Lewis Associates e-Newsletter
Volume 3 Issue 11
Published by Lewis Associates. Dr. Cynthia Lewis, Phd., Editor
with your comments. Enjoy!
=> Welcome to Success Stories Newsletter!
=> Important News: Ensuring Access to Health Care;
The Next Prescriber-in-Chief; Stem-cell Debate Another Division Between
Bush, Kerry; The book, Learn to Relax; Outsourcing Doctors
=> Useful Links: 36,000 individuals applied to
attend medical school in the 2004-2005 school year;
=>Dates and Reminders: Minority Student Medical
Career Awareness Workshop; The Road to Medicine; Next Generation;
=>Success Story of the Month: David Schatz and
Jonathan Bloom--Updates in Medical School
=> Question of the Month "How do I
prepare for interview?"
=> Our Services
Welcome to Lewis Associates!
October 14, 2004
From HK, our first Class 2005 applicant to submit her application this
year to medical school.
"Look!! I don't think I have ever been more happy in my entire
life! I cannot even begin to thank you...":
"Ok, HK, are you up this late? Are you ready? drum roll, please............Congratulations,
HK! We're happy to inform you that you've been accepted into the
College of Human Medicine at Michigan State University!!! An official
letter with more details will go out in the mail today. Hooray for you!"
October 26. 2004
Darcy Thompson called! She was soooo excited because she was
accepted to Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, one
of her top choice schools, today!
November is in the middle of interview season. And, this year, the primary
and secondary (supplemental) applications are speedier than in the past.
I suspect this is due to most medical and other health professions schools
establishing direct communication via a web-based site. They communicate
to let applicants know what materials are in their file on the web and
after they pre-screen (or not--some schools send an automatic secondary
to all applicants), they indicate how to enter their secondary online
and you complete and submit by pushing a button (and sending money,
of course). It is terribly important to get all letters plus secondaries
in ASAP.....even more so this year, than last. And, I predict that it
may even speed up more next year. So, Class 2006 applicants beware
and be prepared NOW.
Inbar Suporta, is the first student who established an Advising
year with us since our October Newsletter. We are sending her the book,
Anatomy of an Illness -- Enjoy!
See this month's Success Stories about two of our Alumni
and what they are doing...in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia!
Class of 2005
applicants, are now very behind if you have not established a well-thought
out strategy to carry you through the difficult application process.
You should be completing all secondary applications, and submitting
your letter packets to complete your file at all your schools now. Your
competition already has! This is the most intense time you will experience
as a pre-health student. Need help with the interview preparation?...This
is what we do! 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, time to live up to
your potential! I am working with my Class of 2006 students to begin
writing their application personal statements now. Is this what you
If you are serious about making your dreams to become a physician, dentist,
PA, veterinarian, optometrist or pharmacist a reality --- Lewis Associates
can help you. We have made the difference for over 700 students
over almost 20 years.
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 us for more information firstname.lastname@example.org
Eric T. Lee, one of our Class of 2004 applicants who had previously
applied without success wrote to us on July 20: " ... I would
just like to send along my eternal gratitude. The medical school application
process is a daunting one 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, which means my medical school dream has
actually come true. .....Once again, thank you so very much for your
time, patience and guidance..."
n e w s & l i n k s
N E W S : Unless you live on another planet, you
know there is a Presidential election November 2, 2004. We, at Lewis
Associates, encourage all of you to VOTE.
Ensuring Access to Health Care (JAMA)
The 2 major Presidential candidates were asked to answer the question,
"How would you ensure access to health care for the citizens of the
The Next Prescriber-in-Chief (HealthLeaders)
The President of the United States does more than sign the checks for
the nation's healthcare system. He prescribes its arch and direction.
Stem-cell debate another division between Bush, Kerry (USA
Since 2001, the debate over President Bush's decision to limit spending
for this research has grown louder. With Nov. 2 nearly here, voters
face clear differences in the stem cell policies set out by Bush and
Democratic challenger John KerrHealth Savings Accounts
Health Savings Accounts May Increase Risk (Washington Post)
Health Savings Accounts, the latest untested flavor on the health insurance
shelf, are giving consumers a stake in cost-cutting, but some advocacy
groups say they increase exposure to risk.
Live discussion at 3 p.m. EST at: http://discuss.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/zforum/04/
FDA promises quick review of flu plan (Chicago Sun Times)
The Bush administration on Monday gave a guarded response to Gov. Blagojevich's
request to buy flu vaccine from Europe. Illinois has agreed to purchase
as many as 87,000 doses from wholesalers in the United Kingdom, provided
the Food and Drug Administration approves.
