Forms, Applications and Resources

Applicant Information Form

Students intending to apply for medical school and requesting an institutional letter of recommendation (usually at the beginning of their junior year) must complete an Applicant Information Form along with an essay articulating their motivation for pursuing a career in medicine.

AMCAS Application

Most medical colleges participate with a centralized application service known as AMCAS. By designating schools to which one is applying, a student need only complete one application (done online), which AMCAS will then distribute to the desired medical schools. As part of the AMCAS application, students will be required to write a personal statement (see below). For instructions and deadlines, please visit the AMCAS website.

Personal Statement

How do I approach the personal statement?

The personal statement is an extremely important essay written as part of the medical school application. It is an applicant’s opportunity to distinguish him/herself before a face-to-face interview, to connect with those making admissions decisions, to tell them about oneself and create an interest in learning more. It needs to be authentically personal, to avoid clichés, and to provide insight into people and experiences that have been formative in one’s choosing to go into medicine.

In beginning to think about the personal statement, here are some questions to consider:

  • Why did you choose to go into medicine as a career?
  • What were the turning points in your life?
  • What were some of the biggest challenges in your life, and how did you handle them?
  • What people most influence your life, and how?
  • What events/experiences most influenced your life, and how?
  • What exposure have you had to medicine, and how has that shaped your thinking about going into medicine?
  • What are your future goals, and why?
  • What impassions you to act?

(Some adapted from “Story Works” by John Molidor, PhD, and Julie Campe, BA)

Your answers to these questions should paint a compelling picture of you – piquing the reader’s interest in who you are and what you are about – and compelling them to want to talk to you in person.

Writing this essay will take a lot of time and energy. Start early (the essay written with the Applicant Information Form may serve as a good starting point to work from), and don’t be afraid to write multiple drafts. Keep it simple and well organized; use correct grammar, and have others proofread rough drafts for suggestions. Take advantage of the college writing center. The pre-med adviser is available to review statements as well.



Links for those interested in medical missions: