At Touro, Professional School Readiness Happens In and Out of Class
Health Science and Medical School Deans Demystify Admissions Process, Offer Interviewing Tips and Real-Time Practice
Moshe Baitelman decided to become a doctor when he took his first biology class in his Vancouver high school. In college, at Touro’s Lander College of Arts and Sciences in Flatbush, he has been preparing for rigorous medical school application process both inside and outside the classroom.
Touro offers a series of programs to introduce its undergraduate students to health science careers and demystify the graduate school application process. Students like Moshe have opportunities to meet with graduate program leaders and faculty members, gain firsthand experience and prepare for the admissions process.
Each year, Touro brings deans and faculty members on a tour of its undergraduate schools to share their knowledge. Stops include Lander College for Men in Queens, Lander College for Women in Manhattan and Lander College of Arts and Sciences in Brooklyn. “Access to leaders at our health sciences programs is a strategic advantage for Lander students. They gain the knowledge they need to present themselves effectively to medical, dental and allied health schools and a chance to meet key people at these professional schools,” said Dr. Alan Kadish, president of Touro.
Last month, more than 60 students interested in medical, dental and pharmacy schools participated in an exclusive information session a Lander College of Arts and Sciences in Flatbush. Students had a chance to interact with the chancellor of New York Medical College, the dean of Touro College of Pharmacy and the vice dean of Touro College of Dental Medicine. Faculty members presented information about their specific programs and curricula, and about the admissions processes. The formal program was followed by a question and answer session where students met with the deans in small groups to gain more personalized insight and advice.
In the spring, Lander College for Women hosted a similar session for students interested in careers in pharmacy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, physician assistant, speech, nursing, medicine, dentistry and osteopathic medicine. Students had a chance to meet with LCW alumnae as well as faculty from the health sciences graduate programs.
“It’s a win-win. Our students get the practical information they need to ensure that they are competitive and have the right courses and background to qualify for admission to Touro’s excellent health science and medical programs. Plus the admissions officers at the graduate programs get to know our students,” said Marian Stoltz-Loike, Ph.D., dean of Lander College for Women.
The deans traveled to Queens-based Lander College for Men in the fall to present a similar program. “Our students’ remarkable record of acceptances to medical and dental schools is the result of both their own hard work and our commitment to helping them succeed. Many have attended NYMC and Touro College of Dental Medicine, and have been delighted with their experience,” said Rabbi Moshe Sokol Ph.D., Dean of Lander College for Men.
Touro also offers a unique opportunity for pre-med students to prepare for one of the most daunting parts of the application process, the Multiple Mini Interview (MMI). The MMI is typically a series of six to 10 very short interviews that revolve around a specific scenario. Patients don’t receive the scenario until right before the interviews. It is designed to gauge an applicant’s potential to successfully interact with patients and colleagues.
Moshe Baitelman described the MMI as a “black hole” in the application process, until he attended the session. “We had an opportunity to do practice interviews with medical school professors and get useful feedback. It made the process much less intimidating,” he said.
“We are bringing all of Touro’s resources to bear to help students learn what they can expect from each of these programs and how to prepare for them. The way we provide professional and career guidance is far beyond what is routine at other colleges,” said Dr. Robert Goldschmidt, Vice President for Planning and Assessment and Executive Dean at the Lander College in Flatbush.