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Lewis Associates e-Newsletter
Volume 7 Issue 3
March 2008

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!
Lewis Associates Now Has The Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants' Stamp of Excellence
Current Students' Progress
How to Communicate With Us
Changes in Services
Your journey to a health profession
Are You Ready for the Class of 2009?
Track Record
Be Competitive

Getting Started

Featured News:
New medical school electronic Letter Service AMCAS 2009
Wal-Mart partners with hospitals to rapidly expand in-store clinics
Medicare Advantage sales tactics draw fire as Senate panel investigates
...and More

Useful Links
International Medical Volunteerism
Article from December 2007 The New Physician
The AAMC has a complete website on State and Loan Forgiveness Programs

Alumni Update
Dr. Rene Bravo, Pediatrician, Class 1983 UC San Francisco
Dr. Sam, Plastic Surgeon, Class 1996, UC San Francisco

Success Story of the Month
June Yoshii, Tri-cultural Japanese-Mexican-American, Medical Student Year 1, University of Iowa

Question of the Month
What is this new electronic letters feature at AMCAS?

Our Services


Welcome to Lewis Associates!

AIGAC Stamp of ExcellenceStamp of Excellence
Lewis Associates is now a member of the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants' with their Stamp of Excellence, issued based on education, professional experience as a graduate admissions consultant, and commitment to the AIGAC's principles of good practices.

Current Students' Progress
Advisees applying for the entering Class of 2008 are making fantastic progress.  96% of Lewis Associates 2008 Applicants are interviewing! And, 81% are accepted into medical, and pharmacy, school, 3 into their top choice school! Our advisees are doing wonderfully.  Congratulations to all!

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!

Dr. Lewis' note:  Dr. Linson has just installed the newest, most advanced Radiation Surgery machine in the world in his Vista, California, medical office…even a step up from the ones at Stanford and Harvard! Congratulations to Dr. Linson. Click here to see the news video.

How to Communicate With Us
Mailing Address 1885 Laguna del Campo, Templeton, CA 93465
Phone 805-226-9669 and 805-237-7656 Fax 805-226-9227

Lewis Associates absorbs Long Distance Charges

All appointments/phone conferences are made from our office to you. Meagan, our Administrative Assistant, calls YOU at your appointment time.

Changes in Services

  • After September 1, 2008, Year-Long Packages will be discontinued for new Advisees. If you are considering long-term advising, this is the year to lock in your Advising Agreement with us
  • After September 1, 2008, Applicants will still be able to select from our highly effective Assessment, Essay, Hourly, and Interview Packages. 
  • Current Advisees will continue working with Dr. Lewis until Matriculation.

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 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 2009?
How do you know?

Use our Personal Assessment--and you will be given your personal strategy and path to your future!

Many whom I 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…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?

Margaret Jolley, Accepted to UCSD Class of 2008 medical student
"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!"

Ariel Chairez, Scholarship Awardee, University of Wisconsin Medical School Class 2004
Dr. Lewis, I would like to thank you for all of your help. I have decided to attend the University of Wisconsin and have withdrawn my applications to other schools.  I will be taking anatomy in the summer to lessen my course-load the first semester. 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, University Of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine Class of 2005
Dr. Lewis' note: John was an Assistant State's Prosecuting Attorney in Chicago, Illinois, when he contacted me in 2004. Now in his 4th year of medical school, he says: "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."

Thanks from Lily Marouf, Sackler University Medical school (Tel Aviv) Class of 2007
"Dear Dr. Lewis, Thank you for all of your help the past year.  It was one of the most challenging years of my life, and I could not have been successful without you. I appreciate all of your support and patience, and look forward to sharing many memories with you when I come back to the States."

Track Record
CLASS OF 2007... 97% acceptance to medical, dental and MS/MPH programs, one Class of 2007 applicant accepted into 2008 Class and all applicants accepted into medical and dental Residency programs of their choice.

Be Competitive
In order to be a competitive Class of 2009, or 2010 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 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.

Getting Started

Read about Dr. Lewis doing your Personal Assessment on our website, then phone or email us to get started! We spend 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.

If you are serious about making your dreams to become a physician, dentist, physician assistant, veterinarian, optometrist, podiatrist, naturopathic physician, or pharmacist a reality--Lewis Associates can help you. We have made the difference for almost 800 alumni now practicing in medicine the last 23 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.


