Ranked at the top for research, Johns Hopkins Medical School provides a medical education with an emphasis on integrating scientific innovation in patient care. The school’s mission statement shares a comprehensive and long term perspective on medical education, touching on: The Science and Practice of Medicine, Clinical Competence, The Social Context of Medicine, Communication, Professionalism and Lifelong Learning. Given these tenets, describe how your background and experience has prepared you to excel in these areas as you write your secondary essays.
Johns Hopkins 2017 Secondary Application Essay Questions:
1. If you have already received your bachelor’s degree, please describe what you have been doing since graduation, and your plans for the upcoming year. (This space is limited to 700 characters.)
Using an updated copy of your CV or resume, make a list of your recent activities and label them according to the six tenets of the school’s mission statement, listed and linked above. You can arrange the list chronologically or by the label you assigned each one. Be sure to clarify how each experience has prepared you to succeed at their institution.
2. If you interrupted your college education for a semester or longer, please describe what you did during that time. (This space is limited to 700 characters.)
If this essay question applies to you, review an unofficial or official copy of your college transcript. What did you do during the time away from school? How did the break(s) impact your academic record? Did your grades increase or decrease before or after your return? Adcoms will be scrutinizing how you spent the time and how it ultimately affected your grades. Provide a concise description that details the information they are looking for, along with an explanation, if there was a decrease in your GPA before or after the break.
3. List any academic honors or awards you have received since entering college. (This space is limited to 600 characters.)
Using a copy of your submitted AMCAS application and an updated copy of your CV or resume, create a list of all scholarships and awards that you received during your undergraduate education. Check both documents to make sure that you include all honors awarded to you.
4. Briefly describe your single, most rewarding experience. Feel free to refer to an experience previously described in your AMCAS application. (This space is limited to 900 characters.)
While the essay prompt allows you to use an experience shared in your AMCAS application, I recommend selecting a new anecdote for this essay response. Make a list of your top five or ten “most rewarding experiences.” Next to each item, write one or two reasons why you would consider it the most rewarding. Using the tenets of the school’s mission statement, which of these experiences meets the highest number of these areas? Structure your response according to how your own expectations—sense of fulfillment—matches that of the school’s mission.
5. Are there any areas of medicine that are of particular interest to you? If so, please comment. (This space is limited to 1100 characters.)
To demonstrate the realistic knowledge you have gained of the medical field through your clinical experience and volunteer work, I recommend focusing this response on the areas of medicine that you have developed an interest in based on your personal experience. A broad response that highlights how long term and extensive your exposure is to the various fields of medicine would be appropriate.
6. Briefly describe a situation where you had to overcome adversity; include lessons learned and how you think it will affect your career as a future physician. (This space is limited to 900 characters.)
Using a professional experience and how you directly changed or improved on a process or system to benefit the community you worked with would serve as an excellent response. What was the situation? How did you learn from it and improve the outcome? How will this knowledge serve you in your patient interactions or level of engagement with your patient community?
7. If applicable, describe a situation where you were not in the majority. What did you learn from this experience? (This space is limited to 1100 characters.)
Using a variety of examples, demonstrate your success in working with individuals from diverse backgrounds and cultures. Examples could include travel to countries in which you do not speak the language, participation in cultural or religious activities that are different from your own, and engagement with communities of different ethnicities or cultural backgrounds from your own.
8. The Admissions Committee values hearing about each candidate for admission, including what qualities the candidate might bring to the School of Medicine if admitted. If you feel there is information not already addressed in the application that will enable the Committee to know more about you and this has influenced your desire to be a physician, feel free to write a brief statement in the space below. You may address any subject you wish, such as being a first generation college student, or being a part of a minority group (whether because of your sexual orientation, religion, economic status, gender identity, ethnicity), or being the child of undocumented immigrants or being undocumented yourself, etc. Please note that this question is optional and that you will not be penalized should you choose not to answer it. (1100 characters)
Choose carefully what you will cover here. While it is an optional essay, it is far better to respond to it than to skip it. In representing a different aspect of yourself, keep the mission of the school in mind. Is there a way in which you would be in a unique position to uphold their values or further their mission?
9. If applying to the dual MD/MBA program, please describe your reasons for wishing to obtain this degree. (This space is limited to 1100 characters.)
To determine your interest in the program, review their website. How will the combination of these two degrees enable you to meet your life goals? Why not apply only for an MD? How will an MBA inform or improve your influence on the health of a community?
***Disclaimer: Information is subject to change. Please check with individual programs to verify the essay questions, instructions and deadlines.***
If you would like professional guidance with your Johns Hopkins Medical School application materials, please consider using Accepted’s Medical School Admissions Consulting and Editing Services, which include advising, editing, and interview coaching for your application materials.
Alicia McNease Nimonkar is an Accepted advisor and editor specializing in healthcare admissions. Prior to joining Accepted, Alicia worked for five years as Student Advisor at UC Davis’ postbac program where she both evaluated applications and advised students applying successfully to med school and related programs. Want Alicia to help you get accepted? Click here to get in touch!