Doing Pre-Med the Right Way: College Sophomore edition

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This post is part 2 of “Doing Pre-Med the Right Way.” You can find part 1 here!

I will preface this by reiterating that everyone has a unique journey to medical school, and these are mainly suggestions to keep you “on track.” Your path might take you more years or through different experiences, and that is okay!

I will also update my background by saying I was accepted to 2 medical schools, one being in my top 3, this cycle.

So what do you need to do as a college sophomore to stay “on-track” as a pre-med?

1. Update your academic plan

Make sure you’re still good to go with prerequisites. If you have an idea of what medical schools you’re interested in, make sure you note which classes they require and recommend you to take during undergrad.

2. Continue to meet with your pre-med advisor and professors

Mainly, just keep fostering those relationships and seeking their advice. Being in close communication with your professional support system is so wonderful and will really pay off in the end. If you can start (or continue) research with a professor, even better. Medical schools love to see research experience in any field!

3. Continue extracurricular activities, medical experience, and community service

Like I said in the first post, do things you enjoy doing! You should be able to talk about all of your activities, which really only happens genuinely when you truly care about what you do. Aim for a few, long-term activities you know and do well rather than haphazardly juggling a dozen clubs and medical volunteering once a month.

4. Shadow a doctor

Definitely make an effort to find a doctor or two to shadow. I’m not sure what this looks like now because of COVID-19, but it wouldn’t hurt to call your primary care physician or a local specialty clinic and ask. Shadowing a doctor shows that you actually know what doctors do and still want to do it!

5. Continue to explore new experiences

Your story is unique. And we need unique doctors! Don’t be afraid to try new things and get involved in unconventional clubs or do things unrelated to medicine! The important thing is that you are able to speak about it and the impact it has had on you or you have had on others!


I can’t believe I missed it on the last post, but KEEP AN UPDATED RECORD OF EVERYTHING YOU DO. Record your positions, the contact info of all your superiors, the work you did, the hours you spent, and a brief description of what you learned and how the experience made you feel (or anything else you’d put in a diary). Imagine the child of a resume and annotated bibliography. Do that. It’ll make med school apps 10 times easier. *** Spoiler alert: there is a space to put hobbies in your AMCAS application (for MD schools)! So don’t feel bad about investing in your hobbies! I did have one interviewer ask me about mine :)

Keep on the course! You can do it! As always, feel free to reach out and ask any questions you have to

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Written by Holly Lakin on May 17, 2021