University of Michigan Medical School is ranked in the top fifteen schools by US News for excellence in primary care. Given the school’s focus on self-directed learning and building on a strong science foundation, it will be important in your secondary essays to convey your level of self-awareness in meeting your academic goals. How did you approach challenging science courses? In what ways have you demonstrated a commitment to lifelong learning? How has your community benefited from this commitment? For students interested in earning a MD/PhD, UMMS has a Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) Program. As part of this program, students will be given the training to enter academic medicine and conduct basic science research. Application Tip: Check out this helpful advice.
University of Michigan Medical School 2020-2021 secondary application essay questions
University of Michigan Medical School essay #1 (For MD applicants)
Comment on how you hope to impact medicine in the future. If examples are needed, feel free to refer to our eight Paths of Excellence.
Do not exceed 1500 characters (about 250 words).
A good way to approach this question is to create a list of previous experiences you have had in the medical field. Past behavior is the best predictor of future behavior. Sharing what you have done in that field will demonstrate your knowledge, level of experience, and accomplishments. Next, you can impress the reader by setting realistic goals for what you hope to achieve as well as addressing any obstacles that you will have to work around or overcome.
University of Michigan Medical School essay #1 (For MSTP applicants)
Briefly describe why you decided to apply to the University of Michigan MSTP. If you are interested in a specific department, program, or area of research for your PhD, please provide a brief explanation (we recognize that your interests may change). Do not exceed 1500 characters (about 250 words).
This essay response will require that you complete significant research on the history and structure of the MSTP program and curriculum. After reading their web pages, what features of the program stand out in your mind? After reviewing a complete list of their departments, what areas interest you? Have you completed research or a degree in any of these fields? What attracted you to that research project or field? Align your background and long-term interests with their program in your essay response.
University of Michigan Medical School essay #2
Please respond to ONLY one of the following two prompts (select the question to which you are responding):
Describe your identity and how it has impacted the development of your values and attitudes toward individuals different from yourself and how this will impact your interactions with future colleagues and patients.
If you recognize and/or represent a voice that is missing, underrepresented, or undervalued in medicine, please describe the missing voice(s) and how increased representation in medicine could impact the medical community.
Do not exceed 2500 characters including spaces (about 400 words).
The University of Michigan has changed their diversity question to your choice of these two prompts.
For prompt 1: Choose this prompt if you do not see your identity as representing the underrepresented. The key to responding well to this prompt as someone quite possibly white and middle to upper middle class, and perhaps male, is to explain how you were raised or grew to be an advocate for diversity as a value. Writing this response will require some real soul searching or examination of the values with which you were raised, whether they were inclusive values taught to you by your family, community, friends, or experience — or whether you arrived into inclusive values on your own, as a growth experience, as an arrival into clarity. Tell the story of the path to your truth as one who values diversity and inclusivity – what can others who might choose the second prompt expect from you as a medical student and as a doctor? What do you bring to the table regarding diversity as a value and how have you or will you do that?
For prompt 2: Choose this prompt if you see your identity as underrepresented, in whatever way that seems true for you. The key to responding well to this prompt as someone previously less represented in academic populations is to define and identify with your marginalized self; on the other hand, you still need to foster a value for a wide and diverse collective that includes you but also includes others who may have been historically marginalized as well as more typically-represented people. What can others, less represented and overly represented, expect from you as a medical student and as a doctor? What do you bring to the table regarding diversity as a value and how have you or will you do that?
University of Michigan Medical School essay #3
How was your journey to medical school affected by the COVID pandemic? Please feel free to describe any positive or negative aspects.
Do not exceed 2500 characters including spaces (about 400 words).
Everyone has a COVID pandemic story. All students were derailed from in-class learning, many pre-med students were cut off from shadowing, scribing, volunteering, or taking the MCAT. Some of you may have been affected personally by COVID-19, whether you got sick, family members got sick, or your community was affected. This information needs to be told in a straightforward way. After this, what can you add to this narrative that demonstrates a conviction to get involved with pandemic relief, whether medically-oriented or community-oriented? Future doctors would likely be expected to have rolled their sleeves up and to do what they could to assist during a global health crisis. Then, close with what you learned about humanity from your efforts and experiences. What you learned should be humbling and insightful, maybe even deep.
University of Michigan Medical School essay #4
Tell us something you are passionate about and why.
Do not exceed 1500 characters including spaces (about 250 words).
To feel passionate “about” something is an applied feeling. No one can explain the wonders of this human interlude from rational thinking more truthfully than you can. This prompt is the antithesis of science and thinking. It is an opportunity to demonstrate that you understand the link between feeling and experience.
Be sure to show human virtue in this passion, whether by describing the passion and its essence, or in discussing your experience of it. So, while you stay away from the dark side of what passion can mean, don’t become superhuman either. Don’t save the planet. Humble is best.
Lastly, though on a medical school application one may feel compelled to write about a deep emotional fervor for science, the prompt is broader than that. The prompt asks for a truth. Don’t feel bound by the impulse to fill in the blank with “I am passionate about science.” Reviewers will be looking for your authenticity. They may just be very moved by a well-composed narrative about a passion for puzzles, for instance; but be sure about the following – they will and do dismiss narratives that seem to out-psych the prompt or write to impress. This prompt is more about rounding out the snapshot of you.
Applying to Michigan? Here are some stats:
University of Michigan Medical School average MCAT score: 516
University of Michigan Medical School average GPA: 3.82
University of Michigan Medical School acceptance rate: 4.6%
U.S. News ranks Michigan #15 for research and #15 for primary care.
Has this blog post helped you feel more confident about approaching your Michigan application? We hope so. It’s our mission to help smart, talented applicants like you gain acceptance to your target schools. With so much at stake, why not hire a consultant whose expertise and personalized guidance can help you make your dream come true? We have several flexible consulting options—click here to get started today!
University of Michigan Medical School 2021-22 application timeline
|AMCAS application for MD/PhD program is due||September 15|
|AMCAS application for MD program is due||October 15|
|Secondary application for MD/PhD program is due||October 15|
|Secondary application for MD program is due||November 15|
***Disclaimer: Information is subject to change. Please check with individual programs to verify the essay questions, instructions and deadlines.***
Dr. Mary Mahoney, Ph.D. has over 20 years of experience as an advisor and essay reviewer for med school applicants. She is a tenured English Professor with an MFA in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College and a PhD in Literature and Writing from the University of Houston. For the last twenty years, Mary has served as a grad school advisor and essay reviewer for med school applicants. Want Mary to help you get Accepted? Click here to get in touch!Alicia McNease Nimonkar worked for 5 years as the Student Advisor & Director at the UC Davis School of Medicine's postbac program where she both evaluated applications and advised students applying successfully to med school and other health professional programs. She has served Accepted's clients since 2012 with roughly a 90% success rate. She has a Master of Arts in Composition and Rhetoric as well as Literature. Want Alicia to help you get Accepted? Click here to get in touch!