Check-up with SMCM’s Pre-Med Club

Written By: Olivia Sothoron

St. Mary’s College of Maryland (SMCM) offers a wide variety of clubs, spanning from educational disciplines to community service and everywhere in between. Given the state of the world due to the pandemic, many clubs have had to adapt to a strictly online format. Despite the online transition, club members are making the best of the circumstances and continue to meet regularly to participate in club activities. One club in particular that is remaining active during the pandemic is SMCM’s Pre-Med Club. 

The SMCM Pre-Med Club was recently revived last year by current co-presidents, Lauryn Ridley (‘22) and Megan Rankin Herring (‘22). The club’s website describes the organization “a space where all aspiring nurses, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, physical therapists, pharmacists, doctors, and any other health care professionals can come together to celebrate the big wins while also helping each other through inevitable rough patches in [their] undergraduate journey.” 

Additionally, at the biweekly meetings, club members discuss tips for selecting and applying to medical school. They also exchange tips for how to earn the best grade possible in prerequisite classes as well as how to best study and prepare for exams. The club serves as a safe and comfortable environment for those interested in possibly pursuing a career in medicine to learn the ropes of the various science departments at SMCM and how to best build an application for graduate school. 

Although meetings have all been moved to an online format, the club continues to meet every week. Ridley, Rankin Herring and the rest of the executive board refused to allow the pandemic prevent the Pre-Med Club from hosting interesting events and activities for their members. Rankin Herring remarked: “We have a second year medical student, a genetics counselor, a physician’s assistant, and two rockstars currently wading through the medical school admissions process all coming to speak in the month of October. We are putting together a partnership with the local rescue squad, hosting a virtual 5K, and running an Shadowing and Internship Bootcamp within the club.” Also, Ridley remarked that over the summer, she used club-raised funds to purchase perishable food items to donate to a local food pantry, which is something that the club hopes to continue into the future. 

In addition to the numerous speakers and activities, Pre-Med Club Secretary Elisabeth Wellings (‘22) noted that the club has also started a mentorship program which allows younger club members to “shadow” members of the executive board. Co-outreach chair Saige Teti (‘23) helped institute this program, and recently helped select ten students to serve as mentors. Teti remarked, “I have a lot of experience with this stuff, so I thought I would share that knowledge…I am really excited about the group of people we picked!”

The SMCM Pre-Med Club is not limited to those who know for certain that they wish to pursue a career in medicine. Wellings explained: “That is what we are all about, helping students figure out the weight of being a pre-med student and then how to handle that weight.” Anyone is welcome to attend a meeting and get to know the hardworking executive board members and the amazing opportunities that the club has to offer. 

For more information, contact premedsmcm@gmail.com, laridley@smcm.edu or mrandkinherring@smcm.edu and follow the club on Instagram @smcm_premed. The club also has its own website, which can be found at premedsmcm.wixsite.com/medicine. 

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