SOURCE: Veritas Prep

Veritas Prep

August 20, 2009 11:24 ET

In Light of Looming Primary Care Physician Shortage, Community Service Predicted to Be a Critical Consideration in This Year's Medical School Admissions Cycle, Says Veritas Prep

MD Admissions Experts Encourage Savvy Applicants to Tout Service in Secondary Application, Citing the Correlation Between Volunteerism and the Likelihood of Pursuing Careers in Primary Care Specialties

MALIBU, CA--(Marketwire - August 20, 2009) - In an attempt to address the anticipated primary care physician shortage, more and more medical schools are starting to recognize the correlation between an applicant's level of community service and the likelihood that candidate will pursue a career in underserved areas of medicine. As a result, volunteerism is expected to emerge as a critical component of an effective application in this year's admissions cycle, according to medical school admissions consulting firm Veritas Prep.

According to Adam Hoff, Director of Admissions Consulting at Veritas Prep, recent data released by the American Association of Medical Colleges shows that students' increased involvement in community service, as demonstrated by the volunteer experiences described on their applications, correlates with students' choice of specialty, and suggests a stronger inclination towards family medicine and primary care specialties.

"Medical schools are looking for true doctors, people who want to pursue primary care and family medicine as opposed to the more glamorous, higher-paying specialty fields," explains Hoff. "For that reason, admissions officers will examine community service more closely, looking for candidates who will help to curtail the looming physician shortage by pursuing careers in primary care. The secondary applications -- which some schools call supplemental applications -- offer an ideal mechanism through which medical school applicants can express their commitment to medicine and share their service experiences."

Articulating volunteerism effectively in the secondary applications, which will be released this month, will be critical to an applicant's success in a competitive U.S. admissions landscape where there were more than 40,000 applicants for just 18,000 seats at accredited medical schools last year. Veritas Prep's medical school admissions consultants encourage clients to adhere to the following supplemental application strategies:

-- Focus on fit. Use the compelling back-story created in the AMCAS personal statement as a foundation, but fold in more specifics that showcase fit with each respective medical school.

-- Resist the urge to copy and paste. Admissions officers are adept at differentiating between thoughtfully crafted, authentic answers and those that were hastily copied and pasted from the AMCAS or other secondary applications.

-- Take your time. It is a myth that the speed with which applicants turn in their supplemental applications is the strongest indicator of their interest level in a school. Obviously one must meet a school's stated deadline, but applicants should only apply once their secondary applications are as strong as can be.

For more information about Veritas Prep's medical school admissions consulting services, visit http://www.veritasprep.com/medical_school/ or call 1 (800) 925-7737.

About Veritas Prep

Veritas Prep is the world's fastest-growing test preparation and admissions consulting provider, offering industry-leading programs to help applicants improve their test scores and gain admission to the world's best graduate schools. Founded in 2002 by graduates of the Yale School of Management, Veritas Prep now offers live GMAT prep instruction in more than 80 cities worldwide, as well as interactive online courses available everywhere. Additionally, Veritas Prep offers industry-leading admissions consulting services for applicants seeking admission to the most competitive business schools, law schools, and medical schools in the world. To learn more, visit http://www.veritasprep.com.

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