2021 was a year full of challenges, reflection, and change. With a new year ahead of you, it’s time to focus on setting new goals to jump-start your premed journey. Starting the process can be overwhelming, but if you start with realistic resolutions, you can reach your destination with confidence. Explore these five New Year’s resolutions and perhaps they’ll spark your plan for 2022.
1. Become an Expert on All Things Premed
Research. Research. Research. Achieving your aspirations requires becoming a knowledge expert so you can understand what will and won’t work for your goals. The AAMC created a Premed Resources collection that includes various links throughout the Students and Residents website for easy navigation, as well as print-friendly handouts of all items normally distributed at premed events to complement our newly virtual world and evolving digital technology. Most importantly, check out the Premed Webinars page to learn more about AAMC tips, resources, and guidance in one centralized location.
2. Learn How You Can Finance Your Medical Education
Financing a medical education can be stressful, but you can arm yourself with knowledge to reduce some of that stress. First, check out the AAMC Fee Assistance Program that helps with the cost of applying to medical school. Next, read our Six Financial Tips for Premed Students card — created by our Financial Information, Resources, Services, and Tools (FIRST) service — to learn how you can prepare for the cost of applying to and attending medical school. FIRST advises medical students on money management, loan repayment strategies, and financial wellness throughout medical school and beyond.
3. Discover Medical Schools That Match Your Goals and Preferences
The process of applying to medical school is more than just completing the AMCAS® application. Selecting a medical school will be one of your most significant decisions. Be sure to review each school’s mission statement, teaching style, and resources to see if they align with your personal mission, values, and career goals before applying. Don’t forget your “why” for pursuing medicine: What is your passion? Which communities do you want to help? The AAMC has developed products — like the Medical School Admission Requirements™ (MSAR®) online database — to help you make well-informed decisions about your medical school choices.
4. Get Experience That Shows Your Passion for Going Into Medicine
Whether you are applying in the 2023 application cycle or preparing for when the time is right for you, it is important to find ways to get experience in the medical field. Your experiences will help you to strengthen your skills in the 15 core competency areas. Admissions officers look for these attributes because they will help you succeed in medical school and beyond. For inspiration, read how current medical students incorporated the core competencies in their medical school application. Keep your goals on track using the Anatomy of an Applicant Self-Assessment Guide to gauge where you are now, identify opportunities for growth, and articulate how and why you are proficient in the core areas.
5. Remember to Prioritize Your Mental Health
Applying to medical school can feel overwhelming at times, but it doesn’t always have to feel that way. It’s normal to feel anxious about the process, but there are resources to help you manage stress and keep yourself on track. Create a timeline with manageable deadlines, handle everything one step at a time, and remember how much you have already accomplished. And most importantly, make sure to take mental and physical breaks to recharge and do things you enjoy. Learn more about resources and strategies that current medical students have used to build and maintain well-being that will help you in the future.
If you follow these five New Year’s resolutions, you will be prepared to successfully conquer your premed journey in 2022. Break out your planner, get organized, and stay focused!