By now, you should have a fairly good idea of what your professional plans after graduation are. (Its OK, if you don’t…) Here are your goals for the next few months:
1. Check in with your advisor to make sure that you have adequate time to complete your remaining requirements over the next two years. Knowing this early, will help you know if you have to CLEP a course or two; do correspondence, or go to summer school. This becomes important because you don’t want to “waste” a summer doing a class ( you found out about at the last minute) when you could be doing research or shadowing, or gaining exposure to the field or another experience to add to your AMCAS, AADSAS, or PharmCAS application.
2. Start making a broad list of professional schools you want to apply to.
3. If you’re NOT sure what your professional goals after graduation are, that’s OK too, but you need to start looking to figure that out. Take some time and truly reflect on yourself and your life goals. Take time to seek God’s face on what direction He would have you go in. Talk with your academic advisor about your uncertainty. If you are going back and forth between two or three career options, try and do some shadowing with someone from each field ( good places to look are your church, your advisor may have some guidance, and I’m always willing to help if able, just leave a comment after this post)
4. Prepare an outline and first draft for your personal statement
5. By now, you should have a concrete plan of when you will be taking the necessary entrance exam ( be that the DAT, MCAT, PCAT, OAT, etc). With that date in mind, Determine what your test prep plan is, alllowing adequate time ( 4 – 6 months) to prepare for the exam.
6. Start thinking of which faculty members you will ask to write your letters of recommendation. You want to ask for your recommendations by Mid October, early november. Definitely before you leave for Thanksgiving break!
7. In the vein of #6, get your CV together, adding all your post secondary experiences so you can present this to the faculty who will write your letters of recommendation.
6. Continue any volunteer, leadership opportunities you were engaged in last year, or start to seek some out now.
7. It goes without saying that you still want to focus on your grades and keep your GPA up.
AAMC Website http://www.aamc.org
MCAT website https://www.aamc.org/students/applying/mcat/
MSAR website https://www.aamc.org/students/applying/requirements/msar/
HealthOU post on starting your list: http://healthou.wordpress.com/2012/04/02/pick-a-school-any-school/