From our colleagues in the Undergraduate Research Office:
Welcome Summer Researchers!
Over 130 research assistants across the disciplines are working on summer projects with faculty mentors. It is a fun and interesting community, so make sure you take a break from your work to get to know your colleagues and enjoy a Vermont summer. More information about the summer program and on being a research assistant is available at go/summerresearch.
On-Campus Activities Schedule
Welcome Luncheon, Tuesday, 6/12 at 12:00-1:00 pm in McCardell Bicentennial Great Hall
Share a casual meal with research assistants and their mentors.
Research Luncheon: Graduate School Panel, Tuesday, 6/19 from 12:00-1:00 pm in Hillcrest 103
Join newer faculty for a discussion about the graduate school experience. Panelists are Chris Herdman (PHYS), Alex Lyford (MATH), Lindsay Repka (CHEM), Carly Thomsen (GSFS), and Erin Wolcott (ECON). sign up
Research Luncheon: How to Market Your Research Skills, Tuesday, 7/10 from 12:00-1:00 pm in MBH 220
Discuss how to represent your skills and find jobs and internships that want them. sign up
Summer Research Symposium, Thursday, 7/26 at 2:00 pm in McCardell Bicentennial Great Hall
Includes a poster session with refreshments. The entire campus community is invited to attend. Abstracts to participate are due 7/19. more info
To close out the 2017-2018 academic year, our colleagues in the Global Health Programs office shared the latest installment of the Global Health Program newsletter.
Enjoy! You can download it here.
Some students elect to take a GRE subject test in preparation for graduate school. The paper based exam (available for Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics, Psychology, and Literature in English) is administered three times per academic year; in September, October, and April.
Middlebury College will be administering GRE subject tests on:
- Saturday, September 15, 2018
- Saturday, October 27, 2018
- Saturday, April 6, 2019
Seats are limited for the exam, so students are encouraged to register early through the ETS website.
Not all graduate programs require the subject test, and GREs come with an expiration date (typically 5 years), so consider meeting with a faculty or CCI advisor if you are considering taking a GRE subject test.
For additional information, please visit the GRE subject test section of the Educational Testing Service website.
Congratulations on nearing the AMCAS/AADSAS primary application submission date! It has been such a pleasure working with you all this past year and we look forward to supporting you through the application year as well. Please continue to ask questions as they come up – we are here to help!
- The 2019 AMCAS Application is open for submission on Thursday, May 31st
- The 2019 AADSAS Application is open for submission on Tuesday, June 5th
What are the next steps after submitting your primary app?
- TRANSCRIPTS: All applicants need to request official transcripts through AMCAS. Learn more here. 2018 graduates – the registrar’s office will be getting us your final transcripts within the next few weeks. Unofficial transcripts will be uploaded to your Interfolio account for our INTERNAL process. You will still need to request official transcripts through AMCAS.
- Make sure to CLEAN OUT YOUR INTERFOLIO ACCOUNT. Delete duplicate letters, archive any letters you no longer wish to use, etc. But please keep any documents you used to go through the HPC process. We still need access to your bio report, transcripts, etc. You do not need to update your bio report.
- Follow the APPLICATION TIMELINE to make sure you have everything in for the June 1st deadline.
- Use the GOOGLE TRACKER to see where you are in the process. Remember that we don’t start your committee letter until your file is complete. Use the Google tracker to see what you are missing and why your file is not yet complete.
- You will want to begin pre-writing your SECONDARY ESSAYS. Check out our Medical School Secondary Essays webpage for more info and a link to the Medical School Secondary Essay Prompts Database.
- Remember to email us when:
- You submit your primary – in that email include a PDF copy of your AMCAS/AADSAS application.
- When you send in your first secondary application – this triggers us to start your committee letter (as long as your file is complete.)
- Med School applicants, SCHEDULE YOUR CASPer! – More and more schools are using CASPer, and anyone applying to UVM needs to take it. Learn more here. CASPer has specific dates and times and it can be helpful to check this off the to-do list when you are finished with their primary application and waiting for the secondary applications to come through.
Timeline for the Committee Letter:
- We start a first draft of your letter after your file is complete (see the June 1st deadlines in the Application Timeline) and you submit your primary application. Email our office once your application has been submitted.
- Once you have submitted your first secondary application (and your file is complete), email our office and we will place your file in the Letter Writing Queue. It is at that point that we finalize your letter. The Queue is a first come, first served system. Letters are typically completed within 2 weeks.
