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Lewis Associates e-Newsletter
Volume 9 Issue 11
November 2010

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

November: Thanksgiving, midterms, papers and projects due ... and near final exams. If you are an applicant, you and most of your peers are now interviewing. But, there is something new this year, at least for medicine. Although the MD-granting allopathic schools' admissions mantra is "Holistic Admissions Evaluations", which means considering all your non-GPA and MCAT history up front ... this seems not to be happening at most schools. The same old game of "high" MCAT/GPA profile is still important in getting that interview request, unless you are disadvantaged or something really unusual stands out in your primary applicatin.
Admissions Directors have told me the applicant pool is very strong this year: Translation = high MCAT's and GPA's are necessary!

What does this mean for you?

Be focused on high academic achievement ... NOW!
Learn the skills you need to do well on the MCAT ... NOW!
Be dogged in earning A grades ... NOW!
Use your academic and personal resources wisely ... NOW!

Learn from your mistakes ... ALWAYS!

This month's question (on Dr. Lewis' Facebook page) is: "I have heard that interviewers can ask difficult questions. How do I prepare?"

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-run 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 2012?
Track Record
Be Competitive

Getting Started

• Medical School Enrollment Shows Diversity Gains
• A More Level Playing Field for Students with Disabilities in the Medical Sciences
• Is affirmative action for men the answer to enrolment woes?
• Do No Harm
• Analysis of Health Care Reform Legislation Provisions
• California first to OK insurance exchange outlined under health system reform
• Dr. Stephen Shannon, Osteopathic physician and President AACOM, Featured on Radio Rounds
• Judge Rules Health Law Is Constitutional
• Nobel Prize reflects IVF's acceptance as medical procedure
• New government panel's mission is to empower public with health-care knowledge
• Insurers drop child-only coverage on eve of health reform mandates
• Doctors, patients use smartphones, but can't make mobile connection
• Medical School Accreditation Requirement for ECFMG Certification
• Med students expect Electronic Health Records (EHRs) for their practices
• Many physicians see Medicaid pay cut as enrollment rises
• Berkeley Optometry Admissions Requirements

Useful Links
• AMCAS for Applicants (updated!)
• AMCAS - Information about Letters Service (updated!)
• Global Health Leadership Institute
• Health care income ranges

Alumni Update
• Paul, Entering Class of 2007, University of Colorado Medical School
• Janae, Entering Class of 2009, Touro University - CA, College of Osteopathic Medicine
• Kelly, Entering Class of 2010, Lincoln Memorial University, DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine
• Helen, Entering Class of 2010, University of California San Francisco School of Pharmacy

Success Story of the Month
• Jimmy, Entering Class of 2010, Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine

Question of the Month
Dr. Lewis' answer to this month's question: see Facebook.

"I have heard that interviewers can ask difficult questions. How do I prepare?"

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 2010...86% acceptance
Entering Class of 2009...96% acceptance
Entering Class of 2008...96% acceptance
Entering Class of 2007...97% acceptance
Entering Class of 2006...89% acceptance
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 package 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 2012 or 2013?
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! And if you start the ultimate Commitement Package within 6 months, we subtract your Personal Assesment Fee from the total. 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?

Gail Ruth, mother of Todd Ruth, Entering Class of 2010, Jefferson University Medical School
Just a short note here to let you know how appreciative we are of all the wonderful help you gave to our son, Todd. He just received his first 2 acceptances from his top choices, so we couldn't be more pleased.! You were instrumental in guiding him as to which courses to take and gave him invaluable help with his essays. Thanks once again for all your help and guidance.

David and Maureen Lee, parents of Eric Lee, Entering Class of 2009, Saint Louis University School of Medicine
June, 2009: "Dr. Lewis, We just wanted to drop you a quick note to say thank you for all of your strategic guidance, wise counsel, encouragement, and mentoring to our son Eric on his journey to get into medical school. That is quite a process!! Eric definitely took the "road less traveled", majoring in philosophy, but he worked really hard to get his science prerequisites under his belt. He benefited so much from your experience, insight, and when needed, "tough love". You kept him on track, and we thank you. We think he will be an excellent physician. Perhaps some day we will meet. Again with gratitude, David and Maureen Lee."

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, 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 2012 or 2013 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. Added Benefit: We will subtract the cost of your Personal Assesment from an Ultimate Commitment Package if you choose it within 6 months.

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 25 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.



