From the very beginning of the application process, WMed uses a holistic review that incorporates the breadth and depth of life experiences and skills, personal attributes and characteristics, and academic metrics. Our program is focused on teamwork and our selection process helps build student teams with life experiences, diversity, and attributes that will enable all of our students to fulfill their full potential.
Our process uses the Experience-Attributes-Metrics (E-A-M) Model to screen, interview, and select applicants who fit our institution.
Tell us your story. You bring a unique set of premedical experiences and passions, and we want to know about them. We’re looking for students who bring broad personal interests and experiences in:
- Extracurricular activities
- Medical settings
- Community and volunteer settings
- Team settings demonstrating leadership and collaboration
- Working with a diversity of individuals and cultures
We’re seeking leaders with the personal attributes and characteristics to excel as physicians, and who:
- Are team players
- Can problem solve
- Demonstrate compassion and empathy
- Are committed to serving others
- Have strong oral and written communicate skills
- Make decisions with integrity
A strong academic foundation is required for success in medical school and in a career in medicine. We look at both your GPA and MCAT score to assess your academic readiness for medical school.
- A minimum overall GPA of 3.0 is required.
- We will review applications with an upward trend.
- A minimum MCAT score of 25 (old MCAT) or above the 40th percentile (MCAT 2015) is required.
- WMed will accept scores from either the old MCAT format or new MCAT format for the class beginning in July 2018.
- If you have taken the MCAT more than one time, the most recent score will be used for consideration.
In order to be considered for admission to WMed, applicants must go through the following steps:
Step 1: AMCAS Application
- Recommended Coursework
WMed no longer has specific prerequisite courses. To be well prepared, we recommend applicants complete upper division hard science coursework in:
- Human Anatomy
- Human Physiology
It is anticipated that applicants will have completed the foundational science coursework that is required by their undergraduate institution to enroll in these upper division courses. Additional undergraduate-level coursework is recommended to prepare the applicant with breadth and depth of knowledge and skills. While selecting a major in the sciences is not required, we encourage significant experience in upper-division coursework in rigorous academic settings.
- Applicant Requirements
Applicants are encouraged to gain a strong pre-medical foundation to be best prepared for medical school and throughout their careers. To be considered for admission at WMed, applicants must have:
- A minimum overall GPA of 3.0.
- We will review applications with an upward trend.
- A minimum MCAT score above the 40th percentile, within the last three years.
- If you’ve taken the MCAT multiple times, the most recent of the scores will be considered.
- Earned, or anticipate earning before matriculation, a bachelor’s degree from an institution accredited by a regional accreditor that is recognized by both the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
- At least 90 hours of course work for the bachelor’s degree must be at an institution accredited by a regional accreditor that is recognized by both the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
- U.S. citizenship or permanent residency status.
- Taken the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) within three years (the oldest MCAT accepted for 2018 matriculation is January 1, 2015).
- Proficiency in keyboarding, and in written and spoken English.
- A minimum overall GPA of 3.0.
- Letters of Recommendation
Applicants must submit a minimum of three and no more than five letters of recommendation through the AMCAS Letters Service. Letters must come from individuals with firsthand knowledge of the applicant’s qualifications, skills, attributes and values by direct observation and who can comment on academic achievement as well as personal qualities including work ethic and motivation for a medical career. Two of the letters are recommended to be from faculty members who have been the applicant's undergraduate or graduate instructors or mentors, or employment supervisors in the case of non-traditional applicants. If students apply from a university that provides a composite letter from a premedical advisory program, the composite letter will be accepted in lieu of the two letters recommended from faculty. WMed expects that students will waive their right to view these letters.
You should follow the instructions for letters of recommendation that is provided by AMCAS. The Letters of Evaluation Working Group has released Letters of Evaluation Guidelines that aim to improve the letter writing process in order to benefit both letter writers and admissions committees. The guidelines are organized into two sections that describe (1) tips about how to write a letter and (2) key areas of interest to medical schools.