- When your committee letter is complete, we will contact you to let you know.
You are almost done with the first stage of this external process – you are doing great!
Are you planning to go through the Health Professions Committee (HPC) this year, but will be abroad?
If so, we wanted to connect with you now to remind you that HPC deadlines begin in the FALL.
Top 6 Things to Remember:
- Email us as soon as possible to let us know you will be planning to go through committee starting Fall, 2018. We will place you on our email list.
- Keep a frequent eye on our Application Timeline on our website. If you will be somewhere where internet access is infrequent, make sure to print out the timeline or at least put the deadlines on your calendar.
- There will be an information session in early October so make sure you are on our email list so we can send you the pertinent information.
- November 15th will be the first deadline to join the HPC process. Your Committee Selection Form and head shot will be due and you will need to have opened an Interfolio account.
- We are here to support you in this process and are happy to meet with you via phone and skype appointments while you are abroad. You can schedule with one of the advisors online.
- If you plan to be abroad during the Spring 2019 term, please make sure to let us know so we can schedule your interviews via Skype.
We wish you safe travels and an incredible study abroad experience.
Please let us know if you have any questions about the HPC process.
The AMCAS application is almost open! All of those years of volunteer work and medical research and MCAT prep are culminating in this one application.
The medical school application process is, as you’re well aware, long and strenuous. You do not want all of that hard work on your AMCAS application to go to waste. While you might just want to submit the AMCAS once and for all so you can start focusing on secondaries, make sure to check these 5 last-minute tips by Hannah Smith at In Genius Prep Blog before you hit submit!
Submitting as early as possible is key. AMCAS will start verifying coursework in order of when applications were submitted. They will transmit this information to individual schools later in June, along with letters of recommendation and MCAT scores.
- Check your transcripts: Problems with transcripts are the number one cause of delays and missed deadlines for AMCAS applications. Especially if you’re final semester grades are just coming out, and you want to include them in your application, you must follow up with your undergraduate institution. Make sure that your official transcripts have been sent. This is a small, logistical reminder, but extremely important. For more information on these issues, look through the AMCAS site.
- Make Sure Your Information is Entered Correctly: Omitting coursework, grades, credits, or supplying incorrect grades on your AMCAS application may affect your AMCAS GPA. When you fill out this section, make sure that you have an official copy of your transcript in hand – use the exact same document that the schools will receive. When you input your information, make sure to check it against the official doc. And then check it again. And then check it another time before you send it. Inputting incorrect information is completely avoidable.
- Check In With Your Recommenders: Following up with your recommenders can feel annoying, but it is totally worth it for the peace of mind you get when confirming letters have been sent. Recommenders are people too: they procrastinate. Sending follow-up emails, or even giving them a call, should be seen as a courtesy. Nobody is happy with missed deadlines. Even if you don’t have the best relationship with your letter-writers, you should still follow up with every one of them. Always make sure you’re polite and appreciative!
- Look for Repetition in Your Work and Activities Descriptions: I once read an AMCAS application, where every single activities description started with “It was an honor to…” Don’t do this. Your time with each work experience or activity was different. So your descriptions should be different too. Vary your sentence structure and word choice. Make sure that you aren’t including “filler” activities, and group related activities together if they don’t need their own individual description. Also, pay close attention to your three “most meaningful” experiences, and make sure that you use all the space allotted to show the impact they have had on your journey to becoming a doctor.
- Proofread Your Personal Statement: This seems like an obvious last-minute AMCAS tip. But people still don’t do it! Proofread! And then proofread again! And then have your mom proofread your essay. And your advisor. And your best friend. And your little sister. You get the picture.Careless mistakes do happen, but they never look good. Becoming a doctor takes a lot of attention to detail. A messy personal statement is not sending the right message.
Full article available here.
From Mikayla Hyman ’20:
“The American Medical Women’s Association (AMWA) is undertaking a comprehensive project to understand the leaky pipeline of women in medicine. I am working with Mollie Marr, the President-Elect of the National [Medical] Student Division of the AMWA, to understand the leaky pipeline of women on the pre-medical track. We are working together to create a committee that can tackle a literature review and provide input for eventual further studies and recommended interventions.
I am hoping that much of the literature can be reviewed this summer, as the school year can be very busy for people. There are a limited number of spots on the committee, and we will have a preference for members with a background in research (either within classes or outside of classes) and some experience with the social sciences. Those who are underrepresented within the medical field are especially encouraged to apply.
