Brief Profile:Extracurriculars Research - 3 yrs, 1st author ms in progress Shadowing - 135 h Nonclinical Volunteering - 900+ h Clinical Volunteering - 80 h domestic (ongoing), 400 h international Employment - 1 summer Leadership - Org 1 (4 years), Org 2 (2 years), Org 3 (4 years)
// Applications //
Application Cycle One: 06/02/2014
Undergraduate college: University of Washington
Undergraduate Area of study: Biological/Life Sciences
Total MCAT SCORE: 520
MCAT Section Scores:
Overall GPA: 3.80
Science GPA: 3.70
Summary of Application Experience
Timeline and Costs Timeline: 12/2012: attempted to study for the MCAT; ended up deciding to postpone a year and take a gap (good decision.) 5/2013: asked for first LOR 11/2013: asked for second and third LORs 12/2013: MCAT prep for 3 weeks 1/2014: began working on PS and ECs (11 drafts in the end, at the end it had been given to 8 other people for major edits; 2 were students on adcoms) 3/2014: asked for 2 remaining LORs 3/2014: resume MCAT prep 5/2/2014: requested transcripts 5/17/2014: sat MCAT 6/3/2014: submitted primary to AMCAS 6/6/2014: primary verified
Study Methods: TPR Cracking the MCAT and Kaplan Complete Review -I purchased the 2011-2012 prep book for use in 2014 since they were less expensive Took a Kaplan freebie as a diagnostic. Went through all TPR modules and practice problems over winter break (3 weeks) Took TPR 0 (free exam with book) and got the same score as diagnostic (sigh) Didn't touch MCAT prep through winter quarter (Jan-Apr) Did the Kaplan book late-Mar to mid-Apr Took AAMC 3, 10, 11 while doing the Kaplan end-of-section practice problems and reviewing notecards made from TPR and Kaplan Sat exam on 5/17 Spent a total of exactly 112.25 hours on MCAT prep.
Oregon Health & Science University
Combined PhD/MSTP: No
Secondary Completed: Yes
Interview Invite: No
Interview Attended: No
Summary of Experience:
Secondary received 7/22, submitted 7/26
Summary of Experience:
Secondary received 7/8, submitted 7/21, II 8/14, SUC 11/12 - a little surprised! excited for NY (:
(1st interview) Interview Day: breakfast (fancy stuff—parfaits, bagels, coffee) in the admissions office with other interviewees (10). Interviewees were quite friendly and outgoing. The day begins with a discussion with Dr. Parkas (admissions dean) where we lead the conversation wherever we want; it was mostly questions about Sinai’s curriculum and opportunities. Julia, the assistant director, showed us a brief video and then we broke into interviews. There are two 1-on-1 interviews, one with faculty and one with an M4. My first was a bioethics faculty member who asked me about each of my ECs and was particularly interested in my rural healthcare experiences. This is obviously not something Sinai is particularly involved in to I made sure to emphasize that it was a great experience but I want to work with the urban underserved. It was very conversational and she wanted to hear more about what I learned from research and shadowing. Second interview was with an M4 interested in health policy and internal medicine. She asked the classics: tell me about yourself, why medicine, why Sinai. I asked her “why Sinai” and she gave the supportive environment, true pass/fail, outstanding research and community outreach bit that everyone else had been emphasizing. Between interviews M1 and M2s come in to chat and munch on the food. Also when you matriculate, you get a magical blue coffee thermos of unlimited coffee (at the hospital cafeteria and local Starbucks) which is pretty awesome! The day ends with a financial aid talk and tour of the hospital and lecture halls.
About the school: HUGE emphasis on integration of academics (research) and service (particularly urban primary care). The unique location—between the wealthy Upper East Side and East Harlem provides interesting, unique hospital/research center cases and huge economic/cultural/ethnic diversity for primary care. No undergrads means that all the attention is focused on the med students. There are a ton of highly guided mentorship programs by both older students and faculty. There is also a heavy emphasis on teamwork: besides the true P/F preclinical leading to a highly collaborative environment, there are also table conference groups (anatomy and some other things) and ASM (Art and Science of Medicine—taking histories, connecting to pts) groups that you stay with for 2 full years. Most students stay in Aron Hall, a school-owned apartment complex right across the street. Stayed with an M2 host and the students are definitely very happy and close-knit. The curriculum is organ-based with integrated anatomy (you anatomy-ify organ systems as you learn normal and path for each one) and lectures are all recorded and optional. Students have 2 afternoons free from any courses (including small groups) to do research, shadowing, or take fun classes. Exams are unique in that you take them at home, online, at any time between Friday afternoon and Monday morning. The students emphasized the flexibility that the Sinai curriculum provides as a huge perk, as they can study and learn however they feel best. The hospital is a trapezoid where the “triangle” of the middle is a giant glass foyer, allowing natural light to hit all the hospital rooms. The medical school is basically two floors of the main Sinai hospital building, with an anatomy lab, small rooms for group learning, and two big lecture halls. Everything is very close; Aron Hall is across the street from the hospital, which is across the street from a faculty building. Central Park is one block over.
