If you're hoping to get into one of the medical schools in Michigan, you need to be prepared for some tough competition. Michigan is home to 3 of the country's top medical schools for research, and the other medical schools in the state also have a pretty good ranking and are, therefore, quite selective. The key to getting into medical schools in Michigan is knowing how to make your medical school application stand out, which requires information! In this blog, we provide that information. We'll tell you what you need to know about the medical schools in this state, what types of applicants they prefer, what the MCAT and GPA requirements are, and so much more. So, keep reading if you want to find out how to get into medical school in Michigan.


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The state of Michigan is home to seven medical schools (listed below) and they are all pretty competitive. While Michigan medical schools do differ from one another based on the patient populations they serve, their curriculum designs, and the extracurricular opportunities offered to their medical students, they also have a lot in common when it comes to their admissions practices, what kind of student they are looking for, and the types of opportunities that they can offer.

Preferred Applicants

In-state vs Out-of-state and International Acceptance Rates

Like many other medical schools in the US, Michigan's medical schools are looking for students who have close ties to Michigan and thus, have a preference for in-state students. For instance, the acceptance rate for instate applicants at the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine is 8.6%, while that of out-of-state applicants is as low as 0.32%. Furthermore, even though the school accepts international students, only one candidate out of 612 was offered admission last year. These numbers are in line with the rest admissions statistics of the other medical schools in Michigan. 

However, it is worth noting that Medical schools in Michigan receive a high number of applications from out-of-state students. For example, the University of Michigan Medical School received over 9000 out-of-state applications and less than 1500 in-state applications from in-state students. This tells us that if you are a resident of Michigan, you definitely have a strategic advantage in applying to one of your local medical schools. 

International students will find Michigan the most daunting. In recent years, international students have barely been interviewed, let alone matriculated to a medical school in the state. For instance, out of 67 international applicants to the University of Michigan Medical School, only two were interviewed, and one got in.

Check out this infographic for more tips to maximize your chances of admission

Tips for Out-of State and International Applicants

It is certainly not impossible to get into medical school in Michigan as an out-of-state applicant, but it will take some elbow grease. In addition to having a strong application, having a connection to the state of Michigan ( ideally, in the city of the school you're applying to) is a great way to strengthen your candidacy. 

One of the reasons medical schools prefer in-state applicants is because they are looking for students who will serve the local community by practicing medicine in that state once they've graduated. This means that the admissions committee will look for students who express interest in doing that or can be persuaded to do so. Suppose your application shows that you love the state of Michigan or that you have ties to the local community. In that case, it would be fair to assume that there is a higher probability of you becoming a resident doctor and eventually a practicing physician in the same state. 

Remember that you need to be honest and genuine in your medical school personal statement and other application components, so don't stretch or bend the truth. Instead, emphasize what made you want to apply to medical schools in Michigan. For example, do you have family that lives in the state? Talk about your relationship with your family and how great it would be to have a support system. Or maybe your family often vacationed in the state, and you've always thought of it as a sort of second home. That would be something that is worth noting in your application. 

Lastly, not having a connection to Michigan doesn't mean there is no point in applying. Perhaps your ambitions and motivations line up perfectly with a specific school that just so happens to be in Michigan, or maybe you have a desire to move and assist an underserved community in the state. Those reasons are just as valid, and if appropriately communicated in your application and interview, they can help you get one of those coveted acceptance letters. The key will be to use your medical school secondary essays and interview to discuss your motivations and love for the state in a specific way that demonstrates passion and dedication.

Preferred Academic and Non-academic Achievements

MCAT & GPA

Regardless of whether you are an in-state or out-of-state applicant, getting into medical school can be challenging. You have to think strategically about the schools you are applying to in order to give yourself the best chance of admission. This is why many students turn to medical school application tutors for their expert advice and guidance. When it comes to the medical schools in Michigan, you must think objectively and rigorously about your own academic background and statistics before deciding on which schools to apply to. 

Take a look at the admissions statistics for the medical schools in Michigan below. Luckily, all these institutions are among the medical schools that require CASPer, but if you have to take the exam for a different school that you're applying to and you aced it, then including your score in your application is not a bad idea.

 

Based on the schools' admissions statistics, there is a wide range of average GPA and MCAT scores among the medical schools in Michigan, giving applicants different options depending on their academic accomplishments. For example, a GPA of 3.8 would be considered competitive for all Michigan medical schools. However, you would need to consider it alongside your MCAT score. Let's assume that you got an MCAT score of 511. In that case, even though your GPA is very competitive, the University of Michigan, Western Michigan, and Wayne State University School of Medicine might be out of reach for you, while the other Michigan medical schools would still be excellent targets. 

Prerequisite Courses

Medical schools generally tend to admit students with a wide range of majors, and the medical schools in Michigan are no different. That said, medical school prerequisites are a central part of the premed academic foundation, so they must be taken seriously. These prerequisites are usually pretty general, focusing on a broad base of introductory courses that should provide a solid scientific foundation and lay the groundwork for more specialized medical school studies. We suggest familiarizing yourself with the AAMC's list of required courses as all applicants to medical schools in Michigan are expected to have completed them. 

Furthermore, if you want to maximize your chances of admission, you should also look at completing at least a few of the recommended courses. Remember that Social and communication skills are critical for practicing physicians. This is why many medical schools encourage students to explore other interests and have a well-rounded college education. For your convenience, we've compiled a list of the most common recommended courses by medical schools in Michigan. Courses in these subject areas are not required, but they can help strengthen your candidacy: 

If you are a non-traditional medical school applicant or you've already completed your Bachelor's program, and you realize that you do not have the necessary prerequisites and recommended courses, do not panic. You can take alternative paths to get to medical school, such as special master's programs (SMPs) or post-baccalaureate programs (PBs). These programs can give students who graduated with a non-science degree a chance to complete the required prerequisite courses and take additional classes to improve their candidacy. 

