2021-2022 Columbia (Vagelos)

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Thank you to @rainbowpremed and @BRTC200 for sharing this year's questions-

2021-2022 Columbia (Vagelos) Secondary Essay Prompts:

1. Did you work for compensation during college, during the year, or the summer? If so, what did you do? How many hours a week did you work? 300 words.
2. If you have graduated from college, please briefly summarize what you have done in the interim. 300 words.
3. Please describe your most meaningful leadership positions. 300 words.
4. Columbia Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons values diversity in all its forms. How will your background and experiences contribute to this important focus of our institution and inform your future role as a physician? 300 words.
5. Is there anything else you would like us to know? 400 words.

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Additional questions for MD/PhD applicants:
1. What academic honors have you received (e.g., prizes, scholarships, fellowships, honor societies)? (5000 words)
2. What are your major research interests? (20 words)
3. PhD Goals (5000 words)
4. Additional Information (5000 words)


Good luck to everyone applying!

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For everyone considering applying, here's the previous cycle's secondary questions:
  • Did you work for compensation during college, during the year, or the summer? If so, what did you do? How many hours a week did you work? 300 words.
  • If you have graduated from college, please briefly summarize what you have done in the interim. 300 words.
  • Please describe your most meaningful leadership positions. 300 words.
  • Columbia Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons values diversity in all its forms. How will your background and experiences contribute to this important focus of our institution and inform your future role as a physician? 300 words.
  • Is there anything else you would like us to know? 400 words.
 
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For MD/PhD applicants, an additional section asks the following questions:

  • What academic honors have you received (e.g., prizes, scholarships, fellowships, honor societies)? (5000 words)
  • What are your major research interests? (20 words)
  • PhD Goals (5000 words)
  • Additional Information (5000 words)
I'm not joking about those last two essays...that's quite literally the prompt on the application.
 
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Does anyone know if focusing on work as a teacher for the "Please describe your most meaningful leadership positions" would be considered as dodging the question? I hold no real leadership positions and am unsure if teaching counts as leadership.
 
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Sigh just got this one. Don't they know its a holiday?
 
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Is anyone having trouble getting their password?
 
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Just received the secondary email, but there is no place for prompts/essay questions on the website. It is just to select the program you want to apply to
 
Just received the secondary email, but there is no place for prompts/essay questions on the website. It is just to select the program you want to apply to
Everything appeared for me after selecting the program I am applying to.

Also, does anyone know what they are looking for in the "experiences" section?
 
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Does anyone know if there is a template for the cv?
 
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Does anyone know if there is a template for the cv?
I didn't see one. Relatedly, when you upload a new document does it remove the old one? Accidentally uploaded the wrong version :D.
 
OOS, received one for some reason despite having probably 2 weeks left before being verified (submitted primary mid June)
 
I am an MSTP applicant, however I am also interested in applying to the Bassett track. The MSTP website states that MD only and MSTP decisions are made independent of one-another, so does anyone know if there is a way to apply to both MSTP and Bassett?
 
Question: Because of the fact that my school's chem courses are separate from the corresponding lab courses, there aren't enough slots for me to include my ochem lab courses under the chemistry prereq section. The app states that running out of slots shouldn't be an issue, but what does that mean? Should I add a note at the bottom about this?
 
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For schools that went mandatory pass-fail after COVID - are you seeing pass/fail classes on the pre-req page? Has anyone emailed them about this?
 
Question: Because of the fact that my school's chem courses are separate from the corresponding lab courses, there aren't enough slots for me to include my ochem lab courses under the chemistry prereq section. The app states that running out of slots shouldn't be an issue, but what does that mean? Should I add a note at the bottom about this?
I have the same question
 
I have the same question
Question: Because of the fact that my school's chem courses are separate from the corresponding lab courses, there aren't enough slots for me to include my ochem lab courses under the chemistry prereq section. The app states that running out of slots shouldn't be an issue, but what does that mean? Should I add a note at the bottom about this?
also curious about this. What did you guys end up doing?
 
If anyone was curious, I reached out to admissions and confirmed you cannot apply MSTP and Bassett at the same time.
 
also curious about this. What did you guys end up doing?
I have the same question
Just called admissions, and they recommended typing out the ones that didn't fit in the text box at the bottom, with maybe a short note explaining the situation. They also said they can still see the courses from AMCAS too, so it shouldn't be a big thing.
 
