Where to Find Medical School Scholarships
By Jonathan Bales
, last updated October 12, 2011
Applying to medical school can be a stressful experience, but if you do not take the time to carefully consider the available scholarships, it can also be very expensive. In fact, for some people, a scholarship may mean the difference between attending medical school and finding another line of work. Medical school scholarships are extremely competitive. There are many reasons for this, including the large volume of applicants, the high cost of tuition, and the fact that most schools only want the most qualified applicants.
Being granted a scholarship is contingent on a number of factors, but chief among them is a high undergraduate GPA. Schools are looking for the best and the brightest, and they are going to be searching for students with a proven track record. A good place to start looking for medical school scholarships is at your undergraduate school. Many colleges offer a myriad of scholarships that are only available to current students, thus limiting the competition pool. If you have a high GPA at your current school, you are already a step ahead of the competition.
You might also want to see if your employer offers any scholarships, as many companies will have special provisions for employees looking to go back to school. Regardless of the source of the scholarship, the odds of acceptance become greater when there are less people applying. Thus, if you fall into a specific category, whether it is women, Hispanic, etc., search for medical school scholarships designed for a specific type of person.
If none of those options are available to you, there are other places you can search. One good resource is the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation Scholarship program. This program offers scholarships and grants to prospective applicants, but keep in mind that applications must come from your employer or university, not individual students. One potential scholarship is the Louis Edward Nicklies Scholarship, which offers grants for books and living expenses. To apply for this grant, you must have studied law, engineering, medicine, or teaching at your undergraduate school.
The Mitio Foundation offers two $1,000 scholarships to bilingual students who are planning to attend medical school. There are also many scholarships that are location based, such as the Allegheny County Medical Society Medical Student Scholarship, which is offered to prospective students in Pennsylvania. Another option in this area is the Lycoming County Medical Society Scholarship Fund, which offers $1,000 to students residing in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania. While these options likely do not apply to you, they are good examples of the type of scholarship for which you can search.
A good resource if for medical school scholarships is Fastweb.com. This website has a huge database of different scholarships for a number of different schools, as well as tips and tricks for how to find the scholarship that best suits your needs. Finaid.org is another tremendous website that has a lot of information about scholarships, including deciding which scholarship to which to apply.
Looking for scholarships can be stressful, but there are a host of different options available that can make your search easier. You should make sure you strongly consider the available scholarships and grants before you begin applying to medical schools, as you could end up saving yourself a great deal of stress and money.