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Profile and Perspective for Scott Larson                  Viewed 30652 times

General Information
Name:Scott Larson
School:Medical College of Wisconsin
Graduating:2009, MD degree
Marital Status:Married
Second career:No
Contact prefs:You may contact me.

Pre-Med Info
Pre-med:Microbiology, Idaho State University
Number med schools applied to:15

Read questions I have been asked
by readers and my responses.

Currently 0 questions and responses.

Schools applied, interviews, offers
This list only includes schools interviewed at and beyond, and may not include all schools applied to.
Med School Invitation? Interviewed? Offer?
Creighton University School of MedicineYesYesYes
Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson UniversityYesYesAlternate
University of Toledo College of MedicineYesYesYes
Medical College of WisconsinYesYesYes
Saint Louis University School of MedicineYesYesYes
University of Maryland School of MedicineYesYesYes
University of Iowa Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of MedicineYesYesNo
University of Louisville School of MedicineYesNoNo
University of Nevada School of MedicineYesYesAlternate
University of Utah School of MedicineYesYesNo
University of Washington School of MedicineYesYesAlternate
University of Oklahoma College of MedicineYesYesYes

Profile Questions and Answers
Question Answer  
Why medicine? What is your story?I am not one who has always known that they wanted to go to medical school. A series of experiences throughout my life has indirectly led me to medical school and here is the short version. Throughout both junior high and high school I was exposed to a lot of genetics in several different science classes. The genetics fascinated me and I was determined that I wanted to get a Ph.D. and then run my own human genetics lab. Sometime during undergraduate, as I got more into the science classes and labs, I decided that the bench research was not for me. My next idea was that I wanted to become a clinical geneticist, which obviously involves going to medical school. This is the first thought that I had given to going to medical school. I then got involved in volunteering and shadowing that exposed me to the medical field. Through these experiences I came to the conclusion that I definitely wanted to become a physician, although I decided that clinical genetics is probably not the specialty for me.read other replies on this topic
Are you in any special circumstances? Anything unique?For the most part my situation is not unique. The only thing that is somewhat different is that I am married and am somewhat older than the typical medical student. I waited out two years for my wife to finish pharmacy school. We both thought that it would be best for her to finish pharmacy school before I started medical school.read other replies on this topic
What was the hardest part in preparing for med school?The hardest part in preparing for medical school for me was the MCAT. Standardized tests have always been my enemy and I knew that the one thing that would potentially stop me from getting into medical school was the MCAT. Preparing for the MCAT as well as taking the test itself were very stressful for me.read other replies on this topic
How much did you work while going through pre-med?I worked the entire time throughout undergraduate school and worked between 12 Ė 24 hours a week. I had three different jobs during this time. The first was as a night auditor at a local hotel. This job was difficult because the shifts were at night and I went to school twice a week on no sleep. During my time at this job I worked 24 hours a week. My next job was as a unit clerk in an emergency room. This job was great in that I got a lot of good clinical exposure and I got to know several doctors quite well. I worked about 12 hours a week at this job. My last job was as a unit clerk in an urgent care. This job was not as exciting as the emergency room job, but it was still good clinical exposure. I worked about 16 hours a week at this job.read other replies on this topic
What did you do for MCAT preparation?For my MCAT preparation I took the Kaplan course. Many people have said that they thought it was a waste of time and money, but for me it was great. As I mentioned above, standardized tests are not my strong point and so I felt I needed all the help that I could get. In the Kaplan course you take several full-length practice tests that are very similar to the real MCAT. This was very helpful to me. Also, I am not a very disciplined unless I have a set schedule and deadlines to keep me on tract and the Kaplan course provided me that set study schedule.read other replies on this topic
How much did you shadow physicians?I did not spend tons of hours on shadowing because I feel that it is the shadowing experience itself that is important and not the number of hours that matters. Total I spent about 40 hours shadowing several different physicians. First I was able to watch two different surgeries. One surgery was a nasal surgery for sleep apnea done by a maxillofacial surgeon. The other was a revision of a total knee replacement done by an orthopedic surgeon. Next, I shadowed two different emergency room physicians at the emergency room that I worked at. Finally, I shadowed two different family practice physicians in their clinics and on hospital rounds.read other replies on this topic
