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Academic Support

Students who need extra academic support have access to tutors in all core science courses. They may also request tutoring through course directors. Alternatively, course directors may recommend tutoring. Dr. Cathy Pettepher, Assistant Dean for Medical Student Assessment, directs the tutoring program. She conducts learning style assessments for entering students and provides ongoing support as needs arise. Students who have concerns about their academic performance or issues that interfere with their ability to study should not hesitate to speak to Dean Amy Fleming for advice and encouragement, or to reach out to their College Mentors. Third-year students receive extensive advising on clerkships and elective subspecialties, and seniors have mock interview opportunities. College Mentors work closely with students and Dean Fleming to help schedule the fourth year according to each student’s specialty choice. College Mentors also counsel students on the residency application process and offer assistance with CVs and personal statements. Finally, all seniors meet formally with Dean Fleming for one hour, after which she completes the Medical Student Performance Evaluation, also known as the ‘Dean’s Letter.’

Student Assistance and Tutoring Program

Medical school is a time of great academic, social, and professional growth. For many students, the transition to the teaching and learning styles of medical school represents a great challenge. If a student is struggling to adapt and thrive in this setting it may take a lower than expected performance on a number of weekly quizzes or components of final exams before faculty are made aware of a student’s situation. There are many reasons that students struggle in medical school, one of which may be that a student is using a learning or study style that is not their best fit. So, it is not until there is a review of performance with the student that questions related to their style of learning are asked.

It is the intent of the Student Assistance and Tutoring Program to provide students with an effective means of academic intervention in a way that aids students before their academic struggles require administrative referral. The Assistant Dean for Medical Student Assessment, Cathy Pettepher, is the Director of the Program. She is available to meet with any interested student to discuss study strategies and time management skills. She will also determine if additional resources, such as tutoring or further evaluation, are needed. If so, she will direct the student to the appropriate resource. If it is determined that a tutor would be beneficial, she will work to identify an upperclassman that has been a part of the same curriculum to provide additional help with learning the needed material. It is the intent of the Program to work with and for the student to help them not only survive but thrive in medical school.