Cody Weisel '19


Name: Cody Weisel

Graduation Year: 2019

Major: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Your Story: I grew up in Alexandria Minnesota and came to Gustavus because of the great
reputation of the science program and the small town atmosphere. I became
interested in the medical field in high school and slowly immersed myself into the
field to gain exposure. The summer after my first year, I got my CNA (Certified
Nursing Assistant) and had the opportunity to work in a small 20 bed hospital in the small town of Glenwood MN. This experience showed me how great of an impact I
can make in peoples’ lives while working in the medical field and reaffirmed my
desire to continue along the tough premed track. It also gave me a strong desire to
work in the healthcare field in a rural setting because I saw how a strong team of
nurses and physicians can lead to a great healthcare experience for an entire

During my sophomore year, I was selected to participate in the Gustavus January
Interim Pre-Health Career Exploration program where I was able to shadow several physicians at
the Mankato Clinic facilities for over 120 hours. During this experience, I realized
that there is a ton of different paths to take in the medical field and there are so
many opportunities available to find your passion. The summer after my sophomore
year, I again worked as a CNA but this time I wanted to work in a nursing home to
gain skills working in a different setting which I found to be very beneficial.

The fall semester of my Junior year, I started studying for the MCAT for a few
hours a week. However, I really picked up my studying once my fall semester finals were
completed. I studied every day of the week for an average of 8 hours a day treating
my studying like a full-time job. I took a full-length practice exam every single week
for 6 consecutive weeks and was able to see the growth in my scores from the
studying and as my familiarity with taking an 8 hour test grew. In order to get into
medical school without taking a gap year, you need to have a very good score. After I
secured the score I had hoped for, I decided to start my application in the spring. I
chose UND for medical school because it was a great fit for me. They really put an
emphasis on rural healthcare in the North Dakota/Northern Minnesota regions
which is exactly what I want to do.

Top Five Activities/Experiences:
1. January Interim Pre-Health Career Exploration at Mankato Clinic

2. Working as a CNA in both a hospital and nursing home setting

3. Habitat for Humanity spring break trip to Lafayette Louisiana

4. Working as a TA in the Chemistry department for 6 consecutive semesters

5. Club and Intramural sports

1. Study really hard your first year, having strong grades and having a strong base of
knowledge from your first few classes is very beneficial down the road. However if
you don’t get perfect grades, don’t be discouraged. Grades don’t mean everything to
your application and you can always find ways to improve your GPA if that is a big
concern down the road.

2. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Feel free to ask profs, mentors, advisors, TA’s,
tutors, or peers about whatever you want, for the most part everyone is there to

3. Get experience! I think having a diverse profile of experiences within the medical
field is what helped me get into my top medical school on my first try. Along with that, get experience doing things that you are passionate about doing. Don’t feel like
you should check off a box, rather get involved with activities that you really enjoy.

4. Don’t forget to have fun. College is hard and you will be stressed out at times, this
happens to everyone, but don’t forget to set aside time for decompressing and
having fun doing activities that you like to do that have nothing to do with preparing
for medical school.

Future Plans:
I will be attending the University of North Dakota School of Medicine starting August 2019.

Updated 9/13/2019 HB