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Lewis Associates e-Newsletter
Volume 8 Issue 4
April 2009

Published by Lewis Associates. Dr. Cynthia Lewis, PhD., Editor
Email imaclewis@lewisassoc.com with your comments. Enjoy!

Big News!
President Obama offered a $3.56 trillion fiscal 2010 budget outline calling for sweeping changes to health spending and tax policy, including a recognition that Medicare's physician pay cuts mandated by law are not practical. Read More About it Here.

As a pre- health student, you must, I repeat, MUST engage yourself in understanding what is happening in health policy as it unfolds in 2009. Read a daily or weekly online or print national news source. Have an opinion and be ready to back it up with facts! "I am too busy" is not an option for serious pre- health students! 

Weekly - American Medical News
Daily - The Washington Post
Daily - The New York Times

See Dr. Lewis' answer to this month's question on Facebook: How do Allopathic Medical Schools define Holistic Admissions Review? What are "the desirable traits"?

Getting into medical, dental, pharmacy and the other health professions schools is getting HARDER!

As usually happens in an economic downturn, more people are attracted to stable careers like the health professions…competition is fierce!

How are YOU going to stand out from thousands of applicants?

Warning about student information websites from Cornell Medical School Admissions staff:
"PLEASE do not encourage students to get information from web sites administered by other students. From time to time, I look up the studentdoctor.net site (for interview ratings) and I am appalled at the amount of misinformation there. Most of the information given there will hurt students more than help them."

Sick of rumors and false reports? Lewis Associates website has factual information that you can trust.

What's inside:

Welcome to Success Stories Newsletter!
How to Communicate With Us
Changes in Services
Your journey to a health profession
Are You Ready for the Class of 2010?
Track Record
Be Competitive

Getting Started

Breaking News:
• Being young doesn't mean being healthy
• Med schools pressed to cut drug-firm ties

• White House summit takes 1st step in health system reform discussion
• What editorial writers are saying about President Obama's plan for health care reform
• National Health Service Corps-- important opportunities for medical student financial support
• Shortages forecast for orthopedic surgeons, gastroenterologists
• Americans report cutting back on health care due to economy
• No job, no bill: Physicians tell how they help longtime patients struggling during recession
• President Obama Will Nominate Governor Kathleen Sebelius Secretary of HHS, Announces Other Health Care Appointments
• Health Care and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
• U.S. healthcare system pinched by nursing shortage

• For Primary Care, More Patients Are Seeing Specialists
• Mobile phones may be source of hospital infections

Useful Links
• AACOM Releases 2010 College Information Book
• American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy launches new website

• Foreign Medical School List - Medical Board of California
• Local resources to address health-related issues - Go Local

Alumni Update
• Liana Au, M.D., Entering Class 2003, U Hawaii, Family Practice Residency at Utah Valley Regional Medical Center
• Chelsea Crist Ward M.D., Entering Class of 2006, Drexel University

• Christine Fair, Entering Class of 2005, St. Georges University

Success Story of the Month
• Cai Zhang, Entering Class of 2009, University of California Sam Francisco

Question of the Month
• See Dr. Lewis' answer to this month's question on Facebook, Advising Tips tab: How do Allopathic Medical Schools define Holistic Admissions Review? What are "the desirable traits"?

Our Services


Welcome to Lewis Associates!

Nearly one in ten Americans ages 20 to 24 is unemployed. But, health care jobs remain an economic bright spot. The U.S. Department of Labor expects the health sector to add more than 1.4 million workers over the next ten years. Students in college and even high school can start preparing now for a rewarding health career.

Are you ready?

Our Track Record
Entering Class of 2008...96% acceptance
Entering Class of 2007...97% acceptance
Entering Class of 2006...89% acceptance, 2 waitlisted
Entering Class of 2005...100% acceptance
Entering Class of 2004...100% acceptance

We have restructured our Advising package so you can become competitive during the entire application process!

Our one year addresses ALL preparation and application activities, no matter when they occur for you. We advise all applicants to begin preparation for their application process at least 18 months prior to expected matriculation . But, real preparation to become a strong, competitive applicant starts when you enter college (and even before!) So, get started NOW!

