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How to be a successful candidate for admission

  • Learn the prerequisites for the health field in which you are interested. Know the courses you must take for acceptance to the program.
  • Learn the acceptance criteria for the school to which you will apply. Know the grade point average and entrance test scores necessary for acceptance.
  • State residents have a better chance for acceptance at a state school.  You will need higher numbers, both GPA and entrance test scores, for out-of-state schools.
  • Set your goals.  Grade point average is very important.  Be realistic about your time.  You can’t expect a 4.0 GPA and work 30-40 hrs a week.
  • Be flexible about your goals. If one goal doesn’t work out, be prepared to change your goals.
  • Learn something about the job. Volunteer and work in the field. Talk with professionals in your chosen field
  • Get to know your professors.  Ask for recommendations from professors in classes where you did well.  You will need recommendations from professors who know something about you in addition to the grade you received in their class.  Come to class on time.  Show interest in the class.  Consider doing research with a professor or assist with a lab. Prepare a typed summary of your personal achievements to give to those faculty writing academic recommendations for you.  Also give your resume to individuals who will write character or work related references, e.g., physicians, or other health care providers for whom you have volunteered or worked, and other employees.  A one-page resume is adequate.  It should include academic accomplishments, degrees, grade point average, volunteer experience, work experience, college honors, college activities, community involvement, volunteer work, and hobbies or leisure-time activities.
  • Take time to prepare a thoughtful personal essay for your application. The personal essay is your introduction or handshake to the Professional School Admissions Committee.  In other words, take it seriously because admissions staff personal will read it carefully.  Make certain you include events that influenced your decision to enter a specific health profession.  It is very important to incorporate personal anecdotes that demonstrate how you were exposed to the health profession and your sincere interest and experience in working with patients.
  • Apply early.  For schools with rolling admissions, time your application for best acceptance.  Since medical schools begin accepting the next year's class in the fall, submit  your application in late summer.  Many professional schools process applications as they are received and offer acceptances on a rolling admissions basis.  It is always to your advantage to submit your application as soon as possible for any of the programs for which you are applying.
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