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Lewis Associates e-Newsletter
Volume 14 Issue 11
November 2014

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

November is when many midterms happen and projects are due. Have you been keeping up? Don’t let deadlines “sneak up” on you – you should be preparing EACH week for upcoming assignments and exams. “Cramming” is not learning, nor is it productive in preparing for more advanced work that requires knowledge and skill from earlier courses.

November is also when holidays occur: Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukah, Christmas, etc. So there is intense studying mixed in with “down time”.
Use both WISELY!

Watch for new videos to be posted each month on our Facebook page, including helpful hints for the application process.

After more than 12 years of publication of our Newsletter, we will be closing this successful chapter of our work with the publication of the December issue. We will continue providing the best information and advice about Pre-Medical or any other health career admissions on our Facebook page.
Don't miss it.

Do you really want to be competitive?

1. Plan ... ahead!

2. Address your weaknesses. What are they?

  • 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 27 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 collecting my letters of recommendations for medical school. Who do I ask?”

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 2016 or 2017?
Track Record
Be Competitive

What Are Your Chances?
Getting Started

• Physicians’ ethical considerations in emergencies
• How med students handle uncertainty could predict career future
• Ebola In The US: Front Line Health Training Trickles Down To First-Year Med Students
• Opinion: Med students’ mnemonics and sexism
• Cadavers beat computers for learning anatomy
• The NHSC Loan Repayment Program
• Study: Free IUDs, implants cut teen pregnancies
• I, Intern: When the Student Becomes the Teacher
• Is this what you expected? First-years’ candid thoughts on med school
• Under African skies: DOs face health risks to treat patients most in need
• Changing the Culture of a Medical School by Orienting Students and Faculty Toward Community Medicine
• UW, WSU reach deal on medical school
• Nobel chemistry laureate’s twisting path to molecular microscope breakthrough
• Med schools preparing students for rapid changes
• What MS4 students wish they had known about medical school
• Medical Student Perspective: 10 Tips on How to Be Happy in Medical School
• Escaping the medical school bubble
• Med school student, barbershop patrons help man after stabbing
• CDC issues new rules for protecting workers from Ebola
• Ways students can control residency application costs
• 1.5 million died last year from this curable disease
• How health IT is giving med students real-world experience
• Where you should practice: New tool reveals lay of the land

Useful Links
• The MCAT2015 Exam for Students
• What's on the MCAT2015 Exam?

Alumni Update
• Yamah, Entering Class of 2014, University of Queensland Ochsner MBBS Program

Success Story of the Month
• Paul, Entering Class of 2007, University of Colorado Medical School, Pediatric Residency at The Children’s Hospital in Denver, CO

Question of the Month
• Dr. Lewis' answer to this month's question: "I am collecting my letters of recommendations for medical school. Who do I ask?"
See our Facebook page, Notes tab.

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 2013...88% acceptance
Entering Class of 2012...100% acceptance
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

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

Email: imaclewis@lewisassoc.com

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 2016 or 2017?
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?

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 2016 or 2017 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 26 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.


Physicians’ ethical considerations in emergencies
As flu season approaches and public health outbreaks are making headlines, physicians and health systems across the country are reviewing disaster preparedness procedures.

How med students handle uncertainty could predict career future
Medical students’ level of tolerance for ambiguity may be closely tied to how they deal with stress and where they will practice.

Ebola In The US: Front Line Health Training Trickles Down To First-Year Med Students
Though medical students may not have much physical contact with patients, some are getting training specific to front-line health workers because of their frequent involvement with primary care settings, where an Ebola patient might first present with symptoms.

Opinion: Med students’ mnemonics and sexism
The scandalous mnemonics used by medical students--like those used for hundreds of years before them--are often sexist or juvenile. But they do work, and Dr. Anne Skomorowsky suggests they might help medical students deal with emotionally challenging new experiences.

