personal statement

Should you apply to 68 medical schools?

Should you apply to 68 medical schools?

By: Rob Humbracht

68 medical schools. That's the record number (for us at Passport Admissions, at least) of schools that one of our students applied to. If you had to guess, do you think that student got in?

Of course not. Anyone applying to 68 medical schools is almost certainly going to have the following characteristics …

Savvy Pre-med's Ultimate Guide to Writing Your Medical School Personal Statement

Savvy Pre-med's Ultimate Guide to Writing Your Medical School Personal Statement

By: Ryan Kelly

The personal statement is a cruel beast - but what kind of beast?

For some, it might be a leviathan with countless tentacles going in every direction. For others, a sphinx or a centaur - some hybrid monster that can’t decide what it wants to be. Or perhaps it’s a hydra whose new heads keep growing no matter how many you cut off.

One Surprising Habit to Improve Your Self-Discipline

One Surprising Habit to Improve Your Self-Discipline

By: Ryan Kelly

People tend to view their strengths and weaknesses as unchangeable - certain superpowers or fatal flaws that are hardwired into their genes and personality.

Think about it - how many times have you heard someone say, “I’m not a math person” or “Me and technology just don’t get along!” These statements aren’t facts; they’re just stubborn refusals to change or do what’s uncomfortable.

Our First Facebook Live Event - February 2018

Our First Facebook Live Event - February 2018

Our first Facebook Live event answered questions about applying to medical school, with a special emphasis on writing your personal statement. Do you have questions you want answered live? Email your medical school admissions questions to our Head Advisor, Rob Humbracht, for our next Facebook Live event. All questions welcome.

21-Day “Write Everyday” Challenge

21-Day “Write Everyday” Challenge

You've heard us stress the importance of good writing in your medical school application, and being a good writer, just like staying in shape, takes training and practice.

Would you show up to a marathon without a single day of training? Of course not. Unless you enjoy passing out from physical fatigue, you’ll probably start practicing months in advance.

For your application, this is the time to start training. We're putting you, and ourselves, to the test by kicking off the 21-Day “Write Everyday” Challenge.

3 Tricks to Getting Started on Your Personal Statement

3 Tricks to Getting Started on Your Personal Statement

Few things are as intimidating as a blank screen. What should I say? Where do I begin?

That’s the reason I'm doing this 21-day writing challenge in the first place: to thwart the perfectionism, excuses, and other BS that prevent me from writing on a regular basis.

You, dear pre-med, may harbor this same perfectionism. If I tell you to write a personal statement exercise, you may find yourself freezing up. Why? Because it feels so unfamiliar. It's like taking a jog after a long break from exercise: you know how to use your legs, but they feel weak. You've written plenty of lab reports, but after years of science classes, your creative writing muscles have atrophied.

Finding Your Angle in the Personal Statement (Part 2)

Finding Your Angle in the Personal Statement (Part 2)

By: Ryan Kelly

Most pre-meds struggling to write their personal statements are worried about two things:

  1. They feel like they don’t stand out
  2. They feel like their essays are cliche

These two problems are related, of course: the definition of cliches is the overuse of essay tropes, which then fail to stand out.

Finding Your Angle in the Personal Statement (Part 1)

Finding Your Angle in the Personal Statement (Part 1)

By: Ryan Kelly

Have you ever saved someone from drowning? What about rescuing a baby from a burning building? How about a cat stuck in a tree? Anything?

Alright, so you didn’t save anyone. But surely you could, right? Especially with your tri-cultural background and fluency in six languages! No? Not even close?

Average vs Compelling Personal Statements

Average vs Compelling Personal Statements

By: Ryan Kelly

Compelling stories. An authentic voice. Sharp editorial discernment.

When pre-meds start writing their application essays, they often lack these intangible qualities that will make them stand out. Sure, you’ve gotten good grades in your science classes, amassed hundreds of volunteer hours, and earned a good MCAT score. But the act of making yourself come to life on paper, to write a personal essay, will feel as foreign to pre-meds as binge drinking and slacking off.