A Mentorship Model for Pre-Medical Students Disadvantaged in the Medical School Application Process

Abstract

Applying to medical school is a long, convoluted, and expensive process. While some applicants may be able to afford third-party application consulting services for professional one-on-one advice, others struggle to overcome the basic financial obstacles of applying, such as application fees, travel and accommodations for interviews, and more. “Giving a Boost” (GAB) was founded at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine to address this issue by providing free application consulting services to medical school applicants in the Pittsburgh area with a focus on supporting those from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds. Overall, 97 medical school applicants were recruited from the Greater Pittsburgh area to receive essay support from 65 Pitt Med student volunteers over the summer of 2020. Following the summer essay program, 71 applicants completed a survey rating their experiences with GAB in comparison to other essay preparation resources. GAB was given a rating of 8.7 out of 10 and was rated significantly higher than any other resource (p < 0.01). Between August and December, the number of volunteers and applicants in our program increased, and volunteers provided a total of 151 mock interviews while also assisting applicants with writing update letters and letters of interest to medical school admissions committees. So far, we have found GAB to be an effective mentorship program that can provide medical school application support to disadvantaged pre-medical students. Furthermore, we hope that other schools may initiate similar programs to provide meaningful experiences for medical students while supporting applicants who are most in need.



Author Information
Daniel Pan, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, United States
Amanda Zhou, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, United States
Koehler Powell, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, United States
Arnab Ray, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, United States
David Rivetti, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, United States
Timothy Gao, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, United States
Sarah Atta, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, United States
Toby Zhu, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, United States

Paper Information
Conference: OCE2020
Stream: Education

This paper is part of the OCE2020 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by amp21