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What You Need To Know About Medical Schools In Mississippi

April 19, 2022
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Attending Medical Schools In Mississippi About Medical Schools in Mississippi Tips to Getting Accepted Into Mississippi Medical Schools FAQs

If you have your eyes on a Mississippi medical school, this guide will walk you through everything you need to know, including acceptance rates, admissions requirements, statistics, tuition estimates, and more. Read on to gain the knowledge you need to fill out a successful med school application. 

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Attending Medical Schools In Mississippi 

Mississippi has two medical schools: 

  1. The University of Mississippi School of Medicine's medical center in Jackson 
  2. The William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Hattiesburg 

Which school you should apply to depends on your career goals: MD hopefuls should apply to the University of Mississippi, and DO aspirants should apply to William Carey University. If you aren’t sure which pathway is right for you yet, there’s no reason you can’t apply to both schools. 

Medical schools typically boast low acceptance rates, selecting only the most competitive students into their exclusive programs. The University of Mississippi School of Medicine does not release acceptance rates, but it’s estimated to be approximately 47%. However, this percentage may be much lower simply because it’s a medical school. 

Based on recent class profile data, the William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine’s acceptance rate is 18%. Relatively low acceptance rates are prevalent at the nation’s medical schools, and it’s best not to put too much stock into these percentages.

No matter what a school’s acceptance rate is, crafting a polished application will always boost your chances of acceptance. 

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About Medical Schools in Mississippi 

Before starting  a Mississippi medical school application, you should have a better understanding of each school. Gathering foundational knowledge before jumping in head-first can help you customize your application to what the admissions committees seek, ensure you stand out from the crowd of other applicants, and ascertain the school is a good fit for you and your professional goals. Below is a comprehensive look at both of Mississippi’s medical schools. 

University of Mississippi School of Medicine

The School of Medicine and six other health science schools are based out of the University of Mississippi Medical Center, the only academic health center in the state.  

The school’s mission is to train “skilled and compassionate physicians to provide high-quality and equitable health care particularly to the state’s residents, including diverse and underserved populations.” The School of Medicine prepares students to provide expert care through its innovative program, state-of-the-art research opportunities, and clinical practice to carry out its mission. 

The School of Medicine emphasizes the value of diversity in its students, faculty, administration, and staff in upholding  its mission. The University of Mississippi medical school knows that “Diversity and inclusion enrich the learning environment and better prepare physicians to offer quality care to everyone.”

To apply to the School of Medicine, you must satisfy all prerequisites

If you satisfy all these requirements and have valid MCAT scores from the last three years, you can fill out an AMCAS application, including your scores, official transcripts, and a personal statement. The School of Medicine requires three letters of recommendation by faculty who taught you (ideally in courses used to satisfy admissions criteria) or anyone who supervised you researching the classroom. 

Once the admissions committee receives your AMCAS application, you’ll receive an email to fill out the Secondary Application. From there, you can select which method you’d like to use to qualify for admission: 

Method 1: End-Point Courses 

Method 2: Course-Competency Map

You can choose to list the courses you’ve taken or planned to take “whose content maps to learning objectives that can provide the desired competencies. This option applies only to students at schools with course-competency maps previously approved by the SOM admissions committee.”

Method 3: Novel Curricula

You can choose to list the courses you’ve taken or plan to take that “ comprise eligible novel curricula. This option applies only to students at schools with novel curricula previously approved by the SOM admissions committee.” 

The admissions committee selects applicants for interviews based on their life experiences, personal characteristics, AMCAS applications, and metrics like GPA and MCAT scores. If you’re selected for an interview, you’ll be interviewed by eight to 10 raters through multiple mini interviews. 

These mini-interviews are set up like stations, each providing a 10-minute scenario. The purpose of the stations and scenarios is to measure your:

“personal competencies such as oral communication skills, service orientation, respect for others including compassion and empathy, critical thinking and decision making, teamwork, awareness of ethics, maturity, coping skills and opinions on healthcare issues.” 

The University of Mississippi School of Medicine does not release comprehensive class profile data but does share what a typical entering student’s MCAT scores and GPA look like

In terms of selection criteria, the School of Medicine prefers Mississippi residents. They also look for evidence, quality, and quantity of experiences such as: 

The admissions committee seeks these personal attributes in applicants: 

Tuition at the School of Medicine costs approximately $32,000 per year. 

William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine

According to U.S. News World and Report, the William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine (WCUCOM) is ranked No. 93-123 In Best Medical Schools: Research and Best Medical Schools: Primary Care.

WCUCOM’s mission is to “prepare men and women to become osteopathic physicians through an emphasis on primary care, lifelong learning, research and scholarly activities, service, including osteopathic clinical service, and graduate medical education.” The school uses a community-based training model so graduates can serve all patient needs. 

Along with the school’s mission statement, they have a list of goals that guide it: 

To apply to the College of Osteopathic Medicine, you must complete these prerequisite courses:  

You must also complete at least 90 semester hours in a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. 

Once you’ve completed all of these prerequisites, you must complete an AACOMAS application, including official MCAT scores. You must also complete a WCUCOM secondary application and submit three letters of recommendation: 

When you complete your application file, you may be selected for an interview, where you can visit WCUCOM and talk with students and faculty, allowing the admissions committee to gain a more comprehensive picture of who you are behind your transcripts and MCAT scores. 

