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MINNESOTA: BETHEL UNIVERSITY

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Application Cycle 2015-2016

 

Has anyone applied to Bethel University? I'm curious to know! I just received an interview invitation for October 2nd! I'm excited. :)

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Hey guys! I'm also applying for this current cycle and waiting for an interview invite is the hardest part for me right now. If there are any current Bethel students and/or successful applicants, I'd like some feedback. 

 

 

I just worry about how competitive I am in general.

 

I graduated Cum Laude (GPA about 3.6) from St. Thomas with a degree in Biology (BS). I did a few leadership opportunities in college, including President of my Quiz Bowl team and Relay for Life. Since then, I've been working on patient care hours and experiences. I worked as a Medical Assistant (MA) intern for a pediatric and urgent care clinic where I learned a lot of hands-on diagnostic procedures with patients. I now work as a PCA for people with physical and/or behavioral disabilities. I even acted as the Lead PCA for one of my clients who was a quadriplegic wherein I would train incoming PCAs on his comprehensive nursing cares, managed the schedules of each PCA on our team, organized his medical supply inventory, and took the initiative to write up his Care Plan. I recently took on another job as an MA for an internal medicine clinic, a new demographic to work with while I study for my CNA license. This past summer I did a research internship at Gillette Children's Hospital for the Pain & Comfort department, where I worked with cerebral palsy and Rett syndrome patients in using a pain interview tool to help them articulate their chronic pain experiences; I co-wrote a research paper with my mentor on the benefits of this process. 

 

To date, I have a total of about 3,700 direct patient care hours and counting. 

 

I've been doing so much to stand out as much as possible, not just to Bethel but to other PA schools. Then I wait for something to happen and I worry that all of these efforts are not enough to get in. I don't know if my record is competitive or not, but I'm still trying and I want to show schools that I'm good enough. Just wish they could see it.

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I'm not a successful applicant to bethel but I applied this cycle and have already been accepted 2 two schools and have 2 more interviews lined up.

 

You patient care hours and experiences should great. Your gpa is decent. Is this your first year applying? When did you submit you applications? Who wrote your letters of recc. And do they truly know you? And. How strong are your essays.

 

PA school is competitive. To me it seems you are gaining the right experiences but the questions about could also make or break an applicant

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Hi jasmineirene,

 

Katmetzger posed a very good question! Do you mind sharing what schools you've been accepted to? How would you say the interview process was? And my last question is, what do you feel made YOU stand out as an applicant (i.e. STATS, personal statement, LORs)?

 

I'm sure everyone would love to hear from you as it is early on in the season and you've already been accepted to two schools!! Congratulations btw!! :)

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Faugaas,

 

Thank you! I don't mind sharing. I took a year off after undergrad to gain patient care hours. I majored in Biochemistry with a 3.7 cum and 3.6 science. (I'd say a science gpa about 3.5 is good).

 

My letters of rec. Were from 2 professors and a doctor. The first prof. Was my biochemistry teacher. I choose him because he was one of very few teachers to see me fail and then get up and find a way to fix it. I failed his first exam then sat in his office and we came up with a game plan to do better. I chose him because he could speak on my drive to succeed academically and the fact I'm not afraid to ask for help.

 

My second letter was from a prof. in the education department because I was a writing tutor. She could speak on my ability to interact with and teach others and she knew me very well outside of work.

 

My third was a doctor that I went on a medical mission trip with. He was able to speak on my ability to interact with patients, interpreters, nurses, docs, etc.

 

I told all of then exactly what I wanted them to touch on and then elaborate on anything else they feel important.

 

I think what made me stand out on my written application was my essay. It took me MONTHS to write it and I had it proof read by PA students, my mom who used to be an editor, the director of the writing center of my university. After all that I send it in to a professional company for feedback. Your essay is what makes the admissions committee want to meet you. My essay did a great job laying out how my experiences have prepared me for the PA profession. It showed my interests outside of school and that I was able to handle a strenuous work load. (I had a full ride academic scholarship, ran intercollegiate track, volunteered bi-weekly, held leadership roles in organizations, and worked more than one job - sounds nutts but it was doable.)

 

My one job worked closely with underrepresented/diverse students (religion, race, sexual orientation) and I was able to tie that into the PA profession because that's demographic I want to work with.

 

My GRE was only a 297. I applied to 3 schools that requires the GRE and got interviews at 2. I truly believe what made my application strong was how well rounded it is.

 

I have been accepted to Arizona school of health sciences and Rosalind franklin. I have interviews at Duke and Saint Louis university.

 

I will add more about interviews when I get home, my phone is about to die. Sorry!

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Wow...you've already been accepted to Rosalind Franklin!! I've been thinking of applying to that school. I really love Chicago and like the emphasis they place on working in underserved communities. What kind of a feel did you get from the campus? That's the only thing I was a bit nervous about...the campus, location, and program layout. 

