There’s no denying how the journey to becoming a doctor is long one. But with the right tips and guidance, you can be on your way to making your dream of becoming a doctor a reality.

If you have your sights set on attending medical school, then it’s time to start taking notes. This month, Xavier University School of Medicine in Aruba has done some of the homework for you, as we have outlined the best ways to successfully prepare yourself for medical school, based on information from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC).

Attend a premedical conference

Whether you’re applying to medical school or still deciding if it is the right path for you, attending a premedical conference or workshop is one of the best ways to have your questions answered, all under one roof. From learning about the application process to admission requirements, as well as financial aid and everything in-between, attending a premedical conference is a great starting point for gathering all the information you’ll need. Here are some quick tips to keep in mind when attending:

  • Dress professionally and wear comfortable shoes.
  • Have a note-taking app handy or bring a small notebook to log important information.
  • Bring your résumé or business cards to share with medical school representatives.
  • Bring a briefcase or something to carry any papers or items you may receive at the conference.

For information about attending Xavier, we invite you to meet directly with an admissions counselor by emailing us at, and a member of our admissions team will set up a meeting with you. Also, you can sign up to watch our webinar here.

If you are unable to attend a conference in person, you may be able to do so virtually. Follow AAMC on Twitter for more information.

Key steps to take when applying to medical school

Applying to medical school can be challenging, so early preparation is key to ensuring you have a competitive edge in the process. Here are some important steps to take for positioning yourself in the best possible light:

  • Work with your advisor—Your advisor is a valuable resource to help you navigate important steps, such as the best time to apply, which courses are required in the program, and what internships and lab experiences are available. Additionally, it’s a good idea to build relationships with mentors in different academic departments, as they can offer fresh perspectives on the application process and also help connect you to volunteering and shadowing opportunities.
  • Request letters of recommendation/evaluation—Asking a professor, lab supervisor, or faculty member to write a letter of evaluation is another important step in the application process. Just be sure you ask them early enough, as yours may not be the only letter they may be writing.
  • Research experience—Assisting faculty with research projects is a great way to stand out from other candidates. Keep an eye out for opportunities on the science department’s website, or check with your advisor. (Tip: Positions are typically posted mid-semester or a week or two before mid-term exams.)
  • Elevate your club responsibilities and activities—Believe it or not, even medical school admissions officers are interested in what clubs you belong to, the leadership positions you’ve held and any volunteer activities you’ve participated in. It’s all about leadership and how you made a difference using these related skills and abilities.
  • Meet with the financial aid office—Most medical students will need to take out loans to pay for medical school. Xavier University School of Medicine is committed to making a quality medical education affordable for every student. Student loans, scholarships, and payment plan options are available to students and parents to assist in meeting educational expenses. Did you know Xavier can award a student up to $70,000 in scholarships? It’s just part of our mission to make attending Xavier more affordable for you.
  • Prepare for the MCAT—While most medical schools in the United States and Canada require MCAT scores for admission, Xavier, does not. If you are considering a medical school that requires the exam, however, it’s advised that you take it when you’re comfortable and ready. If you’ve taken the exam and are not satisfied with your scores, you should meet with your advisor to pinpoint the areas you need help with and set a plan to retake the exam.
  • Take time for yourself—Now is the time to relax, travel, spend time with friends and family, and have fun. Savor this time to gear up for the years to come.

Is becoming a doctor in your future? If you have a passion for medicine but aren’t sure how you can make your dream a reality, then now is the time to think about applying to a Caribbean medical school like Xavier University School of Medicine in Aruba. Our graduates have obtained ACGME-accredited residency appointments in nearly every medical specialty and subspecialty at world-renowned teaching hospitals and leading medical centers across the U.S. and Canada. Apply today.