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Applying Next Year

Perspective on Gap Years from a Third Year Medical Student

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Whether you are planning to apply straight to medical school or to take a gap year, Emily offers a perspective on how time off has helped her through third year clinical rotations. The third year of medical school is profoundly different than the first and second years. There is an invisible wall separating the preclinical from the clinical years with a ...

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Benefits of Undergraduate Medical Research

Benefits of Undergraduate Medical Research

As a freshman in college, I had no idea what research entailed. My idea of research was spending hours slaving away as a grunt worker in a lab. The idea of research seemed mundane, repetitive and unfruitful. Now as a medical school student, I am incredibly thankful that I was snapped out of my incorrect preconceptions. Research is now something ...

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Identity Outside of Medicine

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I can’t do anything besides medicine. I’ll do whatever it takes to get there. I don’t care how long it takes. I’ve heard these statements, or something similar to them, many times before. I admire the spirit behind it. But at the same time, I worry about anyone who says or even thinks it. Let me clarify. First of all, ...

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What Should I Do This Summer as a Pre-Med?

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“What should I do this summer as a pre-med?” This is a common question that high school and college students ask. If you are pre-med or thinking about going to medical school, use your summer wisely to strengthen your application. Here are a few activities that you can explore to make your summer fruitful and beneficial for your future career ...

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Diversity in Medical Secondary Applications

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Descend no further because this is the bottom line: if you are a premed applying to medical school, you will be required to take part in the timeless discussion of diversity and healthcare. It’s advantageous to acknowledge this as you find yourself diligently completing countless secondary application prompts discussing diversity and inclusion. Of the 27 secondary applications I submitted, 19 ...

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Weekly Weigh-in: Hesitations in Choosing Medicine

Weigh In

Welcome to PDr’s Weekly Weigh-in! Each week, we ask medical students and physicians to weigh in on some of our most frequently asked pre-med questions. This week’s question: What were your biggest hesitations in choosing medicine? What do you think are important things to consider before committing to medicine? Brandon Brown, UCSF MS2 My biggest hesitation in choosing medicine was ...

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Medical School Gap Year Fear

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Premeds fear that taking a gap year before medical school will distract from their career goal to become doctors. I offer that this is the best possible outcome of your gap year. I am frequently asked about taking gap years. I took four. (Two of those were the result of having to reapply, but my intention was to take time off ...

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Weekly Weigh-in: Taking a Gap Year

Weigh In

Welcome to PDr’s Weekly Weigh-in! Each week, we ask medical students and physicians to weigh in on some of our most frequently asked pre-med questions. This week’s question: What factors contributed to your decision to apply straight in or take a gap year? Edward Chang, DGSOM MS3 I decided during my sophomore year that I was going to take a ...

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5 Ways Premeds Should Choose Extracurricular Activities

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It’s no secret that it takes more than a high GPA and MCAT to get into medical school. Medical school admissions committees carefully examine each prospective student’s application to see what kinds of extracurricular activities he or she was involved in. Why? Because these activities and applicant’s personal statement are really the only ways admissions committees can get to know ...

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Apply Once, Apply Right – 5 Tips for the Medical School Application Cycle

Formula for a Personal Statement

If you only want to apply once, apply right! Keep these 5 helpful tips for the medical school application cycle in mind as you put together your AMCAS this spring. 1. Apply Early This cannot be emphasized enough – it will save you many unnecessary sleepless nights and moments of anxiety if you are able to submit your applications earlier in ...

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