The WMed Admissions Committee evaluates letters of recommendation for the following elements. It is not expected that any applicant will excel in each of these elements, but most applicants will demonstrate strengths in many of these elements. The first six elements ask for evidence, the writer should use examples that they have observed or have personal knowledge of what you have accomplished. The last five elements address attributes, the writer should address your personal qualities based on their observations or personal knowledge of you.
- Evidence of cognitive readiness
- Evidence of integrity and ethics
- Evidence of teamwork and collaboration skills
- Evidence of leadership skills
- Evidence of initiative and drive to be extraordinary
- Evidence of commitment to excellence
- Commitment to the profession of medicine
- Degree of enthusiasm of referee recommendation
We strongly advise that you provide this list to the individuals who are writing your letters of recommendation to WMed so that they can address all of your strengths as reflected in this list.
- Technical Standards
Essential Abilities for Completion of the Medical Curriculum
WMed refers to our technical standards as the Essential Abilities for Completion of the Medical Curriculum.
Medical education requires the acquisition of knowledge, skills, attitudes, behaviors, and values to provide highly effective patient care. Graduates of the medical school must have the broad base of knowledge and the skills and competencies that are essential to be a skilled and effective practitioner of medicine or serve in another professional capacity. Our graduates are prepared to excel in any chosen specialty field. Accordingly, every medical student must complete all aspects of the curriculum and achieve all of the competencies as determined by the faculty. Our graduates must have the ability to function effectively in a variety of clinical situations and provide a wide spectrum of clinical care. Medical students must possess the essential abilities necessary to undertake and complete the curriculum in a reasonably independent manner and must demonstrate an ability to personally perform activities and achieve competencies required by the curriculum.
The essential abilities for completion of the medical curriculum of the medical school define the essential cognitive, physical, emotional, interpersonal, and behavioral abilities that are necessary to participate and progress satisfactorily in our MD program curriculum and to meet the graduation requirements. An applicant/student must be able to perform each of these abilities as prerequisites for medical school admission, continuation, and advancement through our program of study, and graduation.
The medical school does not discriminate against students with disabilities and strives to provide equal opportunity for all students. The buildings and facilities of the medical school are accessible to persons with physical challenges. The medical school complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act and provides equal access through reasonable accommodations for qualified students with documented disabilities but may not be reasonably able to provide every accommodation requested by students.
The medical school has determined the essential abilities that must be met by all medical students and the process for providing reasonable accommodations for persons with qualified disabilities. The Medical Student Admissions Committee considers any applicant who meets the academic and other application requirements and also demonstrates these essential intellectual, physical, and behavioral abilities with or without reasonable accommodations. Acceptance as a medical student into the medical school does not depend on merely meeting these essential abilities for completion of the medical curriculum and the minimum admission requirements.
The medical school helps students with disabilities identify the necessary resources, if available, to facilitate the student’s development. The student is responsible for expenses resulting from diagnosis and treatment of disabilities, including expenses for optional resources selected by the student.
Medical students must possess the essential abilities necessary to undertake and complete the curriculum in a reasonably independent manner and must demonstrate an ability to personally perform activities and achieve competencies required by the curriculum. Reliance on an intermediary, such as another person or assistant, normally creates a substantial risk that the intermediary could impose external power or influence of selection and observation on the student's independent judgment and behavior. As a result, use of an intermediary generally fundamentally alters the nature of the educational program and is not a reasonable accommodation that can be made available.
The essential abilities for completion of the medical curriculum of the medical school are adapted from: AAMC Special Advisory Panel on Technical Standards for Medical School Admission (AAMC, Memorandum #79-4, approved by the AAMC Executive Council on January 18, 1979).
Areas of Essential Abilities
The following abilities and skills are deemed essential and necessary throughout our program of study and required for admission, continuation, advancement, and graduation.
Sensory Abilities: The applicant/student must be able to: observe and participate in demonstrations and experiments in the basic and clinical sciences including microscopic studies; observe a patient accurately at a distance and close by; perform all elements of a complete physical examination; observe electrocardiographs, radiographs and other visual results; and deliver patient care. Obtaining a medical history, observation, examination and patient care necessitate the functional sensory abilities of vision, hearing and touch, and are enhanced by the functional sensory ability of smell.