If anyone is interested in possibly being part of the pre-medical committee for this project and working on this project over the summer, please reach out to me at email@example.com. Or, if anyone knows people at other colleges who might want to be involved in this project, please feel free to forward them this email.
Many medical schools choose to pre-evaluate applicants by asking them to take an online situational judgement test and UVM College of Medicine is the latest school to require CASPer evaluation. The CASPer® (Computer-based Assessment for Sampling Personal Characteristics) test is a 90-minute online situational judgment test (SJT) created by McMaster University in Ontario, Canada. The test was originally established as a screening tool to assess prospective medical school candidates’ non-cognitive skills prior to the interview. Applicants are not tested on any explicit subject knowledge and spelling/grammar mistakes are not factored into their results.
Some medical schools find the evaluation of non-cognitive skills (personal and professional qualities) is a crucial component of any medical school admissions process. What has traditionally been assessed through the submission of personal essays, autobiographical submissions, and interviews, can now be evaluated through this online test.
Structure & Format
The CASPer® test consists of 12 sections (8 videos, 4 non-video) lasting a total of 90 minutes. Each section contains either a short 1-2 minute video (video-based) or a short prompt (word-based), followed by three open-ended probing questions. The examinee is allowed a total of five minutes to answer all three questions for each section. Given the short 5 minute time constraint for each section, spelling mistakes and grammar are not explicitly factored into an applicant’s score. There is an optional 15-minute break halfway.
How to Prepare
As an applicant you won’t receive your actual CASPer® test score because unlike other standardized tests with established pass/fail cutoffs, CASPer® is not a pass/fail test but rather a standardized tool for ranking a large number of applicants based on their personal characteristics. The CASPer® test is administered without providing applicants with explicit learning objectives to prepare for the test in the hopes that examinees will take the test “blindly” without any prior preparation.
However, the current research shows that applicants benefit from advance preparation for the test. To prepare for the test, we recommend applicants complete the following tasks prior to taking their CASPer® test:
- Ensure they can type a minimum of 40 words per minute, free of major errors and distractions.
- Self-reflect on their own personal experiences around conflict, personal weaknesses, and personal failures, and be comfortable sharing lessons learned from these experiences concisely.
- Complete at least one full-length timed practice CASPer® test to ensure they are familiar with the time constraints and expectations of the test. Click here for sample CASPer® content.
CASPer has specific dates and times and it can helpful to check this off the to-do list when students are finished with their primary application and waiting for the secondary applications to come through.
Where do I go to take the test?
You complete the CASPer test on a computer and location of your choice at takecasper.com. Check the technical requirements page and the run through the sample test here to ensure the computer and internet connection is suitable for smooth test operation.
Thanks to Nancy Fullman ’07, Middlebury College has a curated list of entry-level and early career positions in global health. Every few weeks Nancy emails our office with job opportunities to share with you!
Nancy received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Middlebury College in 2007 and went on to become a Post-Bachelor Fellow at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) from 2008 to 2011. She received her Master of Public Health in Health Metrics and Evaluation from the University of Washington in 2011. Nancy is now IHME’s Scientific Advisor and we are lucky to have her in our network! You can read more about Nancy on the IHME website.
Below are entry-level and early career global health positions Nancy has curated have over the last few weeks; note they are far from comprehensive, but it’s a sampling of what she could easily find and/or organizations she knows and respects. She’s highlighted current opportunities at IHME in yellow, as she is able to provide a bit more information about those particular positions.
This month’s list of opportunities can be downloaded here.
As we rapidly approach summer break, we want to wish you the best of luck in completing your final exams and papers. We hope you’ve had a good semester and have exciting plans for summer.
While we won’t be maintaining our weekly newsletter over the summer, we encourage you to stay connected by following our career path pages here and here! We’ll be busy through the summer working on committee letters and advising students applying to medical/dental/veterinary school, but WE REMAIN OPEN TO ALL STUDENTS WITH QUESTIONS.
- For technical questions about your professional school applications and deadlines, email Nicole.
- To schedule an appointment with an advisor, email Mary or Hannah with the topics you’d like to discuss and your preferred days/times.
Have you received an offer for an internship, full-time job, or admission to graduate school? Let us know!
Finally, we wish to congratulate all of our May graduates. We hope that you will stay in touch and let us know how you are doing. Have an enjoyable, productive, and safe summer!
~The HP/STEM Team
(Mary, Hannah, & Nicole)