Cadavers beat computers for learning anatomy
Undergraduate students who learned anatomy using a cadaver scored 16 percent higher on identifying parts of the body than students who learned exclusively on a simulated cadaver in a Michigan State study published in Anatomical Sciences Education.

The NHSC Loan Repayment Program
The program provides loan repayment assistance to licensed primary care medical, dental, and mental and behavioral health providers who serve in communities with limited access to health care.

Study: Free IUDs, implants cut teen pregnancies
Teenage girls given free birth control and encouraged to use the most effective methods ended up getting pregnant, having abortions and giving birth at rates dramatically lower than usually seen in sexually active teens, a new study shows.

I, Intern: When the Student Becomes the Teacher
What happens when teaching becomes another item on a busy intern’s to-do list?

Is this what you expected? First-years’ candid thoughts on med school
Researchers at ATSU-KCOM looked at how closely first-years' expectations of medical school matched up to the reality.

Under African skies: DOs face health risks to treat patients most in need
Would you risk contracting malaria, TB and hepatitis to work with patients in a high-need area? DOs practicing in Sierra Leone, Malawi and Kenya have—but their desire to help patients trumps elevated threats, they say.

Changing the Culture of a Medical School by Orienting Students and Faculty Toward Community Medicine

UW, WSU reach deal on medical school
Officials for the University of Washington and Washington State University have reached an agreement to go their own ways regarding Washington State's proposal to open its own medical school in Spokane.

Nobel chemistry laureate’s twisting path to molecular microscope breakthrough
Once estranged from academia, Eric Betzig built his super-powerful microscope in a friend’s living room.

Med schools preparing students for rapid changes
How will physicians practice medicine in 2050—and how can medical schools train today's students to be prepared?

What MS4 students wish they had known about medical school
First-year medical students, and even those farther along in their education, may be feeling a bit overwhelmed. Hear tips from seasoned fourth-year students on what they wish they had known about medical school that would have helped them.

Medical Student Perspective: 10 Tips on How to Be Happy in Medical School

Escaping the medical school bubble
Getting away from campus and reminding yourself of life outside medical school will keep everything in perspective--and help you get focused when you return.

Med school student, barbershop patrons help man after stabbing
When a bleeding man ran into a barbershop in Pittsburg for help, a medical student was on hand to help out.

CDC issues new rules for protecting workers from Ebola
Hospital workers treating Ebola patients should wear double sets of gloves, disposable hoods with full face shields and special masks, according to strengthened guidelines issued last night by the CDC.

Ways students can control residency application costs
If you’re a medical student in the process of applying for residency positions, you’re probably discovering that the costs associated with applications, interviews and fees are adding up. Here are some ways you can manage those costs.

1.5 million died last year from this curable disease
On Wednesday, the World Health Organization released its 2014 Global Tuberculosis Report, which shows that 9 million people developed tuberculosis in 2013 and 1.5 million died, making it one of the world’s deadliest communicable diseases.

How health IT is giving med students real-world experience
A new “teaching electronic health record” from Indiana University School of Medicine will give medical students a chance to learn clinical decision-making and system-based care using real data.

Where you should practice: New tool reveals lay of the land
A new mapping tool from the AMA lets you find out which regions are most in need of physicians in your specialty and would be served best if you establish or expand your practice there.


The MCAT2015 Exam for Students

What's on the MCAT2015 Exam?

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

alumni updates


Yamah, Entering Class of 2014, University of Queensland Ochsner MBBS Program

October 10, 2014: "Hi Dr. Lewis, I have made many friends from all parts of the US, Canada and Australia. It is remarkable considering the different routes and requirements most of us had as premeds and the differences in our future path in medicine.

Ochsner provides with Kaplan Q books, Kaplan Videos, many review textbooks on a hard drive, and USMLE first aid. We also get tutoring once week from an upper classmen who has taken the exam already or a tutor. The first year tutoring didn’t go so well because the tutors were second years who were still studying for their USMLE and often they could not answer questions so it was difficult to learn in that process. I am considering making a USMLE log similar to the one you had me do for MCAT in order to stay more on tract of studying each week. I often feel that there is so much covered in lecture that I push it aside.

