Med School Bound?

Many students get accepted into medical school from their biology studies at CU, but many more don’t. Every year we have 5-15 or so accepted. Most of these students have worked extensively for the Science Student Success Centre (SSSC), so I STRONGLY encourage you to get involved with the SSSC ASAP. While the SSSC is not an essential step to getting into medical school, it is my experience that your chances will be higher if you become involved.

Some students ask what biology degree they should obtain while at CU. Frankly, it doesn’t matter for medical school. You can be a HBSc Biology, HBA Biology, or HBHum Biology and you will get the training you need. Please note, however, that some degree programs have easier access to the 3rd year anatomy and physiology courses than others, so look at what the requirements are for the medical programs you are interested in. If those programs require anatomy and physiology, look to see whether those programs are required for your degree (you get this information from your audit). If they aren’t required for your program, you may want to switch into a degree program that requires those courses, as they fill up quickly and students who require the courses get priority.

Medical schools require: almost straight A+ average (not quite, but if you have < 85%, I wouldn’t even bother applying); an incredible number and variety of volunteer hours; very high MCAT scores; an impressive written application; impressive letters of recommendation (think about it – which Professors can you get to write your letters? They must really know you to write a good one); and an impressive interview. NUMEROUS students who I think are stellar have NOT been accepted into medical school on their first, second or third attempts. Applying to medical school is a very long and difficult process. Talk to the folks at the SSSC for strategies to attend medical school, develop a plan of action, and attend the ‘so you want to go to medical school’ workshops as they are a better resource than I am. NOTE: The course requirements for medical school are your responsibility, not ours. If a medical program requires that you need a course, you must figure that out and then see if you can get access to it. We (biology) will NOT do this for you. Also note that a medical school requiring a course for admission is NOT justification for you getting priority access to a course. Biology must give priority access to courses for students who require that course to fulfill their degree requirements.

I STRONGLY encourage students to develop a back up plan that they take very seriously. Visit CU Careers for more information. Visit them often. Take their workshops and classes. Learn about what you can do with your degree outside medicine. I say this because acceptance into medical school is exceedingly difficult and many fantastic students don’t achieve this goal.