If you are interested in personalized advising from “The Best in the Business,” (quote by Dr. Patrick Linson, Harvard Medical School Alum who is the only Native American Radiation Oncologist on the planet!), call Lewis Associates today to schedule YOUR personal assessment. Dr. Lewis invests in you, so you may live up to your potential to be the best applicant you can be!

How to Communicate With Us
Phone: 805-226-9669 Fax: 805-226-9227
Mailing Address: 1885 Laguna del Campo, Templeton, CA 93465

Lewis Associates absorbs Long Distance Charges

All phone conferences are made from our office to you. Marcia, our Administrative Assistant, calls YOU at your appointment time.

Changes in Services

Where are you in your journey to a health profession?
In high school? Yes, we advise high school students, particularly, those interested in BA-MD programs!

Just starting college?
This is a scary time.  Everything is new…how do I meet all those new expectations?

Moving into your difficult upper division sciences as a college junior? Possibly, the "dreaded organic chemistry"…

Re-entering as an "older" non-traditional student? Re-establishing academic discipline…

We help prepare those of you submitting applications for medical and dental Residency programs, too!

Whatever niche you fit, we advise students just like you.

Are you REALLY ready to apply for the Class of 2010 or 2011?
How do you know?

Use our Personal Assessment--and you will be given your individual strategy and path to your future! Then, if you use our advising, we help implement your strategy! ! If it were easy to do, all applicants would be accepted...and, that is not the case.

Many whom we advise may not yet be ready, and need to develop some aspect of their background to become competitive. Best to apply when you are ready, be competitive, and do it ONLY ONCE!

Let's work together to make that one-time application successful…contacting us earlier is better so we can develop your strategy and address all those difficult problems…months or years prior to application. Why not set yourself up for success, rather than toy with the proposition of failure?

Michael Nevarez, Entering Class of 2006, Harvard University School of Medicine, his first choice school

"Dr. Lewis was a wonderful guide and mentor as I embarked on a medical career a number of years after graduating from Cal Poly (graduated 2001, applied to med school in 2006). She gave an honest assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of my profile, and more importantly provided specific and personalized ways in which I could address my application and the process going forward. Her advice and experience was invaluable and I am very happy to have worked with her."

Margaret Jolley, Entering Class of 2008, UC San Diego School of Medicine, her first choice school
"I never would've made it without my weekly conference with the calm, experienced Dr. Lewis. She kept me sane. I am so grateful for her guidance, for her editing help, and for the confidence she instilled in me. She is a genuinely caring committed Mentor who takes pride in helping our dreams happen. I have urged every fellow student I know to call her. Let her help you, too!"

Austin Yoder, Entering Class of 2009, Accepted to Uniformed Services University for Health Sciences, Philadelphia Osteopathic-GA, West Virginia Osteopathic, Tennessee Osteopathic, and Kansas City Osteopathic
"I am utterly grateful to Dr. Lewis for all her help, guidance and mentorship through the application process. I owe a great deal of my success to date to her team."

Ariel Chairez, Entering Class 2004, Scholarship Awardee, University of Wisconsin Medical School
"Dr. Lewis, I would like to thank you for all of your help. Without your guidance, I would not have been accepted into medical school this year. I am extremely happy to have been accepted to one of the top medical schools in the country, and to have received a scholarship of $130,000. For any student who questions the value of your services, I can say that you have saved me $130,000 in tuition!  Thank you."

John Fiszer (Lawyer), Entering Class of 2005, University Of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine
Dr. Lewis' note: John was an Assistant State's Prosecuting Attorney in Chicago, Illinois, when he contacted me in 2004. Finishing his 4th year of medical school, he said: "I am really enjoying med school, and I am thankful to Dr. Lewis for her help. Her methodical, disciplined approach to the med school application process, as well as her insight into the transition to med school were right on target."

Ali Warrick, Entering Class 2011 Advisee
"Dear Dr. Lewis,
I appreciate your help in my transfer process to UC Berkeley. You have been an integral part of the transition, and I would like to thank you for your time and efforts.  I know that your work is very thorough and well thought out. In addition, I believe that you really care about your students, and believe in each student's "right fit" in a school. You lead many people toward a brighter future, and I would like to say, 'Thank You!' for your contribution toward my academic goals. This process has been much more enjoyable with your guidance. Thank you for being so good at what you do."

