Lewis Associates
Lewis Associates
Subscribe to Newsletter Order Brochure
Go To Book Recommendations

Pay your bill online with PayPal

Subscribe to our Monthly e-Newsletter
For Email Marketing you can trust
Search Newsletter Archives


Lewis Associates e-Newsletter

Volume 4 Issue 2
February, 2005

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

What's inside:
=>Welcome to Success Stories Newsletter!

=>Special Feature: AMCAS 2006 updates, timelines, and new features

=>Important News: Bush Vows to Back Digital Health Records; Scientists Turn Stem Cells Into Neurons; and More

=>Useful Links: Dental, Pharmacy, Optometry and More

=>Dates and Reminders: Post-bac, Pre-PA, Pre-vet and Pre-optometry programs and opportunities

=>Success Story of the Month: Adam Carewe—Journal of a First-term Medical Student (Part Two)

Question of the Month – I interviewed but am "on HOLD" at my top choice schools-- WHAT DO I DO NOW? Help!.

=>Our Services



Welcome to Lewis Associates!

February is on the downhill side for the Class of 2005 application season. Most applicants have interviewed by now, and of those, almost all are accepted. Congratulations to Misty Richards who was accepted in January to Albany Medical School and John Fiszer, JD who was accepted in February to the University of Illinois Medical School!!! Two more doctors launched!

I predict that the Class of 2006 application process will speed up even more than the Class of 2005. So, Class 2006 applicants beware - begin your preparation NOW!

To date, our 30 Class of 2005 applicants are interviewing at 149 schools (that is almost 5 interviews per applicant!) including the Texas schools, Harvard, Vanderbilt, Hawaii, UCLA, UCSF (and MANY more) and have been accepted at many, including Drexel and George Washington Medical Schools; Western University and NOVA Southeastern Osteopathic Medical Schools; and Boston University and Case Western Dental Schools...the list goes on! We even have applicants accepted into highly competitive MSTP programs like UCLA and interviewing for BA-MD programs.

In order to be a competitive applicant, one needs to have submitted a quality (your experience plus your GPA/MCAT/DAT/GRE, etc. profile) application in a timely fashion---this requires a well-thought out strategy to carry you through the difficult application process. You should have completed all secondary applications, and submitted your letter packets to complete your files at all your schools by October/November at the latest. Your competition did! This is the most intense time you will experience as a pre-health student. It is a roller coaster ride. Let us know how we can assist you....sooner is now!

For Class of 2006 applicants, we have TIME....a precious commodity: Time to plan, to locate and use new opportunities, to gather all your important letters, time to live up to your potential! I am working with my Class of 2006 students NOW, drafting application personal statements and experiences, and collecting letters. Is this what YOU are doing?

For those who choose to wait to begin these tasks in May or June or even later, you do yourself a big disfavor. Who do YOU know who can whip out an essay in a week on top of gathering letters of recommendation and developing your experiences, while deciding if you need to take the MCAT or DAT in the summer---these tasks hold your future in the balance! Do NOT wait!

If you are serious about making your dreams to become a physician, dentist, Physician Assistant, veterinarian, optometrist or pharmacist a reality --- Lewis Associates can help you. We have made the difference for over 700 students over almost 20 years.

We need your feedback
Dr. Lewis is writing a book and wants your input. What do you want to know about getting into a health professions school? What do you wish you had known before you applied? Do you have a personal experience you'd like to share? Send your questions and stories to imaclewis@lewisassoc.com

What are your chances?

If you want to change your career or reach your new career goal, but do not know how to begin or how to jump over all those hurdles, Lewis Associates will implement strategies to change your life. Read about it in our newsletter and website, then phone or email us directly to get started with your personal Assessment!

You may be like our 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. 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) and received the 1990 NACADA Outstanding Institutional Advising Program in the U.S. She teaches Professionalism, Leadership, and Quality, and sets high standards for her Advisees.

Lewis Associates will save you money and heartache on your application process. Contact the experts! For more information email imaclewis@lewisassoc.com or call 805-226-9669 and ask Zakiya to set up your first appointment.

