Today’s guest post is from Next Step Test Preparation partner MedSchoolCoach. MedSchoolCoach provides comprehensive medical school admissions consulting, including medical school interview preparation.
The medical school interview is an important part of the admissions process. We wanted to share with you what some of your specific goals should be going into the interview. These may sound similar to the personal statement goals but the approach towards achieving them will be different.
Your main goal should always be kept in mind whenever you are answering questions during the interview. You want to make sure that you are always portraying to the interviewer that you will be a vital, hardworking, diverse, unique incoming student that will go on to accomplish accolades in your future profession as a physician. However, you have to be doing this in a way that makes you seem humble and eager to work with others. Even more, the best way to describe all these things is through stories and “showing” your true personality during the interview. Sound difficult? Well that’s what practice is for.
Tell Them Why You Want To Go Into Medicine
Often the first question and one that will most likely come up during interviews is the question about “why you want to be a doctor?” Even though it’s been written about in personal statements, that you have spent 4+ years working towards this goal, you still need to provide a convincing, personal story that persuades the interviewer that you know exactly what you are getting into and that you still want to do medicine.
Make it a Conversation
The best medical school interviews are the one that don’t feel forced—they feel like a conversation between an old friend you are catching up with. While it may be difficult to get to this point, with practice and preparation, it should be easy to get to providing answers and make a conversation flow and seem natural.
This is perhaps the hardest part of the entire medical school interview. A lot of medical students are generic. They have volunteered in hospitals, shadow doctors, done a little bit of research and in general are good people. However in order to separate yourself you really need to make your interview memorable. The easiest way to do this is to have a pleasant and fun conversation with your interviewer. If you talk the entire time about your interviewers favorite sports team or their hobby of photography which you share that makes a better interview than talking solely about the time you pushed a patient around in a stretcher at the hospital. Remember faculty members and students on the admissions committee want to be your advocate and the easiest way to get them there is to get along with them well.
This cannot be stressed enough. If you are a naturally a person who is easy to have a conversation with, the interview will go really well for you. This is actually a point we like to stress because it means that if you can relax a little bit, if you consider yourself a normal person. That said, read on to make sure you make no mistakes.
You should always be yourself above all else. Unless you are not normal, in which case, please, just act normal.
Sahil Mehta MD is a physician and the founder of MedSchoolCoach, the nation’s leading medical school admissions consulting company. MedSchoolCoach offers extensive medical school interview preparation.