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MERIT Eligibility
Are You a Good Fit for MERIT?

Sophomore in High School

Live in Baltimore City or attend a Baltimore City high school

2.5 or Higher Unweighted GPA

MERIT Application Process


Obtain Recommendation Letters

You will need it to complete the application


Get A Copy of Your Transcript


You will need it to complete the application

 Deadline: November 29, 2024

Write Your Essays and Complete Online Application


Finalist will be invited to attend an Extensive interview on one of the following Saturdays 12/2,12/9,12/16.


If you are a finalist...

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Prepare these items BEFORE starting the online application

Recommendation Letters:

We require two recommendation letters. One from a STEM teacher, and one from another teacher, counselor, work supervisor, or other non-family member adult. You will upload your recommendation letter when you complete the online application.

 Here is a link to a template you may provide to your teachers"


Essays will be submitted in the online application. We recommend that you prewrite your essays in a separate document and copy/paste answers in the online application

1. Personal Statement (0-350 words)

MERIT is a program for students interested in becoming leaders in health professions and medicine. Tell us about yourself and describe why you would be an excellent candidate for this program.

2. Creative Statement (0-350 words)

If accepted into MERIT, how could your success positively impact your community?[Strongly advise to not skip] 


Please obtain a transcript from your guidance counselor(unofficial is fine). You will upload your transcript when you complete the online application

Make sure you have everything ready!

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I apply?

Joining MERIT Health Leadership Academy is a big decision and should involve discussions with family members, teachers, friends, and other supporters.  MERIT provides as much support as possible to our scholars as they work hard to reach their individual goals.  MERIT not only exposes scholars to various careers in health care through hands-on experiences in hospitals and laboratories, but we also provide guidance through the college admissions and financial aid process.  We support our scholars through the toughest challenges and are there to celebrate their accomplishments.

What are the responsibilities of being a Scholar?

During the school year, MERIT Scholars are required to attend weekly Saturday Sessions.  During both summers, MERIT Scholars participate in paid summer internships working in hospitals and research laboratories.  MERIT Scholars are mentored  (local undergraduates, graduate students, or young professionals working in health care) throughout the three year program.  We also expect MERIT Scholars to complete all homework assignments related to SAT prep, medicine, professional skill development, health inequalities, and the college admissions process.   


What is the application and selection process?

We recommend that you ask one of your teachers or guidance counselors to help you complete Steps 1-3 outlined above.


applicants who are determined to be a strong fit for our program will be invited to participate in a rigorous interview day which will include participation in MERIT activities/classes; a 'regular' interview where you are asked questions about yourself; interactions with current MERIT scholars; observations about your punctuality, engagement, attitude, and more. This long process allows the MERIT staff to better understand the strengths of each applicant. Participation in interview Days are mandatory for admission into MERIT. Interview Days will take place on the following dates, between 9am and 3pm. Exact times TBA. Expect to be on site for multiple hours.


Saturday, December 2nd

Saturday, December 9th

Saturday, December 16th


Scholars will be notified for admissions decisions after the New Year. Those admitted will join during the Spring Semester with Saturday classes to begin in February 2024.


What are the selection criteria?

Applicants to MERIT are evaluated in terms of our five core values:


Equity: MERIT Scholars dream of becoming doctors, nurses, dentists, and other health care providers, and are particularly interested in making Baltimore City a healthier place. 


Excellence: MERIT Scholars' relentless natures allow them to reach accomplishments others deem impossible. Scholars demonstrate a history of perseverance and academic achievement, particularly in reading, writing, mathematics, and science. 


Growth: MERIT Scholars seek opportunities to improve and humbly welcome critical feedback. Meeting expectations is not enough; we are looking for those who strive to be great. 


Family: MERIT Scholars form a strong bond with their MERIT family. They are willing to work together and support other MERIT Scholars during times of need. 


Ownership: MERIT Scholars have a deep understanding of how present actions directly lead to future consequences, not only for themselves, but more importantly for those around them.

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