A career in medicine requires an extensive education that often includes graduate school. Medical scholarships will help to pay for all or some of the cost of tuition. These awards are highly competitive at all levels. It is common for a committee to receive thousands of applications for a single scholarship. Students who are looking for ways to qualify for a scholarship will need to meet several requirements.
Grades And Test Scores
Almost all medical scholarships require applicants to have very good to excellent grades. Undergraduate students need to have a high grade point average (GPA) and above-average scores in math and science. Students who are already in college need to display exceptional academic performance. Grades are a determining factor because academic ability is essential for success in medicine, even on an administrative level. It is also important to have high scores on the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT). Scores that allow admission to a particular school are not necessarily enough to qualify for a scholarship, however.
Succeeding in all of the steps necessary to get through the doors of a medical college is not always easy. Some students must overcome a number of obstacles in order to achieve good grades and to attend school. A number of medical scholarships are available that reward personal achievements before and during school. This might mean overcoming personal adversity, financial disadvantages or other issues. Excellent academic performance must still accompany these achievements. Colleges and local organizations often provide these types of awards.
Passion For Medicine
It is difficult to compete for a scholarship or to complete the classes necessary to become a doctor without a passion for the field. It is nearly impossible to find scholarships that do not include an essay question. The answer to typical essay questions need to give committee members the sense that the applicant cares about medicine and is excited to take on the challenges of the work. A poor essay that shows no deeper interest in the field is unlikely to impress a committee in a competitive university environment.
Support From Outside Healthcare Organizations
Students who cannot find scholarships through a school might need to find support through an outside healthcare organization. This includes associations dedicated to specific causes. This usually requires completion of some college and possibly entry into graduate school. It also means deciding on a specialty within the field. These organizations use standards similar to other medical scholarships, but are sometimes less competitive when dealing with narrow specializations.