Eric T. Lee, one of our Class of 2004 applicants who previously applied without success wrote to us:
"ƒI would just like to send along my eternal gratitude. The medical school application process is daunting, as I am sure you know, and I obviously had little success at it until I began working with you. I received 2 acceptances and several wait-list options this year, which means my medical school dream has actually come true. ƒ Once again, thank you so very much for your time, patience and guidanceƒ"

Special Feature: AMCAS 2006

Launching the "Brand New AMCAS"ƒ for Class of 2006! AMCAS v2.0 online student application offers one-stop shopping for applicants to AMCAS-participating schools. The 2006 admissions cycle promises to be exciting. Visit AMCAS. online. Class 2006 information will be posted in February.

In April, the 2006 "button" will be added to the web with an applicant checklist, glossary, flow chart to follow where your AMCAS goes, etc. In early May, applicants can open the AMCAS begin inputting their application information, and have college transcript received.

In early June, applicants can submit their AMCAS.

It takes 4-6 weeks to process a COMPLETED application.

The biggest AMCAS problems are:
--getting your complete transcripts (from ALL colleges EVER attended at ANY time in your life) to AMCAS in ADVANCE of submitting your AMCAS
--course work errors (missing classes, wrong course classifications or grades or academic status)
--verifying you have a computer system and browser that supports AMCAS v.2
--having electronic payment arrangements: NO increase in fees this year! $150 for the first school and $30 for each additional school
--missed deadlines
--typographical errors in the essay and experiences sections due to cut/paste
--lack of notification due to blocked or unavailable email account

New to AMCAS 2006:
--Transcript Request form is EARLY in the AMCAS and you only need to input minimum information for it to print, and you can also print it after submission
--New section summaries after each section is completed
--New navigational tools
--Easy print option to check data BEFORE submitting; can also print 1 section summary at a time
--Can change your password on the Main Menu
--Easy access to the Main Menu at all times
--Check application status at the Main Menu; new "details" section defines your status
--Financial Assistance Program gives 11 free medical schools and reduces the cost of MCAT registration to $85 (from $200); only those with significant financial disadvantage are eligible
--Status names are more user-friendly: Ready for Review; Under Review, Returned to Applicant, Processing Complete
--Easy to change coursework entries; faster course entry
--Academic years are inputted (not calendar years, which were confusing)

For MD-PhD applicants:
2 NEW essays:

1. What are your reasons to pursue the combined Md-PhD? 3000 characters
2. Describe your significant research experiences, including your supervisor's name and affiliation, and the nature of the problem you studied with your contribution to the project. --10,000 characters

n e w s & l i n k s

N E W S-HOT TOPICS for premedical students:

US News and World Report Health Issue
1/31/05 - 2/7/05 Double Issue
Cover Story Special report: Who will take care of you?
Harried by the bureaucracy of medicine, physicians are pulling back from patient care
Battling physician burnout
The next generation of healers finds compassion can beat back cynicism
Specialists without M.D.'s are pushing for more medical power. Are they ready--and are you?
The druggist is in
In hamlets and high-tech hospitals, nurses are taking on bigger roles
More nurses needed

Bush Vows to Back Digital Health Records (New York Times)
On his first out-of-town trip since the inauguration, President Bush visited the Cleveland Clinic on Thursday, joked about doctors' illegible handwriting and extolled the benefits of electronic health records and prescriptions, in front of a camera-friendly backdrop that declared, "Better Healthcare, Better Technology."

U.S. Is Close to Eliminating AIDS in Infants, Officials Say (New York Times)
Mother-to-child transmission of H.I.V. has dropped so sharply that public health officials now talk about wiping it out.

AIDS drug production to begin as early as March
Production of a generic version of one of the most widely used combination of AIDS drugs could begin as early as March or April and expand treatment for patients in 13 African countries, the company said.

