Hi everyone! I hope midterms are not killing you yet! Last week I attended an amazing information session that Mr. Sobol hosted on applying to medical schools. Now, honestly, I have attended a couple of information sessions before that HPO and other organizations hosted, and I found these sessions were repetitive and cursory. However, this one was very detailed and much more insightful! I would like to share with you some important things I gleaned from this information session.
- When it comes to choosing medical colleges, it is important to first go on the HPO website and actually see what medical schools Rutgers students have gotten into. There is a better chance that these colleges will be a good fit for you as well! Also, purchase MSAR because this database of medical schools gives detailed descriptions and statistics on recent matriculating students, curriculum, grading system, financial costs, and more about each medical college.
- Make sure your Facebook and other social media accounts are professional. This includes your email address. I never thought about this until I attended the information session! Mr. Sobol mentioned how some medical colleges can view your social media accounts to learn more about how you present yourself, so just remember to clear up any silly or embarrassing pictures you may have on Instagram or Facebook. In addition, if your email is something like firstname.lastname@example.org, then you may not come off exactly as professional…
- Don’t apply Early Decision if you are not more than 100000% sure you have a good chance getting into the medical college. This is because if the medical school you apply Early Decision to waitlists you, then you might be too late to submit your applications to other medical colleges in which your chance of getting in might have been higher.
- Go to open houses and make connections. When you go to open houses, you will get to meet with the deans and other staff members of the medical schools. It will be a good chance to get to know them so they can put a face to your application. It would be even better to follow up after the open house by emailing them any additional questions or comments you have about the medical school. Using Linkedin to connect with other doctors and deans of medical schools is also good.
Here are some tips I learned for medical school interviews.
- Research each medical school before going to your interview. Really get to know what they have to offer; look into their programs, curriculum, affiliated hospitals, clubs, etc. Pick few aspects that really stand out to you and be prepared to discuss why you like these aspects.
- Have sell points. Be prepared to talk about what makes you a strong applicant. Remember, instead of saying how you are better than other applicants, focus more on what makes YOU a good fit.
- Talk about failures and hardships to show what lessons they have taught you.
- When they tell you, “tell me about yourself”, don’t freak out. Try to talk about your background, education, clinical experiences, leadership roles, a couple of fun facts and end it firmly by asking whether there is anything else the interviewers would like you to explain further.
- Prepare questions for the interviewer. These could be about any of the aspects you researched on while looking up the medical school (curriculum, clubs, unique programs, etc.).
- Make sure you are well versed in the current health topics that are spurring in the medical fields. Try to go to depts.Washington.edu/bioethics to see what ethical topics medical professionals might deal with! Read the health and medicine section of news websites!
- Good posture, maintaining eye contact, and a firm handshake can go a long way!