S, Entering Class 2008, accepted with full scholarship to Mayo Medical School
"I cannot thank Dr. Lewis enough for her support and invaluable advice. When I came to her, I was apprehensive about the formidable task of applying to medical school especially with my past academic and personal hardships. She helped me see that overcoming these difficulties was a testament to my strength, dedication, and diligence. One of the most surprising outcomes of our relationship was that she was effective in helping me develop a more positive self-image and conquer many of my insecurities. Without her guidance and letter of evaluation, I would not have been able to earn an acceptance to Mayo Medical School, which granted me a merit scholarship that covers almost all of my tuition. I truly appreciate all of her help. She went above and beyond her role as an Advisor by becoming a Mentor to me. She is absolutely the best in the business!"

Be Competitive
In order to be a competitive Class of 2010 or 2011 applicant, you need to submit a quality application as evaluated by your clinical, service and other experiences and your GPA-MCAT/DAT/GRE, etc. profile in a timely fashion. This requires a well thought-out strategy to carry you through the difficult year-long application process. If you use Dr. Lewis' advising, we begin preparation early in the year BEFORE submission of your application!

EARLY is always better, removes much of the pressure, and allows time to solve unforeseen problems and challenges.

What are your chances?

If you want to change your career, or reach your present career goal, but do not know how to begin, or how to jump over all those hurdles, Lewis Associates will advise you and implement strategies to change your life. Dr. Lewis is thorough and professional.

Getting Started

Read on our website about getting your Personal Assessment done, then phone or email us to get started!
Dr. Lewis spends, on average, 7 hours developing an effective strategy of taking you from where you are to where you want to be.

You may be like our other Lewis Associates Advisees -- highly motivated and intelligent -- but needing focus, guidance and specific technical expertise. Dr. Lewis solves problems for her Advisees and finds opportunities for them. Or, you may wish to use hourly advising to solve one specific problem.

Dr. Lewis is a trained Biologist, having taught and directed her own research programs for many years at two universities. She earned two postdoctoral fellowships (one at NIH), received the 1990 NACADA Outstanding Institutional Advising Program in the U.S. and directed her own Health Careers Opportunity Program grant for 6 years, bringing $1 million to her university
while helping hundreds of disadvantaged students enter health professions.

If you are serious about making your dreams to become a physician, dentist, physician assistant, veterinarian, optometrist, podiatrist, naturopathic physician, or pharmacist a reality--Dr. Lewis can help you. We have made the difference for more than 800 alumni now training or practicing in medicine over the last 23 years.

Dr. Lewis teaches Professionalism, Leadership, and Quality, and sets high standards for her Advisees.

Lewis Associates will save you money and heartache on your preparation and application process.

Contact the Health Career experts! For more information email imaclewis@lewisassoc.com. Call 805-226-9669 to set up your first appointment.

breaking news

Being young doesn't mean being healthy
Many young adults lose insurance coverage and forgo preventive care, a new report finds.

Med Schools Pressed To Cut Drug-Firm Ties
Financial dealings and gift-giving between drug companies and doctors are nothing new. But they're getting a lot more attention these days.


White House summit takes 1st step in health system reform discussion
Obama invited more than 100 people involved with health care to a meeting to search for common ground.

What editorial writers are saying about President Obama's plan for health care reform
The president's budget proposal calls for overhauling the health care system.

National Health Service Corps-- important opportunities for medical student financial support
The National Health Service Corps (NHSC) is recruiting over 4,000 new clinicians over the next two years who are seeking a once in a lifetime experience to serve in our Nations needy communities.

Shortages forecast for orthopedic surgeons, gastroenterologists
Demand for these specialists will outpace supply in the future.

Americans report cutting back on health care due to economy
A survey also finds that many in the U.S. trust President Obama to handle health reform.

No job, no bill: Physicians tell how they help longtime patients struggling during recession
Experts say for the cost of a few visits, physicians can build up long-term loyalty that will pay off when hard times end.

