Working in medicine is incredibly rewarding, but it’s also challenging. You know that one of the biggest hurdles will be getting into med school, but that’s why you’re here. The following will help you see what you need to get into medical school and become the person you want to be.
If you want this, you need to make sure your GPA is high. Your science grades matter a little more than the rest, but they all matter nonetheless. If your GPA is not too great, don’t worry. If it’s too late to change things, you’re going to have to go to plan B.
This means getting a liberal arts education and going out into the world to work a bit. Then, come back and do post-bac education. Of course, if this is your plan, you’ll have to give those post-bac classes your all so that your GPA looks good.
Rocking the MCAT
You’re going to have to rock that MCAT test and get a good score. You’ll want to shoot for anything above 505, but if you can get higher than that, then do so. Folks who don’t pass this test will find it impossible to get into medical school. You don’t want to be in that situation, which is why you practice.
You’ll want to look at MCAT practice questions as part of the prep process, and you want to make sure you create the testing conditions of exam day. This means no breaks, no study notes, and silence. You also want to practice this way.
The next thing you want to do is apply as early as you can. The AMCAS opens in May, but that’s not the time to turn them in. You can turn yours in on June 1, but you have more time. You can wait a bit and apply at a later date, but if you do apply early, things are going to be better for you.
Being early doesn’t mean the chances of you getting in are higher; it just means you’ll have more choices. Applying early gives you peace of mind because the application is turned in, and all you have to do is wait. Turning this in early also means you’ll know if you’re in or not a little sooner.
The next thing you want to do is get your recommendations as early as you can. Try to get folks who’ll be personal. These people must be behind you. Ideally, you’ll get a committee recommendation letter, which premedical departments sometimes offer. Find out if you can get one of these somehow.
Focus on folks who’ve seen you perform some of the tasks you’re expected to perform in the future. Give these folks as much time as possible to write your recommendation letter. If you’re going to apply early, you want to ask about the letter sometime in January. Be sure to send friendly reminders every so often.
You want to do something unique that says something about you but also helps you stand out. The application is going to have a section that will allow you to talk about something extraordinary. When you’re asked to write about your “most meaningful experiences,” you want to discuss one particular thing you did in your life that’ll help you stand out. It doesn’t have to relate to medicine; it can be family-related or events occurring in your non-medical employment history.
You’ll need to provide three experiences. The first two should involve something in medicine or maybe medical research, but that last one should definitely be personal. As you can see, getting into med school isn’t simple, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a path. You’re heading that way. All you have to do is prepare a bit and continue pushing yourself forward.