Communication Abilities: The applicant/student must be able to listen, speak and observe patients in order to: listen effectively; elicit and synthesize information; explain medical information in a patient- and family-focused manner; recognize, acknowledge and describe changes in mood, activity, and posture; recognize, acknowledge and respond appropriately to emotions; and perceive nonverbal communications. The applicant/student must be able to communicate effectively and sensitively with patients, families, peers, staff and faculty of both genders and across a diversity of ages, disabilities, ethnicities, socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds, sexual orientation, and religious beliefs. Communication includes speech, reading, writing and keyboarding and the ability to maintain comprehensive, timely and legible records. The applicant/student must be able to communicate effectively and efficiently in oral, written, and electronic forms with physicians and all healthcare professionals.
Motor Skills: The applicant/student must have sufficient motor function and physical dexterity to master technical and procedural aspects of patient care including the ability to elicit information from patients by palpitation, auscultation, percussion and other diagnostic maneuvers. The applicant/student must be able to perform basic laboratory tests, perform physical diagnostic procedures, and read and interpret electrocardiograms, x-rays, and other graphical data. The applicant/student must be able to execute motor movements reasonably required to provide general care and emergency treatment to patients. Such actions require coordination of both gross and fine muscular movements, equilibrium and functional use of the senses of touch and vision. The applicant/student must have sufficient strength to perform the essential duties and the adequate physical stamina and energy to perform taxing duties over long hours.
Intellectual, Conceptual, Integrative and Quantitative Abilities: These abilities include measurement, calculation, reasoning, analysis and synthesis. Problem solving, the critical skill demanded of physicians, requires all of these intellectual abilities. The applicant/student must be able to comprehend and learn factual knowledge from readings and didactic presentations, gather and assimilate information independently, analyze and synthesize material, and apply information to specific clinical situations. The applicant/student must be able to comprehend three‑dimensional relationships and to understand spatial relationships. The applicant/student must be able to independently access and interpret medical information and patient records; identify significant findings from history, physical examination and laboratory data; synthesize a reasoned explanation of probable diagnoses; develop appropriate plans of therapies and medications; and retain and recall information in an efficient manner. The applicant/student must be able to incorporate new information from peers, teachers and the medical and scientific literature. The applicant/student must demonstrate sound judgment in patient assessment, diagnosis, and therapeutic planning.
Behavioral, Social and Professional Abilities: The applicant/student must demonstrate: the emotional health required for full utilization of his/her intellectual abilities; the exercise of sound judgment; the prompt completion of all responsibilities attendant to the diagnosis and care of patients; the development of mature, sensitive and effective relationships with patients that respect patient privacy and autonomy; accountability to patients, society and the medical profession; the ability to work effectively as a member or leader of a healthcare team; and the emotional maturity and stability to tolerate taxing workloads and to function effectively under stress. The applicant/student must be able to adapt to circumstances that are unpredictable or that change rapidly, display flexibility and learn to function in the face of uncertainties inherent in the clinical problems of many patients. The applicant/student must be able to work effectively as a member or leader of a healthcare team or other professional group. The applicant/student must consistently exhibit the personal qualities of integrity, ethics, responsibility, accountability, compassion, empathy, altruism, tolerance, and responsiveness to patient needs that supersedes self-interest, respect for others, commitment to excellence, interest, initiative, motivation and the exercise of the requisite judgment for the practice of medicine. These personal qualities and interpersonal skills are assessed throughout the admission and education processes.
Hearing Enhancement Headsets
Hearing enhancement is available for activities in the two TBL Halls and in the auditorium using systems that transmit audio wirelessly from the room microphones to individual headsets. The hearing enhancement headsets are available to borrow upon request from the Information Technology help desk. Headsets are available upon request to students and others for short‑term needs, and may be assigned to students with long‑term needs without the need to request accommodations. There is no charge for use of the hearing enhancement devices if the devices are returned as agreed and undamaged.
Applicants with disabilities are evaluated for admission according to the same standards and selection criteria that are used for all applicants. The review of each application for students with or without disabilities takes into account the necessity of meeting the essential abilities for completion of the medical curriculum with or without reasonable accommodations.