According to recent class profile data, the college had 448 students enrolled, 272 of which were male and 176 female. As for first-year students: 

Table outlining the percentage of William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine's first year students who self-reported their race/ ethnicity as Indigenous American, Asian, Black, White, and undisclosed

Out of all first-year students, 90% were Science majors, 10% came from a non-science background, and 30% held graduate degrees. 

Applicants are rated based on their academic aptitude, including the results of their MCAT, GPA, and the difficulty of classes taken. Recommendations are also telling of a candidate’s character and academic achievement. Although all students are encouraged to apply, the admissions committee prefers qualified Mississippi or Gulf South residents. 

Tuition at the College of Osteopathic Medicine costs approximately $44,000 per year. 

Tips to Getting Accepted Into Mississippi Medical Schools 

Getting accepted at any medical school can be challenging, but there are ways to ensure your application receives the attention it deserves. These tips can help you gain admission at either of Mississippi’s medical schools. 

Start Your Application Early 

Starting your application as early as possible ensures you’ll have enough time to gather the materials you need. It also gives you time to polish all of your materials, so any mishaps or setbacks won’t derail you.

Remember, you’ll need to write a personal statement as part of the AMCAS or AACOMAS applications; you want to give yourself enough time to craft a compelling narrative. 

Achieve a High GPA and MCAT Score

A high GPA and MCAT score strengthens every medical school application. These metrics show academic excellence and that you can handle the rigorous instruction med school has to offer.

An excellent way to check your standing is to look at class profile data if available. For example, University of Mississippi medical school students on average score a 504 on the MCAT and boast a 3.7 GPA. If your scores and GPA look similar, you can expect that they won’t hold your application back. 

At William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine, the admissions committee looks for students with a competitive application: MCAT scores above 500, a 3.4 BCPM GPA, and an overall GPA of 3.4 or 3.5 to be competitive. 

Choose Recommenders Carefully and Ask for Letters ASAP

Your recommendations are a crucial part of your application. Their recommendations paint a picture of you from a third-party perspective, backing up every wonderful thing you’re shared in your application. You should ask for recommendation letters as soon as possible, so your recommenders have enough time to write a stellar letter. 

Ensure you double-check admissions requirements and obtain letters from professionals each school wants to see. While the University of Mississippi gives its students some free rein on their referee, you must seek out one physician (ideally a DO) and two science professors if you apply to the Osteopathic College. Above all, ensure your recommenders can speak upon your character, your achievements, or your medical-related experience to date. 

Consider An Admissions Consultant’s Help 

Applying to medical school is a colossal step in your path to becoming a physician. It can be challenging to know when your application is ready for submission and whether or not you’ve hit the mark in every element. 

Admissions consultants take the guesswork out of the medical school application process. They can help you polish your application, give you the insight you need to tailor it to admissions committees’ preferences and ensure you represent the best, most authentic version of yourself.

Remember, you don’t have to soldier through the process alone; think of an admissions expert as a knowledgeable companion ready to help you navigate the medical school application process.  

FAQs 

1. Does the School of Medicine have an early decision program? 

Yes, applicants may apply through the school’s Early Decision Program if they wish. If you apply through early decision, know that it is binding, meaning you must enroll if you are accepted. 

You can apply through early decision if you have a 3.6 BCPM GPA, a 3.7 overall GPA, and an MCAT score of 504 for above. 

2. Does the College of Osteopathic Medicine offer an early decision program? 

No, all applicants follow the same pathway and timelines. 

3. Do I need shadowing experience to apply to Mississippi medical schools?

If you’re applying to the School of Medicine, you must have at least 35 hours of shadowing experience, but no shadowing experience is necessary to gain entry to the College of Osteopathic Medicine. 

4. If I don’t live in Mississippi, can I still apply? 

You can still apply to either school, even if you don’t live in Mississippi or Gulf South. If you’ve researched both of these schools extensively and feel that one or both would be an excellent fit for you, you should apply. 

However, you should keep in mind that the admissions committee prefers Mississippi residents. 

5. What is a good MCAT score if I apply to these schools? 

A good MCAT score is always subjective to the school. If you want to be a competitive applicant at both schools, aim to score at least 504 on the MCAT or higher. 

6. Can I apply to medical school even if I did a non-science major in college? 

Yes, it’s possible to go to medical school even if you completed a non-science major in college. However, you must ensure you take all the prerequisite courses each school outlines. Ensure you carefully check admissions requirements to see if there are any other courses you need to take before applying. 

Conclusion

If you live in Mississippi and are passionate about helping your state’s underserved populations, attending a Mississippi medical school may be the right path for you. Applying to medical school requires organization, time management, and patience to gather all the necessary elements. The process can be a little intimidating to some, but it doesn’t have to be. 

If you begin the process early, boost your GPA and MCAT scores, secure stellar letters of recommendation, and seek an admissions consultant’s help, the medical school application process will be a lot clearer and easier to manage. Whatever school you choose to apply to, you can feel empowered knowing you have the knowledge and tools to produce the perfect application.

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