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To prepare for the interview I read, re-read, and then wrote out the answer to every questions in Andrew Rodican's Book How to Ace the Physician Assistant School Interview. He does a great job laying out every type of question you could be asked and it made me confident walking into interviews (I also did a mock interview).  With that said different schools have different interviewing types.  If your school has a traditional interview or group format, this book is perfect.  If the schools you're applying to have MMI (multiple mini-interviews) **Its like speed dating of interviews** then you will need to really only focus on the behavioral/situational and ethical sections of the book and look into how MMI interviews work as his book does not address it.

 

Yes, I loved Rosalind Franklin.  Deff. my top choice right now, depending on Duke (and UW-Madison if they offer me an interview).  Rosalind uses the MMI interview format.  Rosalind still has plenty to do for you outside of school and thats what sold me.  The students I met there were genuinely happy and made the candidates feel so comfortable.  I loved that the students actually knew one another and that you get 2 mentors when you enter the program (One 2nd year student and a faculty member).  

 

The location I love.  you can catch a train or drive to chicago.  it's like 10/15 minutes away from my favorite mall (gurnee mills) and six flags and an hour from milwaukee.  Between chicago and milwaukee something is ALWAYS going on and it's a great time.  If you rather not travel the campus has clubs and intramurals, work out classes, etc.

 

I loved it, lol can you tell :)

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I'm not a successful applicant to bethel but I applied this cycle and have already been accepted 2 two schools and have 2 more interviews lined up.

 

You patient care hours and experiences should great. Your gpa is decent. Is this your first year applying? When did you submit you applications? Who wrote your letters of recc. And do they truly know you? And. How strong are your essays.

 

PA school is competitive. To me it seems you are gaining the right experiences but the questions about could also make or break an applicant

This is my second time applying. The first time I applied, I got one interview from Mercer University in Atlanta; they actually invited me on the very day of their deadline, so they probably operate on a rolling basis. It was valuable interview experience, plus I read Andrew Rodican's book How to Ace the PA School Interview, extremely helpful! I was wait listed, which I was a little grateful for with regards to the dreaded alternative.

 

This year, I learned my lesson and tried my best to send my CASPA earlier than I did last year. I submitted it mid-June, was verified in 4 weeks. I had three people write my LOR: my Anatomy professor and 2 professional references. 

 

I'm very close to my Anatomy professor and we had a great course. I keep in touch with him often and I update him occasionally on my life experiences in my job. My professional references include one from a pediatrician whom I worked for at the pediatric/urgent care clinic, she manages both and oversees all of the MA interns like myself; she has been very supportive for this process. My supervisor at the PCA company that I'm working for wrote my LOR, she knows my leadership experiences for their company being a Lead PCA for a quadriplegic client and a campus ambassador for the company. 

 

I think my second essay is stronger than it was last year. If you'd like, I could send it to you to read. This time, I had plenty of people proofread it. I had my alma mater writing department proofread it, which definitely helped with the overall voice and structure to make it more concise. I also gave it to two supervisors from my company, one of whom is an RN who has looked at other resumes for grad schools, and the other a current grad student. Let me know if you want it, I can either post it on the forum or email it to you. 

 

My life experiences are expressed clearly in the second essay, plus I included a personal story dealing with chronic pain and being a caregiver for my disabled stepfather, a cancer survivor. I also include my leadership experience and taking initiatives to go above and beyond, at least I hope the committee sees it too. 

 

I hope my GPA is considered competitive too. My cum GPA: 3.57, science GPA: 3.42, I recently re-took a course to bump it up and got an A in that course, the second-highest student in the class. 

 

I will be re-taking the GRE for one of my schools that requires the GRE; last time I got a 303 I think, with a 4.0 in writing. I sent those scores to Mercer last year and I got the interview, which I was really surprised about. 

 

So this time around, I'm hoping that I'm considered stronger and I show a little progression than before. But I am worried about Bethel and other schools, I'm constantly trying to improve my chances. So whatever feedback you have would be great.

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katmetzger,

 

Everything you mentioned sounds like you'd be a great candidate, especially submitting your application in early! I'm not sure if my essay was the best honestly.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Katmetzget,

 

From all you explained I think you're a great candidate. If you got interviews last year I'd assume you'd get interviews this year as well. It's still early in the cycle and you have deff. Put in the needed work to better your application.

 

Be confident and stay positive. If you for some odd reason don't get in and want me yo go through your essay for future cycles (I can't believe this would be a problem) I'd be happy to.

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katmetzger,

 

Everything you mentioned sounds like you'd be a great candidate, especially submitting your application in early! I'm not sure if my essay was the best honestly.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

If you were lucky enough to get an interview from Bethel so early in the month, I think your essay was great! Thank you to both faugaas and jasmineirene for your kind words.

 

If I need someone to proofread my essay, I'll definitely consider you to look at my essay. Good luck to you guys, I'm sure you're going to make great PAs!

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To prepare for the interview I read, re-read, and then wrote out the answer to every questions in Andrew Rodican's Book How to Ace the Physician Assistant School Interview. He does a great job laying out every type of question you could be asked and it made me confident walking into interviews (I also did a mock interview).  With that said different schools have different interviewing types.  If your school has a traditional interview or group format, this book is perfect.  If the schools you're applying to have MMI (multiple mini-interviews) **Its like speed dating of interviews** then you will need to really only focus on the behavioral/situational and ethical sections of the book and look into how MMI interviews work as his book does not address it.

