need some advice on my school list!

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lovingmed

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hi guys - i wanted to see if people could share some insights because i'd like to have as high of a yield school list as possible as a first-time applicant lol

and i also recognize my nonclinical hours are low and am working to get them up as much as i can but that's also why i am planning to avoid service-heavy schools

about me: senior, biomedical engineering major (T20 school), ky resident with ties to il, asian and low SES (still ORM rip)

stats: 517 mcat (130/127/129/131), cumulative gpa - 3.82, science gpa - 3.77

extracurriculars:

clinical volunteering: ~125 hours at a rehabilitation-focused hospital mostly working with both pts and ots, ~147 hours at hospital in x-ray dept w/ prepping patients, ~145 hours at nursing home doing 1-on-1s with residents

non-clinical volunteering: ~75 hours campus kitchen (repackaging leftover food from dining halls into healthy nutritious meals for community with connections to local ymca, community fridges, etc.)

shadowing: 39 - shadowed multiple specialities (cardio, internal, ophthalmology, rheumatology, ob/gyn, ent) - will shadow radiology soon!

research: summer internship with argonne national lab (500 hours), speech lab with neurodegenerative diseases (145 hours), chemical engineering lab with life cycle assessments and environmental analysis of surgical kits (350 hours)

leadership: president of engineering advisory board organization (previously events chair) - spearheaded major event that connected all engineering orgs and revigorated engineering community (700 hours), vice president of premed society (previously academic chair) (300 hours), publicity chair of biomedical engineering society (110 hours)

other experiences: work-study (1160 hours), medical assistant (425 hours before application with more anticipated for gap year), presentations to u7+ university ambassadors, department of energy, engineering design projects (biomed focused with 320 hours total), homecoming court (no idea if this should even be included in my app)

school list: (30 schools)

University of Louisville, University of Kentucky, University of Cincinnati, Northwestern University, Carle Illinois, Virginia Tech, The University of Vermont, Wake Forest University, Indiana University, University of Miami, Mount Sinai, Vanderbilt University, UMass, Geisel, Duke University, Ohio State, Sidney Kimmel, Stony Brook, Hackensack, University of Illinois, Albert Einstein, USF Morsani, Virginia Commonwealth, Boston University, Stanford, University of Michigan, Cornell, Case Western, New York Medical College, University of Pittsburgh, Tufts

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So you will graduate next month? If so, what are you doing in your gap year?

You obviously have a ton of engineering and research activities, so make sure the programs on your list appreciate that. I agree that you may not be a great fit for service-oriented schools at the moment. This means you should exclude Einstein because I don't see your fitting in with their community.

In addition to your in-state programs, I think you could shoot for CWRU/CCLCM, Vanderbilt, Miami, Northwestern, BU, Pittsburgh for sure. Carle, Illinois, UChicago, and Northwestern should be on your list. Do your research for other schools that have engineers working with med school faculy/students that match your metrics and experiences.

You need to get your service orientation hours up to 150 total hours. Replace your campus kitchen activity with an off-campus activity if you are taking a gap year.
 
So you will graduate next month? If so, what are you doing in your gap year?

You obviously have a ton of engineering and research activities, so make sure the programs on your list appreciate that. I agree that you may not be a great fit for service-oriented schools at the moment. This means you should exclude Einstein because I don't see your fitting in with their community.

In addition to your in-state programs, I think you could shoot for CWRU/CCLCM, Vanderbilt, Miami, Northwestern, BU, Pittsburgh for sure. Carle, Illinois, UChicago, and Northwestern should be on your list. Do your research for other schools that have engineers working with med school faculy/students that match your metrics and experiences.

You need to get your service orientation hours up to 150 total hours. Replace your campus kitchen activity with an off-campus activity if you are taking a gap year.
I'm working as a medical assistant for my gap year, but will also be starting in my last quarter before graduating, so I'll have some hours before application submission.

That definitely makes sense for Einstein! I'll look into Pittsburgh and UChicago then.

As for service hours, I certainly plan to bulk up nonclinical to at least 150 during my gap year, but was also iffy on how schools might see it if I list hours as anticipated instead of completed when I apply?
 
