CLS program but I was wondering if it would be a good idea to retake certain classes or take more classes to boost my GPA? I'd really appreciate any suggestions and advice, thank you!

GoldenAge in Garden Grove, California

16 months ago

We should have a backup plan if you don't get into the CLS training program. I know many Filipino CLS work in the biotech industry where they work in R&D or do QC testing on diagnostic medical device& reagents (the job duties are quite similar to CLS in a clinical lab). Maybe the salary is not as high as a CLS who work in the hospital, but it's a good alternative choice. You can gain related experience, have a job to support for a living while still continue pursuing for CLS training program. Most of candidates for CLS training have Bio or Chem majors, so you can try to find a job in biotech, pharmaceutical, or health care to work to earn money and at the same time study part-time to increase GPA or to meet the prerequisites and continue applying for CLS training program again...Many people fail at the first try, but then succeed in the next application cycle.

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