 

Yes, I loved Rosalind Franklin.  Deff. my top choice right now, depending on Duke (and UW-Madison if they offer me an interview).  Rosalind uses the MMI interview format.  Rosalind still has plenty to do for you outside of school and thats what sold me.  The students I met there were genuinely happy and made the candidates feel so comfortable.  I loved that the students actually knew one another and that you get 2 mentors when you enter the program (One 2nd year student and a faculty member).  

 

The location I love.  you can catch a train or drive to chicago.  it's like 10/15 minutes away from my favorite mall (gurnee mills) and six flags and an hour from milwaukee.  Between chicago and milwaukee something is ALWAYS going on and it's a great time.  If you rather not travel the campus has clubs and intramurals, work out classes, etc.

 

I loved it, lol can you tell :)

I won't be able to purchase the book in time for the interview....:(

Is there any tips or suggestions on what types of questions we should focus on for the interviews? Also, did you receive an interview at Bethel? I know you said you were unsuccessful there, but I was wondering if you could let us know what types of questions they focus on.

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Hey faugaas,

 

I recently turned down my interview for Bethel due to being accepted to a program much closer to home, but what I gathered from email correspondence was awesome. They were very polite and helpful. Most programs want to get to know you at your interviews. They already know you are awesome on paper so be yourself! Be articulate and to the point, but also someone they feel they could casually chat with. I wouldn't worry about reading a book about how to prepare. If you're anything like me you'll be thinking more about what was in that book than just being yourself. Obviously it works for some people, but don't fret too much. Also, there are always the classic "what would you do" questions in every interview I have had e.g. You're a PA and your superior yells inappropriately at you in front of coworkers, how do you handle the situation. They will almost always ask you what led you to deciding you wanted to be a PA. So, like I said just be yourself and you'll be fine. They just want to see if you're a fit for their program. Sorry if that was long winded! I'm a second year applicant so I've had my fair share of rejections as well so if do not lose hope if you don't mesh well with a few programs! Good luck and I hope this was somewhat helpful!

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Hey faugaas,

 

I recently turned down my interview for Bethel due to being accepted to a program much closer to home, but what I gathered from email correspondence was awesome. They were very polite and helpful. Most programs want to get to know you at your interviews. They already know you are awesome on paper so be yourself! Be articulate and to the point, but also someone they feel they could casually chat with. I wouldn't worry about reading a book about how to prepare. If you're anything like me you'll be thinking more about what was in that book than just being yourself. Obviously it works for some people, but don't fret too much. Also, there are always the classic "what would you do" questions in every interview I have had e.g. You're a PA and your superior yells inappropriately at you in front of coworkers, how do you handle the situation. They will almost always ask you what led you to deciding you wanted to be a PA. So, like I said just be yourself and you'll be fine. They just want to see if you're a fit for their program. Sorry if that was long winded! I'm a second year applicant so I've had my fair share of rejections as well so if do not lose hope if you don't mesh well with a few programs! Good luck and I hope this was somewhat helpful!

Thank you very much Kathrun55! I will definitely use those tips. I noticed we will be having individual and group interviews and as wondering what to expect particularly for the group interviews...

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Of course! When I interviewed at Marquette last year we had a "group discussion/interview" where we discussed an ethical issue and tried to come to a consensus we could all agree on. The thing that I remember being told about group interviews is that you want to make sure your opinion is heard, but make sure you listen to what others are saying so you can build the conversation. As a PA you need to have good listening skills to better understand your patients so it is important to show that you do in a group type setting. Make sure you do put your 2 cents in though! Again I haven't interviewed at Bethel so I can't tell you what their group interviews are like, but I would think it would be more of a discussion.

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Anyone ranking Bethel as their first choice? I loved the faculty! 

I'm not sure that I'd go as far as ranking Bethel as my top choice, but I too liked the faculty and the set up of the PA facility. I'm waiting to hear on the official PANCE scores for the newly graduated class. For many reasons, my top choice is Augsburg, but Bethel is a close second. I think I gravitate towards Augsburg because of its mission statement and also most importantly because it's so established. 

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I'm not sure that I'd go as far as ranking Bethel as my top choice, but I too liked the faculty and the set up of the PA facility. I'm waiting to hear on the official PANCE scores for the newly graduated class. For many reasons, my top choice is Augsburg, but Bethel is a close second. I think I gravitate towards Augsburg because of its mission statement and also most importantly because it's so established. 

Yes, you have good reasons! It would be an honor to be a part of either one of the programs. 

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I was informed that they would let us know by Thanksgiving. I believe that the people accepted will get a call. What did they tell you at your interview? 

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I was informed that they would let us know by Thanksgiving. I believe that the people accepted will get a call. What did they tell you at your interview?

I was told the same thing. I just assumed it would be 'rolling'. But are we all going to hear back the week of Thanksgiving?

 

 

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Anyone ranking Bethel as their first choice? I loved the faculty! 

I am ranking Bethel as my 1st choice. Because of their professionalism, overall atmosphere, great faculty and facilities :).

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