All applicants admitted to the medical school are required to submit a completed Student History and Physical Examination form prior to matriculation. This includes a complete health history, physical examination by a licensed health care provider, record of immunizations, record of tuberculosis testing, and additional laboratory testing. The physical examination form also includes a copy of the Essential Abilities for Completion of the Medical Curriculum for the examiner to review. Both the applicant and the licensed health care provider must attest to the student’s capability to consistently comply with all elements of the Essential Abilities for Completion of the Medical Curriculum. All forms should be completed within two months prior to matriculation, and must be completed, signed, and dated by the applicant and their licensed healthcare provider.
Applicants with disabilities should begin discussion with the director of Admissions as soon as the offer of admission is accepted. Upon request following the offer of admission, applicants must submit the signed form “Essential Abilities for Completion of the Medical Curriculum Attestation.” Failure to provide a signed form could result in rescinding the offer of admission. Falsification of the form is a violation of the Code of Professional Conduct.
Annually each student must submit the signed form “Essential Abilities for Completion of the Medical Curriculum Attestation.” Failure to provide a signed form could delay or preclude advancement or graduation. Falsification of information on the form is a violation of the Code of Professional Conduct.
- Students with Disabilities
The medical school adheres to Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) in prohibiting discrimination against any qualified person with a disability within the context that medical students must possess the essential abilities necessary to undertake and complete the curriculum in a reasonably independent manner without having to rely on intermediaries.
Matriculating and enrolled students with specific questions regarding medical school policies governing students with disabilities should contact Student Affairs at 269.337.6100.
- Transfer Students and Transfer Credit
Our highly integrated curriculum blends the basic sciences with clinical sciences throughout all four years. The differences in curricula do not enable advanced placement of medical students from other medical schools. WMed does not consider transfer requests.
Step 2: Supplemental Application
After an initial review, candidates who meet our minimum academic requirements are notified via email and invited to complete our supplemental application. A unique username and password are provided to each applicant. The supplemental application has three required components and is completed online.
- Essay Questions
The supplemental application includes three essay questions. Each question has a 2,000 character limit. The questions are:
- Describe why you wish to enroll at WMed. You should describe any connection that you have to Southwest Michigan.
- Describe what you bring to the practice of medicine - your values, skills, talents, and life experiences - and how you add to the cultural, ethnic, and socioeconomic diversity of the medical profession.
- WMed Re-Applicants Only: Describe the changes to your application from previous cycles - include academics, experiences, and/or personal attributes.
This section of the supplemental application is not timed. You can work on your responses offline and then submit your essay responses when you are ready.
- Online Assessment
The online assessment is unique to WMed. We use this assessment to give us more information about your personal attributes. It includes approximately 50 multiple choice questions and you have 30 seconds to respond to each question. The questions are straight-forward and no preparation is needed or recommended. Your supplemental application is not considered complete until both the essays and online assessment are submitted.
- Application Fee
The fee for the supplemental application is $100.00. The fee is submitted prior to completing the other components of the supplemental application.
Step 3: Experiences Review
Select candidates move next to the experiences review where we review your pre-medical experiences, essays, and application materials.
Step 4: Phone Interview
We have designed a telephone interview to help us learn more about your personal attributes. This is not an interview you can study for and isn’t designed to test your medical or scientific knowledge. This step is unique to WMed and is designed to help us learn more about your personal attributes.
Step 5: On-Campus Interview Day
Approximately 420 applicants will be invited to Kalamazoo to the W.E. Upjohn M.D. Campus, and meet with faculty and students for a campus interview. The interview day includes both a traditional interview and a structured interview.
On-Campus Interview Agenda and Travel Information
If you are invited for a campus interview, prepare carefully. We encourage you to explore our website and become more familiar with our institution. We also encourage you to be prepared to talk about your experiences and goals in medicine.
Throughout the day you will have plenty of opportunities to ask questions and learn more about WMed. You will meet with the Admissions Team, meet with Founding Dean Hal Jenson, M.D., learn about financial aid and get a tour of our state of the art facilities including the Simulation Lab. Interview days will be held on select Fridays from late September through early March.