Scientists Turn Stem Cells Into Neurons (Associated Press)
Researchers at the University of Wisconsin, Madison reported Sunday that they've whipped up an exciting - but intricate - new recipe that could someday treat spinal cord injuries or provide a cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, better known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

Fearing Future, China Starts to Give Girls Their Due (New York Times)
To reverse the birth imbalance between boys and girls, Chinese officials have declared that selective sex abortions will become a criminal offense.

L I N K S :

Dental Listserv
Dentistry portals and Directories linking the global dental resource online.

Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education
Resources, Publications, and information for Future Pharmacists

Primary Care Optometry News
Publication focusing on current issues in Optometry

d a t e s   &   r e m i n d e r s

Subscribe to:
The Free Pre-Veterinary Newsletter from Cornell, January 2005
1. Director of Admissions Moving Up the Career Ladder
2. Do Veterinarians Need to Specialize
3. A Topical Index of Articles for Pre-Vets and Advisors
4. All Cornell Admissions Decisions Have Been Made
5. Cornell's DVM Admissions Web Site

ISL is offering opportunities for pre-health students interested in Optometry this Summer. May 14-27 to Costa Rica/Nicaragua and Tanzania Aug. 2-26. Dr. Ian Berger of InFocus will be leading the teams. Financial sponsorship program available to assist students with funding. We still have openings on our teams that begin departing Feb 26 through March 26 going to Costa Rica/Nicaragua, Costa Rica/Panama, Guyana/Trinidad, and Mexico. Please see www.ISLonline.org for specific information to fit your Spring Academic Calendar

Touro University Physician Assistant MSPAS/MPH Program
The program was Approved as a Master of Science Degree in Physician Assistant Studies/Master in Public Health. One of only a couple of programs nationally which Combines two Masters Degrees, was recently approved. While CASPA primary applications to the program have increased this year, it appears that eligible candidates are taking much longer to complete the secondary application process than in previous years. The date for the last interview will be extended to May 11, 2005.

The major deadlines for the MSPAS/MPH program are now:
March 15, 2005-deadline for CASPA primary applications.
April 15, 2005-deadline for completion of the secondary application.
May 11, 2005-final interview date for candidates applying for the August
2005 start. More information at www.tu.edu and click on "Prospective Students", then on "College of Health Sciences".

Drexel's Postbaccalaureate and Master's degree program initially began in 1981 with the IMS and has expanded to include the MSP, MBS, MMS, PMED and DPMS programs. All have successfully helped students gain entrance into US medical and other health professional schools. Additional information can be viewed at www.drexel.edu/med/ims

This year Drexel is introducing its Master's of Forensic Science (MFS) program, which begins in September 2005 and will allow exposure to the intricacies of problem solving and the real-world application of the related disciplines within the field of forensic science.

s u c c e s s s t o r i e s

Adam Carewe
-Journal of a First-Term Medical Student
Part Two: The Rest of the Story


Dr. Lewis is on the right, Adam is the tall guy!

From basketball jock to MS in Exercise Physiology to physician!

Adam's Backstory
Adam grew up in the California Bay area. In the autobiography written from me he says, "About 10 minutes before midnight, Art and Karen are circling the front parking lot at Marin General Hospital awaiting the delivery of their second child. You might be wondering why a woman in labor would be circling the parking lot and not entering to deliver the eager baby. Well, my parents did not want to enter the hospital before midnight, because if they did, they would be charged for the entire day of August the 14th. As midnight came, they parked the car and walked into the hospital to be checked in. Early in the morning on August 15th, I was born."

In the house where Adam grew up, his father built a half-size regulation basketball court. He says, "that green lawn and basketball court served as my practice grounds as I learned 'the ropes' of how to throw a baseball and football and how to properly shoot a basketball. I have vivid memories of following my dad outside to watch him shoot some hoops, from what it seemed to me a mile from the basket. I was so small I could barely even get the ball up to the rim shooting underhand. Nevertheless, I persisted and continued to practice and practice." Adam grew up as the consummate athlete. He loved soccer, was bored with baseball and gymnastics and took swimming lessons in the summers.