Los Angeles hospitals need 25 percent more nurses (LA Times)
Los Angeles County's five public hospitals are more than 25 percent
short of the number of nurses they need to fully comply with state laws
on nurse-patient ratios, and officials doubt they can substantially
increase the nursing ranks anytime soon.
The book, Learn to Relax (A Practical Guide to Easing Tension
and Conquering stress) by Mike George (1998) may be one of those "self-help"
books that will make a difference for those who have test anxiety and
generalized anxiety. Some chapter headings include: world, Mind and
Body; perspectives on stress, worry, built and conscience, positive
thought, creative visualization. And, there are specific exercises to
do throughout. I work with MANY anxious students. This may help you!
India's hospitals offer high quality at Third world prices: "With
broadband Internet and the latest digital imaging equipment, Indian
hospitals can now send X-rays to Mass Gen in Boston or MRI scans to
Guy's Hospital in the UK for consultations. Combined with the country's
low labor costs, that's drawing an increasing number of patients from
abroad!" See Newsweek October 18, 2004 page E20.
L I N KS :
Number of Applicants to Medical School Increases
Washington, D.C., October 20, 2004 - The number of applicants to U.S.
medical schools increased for the second year in a row, according to
data released today by the Association of American Medical Colleges
(AAMC). Almost 36,000 individuals applied to attend medical school in
the 2004-2005 school year, a 2.7 percent increase over last year's applicant
pool of 34,791.
Black and Hispanic applicants contributed to the rise with 2.3 percent
and 2.5 percent increases respectively. However, more significant was
the number of blacks and Hispanics who entered medical school this fall:
black enrollment increased by 2.5 percent, while Hispanic enrollment
increased by almost eight percent. In 2003, black enrollment declined
by nearly six percent, and the number of Hispanic enrollees dropped
by nearly four percent.
Other highlights of the 2004-2005 medical school application cycle:
*Women applicants made up just over 50 percent of the applicant pool
with 18,015 applications, outnumbering men for the second straight year
*Applications from men increased almost four percent to 17,712, the
first substantive gain in six years
*The number of first-time applicants rose again this year to 27,185,
a nearly four percent increase
*Hispanic enrollment gains were particularly pronounced for Mexican-American
males, with 200 new enrollees this year compared to 156 last year
d a t e s & r e m i n d
e r s
National Minority Student Medical Career Awareness Workshop and
Recruitment Fair at the Association of American Medical Colleges
November 6, 2004, Boston Massachusetts, see www.aamc.org/diversity
Read The Next Generation at the New England Journal of Medicine
"I invite you to visit the premier issue of the Next Generation
a free, nonprofit online publication written to help premedical students
develop an understanding of the field of medicine. The Next Generation
provides a glimpse into the world of medicine beyond television and
popular literature by providing an overview of many issues facing health
professionals today. The site contains information about the real-world
experiences of physicians and explores issues at the heart of the medical
profession. The site is written and managed by undergraduate premedical
students. My colleagues and I, all editors of the New England Journal
of Medicine (NEJM), provide advice and oversight. NEJM is also providing
the financial support for the site. All involved with the Next Generation
hope that by providing information to students when they are formulating
their career plans, we can interest the best and brightest in medical
careers. We want the next generation of students, destined to become
our future leaders, to be conscious of the critical challenges, debates,
ethical issues and scientific discoveries in medicine, and to have a
fundamental understanding of what a life in medicine entails."
The Next Generation features:
- Selected papers (understandable to the premedical student) from NEJM
(free links to the papers will be provided)
- Q&As with the primary authors of research papers published in NEJM
- Continuing series (e.g., "A Day in the Life of a Physician")
- Perspectives from influential people in medicine
- Tutorials and descriptive articles
- An online undergraduate journal club for discussions of topics in
- Readers are invited to submit special feature ideas for possible
publication. This is a novel and unique opportunity to generate dialogue
between current and future physicians and scientists.
Osteopathic Medicine Awareness Conference
The College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific will be hosting an
Osteopathic Medicine Awareness Conference on Saturday, November 13,
The purpose of the conference is to educate interested students about
the field of Osteopathic Medicine and the College of Osteopathic Medicine
of the Pacific. The agenda includes an overview of Osteopathic Medicine,
presentations on the curriculum & admissions process, lunch &
a campus tour with Western University students, a student panel and
an explanation/demonstration of Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM).
Western University of Health Sciences
Health Professions Center
521 East Third Street
Pomona, CA 91766
***PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED***
For workshop details and registration information, please print the
. You will need Acrobat http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html
Reader to access this material.
