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Lewis Associates e-Newsletter
Volume 8 Issue 6
June 2009

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

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! 

Health-Care Reform 2009, Tracking the National Health-Care Debate

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"? Part 3.

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:
• House Democrats set July 31 deadline for health system reform bill

• In ASU Speech, Obama Calls Upon Students to Seek Lasting Achievement
• Shortage of Doctors an Obstacle to Obama Goals, Washington focuses on medical workforce, primary care
• Health care crisis - shortage of Primary Care physicians
• Osteopathic Medical Schools 2008 Admissions Data
• IOM warns about physician-pharma conflicts of interest
• Health Groups Vow Cost Control
• Ex-Hospital CEO Battles Reform Effort, Ads Cite Long Waits In Canada and Britain
• Medical School Faculty, grads differ on what's "must-know"
• Medicine's voice being heard on health system reform

• Is goal more quality or less payment?
• Health care leaders pledge $2 trillion in spending cuts

Useful Links
• FIRST (Financial Information, Resources, Services, and Tools) for Medical Education
• Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges

• PhD in Health and Rehabilitation Science
• University of Pennsylvania VMD/PhD combined degree.
• Case Western Reserve University Dual Degree - DMD, MD Program
• New Rural Medical School

• Columbia University Postbaccalaureate Premedical Program

Alumni Update
• Nikita Shah, Entering Class of 2008, University of Texas Southwestern Medical School
• Carmen Ruiz, MD Entering Class of 1992, Harvard University School of Medicine, Residency in Colorectal Surgery Mayo Clinic, Professor at the University of Oklahoma-Tulsa School of Medicine

Success Story of the Month
• Kimberly Grueneisen, Entering Class of 2009, Midwestern Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine

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"? Part 3.

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 2009...92% acceptance
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

House Democrats set July 31 deadline for health system reform bill
Meanwhile, a House GOP reform group will not offer a specific solution for the 21% Medicare physician pay cut scheduled to take effect in January.


In ASU Speech, Obama Calls Upon Students to Seek Lasting Achievement
President Obama told students at Arizona State University that they are graduating at an uncertain and challenging time for the country, but urged them to reject the old formulas for success and shape a new future for their generation.

Shortage of Doctors an Obstacle to Obama Goals, Washington focuses on medical workforce, primary care
The Obama Administration and Congress have started to recognize that to achieve major health care reform and cover the uninsured, the medical workforce--particularly in primary care--must be bolstered.

Health care crisis - shortage of Primary Care physicians
D.O.s Could Play Key Role in Bolstering Primary Care Workforce.

Osteopathic Medical Schools 2008 Admissions Data
Last fall, first-time enrollment among osteopathic medical students reached 4,768, an increase of 360 students, or about 8 %, compared with the enrolling class of 2007. Most of the increase stemmed from opening 2 new medical colleges in Yakima, Wash., and Parker, Colo. AACOM is expecting even more students to enroll this fall, with the opening of three new satellite campuses in Pennsylvania and Michigan.

IOM warns about physician-pharma conflicts of interest
A new institute report recommends that physicians accept drug samples only if they distribute them to needy patients.

Health Groups Vow Cost Control
Volunteering to "do our part" to tackle runaway health costs, leading groups in the health-care industry have offered to squeeze $2 trillion in savings from projected increases over the next decade, White House officials said yesterday.

Ex-Hospital CEO Battles Reform Effort, Ads Cite Long Waits In Canada and Britain
"Before government rushes to overhaul health care, listen to those who already have government-run health care."

Medical School Faculty, grads differ on what's "must-know"
Researchers said medical residents listed fewer procedures as essential to their education.

Medicine's voice being heard on health system reform
The American Medical Association and the specialty and state society leaders have had access to and have been engaged with the White House and the key committees in Congress.

Is goal more quality or less payment?
Letters to the Editor - May 18, 2009

Health care leaders pledge $2 trillion in spending cuts
The AMA indicated it will push for medical liability reform for doctors in exchange for reducing health spending.


FIRST (Financial Information, Resources, Services, and Tools) for Medical Education

Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges

PhD in Health and Rehabilitation Science

University of Pennsylvania VMD/PhD combined degree.

Case Western Reserve University Dual Degree - DMD, MD Program

New Rural Medical School - Columbia Partners with Bassett Healthcare to Establish Medical School Program in Cooperstown, New York

Columbia University Postbaccalaureate Premedical Program

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

alumni updates

Nikita Shah

Nikita Shah, Entering Class of 2008, University of Texas Southwestern Medical School

April 23, 2009: "Hi Dr. Lewis, how are you doing? I'm about 5 weeks away from the end of my first year at UT Southwestern med.  The year has gone by very quickly!  First year went pretty well, but it was a big adjustment initially. The curriculum at Southwestern is fairly traditional.  We took all of our basic sciences this year (biochem, anatomy, physiology, genetics, immunology, neuroscience, embryology).  Next year we'll start on the organ systems--I can't wait."

