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Lewis Associates e-Newsletter
Volume 10 Issue 6
June 2011

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

June is when premedical and pre-dental applicants can submit data into the AMCAS (allopathic medical), AACOMAS (osteopathic medical), and AADSAS (dental) applications.

Are you ready?

Many applicants only begin to prepare in May or June.  Oops! If this is you, you are late.

I have my applicants preparing since LAST summer/fall, because it takes weeks to months to collect all the pertinent letters and to craft a well-thought out personal statement. It is unrealistic to assume that a few hours work will produce a competitive application.

Do you really want to be competitive?

1. Plan ... ahead!

2. Address your weaknesses.What are they? How long will that take?

  • Science GPA?
  • Test (MCAT, DAT) scores, or do you need to take the test for the first time?
  • Clinical experiences? How meaningful are they?
  • Service? What did you do to help others?
  • No close relationships with faculty?

And, how long will it take to really improve? One term? 2 years? Be realistic!

So, whatever quest you have or issue you want to discuss, Dr. Lewis is the best person to use for personal and academic advice. She's been doing it for 25 years, and "has heard it all". Why don't you let her help you?


This month's question on Dr. Lewis' Facebook page is: "I am completing the AMCAS Activity/Experience section. I cannot list anyone as my contact for this experience. What do I do?"

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
Your journey to a health profession
Are You Ready for the Class of 2012?
Track Record
Be Competitive

Getting Started

• U.S. News and World Report Puts Osteopathic Medical Colleges at Top of List of Primary Care Producing Medical Schools
• Debt Management Guide
• Improving the Supply and Distribution of Primary Care Physicians
• Education for the Emergency Room
• Preparing for Health Care Reform: Ten Recommendations for Academic Health Centers
• States eye public access to more doctor disciplinary records
• Physicians with many Medicaid patients are likely to treat more in 2014
• Plans to reduce the federal deficit
• Half of U.S. states have comprehensive smoke-free laws

Useful Links
• AMCAS Resources - Video tutorials to aid you in completing sections, e.g.: How to enter Course Work, AP, Future, Study Abroad on AMCAS
• National Area Health Education Center Organization - Improving health care in underserved communities and recruiting and retaining underrepresented students in the health care professions.
• National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Scholarship
• Financing Medical Education
• Financing Dental Education
• Pharmacy Scholarships for Students

Alumni Update
• Darin, DDS, Entering Class of 1994, Baylor University School of Dentistry, Orthodontics Practice in Canada: Learning about ethics and colleagues
• Cynthia, DO, Entering Class of 1995, Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific
• Steven, Entering Class of 2008, Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine: Death in the family

Success Story of the Month
• Inna, Entering Class of 2008, UC San Diego School of Pharmacy

Question of the Month
• Dr. Lewis' answer to this month's question: see our Facebook page, Advising Tips tab.

"I am completing the AMCAS Activity/Experience section. I cannot list anyone as my contact for this experience. What do I do?"

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 2011...100% acceptance
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.

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.



U.S. News and World Report Puts Osteopathic Medical Colleges at Top of List of Primary Care Producing Medical Schools
In this yearís best medical school rankings, five of the nationís 26 colleges of osteopathic medicine top the list of U.S. medical schools producing the most primary care residents.

Debt Management Guide
For medical students seeking primary care medical careers. It has links to programs, plus information about loans and financing a medical education.

Improving the Supply and Distribution of Primary Care Physicians
The supply of physicians in the United States has two principal shortcomings: a skewed distribution of specialists with a shortage of primary care physicians and a maldistribution of physicians by geography with a shortage of physicians in many rural areas.

Education for the Emergency Room
When health-professions graduates get into hospitals or other clinical settings as doctors, nurses, pharmacists or other medical workers, they are thrust into situations where they must work as teams.

Preparing for Health Care Reform: Ten Recommendations for Academic Health Centers
Brief analyzes of the most important effects PPACA will have on AHCs and recommendations as to how AHCs can and should prepare for the implementation of PPACA. http://journals.lww.com/academicmedicine/Fulltext/2011/05000/Commentary__Preparing_for_Health_Care_Reform__Ten.11.aspx

States eye public access to more doctor disciplinary records
Several have passed or are considering legislation to publish disciplinary, criminal and liability histories, or otherwise increase transparency of the process.

Physicians with many Medicaid patients are likely to treat more in 2014
Doctors with low Medicaid patient loads may be unwilling or ill-equipped to see those who become eligible, a survey finds.

Plans to reduce the federal deficit
President Obama and House Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan (R, Wis.) have made very different federal deficit-trimming proposals that would affect Medicare and Medicaid.

Half of U.S. states have comprehensive smoke-free laws
More action is required to limit exposure to secondhand smoke, a CDC report says. http://www.elabs10.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=x8pbgr,huy8,2kdo,8tjv,jv4r,d051,er0i


AMCAS Resources - Video tutorials to aid you in completing sections, e.g.: How to enter Course Work, AP, Future, Study Abroad on AMCAS

National Area Health Education Center Organization - Improving health care in underserved communities and recruiting and retaining underrepresented students in the health care professions.