The faculty is nice. I mostly go to my physician mentor for PBL and physician clinical coach for help. I have adopted more of a personal study regime instead of going to lectures. I learn a lot more when I study at my own pace and not at 2PM when I start to become sleepy. But, I do still watch the recordings for the lectures so I am not missing any content. I still would have enjoyed anatomy more if we got cadavers and wet labs, but considering the alumni of the program have moved on to good residencies without it, I am happy. I am not sure if you have heard, but CA did approve UQ Ochsner for residency eligibility, so I am excited to have a better opportunity to come home for residency.
Thank you for all your support, take Care!

success story


Paul, Entering Class of 2007, University of Colorado Medical School, Pediatric Residency at The Children’s Hospital in Denver, CO

I grew up in Denver Colorado and enjoyed playing soccer, spending time with friends and following my big brother everywhere he went. I was very athletic and playing soccer came easily for me. I started school a year earlier than most of my classmates. I struggled in those early years and my parents thought they may have made a mistake allowing me to start school early.

The struggles I encountered early in school made me develop new skills, and today, I look at that period as defining who I am. I learned that if I wanted to keep pace with my peers, I would have to work much harder. I spent countless hours after school working with teachers and tutors to keep up in elementary school. At night and on the weekends, my mother took me to the public library to read and practice my math problems. Within a couple of years, I began to excel in the classroom, and by high school I was at the top of my class. Many friends tell me that something must have just clicked, and learning must be easy for me now--not the case. Still today, I spend hours studying in the library and reading beyond what I see my peers doing. To give you some perspective, while taking my upper division biology courses I spent one week before each exam preparing. On weeks that I didn’t have exams I would spend close to 30 hr/wk reviewing material and seeking help when needed. If I didn’t understand the material, I was the first person to be waiting at the professor’s door for office hours and usually the last to leave.

Although my father is a physician, and has been my greatest role model, applying to medical school was a daunting goal for me. Because my hard work ethic and perseverance had paid off with earning good grades in college, I knew it was possible. During my tenure at San Diego State University I earned mostly A’s, not because the subject matter was easy, but because I studied until I felt comfortable with it. I spent about 5 months preparing for my MCAT and probably spent close to 800 hours studying. Some people called me crazy, but I knew that if I wanted to reach my goal I would have to put in that much time due to my personal learning style, which is kinesthetic. I learn by observing and interacting with others. Because of this active learning style, I had to adjust for the way in which I prepared for this exam. I used a lot of online material and interactive 3-D models to understand important scientific and biologic mechanisms.

I am happy to say that I survived and was accepted to my first choice medical school, The University of Colorado! I will be attending as part of the entering class of 2007, where I hope to develop a strong understanding of clinical medicine and prepare to practice 21st century pediatrics, sub-specializing in pulmonology. I have learned through experiences that no setback should be looked at as a roadblock, but as a challenge that can be overcome with hard work and perseverance.

Applying to medical school is a long difficult process, and I could have never done it without the support of Dr. Lewis and CUHRE. She was always there for me and made herself available to answer all my questions and offer guidance when needed. I was lucky to be involved in such a great organization while having the opportunity to take advantage of Dr. Lewis’ advising and experience. I would encourage others who are interested in medicine or other health professions to become leaders in organizations like CUHRE and seek advice from qualified individuals such as Dr. Lewis.

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, Notes tab
By Dr. Cynthia Lewis, PhD

"I am collecting my letters of recommendations for medical school. Who do I ask?"

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 29 years of a successful track record.

Call or email today to set your first appointment!


Copyright 2014, Lewis Associates. All rights reserved. Please do not repost on any website without direct permission from Lewis Associates.

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