Coursework Descriptions

Senior Year

Sophomore Year

Social/Personal Support

Junior Year

Summer Internships

Events

Health Careers Exploration (HCE)

 

Scholars learn about factors associated with career alignment and satisfaction. Scholars conduct personal strengths assessments and participate in reflection activities to promote informed early-career decision-making. Scholars map the necessary milestones and steps necessary to achieve their desired career goal.

Culminating Project: My Academic and Professional Plan (MAPP)

Senior Year
 

College Choice and Enrollment (CCE)

Scholars complete college application follow-up steps necessary to enroll in their college of choice. Scholars receive support managing financial aid verification process, choosing a college, completing campus registration/enrollment steps

Culminating Goal: Matriculate into a best-fit college

College Essay Writing (CEW)

Scholars learn to write engaging and highly compelling personal narratives to meet all supplemental essay requirements for college applications. Scholars learn to write strategic essays that highlight their candidate strengths, professional experiences, and growth. 

Culminating Goal: Supplemental essay completion

Financial Aid Literacy

Scholars learn content knowledge related to the college financial aid system, including topics related to: filling out the FAFSA and CSS profile, understanding financial aid packages, applying for student loans, managing family tax and wage-earning documents, executing financial aid verification steps and applying for strategic scholarships.

College Application Support

Scholars complete steps necessary for complete submission of college applications by the earliest fall deadlines. Scholars are closely managed by support interns through the entire college application process to ensure successful submission.

Culminating Project: Complete college applications submission

Financial Aid Literacy

Scholars learn content knowledge related to the college financial aid system, including topics related to: filling out the FAFSA and CSS profile, understanding financial aid packages, applying for student loans, managing family tax and wage-earning documents, executing financial aid verification steps and applying for strategic scholarships.

College Application Support

Scholars complete steps necessary for complete submission of college applications by the earliest fall deadlines. Scholars are closely managed by support interns through the entire college application process to ensure successful submission.

Culminating Project: Complete college applications submission

 
Junior Year

Early College Apps 

Scholars complete preliminary college application steps: personal statement, resume, and college list draft in preparation for the upcoming college application process in the fall.

 

Culminating Project: Personal statement, resume and college list completion

Research Foundations

Scholars prepare for their upcoming summer research internship by learning lab safety protocol, basic lab techniques (such as micro-pipetting and bacterial plate streaking), and dilution/solution calculations.

 

Culminating Assessment: Demonstrated skill proficiency via lab practical exams

SAT Verbal 

Scholars learn SAT-related critical reading skills to prepare to take the SAT. Scholars aim to demonstrate mastery in concept-indexed SAT question types.

 

Culminating Goal: 10 full-length practice exam completion

SAT Math 

Scholars continue to learn SAT math problem-solving skills to prepare to take the SAT. Scholars aim to demonstrate mastery in concept-indexed SAT question types.

 

Culminating Goal: 10 full-length practice exam completion

Medical Technology

Through a partnership with Code in the Schools, scholars learn about technological advancements related in the medical field, and underlying S.T.E.M. concepts (robotics, circuitry, data analytics).

 

Culminating Project: Design a phone app to combat health disparities

 
Sophomore Year

Math Foundations

Scholars learn the necessary foundational skills necessary to begin SAT standardized test preparation work during their junior year. Course focuses on key concepts covered in algebra and geometry.

 

Culminating Assessment: Math proficiency exam

Introduction to Health Disparities

Scholars analyze the complex factors that affect health inequity in Baltimore. Scholars learn about root causes of health disparities in Baltimore through the lens of social and environmental determinants of health. 

 

Culminating Project: Clinical and health disparities poster

Medical Anatomy and Physiology

Scholars learn about human body systems through a combination of advanced classroom. based instruction and engaging hands-on dissection and clinical simulation activities.

 

Culminating Project: Clinical and health disparities poster

 
Summer Internships

“Art of Medicine” Internship

Scholars complete a six-week clinical internship that provides them with opportunities for real-world exposure to diverse healthcare professions through daily shadowing experiences at hospitals across the city and weekly guest speaker panels. Scholars also participate in classroom-based activities to learn about diverse health careers and complete high-rigor, high-volume clinical homework assignments.

