300+ hours clinical volunteering
1 year tutoring upper div chem , had to plan own lessons and everything
1+ year mentoring socially/economically disadvantaged children in the area
~6 mos running comedy blog
2 years lab research in cardiology
10/6: Got a bunch of rejections early on... which was kind of discouraging but it seems to be turning around which is really exciting!
ATTENDED FIRST INTERVIEW!
It was great! So conversational. I got some questions from left field delving into my personality, asking about three wishes or what really defines me that I hadn't thought about before, but in general the questions were pretty standard. The buildings are kind of old, but have beautiful views of San Francisco from a lot of the rooms they showed us. The students and faculty that I met with were really nice, and the interviews were very relaxed. I feel so grateful to have the opportunity to interview there, and would love to go! I have my fingers crossed and double crossed to go here!
The interviews were pretty conversational. The dean of admissions is great, so nice and definitely tried to just calm everyone down for the interview. She was really nice and very helpful. I definitely got a great impression of the school, they really emphasize how training primarily at the County hospital really hones your clinical skills and will aid you down the road in any medical profession you choose. On top of that, County is shiny and brand new because it was just built in 2008 which is really impressive. The students were really nice, and it's easy to tell that the administration really takes care of and values their students, with all of the facilities they provide for them. Sitting in on a lecture was pretty cool, seeing the way the students take notes and seeing the way it all works. I was sad to miss out on that at UCSF (my interview was scheduled during the lecture/small group portion of the day). The students seem very relaxed, and there's ample funding from what I understand for any student to pursue whatever they'd like. That was a pretty major difference from the UCs, because CA is broke and funding cuts are everywhere. Overall, I got a great impression!
This was my first MMI! All I can really say about that was that it was better than I expected. UCLA definitely impressed me. Having been here for undergrad, I really got a different perspective of the campus and was able to see a new side of life at UCLA. In terms of their students, talking to them was great and it seems like UCLA has made great efforts to separate their med students from the undergrads and provide them with the resources that they would need to have a comfortable experience on campus. Also, the hospital is very nice and it's great to hear that the doctors at Reagan are really receptive to the medical students coming in and seeing whatever they want to open their eyes to the different opportunities in medicine. Something I found was unique about the school is that there is a dedicated curriculum coordinator who is really there to make sure the curriculum is serving the students' needs. Also, there is a 4th year college system that helps students dive deeper into the kind of medicine they want to pursue which is great. Overall, I had a great interview day and really enjoyed the school!
The interview day here left a little to be desired. Their medical education building is pretty nice, but the rest of the school's buildings and facilities are pretty old, including the dorms. It was my first time staying with a host, and I learned a lot about the school. It seems like their curriculum, along with their testing materials (Xray films) are very old. This turned me off from the school, that as a private university they don't take the care to update their testing materials to make them modern and up to today's standards. In addition, the students told me that there aren't a lot of academic resources in case you aren't succeeding academically. On top of that, the grading system is Hon/HP/P/F. After interviewing at top notch schools on the west coast that consistently update their curriculum and really take care of their students, this was a surprising change. I did, however, find the students to be easy to get along with. The dorms, though not in the best state, seem to facilitate a community feel amongst the students which I really enjoyed.
Overall, I felt pretty out of place here since I was the only person from CA and everyone else except for a couple of people seemed to be from the area, upstate NY. I didn't really fit in, but the interview group seemed friendly. We didn't have much interaction with the students on campus, but they seemed nice enough. The tour was okay, we didn't get to see inside the hospital but the lecture facilities seemed average and the MMI was not as intense as UCLA's. The shuttle driver for the hotel I stayed at said the gray is what gets to people, that they can't stand it after a while. I know someone who went here who matched really well, so that's good. The research opportunities seem ample, and I know in-state status isn't too difficult in NY so that's a plus too. Overall, I wasn't too impressed but the program seems on the better side. One huge con for me at this place is that it's not true pass/fail, to the point that it's occasionally that the top 15% get honors for a course. Coming from a competitive school, I don't want to deal with that anymore.
The admissions people here were so nice! A major contrast to the staff I met at NYMC. The program seems good, I really like that they're p/f.
updating this super late, but, Einstein was great. It's in the Bronx, which isn't amazing but is a 1 hour bus ride from Manhattan. The faculty interview was great, but I wish they had one more. One didn't seem like it was enough. The price is great, and the subsidized housing is awesome - a giant single room for ~400something. The students I met were all really friendly, laid back, and very nice. The campus culture was great. They all joked around and seemed like they had a lot of fun. There's a lot of random Jewish holidays, which is a plus for students, too. The research opportunities seem plentiful and the students say that the faculty is super nice and willing to help out.
Stony Brook was good! The snow piled up all over Long Island was a little intimidating, since it was left over from Nemo. The students seemed pretty nice, but the school looks really ... strange. My student interviewer was really great, and even emailed me after I got accepted to congratulate me and let me know that I could contact him for any questions. The faculty interview was a little formal, but I liked the open file format because they both asked me more about what stood out to them. The facilities seem great but the location is a little less than ideal, being in Long Island. The area is definitely suburban and a lot of undergraduate students got off of the train with me. Plus would be cost but the location is a pretty major deal breaker!
Update: 1/18 - Pretty bummed about my WL at USC, since I thought my interview went well and it's a great school. I'm keeping my fingers crossed to get in off of the waitlist, and we'll just have to see if that happens. At this point, I'm hoping to get in and feeling pretty stressed about this process overall.
Update: 2/20 - I'M IN! I WILL BE A DOCTOR! Pretty excited, RFUMS was a really nice school and the administration seems really accommodating.
Update: 4/29 - with so many wait lists and acceptances at schools i'm somewhat excited about, i'm somewhat bummed but my wait lists because I was really excited about those schools. That being said, i'm really grateful for the acceptances I do have, and hope that wait lists will be good to me!