How much did you volunteer?For volunteer work I volunteered at a local hospital in the cardiopulmonary department for a year. For one semester I helped with the cardiopulmonary rehabilitation program. This involved mostly talking with the patients in the program and taking their blood pressures. The second semester I did more inpatient stuff, doing some filing and helping the respiratory therapists with their rounds. Total this involved about two hours a week for the school year.read other replies on this topic
What clinical exposure did you have?I feel that I had quite a bit of clinical exposure. I had the shadowing and the volunteer work that I listed above. In addition two of the jobs that I had were in clinical settings. As listed above, I worked as a unit clerk in both an emergency room and an urgent care. In addition to the exposure to the clinical environment at these jobs, I was able to get to know several physicians quite well.read other replies on this topic
What did you do for research?For research, I worked about three hours a week in an embryology lab for five semesters. Many different experiments were going on in the lab during this time and I helped out with whatever was going on. Most of the experiments involved doing microscopic surgeries on chicken embryos in an attempt to determine the factors that effect limb development, specifically those that effect the position of the limb development.read other replies on this topic
Do you have any leadership experience?I had a few different leadership positions. For one semester I was the student representative on the campus planning committee which made decisions regarding campus planning and maintenance. Another semester I was on the election board which involved running the elections for the student government. Also, one semester I was the vice president of Golden Key International Honor Society at my university and then the following year I was the president. In my leadership positions with Golden Key I was involved with planning activities such as service projects and running the yearly induction ceremony.read other replies on this topic
What suggestions do you have for the personal statement?I donít know that I have any good suggestions for the personal statement because I feel that I am a very poor writer. The only thing that I can say is to try and write something that will make you stand out from the rest of the crowd. Try to think of a unique and entertaining story from your life and work that into your personal statement.read other replies on this topic
What suggestions do you have for the secondary applications?The only advice that I have for secondary applications is to get them back as soon as possible. I made it my goal to have my secondary applications in the mail within two days of receiving them. This seemed to work very well for me in that I got an interview invitation from almost every school that requested a secondary application from me.read other replies on this topic
What suggestions do you have for the interview?I went to eleven different medical school interviews, so I feel that I had quite a bit of experience. I know that it sounds trite, but all you can really do is try to be calm and relaxed and then just be yourself. After the first few interviews, I became much more relaxed and after that the interviews went very well for me.read other replies on this topic
Describe your pre-med schedule, typical day and weekI did not have a typical day or week during undergraduate school. I did not have a regular study schedule. Some days I would not study at all and other days I would study all day long.read other replies on this topic
Did you do any other extracurricular activities?In addition to the extracurricular activities I have mentioned above, I also got involved in some of the honor societies that I was a member of, particularly Mortar Board. Mostly I got involved in some of the community service projects that they had which involved activities will local elementary schools. In addition to these activities, I was involved in non-school activities to keep myself sane. I took piano lessons from a concert pianist throughout undergraduate school. I was also on several different indoor soccer teams and tried to go water-skiing as much as possible.read other replies on this topic
How did you choose your med school?I mostly chose my medical school by how I felt about the school while at the interview. At some schools I just did not like the atmosphere and the feeling of the school. At other schools, like Medical College of Wisconsin, I just really liked the general atmosphere of the school and the medical students that I met throughout the interview day.read other replies on this topic
Did you take any extra coursework in preparation for med school?The only extra coursework that I took to specifically prepare for medical school was biochemistry. By the time I got to medical school I felt that I had forgotten most of it, but at least I had already heard a lot of the material they taught in medical school biochemistry. I felt like this helped me to pick up the material faster than those students who had never heard the material before. In general, I feel that whatever extra coursework you can take in undergraduate school will help you during medical school.read other replies on this topic
Any open-ended advice?I cannot emphasize this point enough. Apply as early as you can and get the secondary applications back as soon as possible.read other replies on this topic

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