Culminating Goal(s): Increased health career investment, improved study skills

 

Culminating Assessment: Rigorous weekly exams and final exam

“Science of Medicine” Internship

Scholars conduct independent research based on their interests under the guidance of a research mentor. Scholars participate directly in the research process, engaging in projects that drive scientific discovery and medical advancement. Scholars not only learn science content but also build tangible laboratory skills proficiency in advanced lab techniques such as: gel electrophoresis, western blot, bacterial cloning, and DNA extraction.

 

Culminating Assessment: Demonstrated skill proficiency via lab practical exams

Culminating Project: Research poster

 

College Application Bootcamp

Scholars will create their supplemental application essays and begin college applications as of the release date of college applications. 

 

Scholar Support

Advisory Groups

All Scholars receive at least three hours of formal one-on-one, in-person time with their advisor and at least 90 minutes of additional informal support from their advisor per term (fall, spring, summer). Advisors provide scholars with support to accomplish personal/professional/academic goals, secure at least two mentors and three supportive adults within the MERIT family, and improve growth mindset and ownership of personal success.

Scholar Government Association

Elected scholars build leadership and communication skills through real-world projects and opportunities for development. Scholars co-lead winter and summer party events, act as liaisons between the MERIT staff and their respective cohorts, and lead professional symposiums as emcees and hosts. Scholars participate in monthly SGA meetings with MERIT’s SSM.

Family Engagement

Parents develop knowledge and skills to support their child’s success in the MERIT program. Parents participate in monthly, cohort-specific workshops with our Scholar Support Manager. Parents also receive weekly Scholar newsletter e-blasts and targeted monthly emails with reminders, resources and opportunities for receiving individualized support.

Scholar Government Association

Elected scholars build leadership and communication skills through real-world projects and opportunities for development. Scholars co-lead winter and summer party events, act as liaisons between the MERIT staff and their respective cohorts, and lead professional symposiums as emcees and hosts. Scholars participate in monthly SGA meetings with MERIT’s SSM.

Mentoring

Scholars will participate in 3-5 networking events to improve communication/professionalism skills and provide opportunities to connect with diverse professionals. Scholars will receive coaching from the Scholar Support Manager to secure two personal/professional mentors of their choice, based on their individual needs, preferences and areas of growth. Scholars will  receive coaching from the SSM on how to maintain and maximize mentor-mentee relationships.

 
Events

MERIT Research Symposium

Junior scholars have the opportunity to present their Sophomore clinical/health disparity poster projects and Senior scholars have the opportunity to present their SMI research posters to a diverse audience at a research symposium. (SMI scholars also have the opportunity to present this research at the Johns Hopkins Medicine C.A.R.E.S. symposium during the summer prior).

Scholar Impact Symposium

Scholars have the opportunity to present their Brancati Fellowship projects to a diverse audience at a research symposium.

Medical Leadership Course

Selected candidates for admission to the MERIT program participate in a three-week holistic selection process designed to assess candidates’ academic foundational skills and alignment with MERIT program core values and competencies (coachability, ability to follow directions, curiosity/intellectual drive and personal character/resilience). New scholars are selected based on the strength of their initial application, performance on formal assessments and interviews, and informal performance throughout the MLC process.

Summer Party

Scholars celebrate completion of Saturday session courses and engage with MERIT peers, family members and staff in a fun, carnival-style party.    

College Tours

During the Baltimore City Public School System spring break, Sophomores and Junior scholars embark on a weeklong out-of-state college tour, visiting schools from Baltimore to Atlanta. During the tours, MERIT scholars gain exposure to a wide variety of college settings, giving them the tools and experiences to determine their ideal learning environment. Throughout the school year, Sophomore and Junior Scholars tour at least five colleges in the surrounding Baltimore and Philadelphia area.

Alumni Luncheons

Alumni graduates of the program celebrate bi-annual luncheons with MERIT staff members. Luncheons are intended to gather updated data on program alumni, re-engage alumni with program staff, and foster community between and among cohorts.

College Tours

During the Baltimore City Public School System spring break, Sophomores and Junior scholars embark on a weeklong out-of-state college tour, visiting schools from Baltimore to Atlanta. During the tours, MERIT scholars gain exposure to a wide variety of college settings, giving them the tools and experiences to determine their ideal learning environment. Throughout the school year, Sophomore and Junior Scholars tour at least five colleges in the surrounding Baltimore and Philadelphia area.

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1 North Haven Street, Suite 4

Baltimore, MD 21224

leadership@meritbaltimore.org

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© 2019 By Medical Education Resources Initiative for Teens (MERIT), a 501(c)(3) organization.