As almost everyone knows, medical school is no easy avenue to walk into. In fact, UW Seattle’s school of medicine receives on average 42,000 applications each year as of 2010, according to the UWS admissions page. Less than 50 percent of these applicants are accept­ed. In addition, UW Seattle is one of only two Allopathic, or traditional, medical schools in the Pacific North­west and has a direct contract agree­ment with all of the states in the region to educate a set number of applicants from these states.

That means the challenge for new undergraduate students is becoming increasingly daunting. How can un­dergraduate students at UWT hope to overcome these obstacles?

This is the same question Kristen Piephoff, President of UWT’s Pre- Health Society, and her officers asked themselves. Also, they wondered, how could they help? With the ever chang­ing prerequisites of UWS medical school admission and the increased material on the Medical College Ad­missions Test (MCAT), they decided there must be a better way to prepare.

Since last year, Piephoff has begun building a foundation for future UWT pre-health students to stand on. With MCAT workshops, supplementary pre-health lectures, resource finding, in­ternship location services, and aca­demic support, this society seeks to increase UW Tacoma’s interest in pre-health related majors.

Piephoff said, “Our goal is to help students prepare for post-graduate professional schools. We want to pro­vide chances for students interested in medicine that will build their resumes, and increase their chances of getting into graduate programs by providing volunteer hours, getting involved in the local community, and providing physician shadowing opportunities.”

According to Evergreen State Col­lege’s website, the mean GPA for med­ical school applicants is 3.64. Achieving such a high level of academic prowess while balancing other duties, is a dif­ficult feat to overcome. This is why Piephoff and her society suggest that volunteering and community involve­ment may be a healthy supplement for a low GPA resume.

UWT students who are interested are welcome to join. Currently there is no admission fee. Students can join via Dawg Den, simply search “Pre-Health Society” and click the “Join Organiza­tion” button or contact any of the of­ficers listed for more information.

COURTESY OF DIANTHA DOUGIL
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