The Summer Medical and Dental Education Program desires to increase the representation of minorities in the medical field by providing a program that enriches and prepares students. This program takes place in various locations; the one I am particularly interested in is at Duke University. The program lasts from June 4th to July 16th, which provides an extra time window for anything else I desire to do.
Daily work may include clinical exposure, academic enrichment, career development, or health policy seminars. Individual advising will also be available, as well as financial planning workshops. Pre-medical sciences, math, writing, and learning skills will be addressed, as well as methods for studying.
In order to be eligible for this program, applicants must have a grade point average that is at least 2.5. Applicants must be a current freshman or sophomore in college, and be a U.S. citizen or hold a permanent resident visa. It is important to note that SMDEP makes decisions on a “first come, first served basis”, so applying as early as possible is incredibly advantageous.
While these are the requirements, there are also considerations that may improve the chance of getting into the program. Applicants that identify with a group that is racially or ethnically underrepresented in medicine have priority because this speaks to the mission of this program. Economically or educationally disadvantaged students are additionally taken more into consideration. Outstanding applicants also tend to exhibit an interest in issues affecting underserved communities.
Financially, this program greatly benefits me. I am provided with a $600 stipend, as well as free housing on Duke campus. Meals are mostly covered as well. If I decide to apply to this program but at a different location, I could additionally be provided with $200 to cover travel expenses.
As a pre-med student, SMDEP has various advantages that I appreciate. If I apply to the Duke University location, it would be convenient because it is only 5 minutes away from home. (I’m sure my mom would appreciate this too.) Additionally, it would prepare me for the unknown. Trying to reach my career goal is challenging as a first generation student and I need all the guidance I can get. There is an incredible amount of information I have yet to uncover, and I presume SMDEP will guide me to learn about the essential details. This program would not only provide me with clinical exposure but also assistance in subjects I need to excel in for medical school. I also particularly enjoy the length of the program. It allows me to include any other activity I may want to strive for, like a part time job or the continuation of my research I do here at UNC.
The deadline for this program is March 1st, but I plan to apply next year due to previously made plans and the decreased likelihood of getting accepted this current year. However, I believe it would provide an immense amount of guidance, as well as experience, so it is a program I wouldn’t want to disregard.