Schools of the health professions expect applicants to have a broad array of experiences.
Seek out experiences that resonate with you, help you grow, and inspire you to become a life-long learner.
In addition to excelling in the pre-requisite coursework and entrance exam, schools of the health professions expect prospective applicants to have developed a rich portfolio of experiences that have informed their understanding of health care, challenged their intellect, and demonstrated their commitment to others.
You can develop your application portfolio by documenting your experiences in AdviseStream’s Academics and Engagement Planner. This will not only help you organize and keep track of your extracurricular involvement over your four years at NYU, but also help preprofessional advisors stay abreast of your activity and offer you individualized advice based on the experiences you’ve had.
Admissions committees expect applicants to have a realistic understanding of the profession that they seek to enter. Gaining this exposure can take many forms and should start early in your undergraduate career, with your time-commitment and responsibilities evolving as you get closer to an application. Some health professional schools require hands-on experience as part of your application portfolio and all programs strongly recommend it.
We encourage you to reflect on the following as you assess your involvement in clinical arenas:
- Have you had more than one sustained experience volunteering in hospitals, clinics, or private offices?
- Did you interact with patients?
- Have you shadowed, or observed, healthcare professionals?
- What did you learn about health care and the profession through this experience?
As you embark on new clinical activities and deepen your existing ones, don’t forget to reflect on what you’re observing and learning. Be sure to log your experiences in AdviseStream’s Academics and Engagements Planner so that you and your advisor can take stock of your progress.
Not sure where or how to gain experience? Considering gaining clinical experience abroad? Visit Clinical Experience
Involvement in a research project will help you develop and hone critical thinking, teamwork, problem-solving, and quantitative skills. Schools of the health professions typically do not have a preference for the type of research that you conduct (bench, translational/clinical, honors work); it is more about the demonstration of your intellectual curiosity and scholarly development.
Some professional programs incorporate research requirements into their curricula and therefore expect applicants to have demonstrated an interest in conducting research at the undergraduate level. If you are considering a Ph.D. (MD/Ph.D., DO/Ph.D., etc.) you should plan to gain significant research experience as part of your application portfolio.
As with the other elements of your prehealth preparation, it is critical to seek out and get involved in meaningful activities that help you grow as an individual, preprofessional student, and academic. If a research opportunity arises and it aligns with your interests, we encourage you to add this type of experience to your portfolio.
Health professionals are intrinsically motivated to help others within and outside of their community. Engagement in your community through volunteerism and service helps you develop social awareness, cultural competency, and a sense of civic responsibility.
Not sure how to get involved? Visit NYU Tandon Student Organizations
Clubs and Activities
Tandon Prehealth Student Board