When Adam was age 8, his parents divorced amicably, and both remarried. Adam says, "In fifth grade, I finally convinced my mom to let me play football. I had asked her the previous 2 years, but as she always dissuaded me by pointing out how much I enjoyed soccer since soccer and football are played the same season. Finally, in the 5th grade, she let me sign up. From that point, I played football every year until I graduated from high school." Adam made the 7th grade basketball team at 5'5" tall. He says, "I liked the competition and enjoyed the camaraderie associated with interscholastic sports. The road trips were the most fun. I continued to play basketball in high school but now there was the opportunity to compete in football as well." Adam indicates that his mother instilled the work ethic to do homework and study first, sports second. He says, "By the time I reached high school, it was easy to manage my time even with the extra hours of athletic practice. Because of this work ethic, high school was not very difficult. I found that if you simply paid attention in class and turned in accurate homework assignments, it was difficult to get less than an 'A' in class. Nevertheless, I always tried to do my best."

Upon high school graduation, Adam was recruited heavily and he selected Humboldt State. Adam started in college as a math major with the goal to teach high school math and coach basketball and football. The Exercise Science classes interested him so much that he changed his major to it. Adam says, "I marveled at the idea of being able to get a degree that would help me to understand the physiological changes I would go through while training for basketball. I was instantly interested and excited at the coursework ahead of me. Honestly, up to this point I had never considered medical careers, but that changed. During my junior year, I worked in the Human Performance Laboratory where we conducted exercise stress tests, body composition analysis, pulmonary analysis, and nutritional evaluations. This was my first 'taste' of clinical experiences and I was hooked."

Upon college graduation, Adam was accepted into the top rated Exercise Physiology M.S. program at San Diego State University. He says, "If it weren't for my graduate coursework, I may have never been so turned on to medicine. During my second year, I had to complete an internship in exercise physiology. I wanted to work at Memorial Cardiac Rehabilitation because of my past experience in the HSU Human Performance Lab. This internship allowed me the clinical work that intrigued me at HSU and solidified my goal to become a physician. I enjoyed all aspects of my job: the leadership of directing group exercise sessions, to the individual attention I could give patients, to the direct bedside education I gave hospital cardiac in-patients. Following this internship, I began to seriously prepare for medical school. I knew I needed to take additional undergraduate courses to fulfill the prerequisites, so the next semester I began to load up on chemistry, physics, and math, trying to keep up with my graduate school courses."

Adam exudes a quiet confidence that is probably grounded in his personal qualities, his intellectual capacity and his experience as an accomplished intercollegiate athlete, a relatively rare combination in pre-medical students. While Adam demonstrated a number of leadership skills, his year as co-President of CUHRE (the pre-health organization that Dr. Lewis advises at San Diego State University) was a challenging opportunity to hone these skills to a finer edge. One of his strongest attributes is his ability to evoke a positive response from those with whom he works. Adam jumped into CUHRE full force. He took on physics Enrichment Instruction, newsletter layout and website design. He says, "Back at HSU, I began to teach myself how to design web-pages. What started as a hobby in 1996, became my own business, AC Advantage Web Design, in summer 2001. I still have my business with my busy schedule of school, work and play, and I still learn new computer graphic effects that will help my business." Adam completed his M.S. thesis while working 25 hours a week as a hospital-based Exercise Physiologist and Health and Fitness Specialist for a large engineering firm, and taught weight lifting at SDSU.

In summary, Adam is a strong student leader. He decided to become a physician during his M.S. in Exercise Physiology degree at SDSU. He earned many student-athlete honors including MVP and team Captain of his college NCAA basketball team at Humboldt State. As a graduate student, Adam worked close to or fulltime for 3 years while a fulltime student. He also ran his own website design company while logging thousands of hours working with patients in clinic and hospital-based exercise physiology and medicine. He also Mentored at-risk teens (and their parents) while he was an undergraduate. Adam sees his strengths to be an effective team player with a hard work ethic, who uses a synchronized computer-based system to manage his time. Adam has science acumen, significant clinical experience that is meaningful and a passion for athletics and leadership.