National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Scholarships

Financing Medical Education

Financing Dental Education

Pharmacy Scholarships for Students

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

alumni updates

Darin & Family

Darin, DDS, Entering Class of 1994, Baylor University School of Dentistry, Orthodontics Practice in Canada: Learning about ethics and colleagues

April 166, 2011: "Yeah, lots of changes! Graduated Nov. 2009 from Orthodontics Residency. Got engaged and certified to practice in Canada the same month (thought I would get a CDN license to practice 1-2 days month in my friend's office in Calgary... it was a gnarly exam: 6 hours hand-written essay and a 3 hour oral exam!) †

Moved to Colorado Springs to work in Dec. Showed up for work and they said they would pay me 50% of what we agreed (after I rented a house for a year). When I confronted him, his reply was "It is what it is". After working for a month, I told the doc in CO Springs where he could put his 50%. He came back with "Everything is negotiable-what do you want?" I let him know that I want to work with someone I trust, I didn't trust him, and to me, trust is not negotiable.... so I asked for a final check, and I returned his key. †

Contacted an orthodontist in Calgary who offered me a job. †He is a "businessman stuck in doing orthodontics" and I am the opposite! Decided I couldn't work with him, but bought his satellite practice in downtown Calgary. Got married in December, moved to Canada in February, and found out we were pregnant in March! †

We had Rogan James November 1st, 2010, and I had my left hip replaced December 7th. I've been slowly growing my downtown orthodontic practice, which is 2 operatories (Unlike most ortho offices that are 4-14 opertories!), and 98% adult (as I'm the only orthodontist downtown). I also have a satellite practice 1 day/month in Revelstoke, BC-a cool little mountain town. It's basically an excuse to visit the mountains to ride, hike, ski, etc....and I'm looking to open a 2nd office outside of Calgary in a community with no orthodontist, so I can see more kids....so yeah, pretty busy! †

I love being a Dad! Rogie is growing so fast! I plan on keeping my schedule 3-4 days/week so I can be with my family at least as much as I am at work. That balance is tricky, but I'm working on it! I've been studying with an orthodontist in LA who is big into airway, maximizing growth and development, and non-extraction treatment.

Most of what I do is not what I learned in dental school, as they are pretty old school: head gear/extraction/retraction-oriented. Orthodontics is so much fun, and I'm loving it."

Cynthia & Family

Cynthia, DO, Entering Class of 1995, Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific

Mar 15, 2011: " Hi Dr. Lewis, I am living in Chino Hills.  After working for others in private practice for the past 7 years, I just opened a private practice last April with my husband.  It has been going well, we are both family medicine docs.  I teach at Western University a couple times a year in their OMM lab for 1st and 2nd year students.  Keep pretty busy with that and the kids, Brenell is 7, Leilani is 5, Malea now 1. Hope you are well!  Talk to you soon! Love, Cindy."


Steven, Entering Class of 2008, Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine: Death in the family

Mar 31, 2011: "Hi, I am now a 3rd year student who had a rough turn last July, 2010. My mother died suddenly, and I had to go on a leave of absence for 2 months. Now, I am dealing with my mother's estate and house in San Jose. Since the probate court appointed me a legal representative for my mother's estate, I am busy dealing with probate, managing my mother's house in San Jose, and being a full time medical student.

I am handling the process ok, but I am slightly behind from my classmates. I can slowly catch up to graduate in 2012, but I will have to work harder then the rest of my class for the remainder of my schooling. Having good time management skills and grieving properly has helped me juggle my responsibilities between fulltime school and estate issues.

I will get in touch again soon, so that I may see what Dr. Lewis can do to help me prepare in applying for Residency, and to catch up. Thanks for everything! Sincerely, Steven."

Watch for Success Stories coming for some of these alumni!

success story


Inna, Entering Class of 2008, UC San Diego School of Pharmacy

When I was younger, I did not know what I wanted to be when I grew up. After graduating from high school, I attended community college, and for the next few years I took a variety of subjects to understand what I wanted to do for my career. I changed my major from business to art to sociology. I was nervous about taking any science class, due to some bad high school science experiences, and put them off for several years. However, once I took my first college chemistry class, I knew I had found a direction. Although the classes were much more challenging than anything I had experienced before, my desire to learn, and fascination with chemistry helped transform me into a dedicated student.

I transferred to San Diego State University to continue my studies, and here I realized my pharmacy ambitions. I wanted to take my passion for chemistry and use this knowledge to help people. While studying at SDSU, I was introduced to Dr. Lewis who was instrumental in helping me outline the steps I needed to take to become a strong applicant for pharmacy school. She put me in contact with pharmacists that she had worked with and encouraged me to volunteer in different areas of pharmacy. These experiences were very valuable in developing a better understanding of the profession.

During the year I was applying to pharmacy school, my mother was diagnosed with an advanced stage of breast cancer. This experience was a very difficult time for me, but it did make me realize how important pharmacy professionals are to patient care and how important the goal was to me. Dr. Lewis was such an important moral support system for me during this time. She helped me stay strong, as well as guide me through the application process. With the help of Dr. Lewis, I got into my first choice pharmacy school at University of California, San Diego.

I am currently finishing my 3rd year at UCSD Skaggs School of Pharmacy. I chose UCSD because it is a unique program that offers a strong integration with their medical school, providing a clinically-focused and interdisciplinary pharmacy school experience. Throughout my pharmacy studies, I have also worked in the UCSD free clinics. This program provides medical services to poor families and the homeless in San Diego. I have enjoyed my work with these clinics, and have been inspired to continue to work with the underserved community. I am looking forward to becoming a pharmacist who works with patients to improve their health and quality of life.

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 am completing the AMCAS Activity/Experience section. I cannot list anyone as my contact for this experience. What do I do?"

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.

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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