For the Class of 2026, Brown University’s Program in Liberal Medical Education (PLME) had more than 3,827 applicants but admitted just 84 students for a 2% acceptance rate. While the school remained test-optional, the average accepted student who submitted scores had an SAT score of 1500-1570 or an ACT score of 34-36. With an average GPA of 3.9, the accepted students were almost always in the top 10% of their graduating class.
However, thousands of students have a similar profile to the accepted students who get rejected. What is the secret to getting an acceptance letter versus a rejection?
Ultimately, it comes down to the resume. Accepted students have more than just strong academics; they also have been heavily involved in school clubs, volunteer work, and other extracurricular activities.
For BS/MD students, they have to go the extra mile to gain one of the exclusive seats in a direct medical program. That means volunteering in medical settings, shadowing physicians, and completing research. However, students who want to stand out will often pursue a passion project to help bolster their resume.
At Moon Prep, we’ve interviewed dozens of admissions officers and students at top schools, BS/MD programs, medical schools and summer programs to learn what they are looking for in their applicants. One recurring theme emerged: passion. Admission officers want students who are passionate about a particular thing and figure out a way to use that passion to impact their community. These passion projects can be anything: a research project, a nonprofit, inventions, or advocating for a particular cause.
Here are nine passion project examples from real students who were accepted at the most competitive colleges, BS/MD Programs, and summer camps in the world.
Read more about the projects in our full article on Forbes here.