What are the differences between your program and MAMS?
These are unique traits of our program:
- Nationally recognized as a highly successful Special Master’s Program located at the Stritch School of Medicine (SSOM).
- Small class size
- Individual, one-to-one mentoring with SSOM Graduate Faculty.
- Our program has a verified 99% of students accepted into medical school.
- We openly publish our statistics on our website.
- National reputation of predictor of success in medical school: our students thrive in medical school and SSOM students never have difficulties with the academic curriculum.
- Access to the same volunteer opportunities available to medical students, and more.
- Access to volunteer opportunities at the adjacent Edward Hines Jr. VA Hospital, in addition to Loyola University Medical Center.
- Access to the medical student-run Medical Spanish and Medical Polish courses.
Is it true that the MSMP is modelled after the MAMS program?
No, the MSMP is not modelled after our undergraduate campus sister-program.
We are a newer program that achieved high success very quickly because we are experienced medical school professors with current, first-hand knowledge of all issues involving graduate medical education. As such, and from within, we identified the top difficulties medical students face during their academic years; and similarly, we also recognized the most common mistakes made in medical school applications. Therefore, we used a three-pronged approach-design for our program’s curriculum based upon our medical education and admissions experience, building a curriculum:
- very similar to the M1 curriculum specifically targeting the biggest areas of concern that affect struggling medical students, with the goal to provide our students the opportunity to:
- demonstrate academic excellence
- ensure that our students will not only be accepted in medical school, but that they will thrive, avoiding academic trouble during the pre-step 1 years
- with a Professional Development course that targets all areas of concern during the application process, including the application, your statement, your secondaries, your interview, your medical school selection process, direct access to several Medical Admissions Deans and Directors, among others.
- with individual mentoring from our experienced SSOM Graduate faculty
Is it true that you don’t have one-on-one dedicated advisors?
No, that information is incorrect.
Students are assigned an individual SSOM Graduate Faculty Advisor who is currently involved and with extensive experience in medical education and/or in the medical school admissions process. During the initial meeting with your advisor on week 1, you will craft an individualized plan of action for the full year; your advisor will be an additional source of knowledge and will be working in coordination with your Professional Development Course director to help you with the application process.
Is it true that you don’t have a full-time pre-medical advisor?
Full-time undergraduate pre-health advisors are indispensable at an undergraduate campus in lieu of direct medical school experience. They learn about medical education issues by attending annual advisor’s meetings to learn from medical school representatives about some of the main issues affecting medical education.
SMPs like ours, that are in a medical school, do not need additional undergraduate pre-medical advisors. All professors and mentors in our program are not only trained, and come from internationally recognized medical schools such as Brown, Johns Hopkins, Northwestern University, Rush Medical School, Stanford, UT SW Dallas, Yale, among others; they are directly engaged in medical education and the medical school admissions process. As a testament to this, our program quickly achieved national recognition and great success from year 1 (100% acceptance rate).
Is it true that you don’t offer medical school courses?
No, that is incorrect.
Our faculty is entrusted with teaching the Function of the Human Body course in M1; and as one of the most challenging courses of M1, we decided to also teach it in our program. The major difference is that our students learn this course in two semesters, unlike M1 where we teach it in a single semester. This is specifically designed to allow our students to learn the complexities of medical physiology in detail, with more time, in complement with our Pathophysiology course. The accompanying small groups sessions, EKG laboratory and conferences are also exactly the same as the M1 curriculum. Similarly, the Anatomy lectures and in-person cadaver labs are the same as in the medical school curriculum. The Biochemistry, Cell Physiology, and Neurophysiology courses are also very similar to the medical lectures.
Isn’t it true that most med schools require a pre-health committee letter of recommendation and that you do not offer one?
No, that information is incorrect.
A pre-health committee letter is written by a University’s pre-health advisor and counts as one out of three LORs needed in your application; the majority of medical schools do not require a committee letter.
Our program is a Special Master’s Program in a medical school, not at an undergraduate campus, therefore it does not need a pre-health advisor, or a pre-health committee letter.
Stand-alone letters of recommendation from the MSMP afford you the advantage of highlighting your achievements during your gap year, which are easily distinguished from your undergraduate credentials. It also allows you the choice of having your choice of several stand-alone LORs: from the MSMP Director, from your individual advisor, and/or from individual science professors, according to your needs.
Where is the “Maywood campus”?
The Health Sciences Division campus is our graduate campus exclusively dedicated to the Medical, Nursing, and Public Health Schools. You will be immersed in our campus activities, including all medical and non-medical volunteering opportunities available to or medical students.
Is it true that not all your credits will count towards my BCPM GPA?
Credits earned in any MS program will not be counted towards your undergraduate BCPM GPA.
Indeed, 2 credits out of 24 in our program are not STEM courses (neither Ethics nor Professional Development courses should be designated as STEM courses); this has negligible impact on your GPA outcomes or program outcomes. Instead, this is designed on purpose to provide you with a well-rounded, holistic education; for instance, you will have the opportunity of learning Clinical Bioethics from Dr. Mark Kuczewski, nationally renowned scholar and Director of the Neiswanger Institute for Bioethics at Loyola.