Medical School Enrollment Shows Diversity Gains
Number of First-Time Applicants Also Up, Demonstrating Interest in Medicine as a Career

A More Level Playing Field for Students with Disabilities in the Medical Sciences
Timothy Cordes graduated as valedictorian of his class at the University of Notre Dame, and was admitted to the University of Wisconsin (UW) where he recently earned an M.D. and a Ph.D. in biomolecular chemistry. He is currently a resident physician in the psychiatry department while fulfilling his role as a husband and father. Tim is blind.

Is affirmative action for men the answer to enrolment woes?
The gender gap at the McMaster University's medical school was one of the widest in the country and one of the factors that prompted Dr. Reiter to rethink the admissions criteria.

Do No Harm
Medical errors kill some 100,000 Americans every year. How we can reverse the trend.

Analysis of Health Care Reform Legislation Provisions
AAMC has summarized the provisions of health care reform legislation that are of particular interest to medical schools and teaching hospitals.

California first to OK insurance exchange outlined under health system reform
Other states are moving in that direction with health reform implementation task forces.

Dr. Stephen Shannon, Osteopathic physician and President AACOM, Featured on Radio Rounds
Radio Rounds, a weekly medical talk show hosted and produced by medical students, recently focused an episode on osteopathic medicine with Stephen C. Shannon, DO, MPH, President and CEO of AACOM.

Judge Rules Health Law Is Constitutional
A federal judge in Michigan on Thursday dismissed one of more than 15 legal challenges to the new health care law, becoming the first to rule that the law is constitutional.

Nobel Prize reflects IVF's acceptance as medical procedure
Nobel laureate Robert G. Edwards' innovation has resulted in more than 4 million children born since 1978.

New government panel's mission is to empower public with health-care knowledge
Steven Lipstein was selected by the Government Accountability Office to be vice chairman of the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute's board.

Insurers drop child-only coverage on eve of health reform mandates
As preexisting condition rules kick in for children, health plans stop selling such policies in most markets, casting doubt on their reform pledges.

Doctors, patients use smartphones, but can't make mobile connection
A study cites a lack of payment from insurers to physicians for electronic monitoring and an unwillingness among patients to pay for that service.

Medical School Accreditation Requirement for ECFMG Certification
The Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates announced it will require accreditation of medical schools attended by all international medical graduates (IMGs) who seek ECFMG certification beginning in 2023.

Med students expect Electronic Health Records (EHRs) for their practices
Hospitals and physician practices take note: the next generation of doctors will expect a technology-laden environment when they get out in the real world.

Many physicians see Medicaid pay cut as enrollment rises
Twenty states enacted reductions in 2010, and more adopted cuts for 2011. But with stimulus money running out, states are bracing for the worst.

Berkeley Optometry Admissions Requirements
Faculty has approved two changes in the undergraduate courses applicants are required to complete to be eligible for admission to the professional degree program.


AMCAS for Applicants (updated!)

AMCAS - Information about Letters Service (updated!)

Global Health Leadership Institute

Health care income ranges

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

alumni updates


Paul, Entering Class of 2007, University of Colorado Medical School

Oct. 19, 2010: "Hi Dr. Lewis. It was great to hear that you are still advising students.  I read your newsletter every now and then to keep up with what you are doing. I have met a few people who are applying to med school this year and it does sound like the applicant pool is getting stronger. I am not sure if I would have been accepted if I had to apply now. I am still doing Peds.  I am interviewing all over the country but would love to stay in Denver.  They have one of the best programs in the country and great subspecialty training.  I am actually coming out to California in Dec.  I will be at USC and Childrens Hospital of Orange County.  Still waiting to hear from Stanford and UC Davis. If I get a chance to come out there, it would be great to see you.

I actually live in downtown Denver.  I moved there my third year to be closer to the hospitals we rotate through.  My family is doing well.  My dad is still working as hard as ever, and my Mom is doing well. Not sure if I told you, but my brother and sister-in-law had a little girl.  She's almost 2 now.  They live in Dallas and my brother is still flying for American Airlines.  They live a couple of blocks from Southwestern University (a very good peds program), so I will be interviewing there as well.  How are you doing? Sounds like you are still busy.  It was great to hear from you.  Take care, Paul."