Pros: highly supportive environment with good mentorship, organ-based curriculum, early clinical integration, tons of opportunities for research and community engagement, excellent MD/MPH program, students are happy and fun, subsidized housing
Cons: I did not enjoy NYC…too crowded, noisy, smelly, and I got food poisoning from a halal cart. The closeness of the residence hall and the lack of an actual campus felt very claustrophobic and our tour guide referred to Sinai as “Camp Sinai”.
Summary of Experience:
Secondary received 7/15, submitted 7/26, II 8/7, Accepted 10/15!!!!!
OMG first acceptance!! Definitely one of my top three, SO excited.
(2nd interview) Interview Day: There were about 16 interviewees there and the majority were super chill, fun to chat with and full of interesting experiences. Definitely a more relaxed vibe from the OSU interviewees than the Sinai ones. The day starts off with a presentation by Dr. Capers, the super cool Dean of Admissions (he has several Youtube videos with tips on applying and interviewing) about the new curriculum and key fabulous things about OSU. The morning is heavily focused on selling the school to interviewees. We then have lunch and socializing with current M1/M2s, many of whom represent student organizations. After the tour, the interviewees are sent to interviews. Interviews are two 1-on-1, either two faculty or one faculty and one student/resident/fellow. My faculty interviewer asked me to talk about my journey to medicine, and then for an anecdote each from two of my clinical experiences. She and her husband did couples match for residency and now teaches M3/4s for oncology and internal medicine rotations. I had an M2 for my student, and she was super serious and I got the vibe that she did not believe I would come to OSU if accepted. She asked why MD, why OSU, greatest challenge, critical feedback, and time when I empathized with a pt. Also why she would want me as a classmate. Overall a very relaxed interview day, highly conversational all around and gorgeous campus!
About the school: I arrived in the afternoon the day before my interview so my student host took me along to an ultrasound interest group (OSU is a pioneer in physician-education for ultrasound application, and they apply it to the medical students to allow them to gain residency-level competencies) and a dance club practice (pulled my hamstring…sad. But it was fun!) and it was great to see how well the students got along and how fun and full of great personalities the class was. The grading system is honors/letters/high pass/pass/fail and the top 25% get scholarships (more money the higher your rank) which sounds like a nightmare, but they seemed highly collaborative with sharing notes on a big Facebook group and M2s sharing their study guides from previous years. Every student must do at least one advanced competency (example: ultrasound, research, global health) which are educational programs that add to your application for residency. Class size is on the big side (200). The new curriculum, for which matriculating class of 2015 would be the 4th year to do, is organ-based and emphasizes integration of clinical skills and practical exposure. There is a weekly small group class to learn history-taking and patient interaction, and a longitudinal practice where in the 2 “preclinical” years you follow a community physician and get to take histories, draw blood, take vitals and discuss the treatment plan. The faculty seems to care a lot about the students. Lectures are recorded and optional, and iPads are given to all students so exams/modules are all digital and on the iPad. They have a very exciting simulation lab with dolls that can be programmed with various heart murmurs, tell you that your hand is cold, and simulate birth (with a interactive “baby” popping out!). There is an emphasis on service (5 fully student-run free clinics) and the global health elective is paid for by the school, if you choose to do it. The last month of M2 is structure review for Step 1, with mock exams, faculty lectures and then 4 weeks of self-study. By graduation, OSU students with have achieved 6 core residency competency certifications. OSUCOM is on the south end of the overall university campus along with all the other health science schools (nursing, pharm, optom). The OSU campus is one of the largest in the US, has huge fabulous libraries and grassy plains, and a super swoll gym (largest undergrad gym in the states). There is a lot of construction happening; the new James cancer hospital is finishing up and they plan to double the size of the emergency department in the next few years. This construction and development is mirrored in the rest of the city; Columbus seems to be really growing and improving.
Pros: in-state tuition after first year, very low cost of living (500/month to have a room in a 4br house!), very forward-thinking curriculum aiming to prepare students for residency, nice new cancer hospital and heart hospital is major center for Midwest, lots of financial aid, simulation lab, organ-system curriculum, structured Step 1 prep, fantastic facilities
Cons: Columbus is super sleepy and has no bubble tea, middle-ranked school, not pass/fail and gunners gonna gun
Summary of Experience:
Secondary received 7/7, Submitted 7/13, II 9/3, accepted 11/3!! -- excited!! And they were very nice and reponsive to my in the area email--will be doing NWern + Loyola back to back.