Featured News
New medical school electronic Letter Service AMCAS 2009

AMCAS will launch an electronic AMCAS Letters pilot for the 2009 entering class admissions cycle. AMCAS Letters represents a new service expansion of AMCAS to include the receipt and processing of letters on behalf of participating medical schools. Twenty medical schools will participate in this pilot, whose names will be provided by March 1, 2008. This service will launch in early May with the opening of the AMCAS 2009 entering class application, and AMCAS will begin to accept letters at that time. (see Question of the month about this new feature)

Wal-Mart partners with hospitals to rapidly expand in-store clinics
Analysts say the giant retailer wants the good will a trusted hospital name can provide. Hospitals, meanwhile, say they don't intend to compete with physicians.

Medicare Advantage sales tactics draw fire as Senate panel investigates
Lawmakers consider taking further action to regulate Medicare private health plans.

UCF medical school to start recruiting
The University of Central Florida (UCF) College of Medicine recently received preliminary approval from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education to start recruiting students for its first class of 40 students in 2009, according to an article in the Feb. 7 issue of the Orlando Sentinel. The school still needs to receive full accreditation, but preliminary approval means the UCF College of Medicine can start talking about the program to prospective students, all of whom have been promised a full, four-year scholarship worth $160,000. View the Orlando Sentinel article.

New emphasis in medical schools on care of seniors
 The new emphasis on aging is part of a wave of change sweeping medical schools nationwide as they focus on preparing future physicians to treat the growing population of older Americans, according to an article in the Jan. 28 issue of the Boston Globe. Until recently, the vast majority of medical schools had few geriatric programs. The Donald W. Reynolds Foundation has awarded nearly $60 million to 30 schools to help meet the need for geriatric expertise. View the Boston Globe article.

Ethics in brief: Financial incentives and generic drugs
Pharmaceutical companies are often identified as the industry that most attempts to sway physician prescribing decisions. They are not, however, the only ones making efforts to influence drug choices.

Recently, some health insurers have implemented financial incentives for physicians who switch patients to generic drugs from more expensive brand-name drugs. One method of attempting this is to pay physicians for each patient who makes the change. But is this much different than a pharmaceutical company trying to influence prescribing by offering meals, gifts or other incentives?

Physicians are ethically obligated to place the interests of their patients first. Certainly, prescribing a cheaper, yet still effective, generic medication can serve the patient’s interest by lowering costs. A payment to the physician for doing so, however, may cause more harm than good.

View the AMA’s question-and-answer document which addresses the legality and ethical propriety of receiving compensation for moving patients from brand-name drugs to generics.

Lawsuit hits medical access post-Katrina

Program helps Hispanic IMGs qualify for U.S. residencies

Ethics Forum - How to handle a prejudiced patient


International Medical Volunteerism
The December 2006 Issue of the American Medical Association Journal of  Ethics The entire issue is devoted to this subject

The New Physician: International Volunteerism

The AAMC has a complete website about State and Loan Forgiveness Programs
Click on each program for direct website detailed information

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

alumni updates

Rene Bravo

Dr. Rene Bravo

Class of 1983 UC San Francisco

Dr.  Rene Bravo was among the first group of biology major students  I taught at Point Loma College in San Diego in my first fulltime  college teaching position in 1978.  Dr. Bravo reminded me that he  was my Teaching Assistant for marine biology.  He attended UC San Francisco Medical School (Class 1983) and practices pediatrics  in San Luis Obispo.  Dr. Bravo and Dr. Lewis recently had  lunch.

Dr. Sam
Dr. Sam

Plastic Surgeon
Dr. Sam

Class 1996, UC San Francisco

Dr. Sam recently emailed from Kathmandu, Nepal,  where he spent a few weeks on a medical mission.  He will be completing a Fellowship in Cleft Lip and Palate  surgery next year (See March 2005 Success Story)

Watch for Success Stories coming for some of these alumni!

success stories

Japanese Mexican American in Medical School: June Yoshii         
University of Iowa, 1st Year

June Yoshii
June Yoshii

June was born in Mexico City, half Mexican, and half Japanese. Her parents divorced and June has 2 younger half brothers who live in Japan. June's mother remarried and they moved to San Diego. In 7th grade June entered ESL classes in Chula Vista, where she did not learn much. In 8th grade, her mother fought to put June in a regular class, which she liked and learned English although it was hard. In high school June took AP Spanish language and literature, and honors in all of her other classes. Her uncle who had ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease), lived with June's family and June was his caregiver for months, before he went into hospice. June graduated in 1995 with a strong GPA, no SAT scores, and no college. June took general education classes at a local community college for 3 years, but was given poor advising.

