13 Things to Do to Prepare for Applying
to Medical School
Might be a cliche, but there are no truer words; medical schools are extremely selective. Hence, there’s a great need for interested applicants to prepare thoroughly.
These 13 tips will help you adequately prepare:
1. Seek the Help of an Advisor
Pursue the assistance of a pre-health advisor to guide you with the process involved in getting into a medical school. They’ll inform you about the timeline to seek admission into the medical school of your choice and the courses you have to take to get there. Your advisor may refer you to the best place for an internship, lab experiences, and generally health-related knowledge.
2. Get in Touch With On-Campus Mentors and Materials
Seek mentors in different departments of your campus who’ll help you with advice on application processes, and even recommend you to colleagues for volunteer work or lab opportunities.
You may also go to the career center on the campus to get materials like guidebooks. Visit the center frequently until you’re aware of the entire application process.
3. Engage in Shadowing, Volunteering, or Lab Work
Attend health professional programs. During summer or mid-semester, look for a health-related environment you can volunteer to work. Also, seek opportunities to help with a faculty research project; you may find opportunities announced on the science department websites, social media pages or board. Your pre-health advisor may also get you a chance to work in the lab or faculty or find you a doctor to shadow.
It’s essential to find a healthcare professional whom you can shadow to have a practical idea of what it looks like to be in their position. That way, you may even find out if you’ll love to be like them someday.
4. Participate in Medical Professions Fairs
Attend career fairs to gather in-depth information about programs, admission prerequisites, and numerous academies at a go. This measure is relatively inexpensive and less time-demanding compared to touring all your interested medical schools.
5. Belong to Clubs
Do you belong to any club already? Admission committees are more interested in prospective students who have experiences with planning, directing or leadership. Your advancement in regards to responsibility and functionality would set you apart.
6. Solicit for Letters of Evaluation
Promptly ask your advisor, professor, or lab supervisor to write letters of evaluation for you so that they have enough time to explain any situation that may have impacted your academic performance negatively.
7. Get Ready for the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT)
In the United States and Canada, many medical schools require their potential students to take a MCAT before admission. Seek the opinion of your advisor on when you should take the test. You’re, however, in the best position to know if you’re fit to write the test successfully.
Sign up for an AAMC account to get access to relevant resources that can equip you for the MCAT. If you take the test and you’re unsatisfied with your result, meet your advisor and figure out your area of weakness and how to tackle it for your next participation.
8. Familiarize Yourself With AMCAS
Better to promptly introduce yourself to the American Medical College Application Service® (AMCAS®). It’s the AAMC’s consolidated medical school application processing service. Through the service, familiarize yourself with the application and acceptance protocols for applicants to avoid breaking any rule.
9. Seek Financial Aid
Most students need financial assistance while in school, more so the medical students. While applying for financial aid, meet with your parents for some required information in the application form; Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). It’s necessary to fill in the form in January before the year you hope to get into medical school. Otherwise, the sponsors wouldn’t consider you for the aid.
Overall, get in touch with the financial aid processes and deadline of your school, so you don’t miss out on any vital information. On the AAMC’s website, you’ll find relevant materials to help you secure the right financial aid for you.
10. Have a Good Time
It’s common knowledge that medical students are busy fellows. Therefore before going into medical school, relax and spend quality time with your family and friends. Besides, engage in games like air hockey; purchase an air hockey table suitable for your home. This game will help you make beautiful memories together as a family while preparing for your life as a medical student.
11. Learn New Languages
Communication and the knowledge of other languages is a requirement for success in the medical world. Therefore, to impress the admission committee, learn one or more languages.
12. Know Why You Want to be a Doctor
Reciting your story and vision to the admission committee would be a more genuine answer to why you want to become a doctor. Avoid unspecified answers, and honestly explain why you’re committed to the demanding medical journey.
13. Be Polite at the Interview
It’s essential to leave a good impression about yourself once you get into the interview premises until you’re through with the interview session because virtues are part of what make a successful medical applicant. Moreover, familiarize yourself with the school mission, vision, and slogan so that they know you’re aware of the institution you’re seeking for admission.
Read on how to comport yourself at school interviews, including dressing and body language. By doing all of the above, you can hope for the best.
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