Summer Health Professions Education Program
Apply through Independent Application Process
The Summer Health Professions Education Program (SHPEP) is a free summer enrichment program focused on improving access to information and resources for college students interested in the health professions. SHPEP’s goal is to strengthen the academic proficiency and career development of students underrepresented in the health professions and prepare them for a successful application and matriculation to health professions schools. These students include, but are not limited to, individuals who identify as African American/Black, American Indian and Alaska Native and Hispanic/Latino, and who are from communities of socioeconomic and educational disadvantage. SHPEP, formerly known as the Summer Medical and Dental Education Program (SMDEP), expanded in 2016 to include a broader array of health professions.
SHPEP takes place at twelve different universities across the country. You can apply to multiple program sites with one application. The program offers students a variety of academic and career experiences:
- Academic enrichment in the basic sciences and quantitative topics.
- Learning and study skills development, including methods of individual and group learning.
- Clinical exposure through small-group rotations in health care settings, simulation experiences, and seminars. This is limited to 5% of program time for all the sites.
- Career development sessions directed toward exploration of the health professions, the admissions process, and the development of an individualized education plan.
- A financial literacy and planning workshop that informs students of financial concepts and strategies.
- A health policy seminar series to expose scholars to a larger view of health care, health systems, and the social determinants of health.
- An introduction to interprofessional education that addresses effective collaboration across health professions.
EligibilityAll students who meet the Summer Health Professions Education Program eligibility requirements are encouraged to apply. Applicants must meet the following requirements:
- Must be a high school graduate and currently enrolled as a freshman or sophomore in college.
- Have a minimum overall college GPA of 2.5.
- Be a U.S. citizen, a permanent resident, or an individual granted deferred action for childhood arrivals (DACA) status by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
- Must not have previously participated in the program.
- Identifies with a group that is racially/ethnically underrepresented in the health professions;
- Comes from an economically or educationally disadvantaged background; and/or
- Has demonstrated an interest in issues affecting underserved populations.
- Submits a compelling personal statement and a strong letter of recommendation.
Apply directly on the SHPEP website. The deadline is generally in early February or late January. See website for exact deadline.
Applications will only be reviewed by designated program sites once the National Program Office processes the following materials in accordance with the admissions guidelines:
- The online SHPEP application, which includes one essay prompt (Personal Statement Guidelines). An AAMC account is required to access the application. Register for an AAMC account if you do not already have one.
- One official transcript from every U.S., U.S. Territorial, or Canadian post-secondary institution attended sent directly by the institution’s registrar’s office. Please review the Transcript Requirements section for more information.
- One letter of recommendation from a qualified reference. Please review the Recommendation Requirements section for more information.