by Mia Carpiniello
Interview season has begun for medical and dental school applicants. Here are five things that you can do to prepare for a traditional medical or dental school interview. (For advice on preparing for a Multiple Mini-Interview, please see this blog post.)
- Remember the purpose of the interview. The interview is an opportunity for the school to get to know you as a person, evaluate your interpersonal skills, and gauge your enthusiasm for their school and the profession. They are talking to you for a reason. Namely, they are interested in you and want to know more about you that they can’t get from your paper application. This prior blog post will shed some light on the interviewer’s perspective.
- Refamiliarize yourself with your application materials. Be ready to share about yourself, your experiences, and why you want to become a physician/dentist. Review your primary application, your personal statement, your secondary applications, highlights from your classes, and anecdotes from your clinical experiences.
- Practice having a conversation about yourself. Don’t go into the interview with an agenda, a script, or a sales pitch. Instead, have a conversation with the interviewer. Be reflective and introspective. Offer specific examples and anecdotes, rather than vague descriptions or a recitation of your resume. Once you have been invited for an interview, you are welcome to schedule a 30-minute, one-on-one mock interview with one our pre-health advisors.
- Read up on bioethics issues and current events in health care. You are not expected to be an expert, but you should be well-read on hot topics in health care. Read the health and science sections of a major, national newspaper on a regular basis.
- Familiarize yourself with the individual school. Have some questions ready to ask the interviewer if you get the opportunity. Ask questions that reflect your actual interests. Take advantage of this opportunity to demonstrate your interest in the particular school and get answers to things that you couldn’t easily find the answer to on your own.
For additional advice, we encourage current applicants to attend our Pre-Health Interview Tips Workshop. Check our events calendar for upcoming workshops.