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You obviously have a ton of engineering and research activities, so make sure the programs on your list appreciate that. I agree that you may not be a great fit for service-oriented schools at the moment. This means you should exclude Einstein because I don't see your fitting in with their community.

You need to get your service orientation hours up to 150 total hours. Replace your campus kitchen activity with an off-campus activity if you are taking a gap year.
This is entirely misguided advice. Einstein is a large research school (from an MSTP perspective, one of the original 3). They have a portion of their class interested in primary care, but the majority are students with significant research interested in continuing to do so (and specializing).

You are fine applying to Einstein, though it will be competitive. There are very few schools that will not interview applicants based on "service" if there is a reasonable activity already on the application, and the application is otherwise strong. Yes, you can list anticipated hours as long as the activity has started a good amount of time (i.e., at least a few months) before the application is sent.
 
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This is entirely misguided advice. Einstein is a large research school (from an MSTP perspective, one of the original 3). They have a portion of their class interested in primary care, but the majority are students with significant research interested in continuing to do so (and specializing).

You are fine applying to Einstein, though it will be competitive. There are very few schools that will not interview applicants based on "service" if there is a reasonable activity already on the application, and the application is otherwise strong. Yes, you can list anticipated hours as long as the activity has started a good amount of time (i.e., at least a few months) before the application is sent.
I can stand corrected, but the OP has engineering experience in the description. Do you feel that the OP is a good fit with Einstein given that the program is not as known for engineering based research that the OP has? I agree if the OP has a very strong interest in primary care research, but there's a lot more in the profile that I'm worried the engineering-heavy resume will not be a good fit. (OP must have more non-clinical volunteering anyway.)

Again, the OP always has the responsibility of doing the homework. Here is the information about the PhD program at Einstein:
 
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I can stand corrected, but the OP has engineering experience in the description. Do you feel that the OP is a good fit with Einstein given that the program is not as known for engineering based research that the OP has? I agree if the OP has a very strong interest in primary care research, but there's a lot more in the profile that I'm worried the engineering-heavy resume will not be a good fit. (OP must have more non-clinical volunteering anyway.)

Again, the OP always has the responsibility of doing the homework. Here is the information about the PhD program at Einstein:
Again, I'm not sure where this "primary care" bent is coming from. They have several large basic science departments in addition to clinical.

If they were applying to the MSTP, it would matter what specific labs are available and relevant to their research interests. For MD admissions, there is no correlation - applicants just need to conduct significant research in any field, and be able to discuss their project and field questions well. Regardless, I know of at least a few PIs working in bioengineering there, but it does not matter for admissions (and for post-admissions, most MD students do not do a research year. Those who do tend to, do research in the specialty they are applying, and "bioengineering" can vaguely apply to many specialties).

As an aside, I am not sure why you chose to include a link to NSF grants - these are far from the main grants funding research at medical schools. NIH funding is much more significant (accounting for hundreds of millions, not hundreds of thousands). I worry significantly about pre-medical advising, since most of those who advise (understandably) are not physicians or scientists. While the advice you and others provide is very helpful (*edit: and I do want to stress this! I think it's very noble that you help so many premeds here, and a lot of advice is very good), I think it's important to step back when one is not as familiar with certain fields/subjects (the Dunning-Kruger effect comes to mind).
 
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Okay... fair criticism. I think it's the afterglow of the press on the donation's impact, especially on the local communities. Put Einstein back on the list, especially given low SES background.

Here is their press release on NIH funding for research. I'm sure there's a more recent update on this.
 
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Okay... fair criticism. I think it's the afterglow of the press on the donation's impact, especially on the local communities. Put Einstein back on the list, especially given low SES background.

Here is their press release on NIH funding for research. I'm sure there's a more recent update on this.
That's fair - I might be underemphasizing the community aspect (it seems to be a strong aspect of their identity as well), but it isn't the only focus (in contrast to a school like Rush, where someone applying without significantly increased service hours might be screened or have a hard time converting to an acceptance).
 
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