#T4DWest Day 3: Premed Hype
Often I see the negative energy that is caused by students comparing personal GPA stats, research, and clinical experiences amongst each other. Students engaging in these practices create an expectation of keeping up with what everyone of their peers are doing. As a result, students begin to use their peers as a way to evaluate their competitiveness for medical school and create a false sense of expectations to keep up with what others are doing on their journey to apply. I’ve labeled this negative energy as the “Premed Hype.”
While GPA and entrance exam scores (MCAT, DAT, PCAT) are important to show you can do well in science courses and that you can do well on standardized exams, the rest of your application is to show your journey and the challenges you have overcome.
On the Tour for Diversity in Medicine (T4D) I consistently hear students say that all their premed friends are doing x,y, and z and when personal circumstances arise they begin to feel like they are “falling behind.” My response to My students is, “Don’t get caught up on the Hype.”
Medical and professional health programs understand that having to take care of family and personal circumstances that arise and that they are part of life. Medical schools are aware that for some individuals the reality is that they may have the to take care of parents, grandparents and siblings. If these responsibilities fall upon you, medical and other health professional programs will want to hear your story. They will understand and recognize that you’re dealing with tough situations and they will want to hear how you were able to prioritize, to make adult decisions, to work on time management, to gain other skills beyond what you learn in the classroom.
Work with your advisors and mentors to put a plan together and remind yourself that your plan and timeline is unique to you so you won’t get caught up on the Hype.