Stony Brook University School of Medicine has changed its name to Renaissance due to the longstanding support it has received from Renaissance Technologies. This seems to be a trend amongst medical schools, many of which have changed their names in recent years out of deference to benefactors. This includes Brown, Penn, Mt. Sinai, and many others, as described in a New York Times article from 2015.

–Liza Thompson, Expert Medical School Admissions Consultant

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Oklahoma State plans to expand its osteopathic school to another location with a focus on expanding the supply of physicians in rural locations of the state, specifically to serve the needs of Native Americans. Specifics can be found here.

–Liza Thompson, Expert Medical School Admissions Consultant

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Thomas Jefferson University and its Sidney Kimmel Medical College have announced that they are partnering with Italy to create a first-of-its-kind medical degree that will allow graduates to practice medicine in either the United States or the European Union.

–Liza Thompson, Expert Medical School Admissions Consulting

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The MCAT system has changed such that registrants will be notified via email if a date becomes available. You must register to be notified when a space becomes available in your preferred location on a specific date. Previously, registrants had to continually check the system to see if a spot opened up. The space will not be held for you since others will be notified concurrently—but this is an improvement over having to check the system for vacancies. The MCAT Notification Appointment Request system will be a big help to applicants.

–Liza Thompson, Expert Medical School Admissions Consulting 

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The University of Massachusetts has received a $7.9 million NIH grant for its business incubator, M2D2, to develop new medical devices/technologies for those suffering from blood, lung, heart, and sleep disorders. General information about UMass medical school can be found here.

Liza Thompson, Expert Medical School Admissions Consultant

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Mayo Clinic School of Medicine has received a gift of $200 million, the largest in its history. The gift is intended to expand scholarships for Mayo’s medical students, enhance innovations in the curriculum, and provide an endowment for a professorship. As a result of the gift, Mayo’s name is changing to that of the benefactor, Jay Alix; Mayo will now be known as the Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine.

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NYU School of Medicine has announced that it plans to open a new medical school on Long Island that will train primary care physicians in three years.  This is similar to an initiative at the flagship campus in Manhattan that offers a three-year medical school curriculum for those interested in primary care.  The medical school is set to start enrolling students as early as September 2019 if all required approvals go through.

–Liza Thompson, Expert Medical School Admissions Consulting

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A recent article in the New York Times about the Bard Hall Players, a theater company consisting of medical students at Columbia’s College of Physicians and Surgeons, highlights the importance of engaging in stress-reducing activities during medical school. Many medical students find creative pursuits to be enjoyable while also enhancing their understanding of the human condition.  As a second-year medical student says in the article, “When you have the ability to see other people’s lives and put yourself into them, then it helps you serve them better and understand what they’re going through in a different way.”

Columbia is not the only medical school with opportunities for students to engage in creative outlets. Harvard’s Arts and Humanities Initiative promotes involvement in the arts and states that, “The arts and humanities are powerful tools in medical education that have the potential to improve professionalism, reflection and empathy among physicians and trainees, foster humanism, reduce burnout, enhance perspective, sharpen physicians’ analytic and diagnostic skills, and improve teamwork and communication.” More information about Harvard Medical School’s focus on arts education can be found here.

At Yale, they have incorporated a course in observational skills—at the Yale Art Museum—for its first-year medical students. At Penn State, there is a required humanities elective. The Music and Medicine program at Cornell provides opportunities for musicians to collaborate and create music. More medical schools seem to be adopting creative programs in an effort to incorporate both creativity and reflection into their training programs.

A recent article describes the benefits of acting classes on medical students and medical faculty, especially in regard to developing empathy. Improv classes at Wright State describes how it teaches medical students about “discrimination against minority groups.” At the University of Rochester School of Medicine, theater classes help participants understand oppression and bias.

–Liza Thompson, Expert Medical School Admissions Consulting

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News announcement:

Harvard Medical School has received the largest gift in its history, $200 million, to be used to advance research initiatives.

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News announcement:

The University of Massachusetts Medical School has received a gift of $1.4 million to do a clinical trial on Tay-Sachs disease.

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