First term New York Medical Collegeƒ update to Dr. Lewis and AdamÍs family and friends in his own words:

January 9, 2005
I hope your holiday celebrations went well and Santa brought you everything you wanted. Mine was sure fun. I flew back to CA (Bay Area) the weekend before Christmas and visited with all of my family for two whole weeks! I was able to hang with my brother and his friends from high school, a few of my friends from high school, family all over the northern CA area, play in my high school alumni basketball game (we won by one point), and spend one of the best snow weeks in Tahoe ever. It snowed about a million inches that week. We had a great time. Got to see Sinbad (comedian for those not in the know) on New Year's Eve at Caesar's Tahoe and rang in the New Year with my brother, sister and brother-in-law at the blackjack table (Mom was babysitting the grandkids for the night).

I flew back to NY on January 2nd and school began again on the 3rd. So, needless to say, we are right back in the swing of things. It has finally got cold back here, but by NY standards it really has only been a mild winter so far. We got about 3-4 inches of snow last week but temps are still in the 30's.

As for the school stuff, we are in a MUCH BETTER block of courses now. We are still continuing with biochemistry and physiology but the schedule is much more forgiving than last one. We are currently going through the cardiovascular system in physio, my personal favorite. I'm enjoying learning everything in school but relearning stuff that you really love is way more fun.

We continue with this block until Spring Break (mid March), and then have our last block of courses (Behavioral Science and Neuroanatomy) until mid June. Tentative plans for the summer are to stay in NY and do a research or clinical fellowship on campus to make a bit of $$$ and get some additional experience. There are tons of projects available in all the different disciplines of medicine and I'll let you know which one I choose later (I'm looking into pediatric, cardiology, orthopedic, or a combination). I also plan on taking a vacation (or two) over the summer, since this will be the last summer I EVER will get off. My brother and I are planning to go on another tropical trip, this time to Turks and Cacaos in the western Caribbean. We plan to meet up with a few friends we met in Cancun last summer.

And for the sport side of me, NYMC sponsored 12 of us us to participate in a local men's basketball league. They bought us game jerseys so we are super official. We play our 2nd game this week. We won by 34 last week so the league is moving us up a division (Bigger and better competition). It is nice to have the athletic competition back, plus is gives me yet another excuse to not study in the evening :)

Well, that's about it for now. I'll update you all when I have something to update you with. I'd love to here from each of you. I apologize ahead of time for not replying to all of your emails, but time is a valuable commodity these days. Talk to you soon! Adam

Email to Dr. Lewis if you wish to communicate about medical schools or other issues or to contact Adam Carewe: imaclewis@lewisassoc.com

q u e s t i o n o f t h e m o n t h
by Dr. Cynthia Lewis, PhD

I interviewed but am "on HOLD" at my top choice schools-- WHAT DO I DO NOW? Help!

I hear this a lot. First, this is exactly the reason that an applicant cannot afford to "get senioritis" or "let down" during your application year. You must attempt to do the best you can in all your academic work, and continue to achieve in your research, community service and/or clinical experiences! Why? Because you will have significant updates to provide with your "GOOD NEWS". If you have NO "GOOD NEWS" to tell, then you have no leverage.

You petition to receive a secondary or an interview if you have NOT been invited to these steps. One paragraph of a 2 paragraph single page letter needs to give your "GOOD NEWS"in a straight forward, cogent manner. The second paragraph needs to describe in detail exactly why you fit THEIR program--giving very specific reasons (curricular, programmatic, faculty, facilities, learning style, support system, etc.). Remember that you will only be believed if you tie THEIR needs to YOUR track record of what you have accomplished and how that fits THEIR mission.

One of my Advisees this week told me that she submitted her petition to interview, but it wasn't filed until the day AFTER the Committee reviewed her file, thus they did NOT see it. Stay in good contact with schools to determine when your file will go to Committee for review and try to provide information in advance. But, there is some "chance/luck" to this process. It cannot be totally controlled.

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 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.

Go to Movie Page Go to Newsletter Archive