Please be sure to include the following:
Your Name, Mailing Address, Phone Number, E-Mail Address, Program of
Interest, the Info Session you Plan on Attending
Please view our campus map:
for directions to the university. Attendees should park in lot 2-7 just
east of the Health Professions Center (Building 4). To view student
testimonials on this and other Western University programs, please click
Please feel free to contact me with additional questions.
Tricia Murdoch, MPH
College of Osteopathic Medicine Recruiter, Western University
Touro University, California's Colleges of Pharmacy
will be hosting an Open House on campus on Thursday,
November 18th from 5:15 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.. Beginning with a wine and
cheese "mixer," the program includes a tour of the campus,
workshops on admissions and financial assistance and, best of all, a
"up-close and personal" meeting with the Dean, Dr. Katherine
The College of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) is unique nation wide as it combines
2 years of didactic instruction with a 2 year clinical component. This
differs from the 3 and 1 national paradigm. This is the last year that
we will be accepting direct applications as we will be joining PharmCAS
next year. Direct applications are currently being accepted and interviews
will begin November 24th to fill a cohort of 60 seats. This should come
as welcome news to your students as the deadline to apply to most Pharm.D.
programs is in November. We will continue to accept applications well
into the Spring semester.
Touro University, California is a regionally accredited university located
on Mare Island in the northeast part of San Francisco Bay. For addition
information and directions to the campus, go to www.tumi.edu
and click on "Open House". For a College of Pharmacy brochure,
please email me at email@example.com.
Donald Haight, Ed.D. Director of Admissions
Touro University, California Mare Island
1310 Johnson Lane, Vallejo, CA 94592
s u c c e s s s t o r i e s
David Schatz and Jonathan Bloom--Updates in the
fourth year of Medical School
See the April 2002 issue of Success Stories for David Schatz's
journey to medical school. He was the "king of the wait list"....then
came acceptance at the University of Pennsylvania in 2001. He says "Hey
Dr. Lewis!! Yeah, I am in my fourth year, going into child psychiatry
next year, looking at programs out in California."
David Schatz writes to us from the University of Pennsylvania:
"So, faithful pre-meds, when we last left off, I was a first year
medical student recounting my story of pain and suffering at the hands
of various medical school admissions committees. In case your memory
dosn't recall that last letter, I'll give a quick recap. After selling
my soul to the medical school gods during my undergraduate career at
Tufts University, I felt I was poised to be a candidate at most of the
top 10 medical schools. And I was a candidate...if you include wait
lists in the definition of candidacy. Out of the 10 schools that I both
applied to and interviewed at, I was wait-listed at no less than 9.
It was a heart-wrenching experience which I will never forget. Eventually,
I got off the waitlist at UPenn, and I matriculated to this medical
school in August 2001.
UPenn, it turned out, was an amazing medical school with a curriculum
which was different from many other medical schools. Although most medical
schools have two years of basic science, Penn only has a year and a
half. This change gives Penn students more flexibility during their
last year of medical school to travel, do rotations at other medical
schools, do research, learn to play the bagpipe, or whatever your little
heart desires (note: during interviews, stress that you have a BIG heart,
not a small one, regardless of the truth.) Although I didn't appreciate
this fact at first, now I realize how great it was. You see, I am one
of those people who, while thinking biology was all well and good, never
identified "loving science" as one of the reasons why I wanted to be
a doctor. I prefered to read a good book on philosophy frankly. Thus,
the basic science years of medical school really didn't captivate me
too much. I even flirted with getting a law degree as well as an MD
so I could defend doctors in malpractice suits.
During that first year and a half, the patients who I was going to take
care of seemed very far away, and thus, it was hard to motivate myself.
This all changed when I got into the clinics, where you become a member
of a team of doctors, taking care of patients. Suddenly, the things
I was good at and loved mattered. The person-to-person interactions
and the analysis of most-likely disorders causing a person's symptoms.
I kissed dreams of law school bye-bye. I was home in the world of patients,
the world of medicine.
This is not to say, however, that these last two years spent in the
clinics caring for patients have been some little dream life. Quite
the contrary, the early goings in clinic were some of the toughest times
I've had. The lack of motivation which pervaded my basic science years
was replaced in the first two months of clinics with a complete lack
of knowledge. Sure, I knew that Down Syndrome was caused by nondisjunction
in one of the stages of maternal meiosis, but I couldn't recognize a
child with Down Syndrome, and I sure didn't know how to take care of
one. clinical medicine was so...different from the science of medicine.