Cris Sherman
Carmen Ruiz

Carmen Ruiz, MD Entering Class of 1992, Harvard University School of Medicine, Residency in Colorectal Surgery Mayo Clinic, Professor at the University of Oklahoma-Tulsa School of Medicine

Mira Costa College 2009 Commencement Speaker.
When Carmen Ruiz was a girl, her mother often treated her ailments with medicinal herbs. Her grandmother believed that a concoction of soil and water taken orally would “thicken her blood.” Dr. Ruiz, a MiraCosta College graduate, is now practicing a more traditional type of medicine as a colorectal surgeon.

Dr. Ruiz’s life, however, is anything but traditional. An Oceanside High School graduate, she married soon after high school and had two sons. While working as a full-time mother, Ruiz came to MiraCosta College where she earned a certificate in cosmetology. However, she never used her skills and soon decided a career in cosmetology was not for her. She reenrolled at MiraCosta with the goal to someday become a doctor. Expecting to be laughed at, she kept her educational goals secret until her studies were well under way.

Once Ruiz got started working toward her goal, there was no stopping her. She transferred from MiraCosta to San Diego State University and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in biology. She sent out 20 applications to medical schools, was offered interviews by 15 of the 20 and was on her fourth interview when she learned she had been accepted to Harvard. Dr. Ruiz went on to earn her medical degree from Harvard Medical School and completed a residency at the Mayo Graduate School. She is now a practicing surgeon in Tulsa, Oklahoma.



Watch for Success Stories coming for some of these alumni!

success story

Kimberly Grueneisen, Entering Class of 2009, Midwestern Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine

Matthew Landon
Kimberly Grueneisen

My path to medicine has been long, winding, and dotted with detours.  My admiration for the profession started at age 9 when my youngest brother was hospitalized with a burst appendix. His picture was in the local Zanesville, Ohioan newspaper, as an 18 pound 3-year old who survived the surgery and 3 month hospital stay.  The doctor was my hero because he saved my brother, and I wanted to be like that doctor. But, due to the lack of support of my family, I wasn’t able to even think about being a physician. My desire was not voiced until the summer of 2006, at age 46, married with two grown daughters, ages 14 and 18.

The exact moment when I seriously considered the possibility of being a physician was August, 2006, when I was listening to the convocation at my older daughter’s college. The dean reassured parents that medical school could be a viable option for their sons and daughters, no matter what degree they pursued.  I sat there and asked myself if it was still a viable option for me.  My daughter’s tutor was a pre-medical student who recommended me to her Advisor, Dr. Cynthia Lewis.  Dr. Lewis saw the physician in me who I always knew was there, and proceeded to lay out my master plan.

Up until that point, I was no stranger to health care, and had been maximizing my dental hygiene degree with clinical positions in pedodontics, orthodontics, periodontics and cosmetic dentistry.

Over 25 years, I had remained active in my professional organization and community, rotating through leadership positions that afforded one adventure after another.  My adventurous nature took me to Switzerland where I practiced clinically for six years, where I also conducted a clinical tooth brushing study, and learned to speak “Swiss German” like a native.  My Swiss years were ones of growth in confidence and self-esteem, due to the praise I received regarding my language acquisition and advanced clinical skills.  But, I became dissatisfied with only treating the mouth, and I wanted more.  I decided medicine was what I wanted, but was unfortunately misinformed when I inquired about taking the prerequisites at UC Berkeley in 1986.

I proceeded to test other waters, beginning with the Landscape Architecture Program at UCLA Extension.  While I was successful in the program, I missed my provider/patient relationship and returned to work part-time as a clinical dental hygienist, and part-time as an educator in dental hygiene. I put my BS degree to use, and taught at USC School of Dentistry, West LA College Dental Hygiene Program, and UCLA School of Dentistry.  I found the teaching environment stimulating, and once again felt a strong desire to be the "student" studying science instead of the “instructor” teaching it.   It was in this period that I met Dr. Lewis, who became my cheerleader.

Although the desire to be a physician had always been present, my commitment to achieve that goal was not made until I felt the support of Dr. Lewis.  My life’s battles with lack of family support continued, but my A grades in successive semesters impressed my family, and their doubts waned.  I attacked my pre-medical classes with delight, and was consistently reassured by my infinite quest for knowledge that I was on the right path.  I discovered the best methods and study techniques to ensure my academic success.  My weekly chats with Dr. Lewis cannot be overemphasized in their importance, as they provided a reminder of what I had to offer to medicine.  Where I have always been a goal setter and achiever, Dr. Lewis was instrumental in reminding me of my worthiness to obtain this goal.  I learned how to cope with the stresses of test taking, and am proud to have taken the MCAT without the feeling of panic.

I am happy to announce that I have completed the master plan as scheduled with the prize in hand.  I have been accepted to Midwestern University in Glendale, AZ and was waitlisted at the other two schools where I interviewed, and look forward to starting medical school this summer!

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"? Part 3.

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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