The Most Commonly Asked Question

The most commonly asked question:

“How many of your students get in to medical/dental school?”

The answer to this one question may not yield the information you really need and want to know. No school gets students into any medical or dental school; students get themselves into school, typically with assistance from a university advising service.  If you are interested in medicine, dentistry, optometry, or other health professions this question may be at the top of your list. However, we suggest that you ask at least three questions of each college you are considering.

How does this university advise and support students who may be considering careers in the health professions? 

Pre-professional advising is available to all UNH undergraduate, graduate, continuing education students, and alums who are preparing for application to graduate programs in the health professions. Premedical/Predental is neither a major nor a minor at UNH; it is simply a non-binding academic curriculum that is prescribed by the professional schools and that students incorporate into their selected major. Students register with the Pre-professional Advising Office and should meet with the advisor to discuss their progress and plans. The office maintains a list serve and web site for Pre Health-Professions students. At UNH, we hold informational meetings throughout the year and offer the Health Professions Seminar course (INCO 403) for students, typically completed during their second year of study. We help clarify career goals and develop strategies to meet academic and other admission requirements for their health professions program. The University offers guidance through the application process, personal essay writing assistance, and practice interviews. When you apply to medical and dental school programs, the Advisory Committee writes a letter of evaluation which is sent to all schools considering you for admission. 

Does the institution write letters for every student who applies?

The UNH Advisory Committee will write a composite letter of evaluation for every student who completes the Committee evaluation and interview process. The Advisory Committee is comprised of faculty members and local area practitioners. The Committee is responsible for decisions affecting the nature and format of health professions advising at UNH, and also plays a key role in the application process by interviewing and providing a Composite Committee Letter of Evaluation for our applicants. Some schools have an internal selection process and will write letters only for the highest achieving students, who they believe are most likely to be successful. Be aware that at such schools an extremely high acceptance rate (the national average is around 50%) may be the result of internal selection; so always ask this question.

What will I need to do in order to get into medical/dental school?

          Do well in all courses, and incorporate the required pre-requisites. Have a consistent record of good work in human/community service and volunteer experiences, and a record of sustained and varied exposure in health care settings. Expand your understanding of others. Take courses and participate in experiences that will help you develop the tools, knowledge, and skills to relate to a wide range of people and feel comfortable in doing so. Build the kinds of relationships with your professors and others that will enable you to have good recommendations. Grow your interpersonal abilities through teamwork, leadership, tutoring/mentoring and practice interviewing skills until you can interview well. Through your experiences, have a clear understanding of your motivations for healthcare as well as the ability to articulate this in writing and in interviews. Plan ahead to prepare and study for the required entrance exam and do well in it. Apply in a timely fashion to a reasonable mix of schools matching your interests and accomplishments. All of these attributes will place you in a competitive position for acceptance to schools, no matter what percentage of applicants from your college are admitted.