January Medical Newsletter

By Brandie Erickson January 31, 2024 BS/MD Admissions Consulting Newsletter

The beginning of the new year also marks the beginning of a new application cycle! While the class of 2024 waits for interview invitations and admissions decisions, those wishing to matriculate in Fall 2025 would be prudent to get started on their primary applications now. Our medical mentors at Moon Prep prepare students for success by getting ahead of the game.

If you want to be first in line when the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS) portal opens, it is imperative to have a strong personal statement ready to go. Schedule a free initial call with Moon Prep to secure your 2024 spot with our experienced counselors and get started today.

AMCAS 2024 Updates

This year, AMCAS has announced changes to their application going into effect for the 2024 cycle. The application, which opens on May 2, 2024, will include a new category in the Work/Activities section called “Social Justice/Advocacy.” This section is meant to allow students to highlight their experience in areas including fighting against climate change, addressing health equity, impacts on diversity and inclusion, and serving vulnerable populations. 

In previous years, there was a question that asked about an application’s disadvantaged status; this year that has been replaced with the prompt “other impactful experiences.” This change in wording is meant to reflect the varied life experiences students bring to the table and allow for a more holistic review of any circumstances or experiences that may shape a student’s readiness for medical school.

In addition to providing future dates for the MCAT exam, students can now indicate a future date they may be taking the AAMC PREview exam. This professional readiness exam is meant to assess competencies, including resilience, adaptability, ethical judgment, empathy, collaboration, and cultural awareness, among others. 

For more information, register for the AMCAS webinar, Navigating the AMCAS 2024 Application Cycle, or for more personalized support, sign up to work with a Moon Prep counselor.

Pathways to Medicine

The road to becoming a doctor isn’t easy, nor is there only one path! While the traditional route is to apply to medical school during junior year of college as a pre-med student, non-traditional students are becoming more common. Some may not find their motivation to become a doctor until later after gathering more life experience, and some may be dedicated to the career early in high school. For seniors applying to colleges, gaining admission to a direct medical program may more efficiently propel students toward their dreams of becoming a physician. For college freshmen and sophomores, early assurance programs are available at select universities to offer high-achieving students conditional acceptance into medical school. Read more about the different pathways to becoming a doctor and the rise of non-traditional medical school applicants in Moon Prep’s Forbes articles.

An essay coach with Moon Prep, Erin works closely with students to help them find their voice and tailor their essays to the unique needs and requirements of each academic program. As a coach and assistant professor, she guides her students to craft essays that will stand out from typical submissions by developing depth, interest, and authenticity in their content. From the initial brainstorming of essay themes and content development to the writing and final line-by-line editing, Erin walks students through the entire essay process from start to submission for traditional four-year universities.

Alongside her mentoring at Moon Prep, Erin currently serves as the Division Chair of Arts and Sciences and an Assistant Professor of English at Howard College. In these roles, she oversees academic and faculty affairs as well as teaches courses in English composition, American and British Literature, and Technical Writing. Erin has a passion for seeing students grow in their confidence as writers and considers herself a ready resource to help students hone and polish their writing skills for every essay throughout the application process to their top-choice programs.

Previously, Erin was the Executive Director of Alumni Relations at Angelo State University and an editor for an online marketing agency. With diverse experiences as an adjunct, editor, and freelance writer, she has published works in both creative and professional publications. Erin has also published academic articles geared towards curriculum cultivation and composition pedagogical theories.

Erin currently lives with her family in Texas. When she’s not teaching and working with students, she can be found playing and writing music with her husband, chasing her four kids, or curled up in a hammock with a good book.

Work with Erin by scheduling a call with Moon Prep today.

New data released by the AAMC reveals a decline in applicants to medical school by 4.7% in the 2023-2024 admissions cycle. However, counterintuitively, enrollment in medical school has increased over the past year by 1.6%. It is unclear why these trends emerged, however, scholars suggest that the decline represents a return to normal following the boom in applications seen during the COVID-19 pandemic. The increase in admissions could be due to new medical schools enrolling their first class this year.

AAMC shares insights into the purpose behind creating combined bachelor’s and MD programs for high school students committed to becoming physicians. Ohene-Agyei is on track to join a small percentage of physicians who matriculate from combined baccalaureate/MD programs: just 3.3% in 2022, according to the AAMC’s Medical School Graduation Questionnaire, increased slightly from 2.8% in 2018.

The University of Texas at Tyler School of Medicine launches its new early assurance program in partnership with East Texas Baptist University, LeTourneau University, Stephen F. Austin State University, Texas College, Texas A&M University – Texarkana, The University of Texas at Tyler, and Wiley College. “Pathways to Medicine” will accept up to 40 college juniors and seniors from their eight partnering institutions to prepare for the healthcare field through clinical exposure, volunteering opportunities, shadowing activities, and even MCAT preparation. However, only 15 students will ultimately be accepted into the School of Medicine.

Slated to open in 2025, The University of Minnesota Medical School is excited to attract students from greater Minnesota to their new campus in St. Cloud. The intention is to recruit medical students from rural areas to ultimately supply doctors to rural Minnesota, addressing the physician shortage in the area.

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