not getting medical school interviews

What to do when you’re Not Getting Medical School Interviews

The idea of not getting medical school interviews is not a pleasant one to think about. You’ve put in so much time and work, yet you are not getting what you wanted. It’s easy to get discouraged, but there are many things that can be done when not getting medical school interviews or even if it takes longer than expected.

Be patient, some medical schools take longer than others

May times not getting a medical school interview invite is as simple as not giving it enough time.

Most schools take a little over a month to get back with their applicants, not all of them do. This is one of those situations where the process of finding the right applicants for their class is tough, and can require a decent process.

Some medical schools are more competitive and have MCAT scores or GPAs needed for admission that are not as low. For those not getting medical school interview invites, it can take a while and not all schools will have the same competition for their slots.

If you not getting medical school interview invites, there are some steps that can be done to help ease frustration:

  • – contact undergraduate premed advisors about how your GPA or MCAT score could be improved
  • – research what medical schools you want to attend and contact them for interview slots, not all of the best ones have a waitlist.
  • – keep practicing interviews with friends or professionals in your field to stay sharp on interview questions and interviewing abilities.

Ultimately there are a lot of things you can be doing to stay busy during that time, but the most important thing to remember is that not all medical schools

The Key to Getting Medical School Interview Invites

Getting invites is not a huge secret, most schools screen for invites that include a brief:

  • -Is the MCAT above their threshold
  • -How is your GPA
  • Any Red Flags
  • -Will you fit in

Most schools have an MCAT threshold, and many times not getting medical school interview invites means not meeting the threshold. It’s not a secret that many schools have GPA requirements as well, and it can be tricky to balance work with education if your grades are not good enough or you don’t meet the MCAT score needed for admission.

However, not all is lost in these situations: there is always the option of making up your GPA with a post-baccalaureate program, taking some time off from school to not only retake courses but also work on improving skills in other areas. Red flags are not always major and for those not getting medical school interview invites it might be as simple as not meeting their GPA or MCAT threshold.

As far as red flags go, not all of them are major and not every school is going to be looking for the same things. For example, if you not getting medical school interview invites because you forgot to include something on your application or didn’t have enough extracurricular activities then it’s not a big deal!

Really though, the red flags would be huge issues with your letters of recommendation, multiple F’s or W’s in undergraduate courses, or multiple attempts on the MCAT that didn’t show much improvement.

Then the last piece of the puzzle is will you fit in with their culture and overall their values.

not getting medical school interviews

This is a simple one, and did you address it in both the primary and secondary applications that you sent to that school? Med schools want students that will fit with what they have built and put together, so be sure you find qualities that show you fit what they want, and have put them in your primary and secondary applications.

What is the difference between you and the med school applicants that are getting invites?

Typically not getting medical school interview invites means not meeting the GPA or MCAT threshold, and not every school is going to be looking for the same things.

Most of the time the main difference between the students that are getting invites and those that aren’t is as simple as scores and GPA.

As much as schools and people don’t want to admit that this is what’s separating applicants, not getting medical school interview invites is not always a reflection on their abilities or skills. It can happen to the best of the best and it doesn’t mean that they won’t get in somewhere else!

However there are also some other things to consider: do you have any red flags? Did you address them in your primary and secondary applications? Have you not gotten medical school interview invites because not every school is going to be looking for the same things?”

If you take an honest look at your application, you may find that not getting medical school interview invites is not because of any major red flags, but it’s something as simple and yet not so simple as not meeting GPA requirements or not having the MCAT score they are looking for.

Most students that have lower MCAT scores and GPA know it going into the interview season. This is likely the main difference between students who are getting invites and those that aren’t.

How to woo the admissions committee

You might be surprised, but you can absolutely woo the admissions committee through a carefully crafted secondary application and personal statement.

You need to not only talk about reasons why you would be a great fit at their school, but make sure to base it off of actual statements or things mentioned on their website about what they are looking for.

In your secondary application and personal statement try not to just list these qualities, show how you have them by providing examples from both inside and outside of the application.

A lot of students just don’t know the process, or what to do when not getting medical school interview invites.

The best way for you not only woo them but also make sure they know how well qualified and passionate you are is by addressing all of these qualities in your secondary application and personal statement.

The real “wooing” comes when you actually get the interview, but a lot of students believe that you can’t do any of this prior to that point, which just isn’t true.

Focus on letting them know that you absolutely do fit in with their medical school and that you deserve a spot in their class.