- The Interview
Our interview day is structured to encourage you to get to know WMed and ask any questions you may have. We utilize both a structured Interview and a traditional open file one-on-one interview.
- Traveling to Kalamazoo
Please secure your interview date before making travel arrangements. Interview invitations are made on a rolling basis and we encourage all applicants to schedule the earliest date available. Parking details will be emailed to candidates. All questions about scheduling should be emailed to email@example.com.
- Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International Airport (AZO)
- Gerald R. Ford International Airport (GRR) – approximately 60 minute drive to Kalamazoo.
- Detroit Metro Wayne County Airport (DTW) – approximately 2.5 hour drive to Kalamazoo.
- Chicago Midway International Airport (MDW) – approximately 2.5 hour drive to Kalamazoo.
- Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) – approximately 3 hour drive to Kalamazoo.
- Amtrak Kalamazoo (KAL) Station - located at 429 North Burdick Street
- Kalamazoo Greyhound Bus Station - located at 429 North Burdick Street
There are a variety of hotel options available in the Kalamazoo area. We have arranged for reduced rates at these select hotels if you follow the registration instructions provided.
Hotel Information Registration Instructions
AmericInn Hotel & Suites Kalamazoo
1550 East Kilgore Road
$69.90 plus tax per night
- Call 269.344.7774 to make a reservation.
- Reference Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine when making your reservation.
3443 Retail Place Drive, Kalamazoo
$79 plus tax per night
- Call 269.270.3203 to make a reservation.
- Reference Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine when making your reservation.
2747 South 11th St., Kalamazoo
$99 plus tax per night
- Visit www.holidayinnkz.com.
- Click "Sleep."
- Click "Reserve."
- Input dates and click "Have a Corporate ID?"
- Enter: 100171512
- Select Room
100 West Michigan Ave., Kalamazoo
$139 plus tax per night
- Visit www.radisson.kz.com.
- Input dates and click "Find Rates."
- Enter promotional code: WMUSOM
- Click "Search Again."
- Select Room
1500 East Kilgore Road, Kalamazoo
$114 plus tax per night
- Call 269.349.0855 to make a reservation.
Step 6: Post-Interview Decision
Within four weeks of the completion of an on-campus interview, we will communicate admissions decisions on a rolling basis.
Step 7: Acceptance and Enrollment Commitment
Rather than requiring a monetary seat deposit, WMed utilizes a commitment letter to reserve your seat in each class.
- Matriculation Requirements
All offers of admission are conditional upon satisfactory review of the following prior to matriculation:
- Confirmation of a bachelor’s degree from an institution accredited by a regional accreditor that is recognized by both the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
- Criminal background check.
- Evidence of health insurance. Health insurance that provides coverage for preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic health services is required of all students throughout medical school. If a student has no medical coverage, health insurance may be purchased through the medical school.
- Completed health forms and required immunizations.
- Alcohol, tobacco, and controlled substances testing. All applicants are required to undergo testing during orientation for alcohol, tobacco (which screens for cigarettes, cigars, smokeless tobacco, snuff, nicotine patches and nicotine gum), and controlled substances. WMed students are not permitted to use tobacco and nicotine products, controlled substances without a prescription, or abuse alcohol. Learn more in the WMed Student Handbook.
- Required Immunizations
Required immunizations and tests are based on CDC guidelines (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Immunization of health-care personnel. Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). MMWR 2011;60(RR-7):1-45). The required immunizations include:
Hepatitis B: All students must have written documentation of three doses of hepatitis B vaccine or laboratory evidence of immunity (e.g., anti-HBs). Laboratory testing is not performed for students who have received three doses but were not tested one to two months after the third dose. These students are tested for anti-HBs following an exposure to blood or body fluids. Students who have not yet completed the series should receive the necessary doses and be tested for anti-HBs to document immunity one to two months after the third dose. Students who are non-immune after the primary vaccination series should be revaccinated with a second complete three-dose series, followed by antibody testing one to two months after the third dose.
Influenza: All students must have annual influenza vaccination, which is administered in the fall of each year during which the student is enrolled.