I felt lost in the hospital. It was only after a couple of months of
basically being clueless, that I began to be able to combine the science
with the art of medicine.
With my penchant for, shall we say, philisophical verbosity, it was
no surprise that I settled on psychiatry as my specialty of choice.
Specifically, I am interested in child psychiatry. I need to know why
people become the way they do. I am currently applying to programs in
California in a match system somewhat similar to medical school applications,
except we have some say in which of the programs we like the best. It's
sort of funny, since I completed my residency applications, I have been
checking my mail box every day for letters from psychiatry programs.
It all seemed so familiar, like de ja vu, but I couldn't figure out
from where. Then I remembered: It was just like checking for letters
from medical school. Then I smiled to myself. These things have a way
of working themselves out, I remembered, just like the way I got into
UPenn, which turned out so great. I haven't checked my mailbox for three
days. Things will work out.
My final thoughts regard a couple of things to remember:
1. It WILL work out
2. Have as much fun as you can during your first year. You won't rememeber
most of it anyways
3. Both Penn and UCSF have programs which cut off some of the basic
science years in favor of the clinical years. I think this is an advantage.
4. The process of medical school admissions SUCKS for everyone. Hang
Take care to all,
Dave Schatz MS4
Late-Breaking Update--Jonathan Bloom asked to interview at Massachussetts
General in Boston!
See the December 2001 issue of Success Stories for Jonathan Bloom's
journey. His mother recently wrote, "It's getting pretty exciting
around here and I thought I'd drop you a post. Jon was one of the first
to get his paperwork in for the "Match." Can you believe that? He has
already received requests for interviews from Duke, Johns Hopkins, Pitt
(they want him to stay and are being very vocal about it), Penn, UCLA
and a couple other places I can't remember. He hasn't heard from Mass
General or Brigham Women's in Boston or UCSF yet which are his top three
schools but.... He's gotten very active with his Technology group so
he will have something to talk about on interviews. He will take his
boards 11/17 but will only have two weeks to study for them. He also
had to trade away his Acting Internship in Medicine so he could take
the boards. He will be able to take the AI later.
An Acting Internship is when the med student is put in a rotation
where he acts as the intern - he is given greater responsibility and
more intense training. The Pitt program is really pretty amazing from
what Jon tells me. When he has worked with med students from other schools
he is aware that he has been given much more opportunity and training
in decision making and follow through. I believe each student gets two
AI's in their fourth year, not positive about that, and I think it makes
a huge difference in confidence. I have known many nurses who laugh
about how new interns have all this book learning and yet know nothing.
I think the students out of Pitt won't be like that since they have
two full years of training on the floor, some of it in AI programs.
The fellowship he wants to take is actually in Critical Care. It is
a program (at Pitt anyway) for intensivists and is based in the ICU
setting, I think it will be a strong adjuvant to anesthesia and should
make him a desirable candidate should he ever actually get a job. It
would give him the variety he needs and the intensity he craves.
Incidentally, he has been loving Critical Care. Now he wants to take
a Fellowship when he's done with his residency. I think he will be eligible
for Medicare before he ever gets a real job - he'll be on Social Security
before his student loans are paid!
He calls me so excited and he tells me about "running codes" and giving
pressors and I just eat it all up. Thank you again for helping him to
be in a position which gives him (and definitely me) so much happiness.
He could never have done it without you.
With much affection and hope that you are experiencing good health
and much joy." Cindy Wilkins, Proud mother of a future doctor!
Email to Dr. Lewis if you wish to communicate about medical schools
or other issues or to contact David or Jonathan: firstname.lastname@example.org
q u e s t i o n o f t h e m o n t h
I am often asked "How do I prepare for an interview?"
From the Stanford University 2004 SUMMA Conference:
The Top 10 Things to Remember About the Medical School Interview:
1. Get organized
2. Know your application
3. Practice Interviewing
4. Be confident, positive and passionate
5. Know the school where you interview
6. Put your best foot forward
7. Come with a question
8. Don't underestimate student interviewers
9. Remember ¨everyone is watching
10. Send a thank you note!
Ethical question for interview: What do you do when the husband
of a woman living for 14 years in a vegetative state wants to remove
her feeding tube, but her parents don't. Read the real story of Terry
Schiavo in Florida. (Newsweek October 18, 2004; page E38).
We will feature an important question each month. Please
submit one that interests you for Dr. Lewis to answer. Send your questions
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
Please feel free to forward this newsletter to any friends, classmates,
or colleagues you feel would find its contents beneficial.