Janae, Entering Class of 2009, Touro University - CA, College of Osteopathic Medicine

Oct. 11, 2010: "Hello Dr. Lewis. Thank you for your guidance during my application process. My dreams of doing underserved medical work are coming true. I have been blessed with the National Health Service Corps Scholarship, and feel so grateful to everyone who has helped me get where I am today. I hope all is well in Templeton. Sincerely, Janae"



Kelly, Entering Class of 2010, Lincoln Memorial University, DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine

Oct. 23, 2010: "Hi Dr. Lewis. How are you? I absolutely LOVE LMU-DCOM. The teachers have great personalities and are very good at what they do. The technology is above and beyond. The staff and faculty really want to make a name for the school, so they are very interested in making sure the students do well. They are very receptive to what we think works and what does not. I have been doing extremely well in my classes. There isn't much to do here, but that's probably a good thing. No distractions. Luckily, I'm a very active person and there are tons of places to go hiking. My fellow classmates are wonderful, too. There isn't one person who has come across as unkind, and everyone is more than willing to help the other one out. It could have a lot to do with coming from small towns. 90% of my class are from the area. I am the only person from California. I hope all is well with you and your vineyard and sunflower garden. I wasn't able to go to Italy this past summer, but I did go last March for a month. I ended up going to Africa and running a 60 mile race in the Sahara!
Like I said, I hope you are doing well. I'm sure you are working like crazy to help all those stressed out pre-medical students. Take care, Kelly"



Helen, Entering Class of 2010, University of California San Francisco School of Pharmacy

Oct. 18, 2010: "Hello Dr. Lewis, how are you doing? I had my White Coat Ceremony last Friday. It was a great event, and I enjoyed it a lot. We had amazing guests with inspirational speeches. My husband and my friend were my guests, and both liked the ceremony. I attached a picture from the event. Overall, I'm doing fine at UCSF. It's hectic though, since they are keeping us very busy. I'm taking 18.5 quarter units this fall, and we have one midterm after another every week. At the same time, we have very good professors, my classmates are amazing, and I've already made some close friends. I look forward to coming to school every morning even though it takes me 1.5 hours each direction, since I commute to San Francisco from Fremont. Regards, Helen"


Watch for Success Stories coming for some of these alumni!

success story

Jimmy (right) with parents and brother

Jimmy, Entering Class of 2010, Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine

My experience with Dr. Lewis has been nothing but amazing! Her dedication, devotion, and guidance have helped me achieve my dreams. Before coming to her, I thought I knew everything to submitting a competitive application. I did all of the research, took the advice my friends and current medical students gave me. Read all of the resources on the internet as well as those directed to me from my university pre-medical advisor. With all of this, I felt like I had the information I needed to submit a strong application. However, feeling hesitant, I sought out and spoke with Dr. Lewis. After the initial phone call, I realized that what I thought I knew was not even close to being adequate, and my decision to work with her has changed my life. The things I thought I knew about the application process were incomplete, and if I were to have done this alone, I would have never submitted as strong an application as I did with Dr. Lewis. We worked on everything together throughout the whole process. We chose schools together, helped me study and prepare, both mentally and physically, for the MCAT. We looked at my extracurricular activities, crafted the enormous number of essays required for each school, and even helped me keep track of everything using tools and spreadsheets Dr. Lewis developed to keep this insanity organized. We even did mock interviews together over the phone to prepare for the real thing! Dr. Lewis even helped me get in touch with physicians to shadow, and I still keep in touch with the one that I shadowed, we have become very close.

The weekly phone calls we had were simply amazing! It was a nice way to stay in touch with Dr. Lewis to let her know where I was in the process, what problems I was experiencing, and any other questions I had about the application process. I’m certain that without our weekly meetings, I would have gone crazy. It was very helpful to know that I could always talk to her about anything, and that she would always be there to help me. At the end of every conversation, she would ask me how I was doing mentally because she was concerned with my psychological well-being, and how I was managing the stressors in my life. The application strategies that she taught me kept me progressing, and in addition to reassuring me every week, all helped get me through this very stressful period.

The application period was especially difficult for me because I had recently graduated and was working full time. Therefore, the time I had to devote to the application process was limited to nights and weekends. Additionally, I was also caring for my mother because of her heart problem, so my priority was always with her. I also experienced a death in my family near the end of December, in the middle of the application process, when I took some time off. If it wasn’t for Dr. Lewis’ dedication helping me see this through to the end, I don’t know where I would be right now.

I can say with 100% confidence that without Dr. Lewis, I would not be where I am today. She is an unbelievably amazing person who went well above what she needed to do to help me, and I am so thankful for the friendship that I have fostered with her! She is the reason why I am currently in pursuit of my dreams!

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... see Facebook, Advising Tips tab
By Dr. Cynthia Lewis, PhD

"I have heard that interviewers can ask difficult questions. How do I prepare?"

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 23 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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