The ProspectiveDoctor Podcast

Mastering the Application and Interview

Erkeda DeRouen talks to Dr. Edward Lipsit who was a diagnostic radiologist for 20 years. Retired from medical practice, he is currently an associate professor of radiology, an educational consultant, and a faculty member at several schools including The George Washington University and the Virginia Commonwealth School of Medicine.

Today Erkeda chats with Dr. Lipsit about how students can effectively plan for their medical school applications¾especially the AMCAS work and activities portion and the interview.

  • [01:49] Dr. Lipsit’s Medical Journey and Background
  • [06:27] Medical School Application Process
  • [09:04] AMCAS Work and Activities
  • [16:32] How to Ace Your Medical School Interview
  • [25:15] What Dr. Lipsit Would Change about Healthcare
  • [29:33] Dr. Lipsit’s Advice to Pre-meds and Medical Students

Medical School Application: Work and Activities Section

Interest in medicine has grown over years but the number of accepted applicants has not increased in proportion. With more eager applicants and scarcely available slots, getting into medical school can be competitive. Academics and test scores are crucial, but the work and activities portion of your medical school application also hold weight.

There are several AMCAS work and activity categories that need to be fulfilled. First, one must have medical related activities such as working as a scribe or paramedic. Shadowing a physician also counts. By having these kinds of experiences, you demonstrate your dedication to the field of medicine.

Volunteer work is also crucial. Activities may or may not be related to medicine. Involvement in community service or projects show altruism. Admission committees want students who are entering medicine for the right reasons.

Leadership and teaching opportunities are important because physicians need to be good communicators and educators. Other work experiences, awards, research, and letters of recommendations are relevant as well. With so many categories to fill, it’s impossible to accomplish them all at the last minute. Applicants need to plan ahead in order to develop a robust resume.

Ace Your Medical School Interviews

Medical schools only grant interviews to highly evaluated applicants, so pat yourself on the back if you make it this far! Interviewers will either be a faculty member, a medical student, a physician, or a combination of the three. Are you someone who they’ll want in their community? Applicants will be eager to please but it’s more important to be your authentic self. Interviews usually last for only 30 minutes so stay focused and answer questions directly. Be mindful of your interviewer’s time while showcasing your strengths.

To prepare for your interview, practice with sample questions. Being comfortable with the interview format will allow you to do well during your actual interview. Learn to accept points of improvement to better your performance.

Got questions, feedback, or suggestions? Send a message to Dr. Erkeda DeRouen’s Instagram or MedSchoolCoach’s Instagram.

Erkeda DeRouen

Dr. Erkeda DeRouen is a graduate of Hampton University with a B.S. in Biological Sciences, followed by completing medical school at the Boston University School of Medicine. She then completed residency at The University of Maryland Family and Community Medicine Program. After that, she worked at an underserved community health center, and currently is an Associate Medical Director of a telemedicine company. She recently became one of the first 1,000 lifestyle medicine certified physicians in the world! Her areas of interest include: health equity and eliminating health disparities, service of underserved populations, HIV management, transgender care, mentorship, and lifestyle medicine.

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