Was your personal statement, well personal?

This is a question that most students forget to ask themselves. The personal statement is a chance for the admissions committee to really see who you are and what you have to offer them.

In order to woo them and show how qualified you are for their school, in addition to showing off your skills and traits, make sure that you have addressed why you are someone they should want to interview and not just a candidate.

The best way to do this is not only by telling them but also showing them that you are the kind of person they want in their medical school.

Some ways to show not only who you are, but why they should interview you would be: have your personal statement not just talk about what interests you and how you want to help others, but also not only talk about things you have done outside of school but show them that these are what makes you the best person for their medical school.

not getting medical school interviews

Use your personal statement as a way not just woo the admissions committee through telling them why they should interview you and not another candidate, but also showing how qualified and passionate you are to not just be a student, but also one of the best they have ever had.

It’s not always easy being rejected from medical school interviews, especially when you know that you are qualified despite not meeting GPA requirements or not having the MCAT score they’re looking for.

However it can happen to anyone and doesn’t mean you are not as qualified or passionate about the field of medicine.

Overall, how was your medical school application?

This is a question that you should ask yourself when wondering why your medical school interviews are not coming in.

As a whole do you think that the med school application, secondary applications and personal statements showcase that you’re accomplished and ready for what’s to come? If so then there is no need to worry about whatever it might be or if it doesn’t say that, all is not lost.

It’s also important to keep in mind that your application doesn’t just consist of the med school interview, but it as a whole- secondary applications and personal statements included.

The admissions committee has their eye on you so make sure to woo them by addressing why they should want to interview you outside of just a candidate and not just list these qualities.

Show them through your secondary application, personal statement and letter of intent that you fit in with their school like a glove. Show them how passionate and dedicated you are to the field of medicine by providing examples from inside as well as outside of this process (i.e., volunteering at hospitals on weekends).

The admissions committees are essentially looking at your application from a global standpoint. They compare all medical school applicants in this way, because it really gives them insight into the question of if they should invite you for a medical school interview, and give you more time and consideration.

It is easy to get bogged down and start thinking about the primary or secondary applications as individual things, but really you need to think about everything as one whole document and it is your medical school application, even more important though, is what does your entire application say about your readiness for the intensity of medical school?

Where are you at in the application cycle?

Not too many applicants think to ask themselves this question. But it is important to do so as not only will it give you a better understanding of the process of extending interviews.

Some applicants find that their applications are at different stages of completion- some starting out on them, others finished with all parts complete yet still not getting interviews.

If you are at the end of your application process and feeling like things still aren’t clicking, then it’s time to go back in and evaluate what might be wrong- is there some missing piece?

Look through all the parts that make up a med school application: personal statement, secondary applications (recommendation letters, essays), letters of intent and transcripts.

Also, look at where you are at globally. Are you just barely at the start of interview season? Or are you later in say October or November and still haven’t heard?

If it’s later, then you may need to reach out to schools. If it is August or September, then you absolutely need to focus on giving it more time!

How quickly did you fill out the secondary applications

Med schools get a TON of applications. They typically process the ones they get back first, so there is an advantage in sending your secondaries back quickly.

This is because the admissions committee is most likely going to be more inclined to interview you if they have processed your application and it has been on their desk for a while.

It’s also good practice because sometimes there are errors that happen with secondary applications, so submitting them early ensures that time can be spent fixing these before sending out any final ones.

Long story short, if you are quick to send your secondary application back, this means a few things.

First it means that you met the MCAT and GPA threshold, that you got a secondary in the first place.

Now if you sent the secondary back quickly, you increase your chances of getting an interview earlier in the process.

If you took longer and maybe even forgot about the secondary for a minute then it may take longer for the school to get back to you because then at that point your application starts to get mixed in with all the others that come in later.

What was your MCAT score

We have covered this a few times already, but it bears repeating: “A high MCAT score can put you above the rest for med school admissions.”

As was told to me, high scores open doors. A higher MCAT score increases your chances of getting a medical school interview. Medical schools want to see that you have what it takes to test well, as there are a LOT of tests in medical school.

If you have a lower MCAT score in general, this might be why you haven’t received many invites to interview.


If you’re wondering why your medical school interview invites have been so scarce, the answer may be as simple as timing. Our article covered many reasons for a lack of interviews and detailed how to get real with yourself about where you stand in terms of competitiveness. But no matter what your situation is, sometimes it’s just that we need to give ourselves more time. When did you submit your application?

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