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Can anyone else not complete the coursework page because they have slots with no classes in them?
 
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Can anyone else not complete the coursework page because they have slots with no classes in them?
Having the same issue. The description states "if you have additional slots remaining that should not cause an issue" but it seems like it won't let me complete the Required Coursework section without filling in every slot
 
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Had the same issue. Just filled the slots with extra upper division credits. Used some research credits to round it out. Lets see how it pans out.
Having the same issue. The description states "if you have additional slots remaining that should not cause an issue" but it seems like it won't let me complete the Required Coursework section without filling in every slot
 
Does anyone know if the anything else essay is a soft requirement or is it truly optional?
 
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Any good examples or templates for the CV requirement?
 
Any good examples or templates for the CV requirement?
I just submitted my resume last year and I got a II and then waitlisted. So that seems sufficient
 
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Does anyone know if the anything else essay is a soft requirement or is it truly optional?
Wisdom I've seen around lately is to only fill it out if you truly have something interesting to add, don't just shoehorn a prompt they didn't ask
 
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Wisdom I've seen around lately is to only fill it out if you truly have something interesting to add, don't just shoehorn a prompt they didn't ask
I think you can also use it as a "Why Columbia?" essay if there isn't another prompt in the secondary where this could go. That's kinda what I did. Added a little more background about myself (that wasn't already in my primary), then briefly explained why Columbia and I were a good fit for each other. Not sure if it helped, but it didn't hurt bc I got interviewed and accepted.
 
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I think you can also use it as a "Why Columbia?" essay if there isn't another prompt in the secondary where this could go. That's kinda what I did. Added a little more background about myself (that wasn't already in my primary), then briefly explained why Columbia and I were a good fit for each other. Not sure if it helped, but it didn't hurt bc I got interviewed and accepted.
What were your stats?
 
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is anyone still waiting on LoR to be received and have app marked complete? I sent my LoR at 2 AM on 7/5 (lol) when I submitted the secondary. the recommender's names show up in the portal, but the letters still say not received (so it's been almost 3 days, just wondering if that's normal because most other schools have done in less than 24-48 hrs)
 
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How bad is it to repeat a story from my primary in my secondary?

For the leadership question, one of my leadership roles is described in detail on my primary as a most meaningful experience. There is a specific story that I told in that most meaningful description that I was planning on retelling in this secondary, but I don't want to be too repetitive. On the other hand, I'm not sure if I have much else of impact to say about this position that hasn't already been said in my primary.
 
For the "Experiences" section, do we have to fill out all of our experiences (like a repeat of our 15 work + activities section), or just our employment experiences?
 
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For the "Experiences" section, do we have to fill out all of our experiences (like a repeat of our 15 work + activities section), or just our employment experiences?
I called and asked and they said you can put anything there, not just employment.
 
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For the most meaningful leadership prompt, am I able to talk about experiences from senior year of high school? I didn't include these on AMCAS for obvious reasons, but I captained multiple sports in HS and those were the most meaningful leadership experiences I've had. I do have other leadership in college I could talk about, but wouldn't be as thoughtful.
 
For the most meaningful leadership prompt, am I able to talk about experiences from senior year of high school? I didn't include these on AMCAS for obvious reasons, but I captained multiple sports in HS and those were the most meaningful leadership experiences I've had. I do have other leadership in college I could talk about, but wouldn't be as thoughtful.
Honestly I wouldnt. I would try and pick something during college so it looks like youve done something in the interim.
 
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Since Columbia does not use rolling admission, does the mindset of getting a secondary in within two weeks (or as soon as possible) still hold?
Well, aren't there still a fixed number of interview spots that fill up as time goes by?
 
For the most meaningful leadership prompt, am I able to talk about experiences from senior year of high school? I didn't include these on AMCAS for obvious reasons, but I captained multiple sports in HS and those were the most meaningful leadership experiences I've had. I do have other leadership in college I could talk about, but wouldn't be as thoughtful.
i also used being the captain of a team in my senior year in high school but i also talked about how i used the leaderships skills from that experience in my university activities
 
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