The University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson AMWA branch teamed up with the recently formed pre-medical University of Arizona branch to offer an opportunity for pre-medical students to have a Q&A session with current medical students. Both branches actively reached out to local community colleges to invite them to our events as well. The panelists included Haley Ciccone, MS1, Danielle Sawyer, MS1 MD/PhD, Afeefah Rashid, MS1, Alicia Sandoval, MS1, and Britt Gratreak, MS1 MD/PhD. The panel answered questions about how we each got to medical school, overcame challenges, and what medical school life is like. Discussions included MCAT study tips, local MCAT resources, how to scout out good research opportunities, and how to receive disability accommodations for testing.
In a post-event survey, pre-medical students shared their comments about the event. While every comment received stated the panel was useful, one comment left by a student encouraged our branch to try our best to virtually continue our networking plans with our pre-medical chapter during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic:
“Thank you for taking the time to talk to us. I thought I was going to leave the panel feeling very stressed out, but I honestly left feeling more confident. It is refreshing to hear that I don’t have to be the absolute perfect applicant in every way (as it is often made out to seem).”
In these uncertain times, medical students should create a dialogue with pre-medical students about how to excel under unique circumstances and reassure them that they are not facing any challenge alone. We all have reassurance to offer as early career mentors to those that are only a few years away from becoming fellow medical students.