Thomas Schumann '19


Name: Thomas Lee Schumann

Graduation Year: 2019

Major: Biology

Your Story:
Hello! I grew up in Litchfield, Minnesota (pop. 6,000). I knew in high school
that I wanted to pursue medicine, but was unsure where to go from there. I chose
Gustavus for its strong science curriculum and approachable professors! The Saint
Peter area was also a great fit for me as I enjoy hunting and fishing.

Coming into Gustavus, I was convinced research was the, and I
was going to do as much of it as I could. I did a research exploration over my first J-
Term and quickly realized that basic science bench research was not for me, at all. I
was worried about this at first because everyone had told me how important
research was for getting into medical school (yikes!). However, I soon realized there
are many types of research, and there is no cookie-cutter way to get in.

I spent my four years at Gustavus exploring the things that did actually
interest me! I learned that I enjoyed clinical research and got involved with HCMC
(Hennepin County Medical Center) in Minneapolis. I also enjoyed honing my skills as
a leader throughout various leadership roles in organizations on campus (captain of
the swim team and president of Alpha Chi Delta). I also developed a passion for
youth mentoring, so, I got involved with big partner little partner and sought out a
volunteer position with Royal Family Kids Camp (shameless plug, check it out!).

Top Five Activities/Experiences: (in no particular order)
1. Volunteer with Royal Family Kids
2. President of Alpha Chi Delta
3. Clinical concussion research with HCMC
4. Member of the Men’s Swim and Dive Team
5. J-term pre-med career exploration at HCMC during sophomore year


1. RELAX! If you put in your best effort, you will reach your goals. So, take time to
slow down and enjoy time doing things you like to do. Reduce your stress! Work
harder than anyone else, but relax even harder. (If you’re here reading this now, I’m
confident you are the type of student who will succeed with hard work, so give
yourself an extra break now and then).

2. Crush your MCAT. Study like you’ve never studied before. I knew I wanted to go
direct from Gustavus to medical school, so a stellar MCAT was a must. Start studying
at least 6 months before your test. Create a schedule and treat studying like your

3. Do what you WANT to do! Do not do something just to put it on your application.
Your life will be miserable for four years if you do this. I knew I did not like bench
research so I found other ways to do clinical and field research. If you have a passion
for mentoring, be a mentor! If leadership excites you, be a leader! There is no one
way to get into medical school that is the best. I chose to make sure I excelled
academically and had tons of volunteering and leadership. Other people choose to
fill more time with less volunteering and more research! Mix and match the things
you want to do that show you are a caring human and not a robot who tests well.

Future Plans:
I will be attending the University of Minnesota Twin Cities Medical School
starting in August of 2019. I also applied for and accepted the United States Navy
Health Professions Scholarship Program (full tuition, bonuses, and monthly stipends
for medical school). After medical school I hope to pursue a surgical residency
through the Navy and practice combat medicine with them.