Measles, Mumps, Rubella: All students must have written documentation of either two doses of MMR vaccine or laboratory evidence of immunity (e.g., measles, mumps and rubella titers). Students who have written documentation of two doses of MMR who are tested and have negative or equivocal serologic results for immunity for MMR are considered to have presumptive evidence of immunity and are not in need of additional MMR doses.
Meningococcus: All students must have written documentation of at least one dose of meningococcus vaccine as proof of vaccination to meningococcal disease.
Tetanus/Pertussis: All students must have written documentation of immunization of a Tdap at any age, and Tdap or Td within 10 years. All students should receive a single dose of Tdap as soon as feasible if they have not previously received Tdap and regardless of the time since their most recent Td vaccination. Students who have received Tdap should receive Td every 10 years as booster vaccinations against tetanus and pertussis.
Tuberculin Testing: Annual PPD (intradermal tuberculin) testing for tuberculosis is required for enrolled students. A two-step PPD test is required for the initial testing, following CDC guidelines. If the most recent documented PPD test was within 12 months, one PPD should be performed within three months prior to matriculation. If it has been greater than 12 months, a two-step PPD test must be completed prior to the first clinical experience. If the PPD test is positive, a chest x-ray or QuantiFERON-TB gold test is required within 12 months of matriculation. All students with a positive PPD test or history of tuberculosis require follow-up consultation with the Occupational Health Office for further management.
Varicella (Chickenpox): All students must have written documentation of two doses of varicella vaccine at least 28 days apart, or laboratory evidence of immunity (e.g., a varicella titer), diagnosis or verification of a history of varicella disease by a health care provider, or diagnosis or verification of a history of herpes zoster by a health care provider. Students without acceptable documentation should receive two doses of varicella vaccine at least 28 days apart.
- Drug Testing
Alcohol, Tobacco, and Controlled Substances
WMed is committed to protecting the health, safety, and welfare of its students, staff, and patients. To carry out this commitment, we seek to assure that a drug-free workplace is maintained and that students perform their duties unimpaired by the effects of alcohol, tobacco, and controlled substances (including cannabis). The medical school does not admit or enroll students who: abuse alcohol, as evidenced by binge drinking, public intoxication, and other signs of excessive use; use tobacco products including cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, smokeless tobacco, snuff, nicotine gum, nicotine patches, e‑cigarettes, and vaporizers; use controlled substances without a prescription; use illegal drugs; use cannabis or cannabinoids in any form, with or without a prescription or registration card; or have a substance dependence. All applicants who accept an offer of admission are required to undergo testing prior to matriculation or during the Transition to Medical School course for alcohol, tobacco (which screens for cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, smokeless tobacco, nicotine gum, nicotine patches, e‑cigarettes, and vaporizers), and controlled substances. Applicants/students who test positive on the initial test may request a second test.
Applicants who refuse to be tested, and applicants whose initial and second test results are positive and who do not have an appropriate prescription, are in violation of this policy, will have their admission rescinded, and will not be permitted to re-apply for admission for one year.
January 1, 2015 to September 2017: We accept MCAT scores within three years preceding the date of the AMCAS application and no later than September of the calendar year prior to matriculation.
May 2, 2017: AMCAS applications become available online at: www.aamc.org/students/amcas.
Early July 2017: Applications are submitted to schools by AMCAS, and WMed begins to review completed applications and schedule interviews.
Fall 2017: Campus Interviews begin and continue through March 2018.
October 15, 2017: First date for sending letters of acceptance. Acceptance letters will continue to be sent on a rolling basis after October 15th.
November 15, 2017: Deadline for completed AMCAS application.
January 9, 2018: Supplemental application deadline, including essays and online assessment.
July 20, 2018: First day at WMed.
Things to Remember
Timing Matters - WMed uses rolling admissions and encourages applicants to complete each step of the application process in a timely fashion for best consideration.
Check Your Email - WMed sends all communication via email so keep an eye on your inbox and make sure our emails aren’t getting caught by an email filter.
Applicant Portal - Applicants will be sent login information to our secure applicant portal to track their progress in the admissions process.
Admissions Questions - If you have questions, contact the Office of Admissions at firstname.lastname@example.org.