President Obama Will Nominate Governor Kathleen Sebelius Secretary of HHS, Announces Other Health Care Appointments
Governor Sebelius will head Health and Human Services; Nancy-Ann DeParle will lead White House Office for Health Reform, and Dr. Mary Wakefield will lead the Health Resources and Services Administration.

Health Care and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
By launching broad federal initiatives for biomedical and comparative effectiveness research, the adoption of health information technology, and the protection of the privacy and security of medical records, the stimulus law should have major and immediate effects.

U.S. healthcare system pinched by nursing shortage
The U.S. healthcare system is pinched by a persistent nursing shortage that threatens the quality of patient care even as tens of thousands of people are turned away from nursing schools, according to experts.

For Primary Care, More Patients Are Seeing Specialists
Even prenatal care visits to family doctors are declining. Specialists are increasingly providing routine and preventive services that have traditionally been handled by primary care doctors, a new study has found.

Mobile phones may be source of hospital infections
Mobile phones used by hospital healthcare workers are often contaminated with germs, including those that can causes illness in hospitalized patients, a Turkish research team reports.


AACOM Releases 2010 College Information Book
The official publication for prospective applicants, students, pre-health advisors and others interested in learning about or applying to the nations osteopathic medical colleges.

American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP)
has launched a new website and all their links have changed.  You can access all of the admissions information (including the Pharmacy School Admissions Requirements) in the Student Center at


Foreign Medical School List - Medical Board of California
Lists all International medical schools recognized and disapproved by the Medical Board of California, and the International Medical School Self-Assessment Report (pdf)

Find local resources to address health-related issues -
"Go Local", a service of the National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health

Find these and other useful links on Lewisassoc.com's Links Page.

alumni updates

Liana Au with family.

Liana Au, M.D., Entering Class 2003, U Hawaii, Family Practice Residency at Utah Valley Regional Medical Center.

"Aloha Dr. Lewis,
My residency is going good; surviving my intern year and learning lots. Kalani's school at BYU is also going great; he is taking a lot of science classes this semester. Just wanted to share some good news, we are expecting and we are having a boy! Zion is really excited to have a little brother. Hope you are doing great and hope to stay in touch.
Love, Liana"

Chelsea Crist Ward's baby, Dylan.

Chelsea Crist Ward M.D., Entering Class of 2006, Drexel University.

"Hi Dr Lewis!
I hope all is well in your 'new' home and maybe you have some wine for the drinking? 
Dylan will be 6months on the 22nd, and Everett and I have been married now 2 years! I was looking at residency programs, and was wondering if your contact at GW was in any way affiliated with residencies as well.  I'm interested in moving to DC as one of my options, and want to use all the resources I can get. Thanks, Chelsea.


Chelsea Crist Ward and her husband, Everett.

Christine Fair

Christine Fair, Entering Class of 2005, Saint Georges University.

"Hi Dr. Lewis,
I left Grenada in December and now I'm studying for the USMLE Step 1 exam.  I'm in DC with my son - we're both studying at the GWU library these days.  I won't be able to catch up much with you right now - but I did want to say "hello" and will be in touch with you in May (after my exam).  I plan to do my clinical IM and surgery rotations at San Joaquin Medical Center in Stockton, CA, starting the end of May.  It will be nice to be back in California again. Happy New Year to you - hope you are doing well. Best, Christine."


Watch for Success Stories coming for some of these alumni!

success story

Cai Zhang, Entering Class of 2009, University of California San Francisco

Matthew Landon
Cai Zhang

As a child, I’ve always had a sweet tooth. I recall at age 5 having toothaches and crying in the middle of the night in pain. Living in rural China, I never had the proper access to health care, but I rarely noticed it because my mom was my doctor and she always made me feel better. However, my mom couldn’t be my dentist. She couldn’t do a root canal, she couldn’t fill my cavities, and she couldn’t make the pain go away. So, I have always valued dentists.