Extracurriculars

 Medical schools, including those in Michigan, like to know how you choose to spend your free time. That is why your AMCAS work and activities section is such an essential part of your medical school application. The admissions committee wants to know what activities you were involved in, what skills you have picked up along the way, and how those activities can help you be a better medical school student and contributing member of their campus community. 

The AMCAS most meaningful activities section is especially important because it allows you to tell the admissions committee about the extracurricular activities that were especially important to you. You should take the time to review AMCAS hobbies examples to get a better idea of how this section can help you show the medical schools in Michigan that you are the perfect candidate. Remember that, as we mentioned earlier, these schools have a holistic admissions process. Meaning that they care about your academic prowess and who you are as a person. They want to know what your interests are, what motivates you, and how the lessons you learned from these experiences can be applied in medical school. 

The key is to be strategic when deciding on extracurriculars for medical school. Look for activities that align with your interests, goals, and values but also show your sense of curiosity, altruism, communication, and leadership skills. For instance, If you're interested in pediatrics, then it's a great idea to gain some experience working with children. For example, you could work or volunteer for summer camps, daycares, children's hospitals, or adoption centers. 

Often, students think that they can select random experiences that they assume will look good on a medical school resume and run with it, but that's not the best way to show the admissions committee why you are a strong candidate. Each person is different, and their experiences should reflect that. In other words, there is no universal set of best experiences for premedical students. Don't pick activities that you think the admissions committee wants to see because that is what most students will do. Instead, look for research opportunities, volunteering, and work experiences related to your interests and focus on learning how to discuss these experiences in a way that highlights the transferable skills you've gained as you will need to do so in your essays and medical school interview. 

Not sure how to prepare for your medical school interviews? This video can help:

What Kind of Doctor You Can Become at a Medical School in Michigan?

Residency 

Approximately one-third of students that were matched to the residency programs in Michigan came from medical schools in the same state. Many of these students matched to the residency program of the institution they attended for medical school. For example, 22 percent of the University of Michigan's graduating class will continue their education at Michigan Medicine - the school's academic medical center. This means that if you are looking to practice or do your residency in Michigan, attending a medical school in the province is not a bad idea, but it will not significantly improve your chances of matching. You will need to ensure that your ERAS application clearly expresses your love for the state and desire to practice in it. 

 It is also worth noting that according to the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP), the primary care specialties are the most popular for the new resident doctors in Michigan – with internal or family medicine placements. Anesthesiology and Neurology found mid-level match rates, so if you are considering one of these specialties, medical schools in Michigan give you a reasonably good match rate.

Research 

Three of the medical schools in Michigan offer MD-PhD programs, and all three schools report great employment outcomes for their students. This means that if you are hoping to go into research, or if you’re interested in becoming a physician-scientist, you do have a few programs to choose from in Michigan. If you are deciding between the MD-PhD and MD, we recommend speaking with a medical school admissions tutor as they can provide some helpful insight.

Practice in underserved communities

The medical schools in Michigan have programs designed to encourage students who want to serve in rural or underserved regions of the state. Some even have international programs of this nature, like Oakland's global health initiative. As we mentioned earlier, one of the reasons public medical schools prefer in-state applicants is because they are looking for students who will want to practice in the community. These institutions recognize that Michigan has many specific needs, especially in rural areas and the underserved communities in urban areas, so they offer support for the students who wish to help. 

Conclusion

The state of Michigan is home to seven medical schools that are quite different in terms of culture, curriculum, and many other things. However, they can all provide a great medical education and give you a good chance of matching to a good residency program, becoming a physician-scientist or working in an underserved community if that is what you are hoping to do. The competition to get into these schools can be tough - especially for international students, but getting in is not impossible. You just need to give yourself the time to research thoroughly and prepare a strong application. You may also want to consider working with a medical school advisor to maximize your chances of admission. 

FAQs

1. How hard is it to get into medical schools in Michigan?

Medical school acceptance rates in the US are notoriously low, so getting into medical school in Michigan is hard. However, it is not impossible! Especially when you have the right information and strategies.

2. How many medical schools are there in Michigan?

There are a total of 7, one of which is an Osteopathic medical school.

3. What GPA do I need to get into medical schools in Michigan?

If you want to be a competitive applicant for most schools, you will need a 3.8

4. Do medical schools in Michigan accept international students?

They do, but the chances of admission are very slim ( Less than 0.5%, to be exact), so you should only apply if you are a very competitive applicant and have strong ties to the state.

5. I am not from Michigan. What are my chances of getting into a medical school in Michigan?

There is no sugar-coating it; getting it in as an out-of-state applicant is hard. However, if you give yourself enough time to plan and prepare your application, you can wow the admissions committee and get in.

6. What can I do to make my medical school application stand out?

In addition to having a strong GPA and a good MCAT score, you will need a compelling personal statement, great extracurriculars, and strong communication skills. We also recommend taking some of your chosen school's recommended courses and preparing well in advance for your interview.

7. What are the best extracurriculars for medical school?

You should look for activities that allow you to develop your soft and cognitive skills, show your sense of curiosity and altruism, and that you are passionate about.

8. Is research experience necessary for medical schools in Michigan?

It is not required, but it can make you a stronger candidate as it shows curiosity and a desire to learn—bonus points for clinical research.

To your success,

Your friends at BeMo

BeMo Academic Consulting

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