The pre-health students I have the privilege of advising one on one will hear me say this often, “You must have plans for the summer. You cannot go home and work for the GAP”. Now, nothing against the GAP, but the point is, they cannot afford to waste a summer in an activity that will not help them develop their application for medical school. While the GAP may offer a great discount and many other benefits, improving ones medical school application isn’t one of them, so its a no no for the summer.
Basic Summer Plan Ideas By Classification
- If you’re a freshman who will not have taken General Chemistry 1 and 2 by the end of the current semester , you should plan to take that course during the summer, so you can enroll in Organic as a sophomore and then Biochemistry as a junior. ( Remember, 1st semester biochemistry is on the MCAT, so you need to set up a schedule where you will be able to take Biochem by Fall of your Junior year.
- In addition to the course, you need to : shadow, health related volunteer work, short term enrichment program like SMDEP
- If you’re a freshman who is currently taking Chemistry you should plan to do summer research or summer enrichment program this summer. My favorite summer enrichment program is SHPEP, but there are many others.
- If you’re a sophomore who will not have completed Organic Chemistry 1 / 2 by the end of the current semester, you should plan to take that course during the summer, so you can enroll in Biochem in the fall of your Junior year.
- If you will have to take Organic during the summer, also plan to shadow, health related volunteer work, short term enrichment program like SMDEP
- If you don’t have to take Organic, plan to do summer research and incorporate some shadowing also.
- If you’re a junior, if you have a solid MCAT study plan and haven’t done any research, plan on doing summer research. Do not plan to do summer research if you are planning to study for and take the MCAT over the summer. There’s not enough time for both.
- If you have done some research and have a solid MCAT prep plan, will be taking the test in April / May and anticipate a good score on the test, you could enroll in research again.
- If you have done research, planning to take the MCAT in May / June but aren’t super confident in how you will do, plan for a light summer, that way you can take June, July, August to do some additional studying and retake the test in Aug/Sept if need be. So you could plan to shadow or health related work / volunteering, a mission trip etc.
If you’re looking for summer research now, in January, you’re late!!! Lots of opportunities have closed, but there are still some available. The goal is that each of you will do something productive this summer. If you are not able to find a summer research program I would suggest taking some courses during the summer to lighten your overall academic load (preferably some science courses) while shadowing extensively. Below is a list of summer research opportunities. As stated, some deadlines may be past.
2. Good list that offers a bit of insight into deadlines without needing to look deep into the application. http://www.naahp.org/Diversity/SummerOpportunities.aspx
Lists organized by state
- Another already compiled list of tons of programs. Organized by state.
2. Nicely organized list that has programs arranged by state.
3. Nicely organized list that has programs arranged by state.
List with later deadlines ( Note: This is a old list of opportunities from a few years ago, but typically the programs recur and the links remain the same. What I know is that these programs had deadlines that were a bit later in late January, February and even some in March So even if the link if outdated, it would be beneficial to look up each individual school’s website and find their program)
http://www.mplsheart.org/get-involved/internships/research-internship/overview/ (DEADLINE IS JAN. 31, 2015)
http://louisville.edu/research/students/students/undergrad-grad/summer ( Several programs with different deadlines)
http://www.shpep.org/ ( March 1)
http://graduate.ucsf.edu/srtp (for students pursuing PhD.)