Moving to the United States in 1992 made my dream of becoming a dentist a possibility. Transitioning to a completely new environment was slow and difficult. I was immersed into a new culture, a new language, and the only English I knew was “Hi.” For my parents, coming to the US was the realization of the American dream. They arrived with only $100, but after 8 years, they opened a Chinese restaurant. I started cleaning at the restaurant when I was 12, eventually devoting over 6,000 hours to it. I would go to school at 8 AM and then, work after school till 10:00p.m. With such a tight schedule, I had to manage my time efficiently. After a while, I acclimated to my new schedule and it made me more productive at dealing with pressure and adjusting to new circumstances.

The pivotal point in my decision to pursue dentistry was at a dental office where I served as a translator for my parents over a period of three months speaking Cantonese. I was fascinated by the meticulous craftsmanship of our dentist as he gently, yet firmly, moved the rotting tooth back and forth. He then molded the neighboring tooth, intently guiding the drill until it was ready for a bridge. The bridge was placed; and with one final push of the dentist’s finger, my dad had the perfect smile. The care, attention, and level of patience our dentist provided for my dad are qualities I want to emulate and provide to all my patients.

In college, I applied myself diligently by undertaking leadership roles, joining honor societies and dental clubs, volunteering at dental offices, all toward my goal of becoming a dentist. In addition, I volunteered 3 weeks in a “Poverty Alleviation through Education Project.” In this project, I went to poverty-stricken schools in China to teach English, and also gave oral hygiene presentations.

My work in the San Diego State University Pre-dental club and Preventive dentistry program made me more determined to become a dentist. I taught the importance of oral hygiene to mentally-challenged individuals, elementary school children, and orphans in Mexico. I also observed a local dentist at a clinic that provides free dental exams, beyond my volunteer activities in other dental offices. I have devoted over 260 hours with a general dentist, orthodontist, and in a pediatric dental office where I have the privilege of being a chairside assistant and can interact with our patients while observing dental procedures.

When this entering Class of 2009 application cycle rolled around, it became difficult to balance clinical work, working in the restaurant, studying for classes and keeping on top of applications. This is where Dr. Lewis came to my rescue. Dr. Lewis helped me stay focused in school with our weekly conference calls and gave me that extra push that I needed. Now, I will be attending UCSF, my first choice dental school in the fall, becoming part of their 2013 graduating class.

Email to Dr. Lewis if you wish to communicate about medical schools or other issues or to contact those profiled in Success Stories: imaclewis@lewisassoc.com

question of the month
By Dr. Cynthia Lewis, PhD

How do Allopathic Medical Schools define Holistic Admissions Review? What are "the desirable traits"?

This is a hot topic for Allopathic Medical Schools. Are they just giving it lip service? See Dr. Lewis' answer to this month's question on Facebook, Advising Tips tab.

We will feature an important question each month. Please submit one that interests you for Dr. Lewis to answer. Send your questions to imaclewis@lewisassoc.com with 'Newsletter Question' in the subject line.

AIGAC Stamp of Excellence
The Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants' (AIGAC) Stamp of Excellence is issued based on education, professional experience as a graduate admissions consultant, and commitment to the AIGAC's principles of good practices. AIGAC exists to define and promote professional excellence in serving graduate and professional school applicants worldwide.


lewis associates advising services

Lewis Associates specializes in personal, effective and professional premedical advising and placement for traditional and non-traditional applicants. Often, non-traditional students are older than 21 years of age, career changers, international applicants or second-round applicants for admission to health professions school.

Lewis Associates' services meet the needs of all types of students from pre-applicants to applicants, including hourly advising support for specific needs. Click here.


"It's never too late to be who you might have been."

If this is how YOU feel, then, maybe Lewis Associates is the place for you. Lewis Associates provides Mentoring and Coaching through the rigorous and often circuitous pre-health preparation and application process. Other consultants may support programs like Law and Business or graduate school -- not Lewis Associates. We are the experts in Health Professions based on 26 years of a successful track record.

Call or email today to set your first appointment!

805.226.9669 imaclewis@lewisassoc.com

Copyright 2009, Lewis Associates. All rights reserved. Please do not repost on any website without direct permission from Lewis Associates.

Please feel free to forward this newsletter to any friends, classmates, or colleagues you feel would find its contents beneficial.

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