i told you all i'd update with information about my med school plans when i had them. and here i am to do just that! here comes the infos:
when i moved to chicago, my mail did not follow me. despite filling out the appropriate forms i still haven't gotten mail forwarded to chicago since i moved here. i was reflecting on this a month or so ago and decided that i should call my friends in omaha to see if they'd made a decision and had sent it...to the chicago post office, where it was wasting away and wanting to tell me all its important news. the addmissions person told me they hadn't made a decision yet, and we chatted a little bit and then all of the sudden she started talking in a very quiet voice and whispered that she wasn't supposed to tell me this, but the fact was that my file had been reviewed and that i had been accepted to med school!!! but since she wasn't supposed to tell me, i couldn't tell anyone, either, so i had to keep it on the dl.
fast forward to just before i left for china, and let's open the letter i got from unmc, congratulating me on being accepted to school but saying that unfortunately they didn't have a seat to offer me at this time. and that's how i came to know the fabulous world of the alternate list. since everyone that gets accepted to unmc doesn't ultimately decide to go there, spots open up with time, and i'm on the list to get one of those seats when that time comes. i am in the top 25% of that list, which pretty much guarantees that i will be offered an actual seat (ah, the fine difference between being accepted and having a seat! very important distinction!) by the time august comes. so that's the situation for going to nebraska.
meanwhile, let's talk about the chicago situation. right after i got back from china i interviewed at the university of illinois-chicago college of medicine (uic to you) and had a great experience. the interview process there is three one on one interviews, and during the second one after discussing a little of my background and the parts of medicine that interest and concern me the interviewer interrupted me to ask why i hadn't had an interview sooner. i told her i wasn't sure and she said "the reason i ask is because usually we see people of your talent level much earlier in the process". she went on to tell me about a relatively new curriculum at uic called the urban medical education program (umed, thank you very much), a small program focused on serving patients in urban areas and meeting the needs specific to that environment. there are several aspects of the program that pretty much perfectly match what i want to do with medicine, so i'm obviously very excited about the chance to be a part of the program. so was my interviewer, who went so far as to call a person on the committee for selecting students for the umed program to say that i am a "phenomenal candidate" for that situation, and helped me introduce myself to the dean of admissions while i was there. it's hard for me to imagine having had a better interview there.
so we'll see what happens. i've never been a "phenomenal" candidate before, but i have been a very strong candidate who didn't get accepted, and i've been an even stronger candidate than before who got accepted but who didn't have a seat. so i guess i'm cautiously optimistic. but the program would really be an incredible opportunity and i'd love to be a part of it. i should know in the next month or so about all of that, so we'll see how things turn out. more updates on the way!