premed conference (not OPM conf)

I am going to a 1-day conference for premed students sponsored by the local med school (the one I hope to attend someday).

There will be different panel discussions such as the MCAT, what’s med school like, competitive apps, getting experience, etc.

Has anyone been to one of these? I am curious if it will be helpful. Also, anyone have an opinion if it’s a good idea to try to integrate yourself into the med school ahead of time – i.e. volunteering @ the university hospital, attending a bunch of their premed sessions, etc.

Thanks for the input!

my doctor told me today that she did a lot of volunteering at hospitals in O.R. and in Labor and Delivery. She felt it was extremely beneficial to volunteer.

I think those workshops are helpful. I haven’t been to one, but, spoke with a Professor of mine that told me the workshops cover all the questions I had. In fact, it has me rethinking my degree. University of Washington’s recent med students were mostly majors in history NOT a science degree. Amazing, eh? They are looking for the well rounded student. Can communicate and kick butt in science.


I think these conferences/ open houses/ or whatever-else-you-call-th em organized by medical schools are very helpful!

I personally attended two of those at two different schools and the experience was priceless. You’re going to get a feel for the school as a place (hopefully they’ll offer you a tour), for the faculty and students… and you’ll see if you’d like to spend 4 year in that place.

The first open-house I attended - a year before I started applying to med school- was the school where I ended up going. Before I went to the event, it was obviously on my list of places to apply (b/c it’s my state school), but it was not necessary my first choice. But I totally fell in love with the place, and when the following year I got an interview there, I confirmed that it was THE SCHOOL!

The second open house I went to (also a year before I started my application process) was at what I thought was my top choice med school. And I’m glad I went there b/c it totally didn’t meet my expectations - I felt that everybody there was very pompous, not really friendly and the place just didn’t feel right… and surely I didn’t feel as at home as at the other school. I still applied to that school (b/c it’s a good school), but it definitely wasn’t where I wanted to end up most!

Is there any possibility you can go to this event with some friend of yours who is also interested in med school/ or I guess any friend for that matter? The reason I ask is b/c as helpful and informative these meetings are, they can also be very ‘disturbing’ (or at least they were for me). You’ll be dealing with some really competitive people there. At the sessions I attend during Q&A sessions asked the questions I didn’t even knew what they meant (is it better to take normal biology sequence, or is it more valuable to do analytical-physical biology tract? etc). If you listen to question like this for an hour or so you might just decide that you don’t fit in this crowd… which surely isn’t the case.

And to answer your final questions! Yes! it’s very important to volunteer and shadow! Medical schools like seeing that people who want to become doctors are altruistic, and that they know what medicine is about. Volunteering doesn’t have to be in a medical field - do whatever you like most. Shadowing has to be medicine-related - shadow you family doc or any doctor you might know.

And it’s really helpful to get your foot at the door before you apply. I’ve never done it, but it is worth making sure that the dean of admissions knows you beforehand. Meeting like this might not be the right place to make yourself known b/c there are going to be tens or hundreds of people like you there. But it’s a good place to start. You might definitely talk to the dean shortly and ask if it’s possible to meet with him/ her at some point to discuss your application and how you can possibly improve it.

Hope it helps,