In her first year of college, June lived at home and worked. She worked 35 hr/wk in a pharmacy to pay for her college tuition, books, and her living expenses. Her physiological psychology course interested June in studying the brain and medicine. In June's second year, she joined the MESA club, which provided academic and personal support. In her 3rd year, June completed the prerequisites and applied to transfer, selecting UCLA. Once in UCLA, June attended a summer transfer program for minority/ disadvantaged students, then selected neurosciences as her major because of her interest in the brain. In summer 1999, June's maternal grandmother became ill and June visited her in San Diego while taking classes. The constant commuting and missing classes began to show in her grades. She also worked 16 hr/wk as a pharmacy tech at UCLA hospital. She found the neurosciences major students to be non-collaborative, and question her choice of major. Thus, June considered changing her major to cybernetics, and was encouraged to take more upper division math that were not part of her major, but in the end her GPA was too low to change.

June's grandmother health was deteriorating. She had been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, yet treatment was not working. June ask one of her professor in UCLA, who did research in Parkinson's, about her grandmother. Her professor told her if the treatment did not work, then it was not Parkinson's. After that, June told her mother to stop the treatment and she began looking into other diseases. In fact, June diagnosed her grandmother's illness as PSP (progressive supra-nuclear palsy). The doctor did not agree until after several more months, and then her grandmother died that summer in hospice.

That summer, June began studying for the MCAT, but stopped once her grandmother was in hospice. June was promoted to work in the ICU pharmacy and work there until she graduated. June graduated in 2001 from UCLA with a low GPA and no MCAT.


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
By Dr. Cynthia Lewis, PhD

What is this new electronic letters feature at AMCAS?

Step 1: Through the AMCAS application, the applicant: 1) enters information regarding letters that AMCAS can expect to receive on behalf of medical schools, and 2) selects the participating school(s) to which each letter should be sent.

• The applicant will enter information about the letter and the author(s)/contact/institution, including whether the letter is a committee letter or letter packet or an individual-author letter.
• The applicant can complete step one either prior to or after the initial submission of the AMCAS application.
• The applicant's AMCAS application will be processed by AMCAS and sent to medical schools with or without letters. In other words, AMCAS does not "hold" applications until all letters are received.
• AMCAS will provide applicants with each school's letter requirements.

Step 2: Through the AMCAS application, the applicant prints an AMCAS Letter Matching form and provides this form to the authors/offices who will be sending a letter to AMCAS.

• This matching form is a key ingredient in helping AMCAS correctly match the letters we receive to the correct applicant, author and destination school.

Step 3: Confirm receipt via the AMCAS application.

• AMCAS will provide applicants with a letter status view that enables the applicant to determine whether or not a letter has been received.
• If AMCAS receives a letter for which the applicant has not entered information in Step 1, information about the letter (never the letter itself) will be presented to the applicant, who will be directed to either 1) create information for the letter or 2) match the letter to existing information.

We will feature an important question each month. Please submit one that interests you for Dr. Lewis to answer. Send your questions to imaclewis@lewisassoc.com with 'Newsletter Question' in the subject line.

AIGAC Stamp of Excellence
The Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants' (AIGAC) Stamp of Excellence is issued based on education, professional experience as a graduate admissions consultant, and commitment to the AIGAC's principles of good practices. AIGAC exists to define and promote professional excellence in serving graduate and professional school applicants worldwide.


lewis associates advising services

Lewis Associates specializes in personal, effective and professional premedical advising and placement for traditional and non-traditional applicants. Often, non-traditional students are older than 21 years of age, career changers, international applicants or second-round applicants for admission to health professions school.

Lewis Associates' services meet the needs of all types of students from pre-applicants to applicants, including hourly advising support for specific needs. Click here.


"It's never too late to be who you might have been."

If this is how YOU feel, then, maybe Lewis Associates is the place for you. Lewis Associates provides Mentoring and Coaching through the rigorous and often circuitous pre-health preparation and application process. Other consultants may support programs like Law and Business or graduate school -- not Lewis Associates. We are the experts in Health Professions based on 23 years of a successful track record.

Call or email today to set your first appointment!

805.226.9669 imaclewis@lewisassoc.com

Copyright 2009, Lewis Associates. All rights reserved. Please do not repost on any website without direct permission from Lewis Associates.

Please feel free to forward this newsletter to any friends, classmates, or colleagues you feel would find its contents beneficial.

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